As expected for one of the lightest mechs in the game, the damage benchmark is lackluster. The 1E deals around 5 points of damage per turn at long and extreme range. At medium range this increases slightly, with the largest increase occurring when the pair of SLas come into play. The benchmark algorithm assumes that the subject mech is moving in formation, simulating a methodical closing pattern consistent with the average engagement - but the battlefield reality is that the Locust could close a 48" gap in just 4 turns - something to keep in mind.
The LCT-1E is equipped with a respectable 4 tons of armor, which provides almost 100% coverage for a 20 tonner. Unfortunately, the designers of the mech opted for over-armoring the torso and leg sections at the expense of the arms. Considering the arms are the the only weapon locations for this Locust variant, this can be problematic. A single LLas shot to either arm will blow it clean off (with a point of damage to spare), along with 50% of the 1E's weaponry.
In the defensive benchmark test, the Locust survived 17% of the simulations. Thanks to an energy-based loadout, 1E pilots do not need to worry about ammunition explosions, but motive hits were a leading contributor to the destruction of the mech; speed is definitely life for the Locust. As the Locust closed and the number of motive hits piled up, the LCT-1E saw an inflection point in the the kill count. Higher-than-average leg armor is keeping this mech moving as fast as possible, for as long as possible. Ultimately, a 17% survivability is above-average or a 20 ton mech - but it is still very vulnerable to being slagged fairly quickly.
The Locust has an incredible ground speed, but lacks jump jets to navigate particularly challenging terrain. Regardless, a top speed of 129.6 kph allows it to plough through most difficulties while still proving to be a hard target for attackers. The Locust can afford to turn up to 120 degrees, or conduct two elevation changes, and still claim one of the best target modifiers available to mechs.
The Locust is a featherweight and lacks the punch to serve as a dedicated strike mech. However, against other light mechs or vehicles, the LCT-1E can deal out a respectable amount of damage for its size. This mech can also be used support heavier lancemates; by relying on agility and top speed, the Locust can position for rear-armor shots to distract enemy brawlers.
The Locust lacks the durability and range to play this role effectively.
This Locust variant has no long-range firepower, however the 1M variant could potentially fill this role.
The LCT-1E is, first and foremost, a reconnaissance mech designed to secure objectives, but not hold them. Keep the Locust out of harms way during the opening turns of the game, then use obscene ground speed to out maneuver, out flank, and outrun your opponent to those late-game victory points.
There are a two notable issues with the LCT-1E that can be easily remedied. The first issue is the distribution of armor. Peel one pip off each leg and move it to the respective arm; this allows each arm to sustain a full medium laser shot without suffering any damage to the internal structure. The second issue is the placement of the weapons; this can be solved by moving the MLas back to the center torso. Note that this modification will limit the effectiveness of the mech when arm-flipping, but seems to be a reasonable trade-off for keeping its weaponry intact longer.