Errrrrr: Hawken’s Live-Action Series

By Nathan Grayson on July 28th, 2012 at 12:00 pm.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the next trend in videogame advertising is either Broadway shows, musicals, or anything involving the words '...On Ice.'

Ah yes, escalation. One game gets a live-action trailer, then all the games get live-action trailers. And now, Hawken‘s taking things to new heights with its very own live-action series – a series being headed up by Warner Bros, no less. And it stars Edi Gathegi, who’s played major roles on everything from House to X-Men: First Class. It’s set to kick off in 2013, but the first trailer – which, if it were really staying true to the logic of these things, would only come in the form of a paperback novel – is now available for your viewing… pleasure?

Right then. By all accounts, it looks like a continuation of that live-action trailer from earlier this year – exceedingly low special effects budget and all – so I guess someone liked it. And while Hawken: The Web Series Of The Trailer Of The Game looks to focus on why we war, Hawken: The Game On Which The Trailer That’s Spawned A Series has no real story to speak of. Adhesive has, however, expressed interest in eventually creating a single-player component, but it apparently doesn’t have the resources to do so right now.

At any rate, hopefully the series will be better than it looks, but, well, games and live-action productions don’t exactly have the best track record. Still though, between this and productions like Defiance, people seem extremely interested in directly bridging the very wide gap between the two sides. And I do think it could be pretty great if executed with proper care.

I mean, look at Metro: Last Light’s live-action short. No killing, very little violence. Hell, there weren’t even any metros in it. But it took the strengths of the medium into account and leveraged them to explore a place in the universe that the games had kept clear of in goosebump-inducing fashion. So these things can work. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go back to reading my novelization of Metal Gear Solid 2.

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37 Comments »

  1. CobraLad says:

    Are they playing Call of Duty or in the middle of explosive mech-fighting? I see no difference in their faces.

  2. SuperNashwanPower says:

    Did that STALKER series ever happen?

  3. caddyB says:

    When did they even stop being indie?

  4. Malawi Frontier Guard says:

    I can’t wait for the volleyball scene.

  5. JackDandy says:

    Looks neat…

    But wouldn’t that money be better spent on the actual game?

    • GoodKnight says:

      see the problem with your post is that it makes sense..

      • Henke says:

        It does? I was under the impression that WB was making the series, which I guess means that the developer sold them the rights to do so and MADE a little money in the process. Money which can then further fund the development of the game.

        Of course I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes. The dev might well have give the license away free just for the opportunity to get some extra exposure for their game.

  6. LionsPhil says:

    The more this behaves like a Big AAA Game, the less interesting it is.

    Wish they’d released back when it was more-or-less an incredibly pretty UT3 mod.

    • AlwaysRight says:

      Agreed.
      I was much more interested when this was a little indie title made by a handful of passionate devs… am I a stinky hipster now?

    • CptPlanet says:

      Even though you dont know how the game was and has changed through its development….I guess releasing a live action trailer is a bit mainstream now.

      • LionsPhil says:

        The problem is that they think this is good. That then calls into question their decisions in developing the game since that earlier point, yes.

        The live-action stuff isn’t just a distraction from game-making; it’s badly written cliched tripe.

    • Roshin says:

      I agree. It’s taking too long and it feels like they’ve been steadily losing focus for a while. I used to be pretty stoked about Hawken, but I don’t really care much now.

      • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

        When they teased it, it had eyeball-popping visuals. At this rate, they might release it just in time for it to have a retro visual style.

  7. AshEnke says:

    I thought that the idea behind Hawken was to be more than just a game but a transmedia franchise set in the same universe with webseries and comic books.
    Is it just a live action trailer or the first episode of the webserie ?

  8. Calabi says:

    It looks a bit silly to me.

    “Renegade wants to save the planet.” No one says that(except maybe at beauty pagents).

  9. Dunbine says:

    You had me at “Mechwarrior Online”.

  10. Unaco says:

    Are these people (Adhesive Games) mad or something? They had themselves a hit… fast paced, mech based, city set, flying Robot shooty, pew-pew, ‘splodey deathmatch that, from the very first trailer had people excited and interested. I think it was Mr Jom Rissignol who said something along the lines of “Hot damn!” in regards to some of the footage. Even I was interested, despite the mechs not feeling “stompy” enough for me.

    Now… It’s 18 months later and we don’t have it in our hands/on our harddrives. And we’re unlikely to have it any time soon… what with their silly, silly Gaikai exclusivity nonsense deal. And Live action trailers. And now this. Which looks appalling. I’m gonna sayit’ll be worse than Battletech: the Animated Series.

    Just stick to the game first. Get that done, get that tight, get it right… then build your franchise from there.

    Speaking of live action series… whatever happened to that Felicia Day vehicle/Dragon Age sh*te? I remember I watched the first episode (and nearly threw up it was so hilarious) because it was linked here… but never saw the 2nd episode. Did they bury it (and the cast) in an underwater trench? Nuke it from orbit? Take them all out back and shoot them? It was so, so, so bad it was… bad, I guess. But watching and thinking they actually thought it was worth releasing was mighty amusing.

    • kibble-n-bullets says:

      Now I feel like I’ve had my head up my ass somewhat. Was it really 18 months ago that the trailer took over the internet? Way to let the enthusiasm boil off boys. I’d wager that given the enthusiasm over Hawken back then any sane business model would have been profitable for the small dev team. But I guess they’d rather make corporations money and relinquish control. Now I am less enthusiastic.

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      The thing is, us folks who read gaming blogs and websites are actually the minority (albeit a pretty big one): People for whom gaming is a serious hobby we are passionate about. These kinds of trailers, the ads, DLC etc, are aimed at the fickle and difficult-to-capture mainstream market, for whom this kind of stuff really works. I recently had this rammed home at work, discovering a few guys who have consoles and play Call Of Duty. They have no clue about the world of games out there – its just like renting a DVD to them. For those guys, the very things that turn you and I off, are exactly what is most likely to work on them. They follow the CoD#s like they follow the Batman movies. Does that make us hipsters? Maybe. I can understand feeling angry – its the sense of having something that felt special turned into something more hollow and superficial. But: Money.

      Hopefully there will be a good experience to be had in here anyway.

  11. kibble-n-bullets says:

    I’m oh so digging the aesthetic of mechs as clunky, brutish weapons. Personally though, if I was in charge I’d spends the bucks on the game. But more business models is an interesting thing.

  12. Solidstate89 says:

    It honestly reminds me of the opening for Phantom Crash in both good and bad ways. The fact the the special effects they’re using has barely improved over what was a game I owned on the original Xbox is lackluster. But I did always love the opening to this game. And the game itself. Hawken reminds me a lot of Phantom crash, in a bigger and better kind of way.

  13. The_Great_Skratsby says:

    So it’s, MechWarrior 4 Introductory Film: The Webseries.

  14. Berzee says:

    So um…

    I am forced to admit that I actually kind of liked that,
    and would likely watch more and even more of it.

    >_>

  15. BMau.ro says:

    Four brawny dudes must band together to rescue the princess kidnapped young female. Sigh…

  16. Phasma Felis says:

    Honestly? I don’t care if this is good or not. I just want it to be popular. Anything that brings mechs more into the Western mainstream will mean more awesome videogames and more chance of big-screen, big-budget mech movies.

    That, and I don’t get the folks complaining that this will hurt the game somehow. Adhesive Games is not making this series. Warner Brothers is. Adhesive probably has one guy working with them part-time, and maybe their graphics & animation guys spent a few hours prepping 3D models to send to WB’s guys. The worst that can happen is that it flops and the Adhesive guys are disappointed. Remember the BattleTech and Heavy Gear cartoons? They were awful, but they didn’t hurt the games any, and I think the BT one even made FASA a little money. So chill out!

    Also, it’s interesting how today’s “exceedingly low special effects budget” looks about a thousand times better than 1972′s “big-budget special-effects extravaganza.” How times change…

  17. MrUnimport says:

    WOW THIS INDIE MECH SHOOTER GAME LOOKS REALLY FUN AND EXCITING

    OH WAIT, THEY’RE MAKING DEALS WITH CORPORATIONS AND TAKING A WHILE TO PRODUCE THE GAME

    BORING GAMEPLAY, 0/10, TERRIBLE ART STYLE, WON’T BUY

    • MrUnimport says:

      That said, “Hawken virus” is a fairly uncompelling namesake, I kind of wish the name had gone unexplained, and our hero needs to work on his thousand-yard-stare.

  18. MeestaNob says:

    Look at all that wonderful money being spent on things that AREN’T A SINGLE PLAYER CAMPAIGN.

  19. MDefender says:

    With the in-game graphics looking better than whatever this is, you’d think it’d be cheaper and better to just use those? Make the tie-in more believable (and put some actual machinima on the machinima youtube channel)? Maybe that kind of rapport between director and developer doesn’t exist. Unfortunate, if that is the case.

    Some details about the game and setting beyond “transmedia franchise eta 2012″ would be nice, especially at this advanced stage.

  20. Hazzard65 says:

    Man what a bunch of cynical shits. It looks kind of neat, if not a little cheesy. A bit like Above and Beyond.

    What the hell is wrong with you people though? Seriously. Fuck off.

    And you know what, while I am at it. I don’t play Call of Duty, I personally find it samey and repetitive, that’s why I stopped playing. MW1 was amazing and I loved that, it was the last one I bought. If you like this sort of thing though good for you. What ever floats your boat. GOD SPEED.

    If you don’t like it, do us ALL A FUCKING FAVOR and give it a rest with the incessant whinging. My god everywhere I go I see these cynical, whingy internet whores moaning about everything under the damn sun. You all remind me of the kind of tits that comment on youtube’s classical music “I’m 12, sorry for the music today”. Don’t be sorry, don’t hate a piece of entertainment.

    If you have to feel so damn strongly about something, why not try poverty. Why not try war. Motivate yourself to make a difference in the world and stop getting so fucking upset OVER A VIDEO GAME YOU FUCKING LOSERS.

    • Gira says:

      IF YOU ARE NEGATIVE ABOUT SOMETHING I LIKE YOU ARE A FUCKING LOSER

    • hello_mr.Trout says:

      comeon mr. hazzard, it was a generic piece of trash, with sub-par acting and story line, loosly tacked on to a video game in the hopes of establishing some kind of franchise empire – it deserves to be called out on being below average. also, i am sure many people on this site are making a difference in the world – and in their spare time, they play and have opinions on video games. you should calm down, and be more reflective about what you write (in my opinion).

  21. Hazzard65 says:

    It was much easier to throw that out there and see what happens, than think about it before I wrote it.

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