Affinity bonuses are gained when a pilot has completed 5, 10, and 15 missions in the same 'mech. Affinity will begin to decay after three missions spent in a different 'mech so it is possible to juggle two or sometimes even three on the same pilot if you can keep track of things.
At 5 missions the pilot gains the "Comfortable" bonus, giving them a +1 to their Piloting stat.
At 10 missions the pilot gains the "Attuned" bonus, giving them a +1 to all skills (Gunnery/Piloting/Guts/Tactics).
At 15 you unlock the good stuff: Special effects that vary depending on the 'mech your pilot is attuned to.
Missions Before Decay: 3
Missions Before Decay defines how many contracts a pilot can go on before prior affinities start to decay. Affinities decay only when you take a contract in a different mech. Example: Joe has 10 affinity for a Penetrator. He then does 4 missions in a Dire Wolf. He would gain 4 affinity for the Dire Wolf and lose 1 affinity for the Penetrator (because the first three missions do not cause decay).
Missions Before Total Affinity Loss: 13
After 13 missions out of a 'mech, a pilot loses any and all affinity for that mech, no matter what it used to be at.
Max Possible Affinity With A Mech: 18
A pilot cannot have more than 18 affinity in any specific 'mech. Benefits stop after 15, the extra three are padding to resist decay.
Lowest Possible Decay: 2
A pilot will not decay past 2 affinity in a 'mech, regardless of missions outside of that mech (as long as 13 missions are not reached, at which point all affinity is permanently lost).
- Pilot affinities can be seen in several places. In the Barracks, hovering over the pilot in the pilot list will show you their affinities. Additionally, clicking on the Biography of a selected pilot and scrolling to the bottom will show their affinities as well as the benefits granted. Finally, on the contract deployment screen hovering over a pilot will also show their affinities.
- The rank 15 affinities are all chassis-specific and are listed on that chassis's tooltip in the Mechbay (hover over that mech in the bay to see the affinity) or can be found in the Full List of Mechs or on the individual 'mech's page on the wiki.
- Affinities are by chassis not by variant. All Shadow Hawks for example have the same affinity and you can swap a pilot between Shadow Hawks without decay setting in.
The following is the list of the tier 3 affinities and their effects as found in BTA. Most of them mimic one of the quirks which 'mechs come with. Unlike quirks, which we can think of as innate bonuses, affinities can be seen as the realised potential of committing to a specific 'mech. The effectiveness of tier 3 affinities can also be dependent on the baseline capabilities of the 'mechs; some affinities significantly change the effectiveness of certain 'mechs, while others do very little and can even be a chore to get, as the mechs themselves are pretty bad. They have the ability to save a 'mech from being total rubbish, to complement their strengths, or to make them fantastic.
Pilot Affinity: Agile
Gains 1 bonus evasion from movement
Pilot Affinity: Armor Block
Gains 35% damage reduction at all times
Pilot Affinity: Brawler
Kicks, punches, and physical weapon attacks deal 15% more damage
Pilot Affinity: Command Unit
Gains +1 initiative
Pilot Affinity: Cool Running
Adds 6 bonus heat sinking
Pilot Affinity: Encouraging
+2 resolve whenever resolve is gained
Pilot Affinity: Evasive
+2 bonus against being hit
Pilot Affinity: Goomba Stomper
Takes 20% less self stability damage and deals 20% more damage when performing a DFA
Pilot Affinity: Ice Cold
Adds 9 bonus heat sinking
Pilot Affinity: Keen Eyed
15% boost to sensor and sight range
Pilot Affinity: Long-Range Specialist
+4 accuracy at extreme range, +1 accuracy at long range, -2 accuracy at short range, -3 accuracy at minimum range
Pilot Affinity: Nimble
15% more jumping distance
Pilot Affinity: Precise Shot
+1 bonus on weapon attacks
Pilot Affinity: Resistant
50% less chance to suffer critical hits
Pilot Affinity: Sharpshooter
Ignores 1 enemy evasion
Pilot Affinity: Squirrely Bastard
Gains +2 defense and +1 evasion at all times
Pilot Affinity: Stabilized
Reduces stability taken by 50%
Pilot Affinity: Sturdy
Gains 2 extra pilot hits
Pilot Affinity: Unlimited Power
Pilot Affinity: Zippy
15% boost to sprint speed!