Viewing Weapons & Equipment
Weapon & Equipment Information
General Details
Name:  Small Shield
Type (Category):  Equipment (Melee)
Reference:  Tactical Operations: Advanced Units & Equipment (p. 102)

From hastily wielded armor plates to well designed ‘Mech additions, shields are a common sight in the lower-class arenas of several game worlds. The most effective versions, of course, were developed on Solaris shortly before the Jihad (where they had yet to advance beyond the prototype phase before Blakist forces attacked and seized that world). If used well, the ’Mech-scale shield has definite potential in combat, though its bulk can hinder a ’Mech’s mobility and combat effectiveness.

Game Rules:
All three sizes of BattleMech Shield have a Damage Absorbance (DA) factor, a Damage Capacity (DC) factor, a Shield Bash to-hit modifier and a Mobility Modifier (as indicated in the ’Mech Shield Table). A shield’s DA indicates how effective it is against incoming damage, while its DC indicates if it is still functioning. A shield’s Bash modifier indicates the to-hit modifier applied when making a special Shield Bash attack, and its Mobility Modifier indicates the shield’s effect on a ’Mech’s Walking, Running and Jumping MPs when carrying a shield. A shield with either a DC or DA value of 0 is no longer effective in combat, but continues to impose movement modifiers until all of the shield’s critical slots are destroyed (or the shield-carrying arm is destroyed/blown off). Shields cannot be jettisoned.

Shields are primarily used to defend against most weapon and physical attacks (though they cannot protect against damage caused by successful Death-from-Above attacks, Charge attacks, mines, damage from buildings, falls or heat-effect damage, and they have no effect on floating criticals scored against locations being protected). When a shield is used to defend a location against an attack, subtract the Shield’s current DA from the attack damage and apply any remaining points to the hit location protected by the shield. (Damage that does not strike a shield is resolved normally.) Regardless of whether or not the damage penetrates the shield, the shield reduces its DC by 1. Weapons using the Cluster Hits table regard every cluster as a separate hit against the shield. Critical hits to the shield subtract 1 from the DA and 5 from the DC, while hits to the actuators of the arm mounting a shield subtract 1 from DA and 1 from DC (double for the shoulder).

To use a shield, the user must declare at the end of his Movement Phase whether the shield is being employed in passive, active or inactive defense modes.

Active Defense Mode: In this mode, a shield protects all of the ‘Mech’s locations except for the rear center torso, the side torso (front and rear) opposite to the shield-using arm, and the opposite-side arm and leg. Weapons (including AMS) mounted in a shield-protected location cannot be used in the same turn the shield is protecting them in active defense mode, nor can a unit using a Shield in this fashion make a physical attack that involves its protected locations. If a unit has two shields, both in active defense mode, and is hit in the center torso, the unit’s controller chooses which shield takes the hit.

Passive Defense Mode: In this mode, a shield protects only its own arm and the front side torso adjacent to that arm. Weapons and equipment protected by a shield in passive defense mode can be used in the same turn, but at a +2 to-hit modifier. During the Physical Attack Phase, a shield in this mode may also be used to deliver a special attack called a Shield Bash (as long as no other weapons in the shield arm were used in the Weapon Attack Phase). The Shield Bash attacks as a Physical Weapon Attack with a to-hit modifier equal to the value shown in the Shield bash column of the Shield Table. This attack uses the Hatchet’s ability to use the Punch or Kick Hit Location Tables, applying all those rules appropriately. The damage from a successful Shield Bash is equal to the Shield’s current DA. This damage is not modified by system such as AES, TSM, etc. After a successful Shield Bash, the shield reduces its DC (but not its DA) by 1 point.

Inactive Defense Mode: In this mode, the Shield only protects the arm upon which it is mounted and applies a +1 to-hit modifier to any attacks made using that arm.
Unit Type Availability
Inner Sphere Data (BattleMechs)
Prototype Date:  3067
Production Date:  3079
Extinction Date:  
Recovery Date:  

BattleMech Specific Construction Rules
May be mounted on Inner Sphere units in accordance with the following construction rules:
 May only be mounted in the Arms
 Not allowed if Medium Shield, or Large Shield is mounted in the same location
 May mount up to one per location

Damage (Aero)
Range (Aero)
Cost (C-bills)
Weight (Tons)
Battle Value
3* (–)
–/1/–/– (–)
50.000 †
* See rules for this equipment
Defensive Battle Value

Start Year
End Year
Rules Level

Special Abilities
BattleMech Shield, Melee

Special Unit Abilities
The special unit abilities described here are intended for use with the Alpha Strike rule system:
 BattleMech Shield (SHLD)
Shield-bearing ’Mechs gain some protection against weapon and physical attacks at the expense of their own attack accuracy. To reflect this, shield-equipped units reduce the damage from most weapons and physical attacks by 1 point (to a minimum of 0). Indirect attacks, heat-causing attacks, and area-effect attacks (such as artillery and bombs) are not dampened by the shield and thus deliver full damage. All weapon attacks made by a ’Mech with this ability incur an additional +1 Target Number modifier.

 Melee (MEL)
This special ability indicates that the ’Mech is equipped with a physical attack weapon, and adds 1 additional point of physical attack damage on a successful Melee-type physical attack.

MegaMek Output → Critical Slot:  ISSmallShield
Record Sheet Output → Critical Slot:  Small Shield