For the Badger one, my friend also got severely trolled on this, no matter what he did it wouldn't pick the Badger up... here's what I did on mine and his that worked perfectly both times.... Capture the watchtower near the crane...bring your two groups (obviously one group must be engineers) there on higher gound to reset the Badger's Arrival Countdown...once it's reset, walk one group underneath where you would estimate the claw to land....now activate the crane with the other group... I did this as a test and only wanted to see if hypothetically the claw would land on my group so I could try the same on the Badger...instead it instantly activated the cutscene and the Badger was caught. So basically it seems you can in fact catch him without him being present, thus stopping your guys from getting mangled along the way. I do not know if this is a perfect solution, but it worked for me on the first try both times I did it.