Maintaining liquidity is a critical component of the campaign in Battletech. If you ever run out of funds, you go under - and from there wind up spaced or in debtor's prison, which is frequently the same on the frontier. DropShips require ongoing maintenance, fuel, and supplies to stay in operation. Additionally, each battle-ready 'Mech incurs an ongoing maintenance cost, and upgrades to the DropShip's internal systems will also increase the overall operating costs. To reduce operating costs, move 'Mechs to storage.
- Contracts, contracts, contracts - the bread, butter, and mech grease of any mercenary company. These represent your bread and butter of your income. You can haggle with the contract giver to either receive more salvage or more C-bills, depending on your needs. Of course, the harder the contract, the more money you get - but it's important to remember that all damage taken and ammo expended is an expense of its own, so take care you don't get in over your head and wind up at a loss, even with a successful contract.
- Any mech or part sales also contribute to your bank account, but represent a trivial amount of money in the beginning. However, once you start salvaging more and more stuff from the battlefield, this can change.
- The basic level of expenditure for your company's operating costs can be set at the beginning of each billing period, and set to five levels from spartan to extravagant. The specific level determines how far your company's funds will stretch and whether Morale is positively or negatively impacted.
- Additionally, any purchases, travel costs, and random events can affect your C-bill level instantly.
- Operating costs
- The Argo is a large, complex, and poorly understood piece of hardware on which your life depends, as well as your livelihood. Keeping it operational is the most important quarterly expense your company has, and this encompasses repairs, maintenance, supply replenishment, and a degree of luck. This represents the baseline operating costs and can can never be reduced.
- Argo upgrades range from repair of existing systems to replacement to installation of entirely new systems, facilities, and amenities. The engineers and techs responsible for these systems work constantly to keep everything running smoothly, and that work is expensive. Note that upgrades are permanent increases to the operating costs of the Argo and cannot be reduced, so choose wisely.
- Keeping a BattleMech in a state of combat readiness is expensive, even above the cost of any specific repairs. Between routine maintenance, resupply of consumables like ammo and armor, and the minor tinkering needed to keep centuries-old war machines operational, the costs add up quickly. To reduce this expense, you can move one or more of your readied 'Mechs to storage. Make sure you keep enough readied 'Mechs that you can deploy a full combat lance, though.
- Medics are skilled professionals, and medics willing to leave the relative safety of a planet to travel with a rough-and-tumble mercenary company are rare. Still, they're a critical part of the crew, especially when MechWarriors come back from battle injured and are out of action for weeks or even months. To reduce this expense, you can fire one or more of your medics, but be aware that MechWarriors will take longer to heal from their battle injuries.
- MechTechs are in high demand, and highly skilled MechTechs are invaluable to a mercenary company that sees frequent battle. They're aware of their worth, and demand accordingly high salaries. To reduce this expense, you can fire one or more of your MechTechs, but be aware that your repairs and refits will take longer to complete.
- MechWarriors are highly paid professionals, and more effective and skilled MechWarriors will demand a higher quarterly salary as well as a high signing bonus. MechWarriors you train yourself are somewhat less expensive. To reduce this expense, you can fire one or more of your MechWarriors, or replace them with less-skilled personnel. Make sure you keep enough pilots available to deploy your lance in combat, though.
- Maintaining a proper level of financing is a matter of good planning and cautious fighting. When taking contracts, always consider taking those that cover your travel expenses first. It's free travel by JumpShip and you can usually pick another contract up at the target planet to further increase your profit margins.
- As stated above, getting in over your head on a contract is bad. Try to minimize the damage taken and ammo expended to reduce operating costs (thankfully, armor repairs are always free, so go wild there).