In Lancer, Heat damage is a powerful high-risk/high-reward tool against both players' and elite NPCs' mechs. Unlike regular damage, enough Heat not only turns an opposing mech into a powerful delayed-timer bomb that can potentially oneshoot the exploding mech's allies, it also narratively removes the exploded mech for the immediate future regardless of which side wins or loses the combat.
This got me excited for a Heat-dealing character build...
...at least until I read a couple of times the Core Rulebook, Section 5 The GM's toolkit, page 281:
Some NPCs, like mechs, have a Heat Cap. By default, these characters have 1 Stress and become Exposed when they exceed their Heat Cap instead of making an overheating check. NPCs with additional Stress follow the standard rules for overheating.
If I'm reading this correctly, this means that in a typical Lancer campaign - where most NPCs mechs have 1 Stress due to having either no or the Grunt template - a PC optimised for dealing Heat damage would most of the time be unable to kill enemy mechs with their main gimmick, and instead would only serve as an unefficient debuffer depending on multiple rolls for a single debuff.
Am I missing something, or is optimising for Heat-dealing really an impractical dead end?