Shrugging At Atlases: MechWarrior Tactics’ Closed Beta

By Nathan Grayson on January 10th, 2013 at 3:00 pm.

Aw, they even have matching paint jobs. That's adorable.

Mech. When you hear that word, what are the first couple things that spring to mind? “Big” is probably one, right? And the other? It’s almost assuredly “rebel.” I mean, just look at them. They clearly don’t give a goddamn about you or your rules. So MechWarrior Tactics is some kind of crazy bizarro world spin on traditional videogame rocket-’em, sock-’em robotery. In this strange alternate dimension, multiple mechs do everything you tell them, and they’re tiny widdle babies! I mean, I could just eat them up. It would cause me inconceivable amounts of pain, but I could do it. At any rate, Tactics’ closed beta just kicked off. Do you want in? OK, let me rephrase that: Do you between-$20-and-$120 want in? Well then, proceed past the break for brain-enriching infobolt.

Like MechWarrior Online before it, MechWarrior Tactics is opening up its closed beta via a Founder’s Program. It’s a three-tiered to-do, and – depending on how many perks strike your fancy – you could end up plunking down quite a bit for your strategic ker-plunking. In short, though, the $20, $50, and $120 packages vary based on amount of in-game currency you’re given, special “Seventh Kommando” mechs and mech parts, and premium account access (either one month or two) – which speeds up XP and currency gain.

All founders, however, gain access to the closed beta immediately, but remember: it’s still pretty early. Roadhouse notes that you should expect regular data wipes and problems of varying severity. Also, at the moment, it’s limited to 1v1 asynchronous matches where both players take turns swapping moves at their leisure. If you’d like to know a bit more, there’s an FAQ to bring you up to speed.

So then, mechses! Hexes! Tactics! Collectible card game and tabletop elements! Are you excited? If so, is it because of the game or my egregious overuse of exclamation points?

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40 Comments »

  1. FakeAssName says:

    Why has it become taboo to use the name “Battletech” …

    • frightlever says:

      I don’t think it’s taboo, the franchise is called MechWarrior in the same way there is an AD&D game called Baldur’s Gate.

      • FakeAssName says:

        Battletech was the franchise name, Mechwarrior was both the title for a character that piloted a mech and the name of a source book that detailed how to create RPG characters in the Battletech universe.

        Ladt i checked there has never been a dnd game tirled “adventurer’s handbook” which is what calling these game “mechwarrior” really equates too.

        ….. especially since the “mechwarrior” rules only applied to RPG characters and had nothing to do with the mechs and mech combat.

        • Dunbine says:

          Au contraire, mon frere. That sourcebook did indeed have portions dedicated to mechs. For example, how would you have known such critical information as the C-Bill cost of a Zeus and repair parts for its autocannon without your handy Mechwarrior sourcebook? And where else would 12-year olds look to see poorly drawn pictures of ladies in their undies, since its soooo hot in those mechs.

          Critical information, if you ask me.

          • FakeAssName says:

            Yeah, but the point is still that Mechwarior wad supposed to be character centric, something that this game is clearly not.

            At least “mechcommander” it was descriptive of what you were doing, and as much as it rubs me the wrong way since its got no character building systems, at least the “Mechwarrior” games are first person as a “Mechwarrior” … this really should just be titled “Battletech Online.”

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          • darlenejeffrey2 says:

            I get paid over $87 per hour working from home with 2 kids at home. I never thought I’d be able to do it but my best friend earns over 10k a month doing this and she convinced me to try. The potential with this is endless. Heres what I’ve been doing..Golden Job

        • DigitalParadox says:

          But MechWarrior is what this specific series of games is called, just as people often refer to the Warhammer 40k RTS games as “Dawn of War” rather than “Warhammer 40k”, it’s simply the name of the series.

          • darkChozo says:

            Technically, he’s right. This would be a bit like if the first 40K video game was a Dark Heresy game, and then they released an RTS title and called it Dark Heresy Wars or something, despite the 40K name (or a new name) being much more fitting. Though in this case, Mechwarrior is definitely the stronger brand name in most gamers’ eyes.

            So, the point is, now I really want someone to make a Dark Heresy game.

    • Gundato says:

      Battletech implies the whole kit and kaboodle where you have tanks, atmosphere-based air superiority fighters, power armor, etc. And, depending on the era, mechs are much less of a factor.

      Mechwarrior implies “Big battlemechs beating the crap out of each other”

      • solidsquid says:

        That does sound pretty awesome if they were to implement it, maybe a future expansion?

      • Moraven says:

        You have it already, but in FPS perspective.

        http://www.mechlivinglegends.net/

        Which is all MechWarrior then they talk about the universe as Battletech. Which I think the two terms are mostly used as. Even if they are wrong.

        Mechassault 2 had Power Armor, which was fun to play a PvP QTE game to eject pilots by hacking their mech. While not a sim like MWO is, it was still good fun.

        Mechwarrior 2 had some attack aircraft in missions, but were limited. I remember loading multiplayer and play a Elemental. Basically played like a 7 foot tall mech with a small laser and SRM 2. Star Fox 64 had this with the ability to be on foot with a rocket vs the tank and Arwing.

      • heldelance says:

        I want me some Elementals! Those things were pretty darned awesome.

  2. ilves says:

    The game seems cool, though pretty early in development to start letting people in and dropping cash, but other games have done it in worse states so I guess its nothing new. Personally I’ll wait and see a little before putting down anything.

  3. Bostec says:

    Mech when I look at it to me, turns into Heck therefore when something pisses me off and I remember I have a swear jar I usually shout out “Heck off!” so this game can “Heck off.” Swear Jar is down by £1 for remembering I have one, god bless this game instead.

  4. Moraven says:

    “asynchronous”

    Nice, have not touched anything asynchronous since playing Massive Assault Network 2. I guess s short stint of Songpop on my phone when I’m bored should be included.

    Hero Academy, come to Android please.

  5. JD Ogre says:

    Meh. Just give me and my friends a proper, faithful computer rendition (with both hotseat and network play) of BattleTech & CityTech (AeroTech can go screw itself), 3025/3026 time period ONLY (screw the Clan fanboys), and we’ll buy it. None of this money-grubbing “free” to play crap, just a complete game.

    • FakeAssName says:

      Exactly!

      3050 introduced some amazing tech, but ultimately muddled the game’s finest points.

    • Taharqa says:

      Ok, here you go:

      http://megamek.info

    • JauntyAngle says:

      What you really want is this: The 3025 campaign that uses MegaMek http://www.mekwars.org/

    • jay35 says:

      This isn’t even a real game it’s a browser-plugin. wtf.

      It’s not really possible to sell “collectibility” with something as ephemeral as a browser plugin.

      They think I’m going to drop a couple hundred dollars to amass an awesome collection of ‘mechs and weapons like my little ‘mech geek self would be sorely tempted to do with a proper game, only to have it be inaccessible because their server is down or the publisher goes under or my Internet connect is flakey or I’m on the road traveling. And what about when I just want to fool around in the ‘mech lab or enjoy a proper singleplayer experience. Not to mention modding, which no devs seem to care about anymore.

      But perhaps most curious of all: How does anyone rightly think they can market a “collectible” aspect to something as fly-by-night as a browser-based online-only f2p “game”?

  6. Bhazor says:

    F2P for a competitive multiplayer strategy game? “No thanks” is the politest way I can put it.

    • mondomau says:

      Mmmhmm. I can’t see how this is going to work either. People seem to be satisfie PS2 is on the right track, so we’ll see.

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      Dota 2 says hi.

      • Smarag says:

        They aren’t going to limit themselves to cosmetics only. They have shown with the other Mechwarrior pay to win game that they know how to completely ruin a potentially good game.

  7. JimDiGritz says:

    Sounded good up until the PBEM/Asyncronous multiplayer bullshit was mentioned.

    FFS developers nowadays see multiplayer as a way of ignoring decent singleplayer AI routines.

    Amiga Mechforce FTW! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vz3e2hpbo50

    • scharmers says:

      MechForce 3.77 is the first thing I install whenever I spin up a UAE installation.

      Amazing that nobody has ever tried to slavishly copy it for the PC. “Titans of Steel” came close (in particular, using MechForce’s phased movement/firing system rather than Battletech’s granular MP system) but they went the retarded Dynamix route of adding shields and energy weapon considerations to the formula.

    • saginatio says:

      I find asynchronous word misleading, simultaneous would be better.

      Each turn has two major phases:
      1)both players plan movement
      -execute movement for both players
      2)both players plan attack
      -execute attack for both players
      Next Turn :)

      Its not battletech, but still might be tactically interesting and much faster.

  8. SuperNashwanPower says:

    OH MY GOD THEY ALL LOOK LIKE SOUNDWAVE

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      That paint job they have is pretty ridiculous. Whatever happened to camo-paint mechs? That’s what the rule books were full of in my day.

      • Phasma Felis says:

        No they weren’t. Some units used environmental camo, but others used unit-specific color schemes, and many of them let aces pick their own colors in any case. The very first Technical Readout listed a handful of notable pilots for each mech model, and always made a point of mentioning how they painted their machine.

        That red-white-and-blue is pretty silly-looking, though.

  9. Erithtotl says:

    Has anyone played this yet?

    I got burnt on the MechWarrior founders package. Got tired pretty quick of endless, pointless, unbalanced death match.

    But I’m an old tabletop player and have always wished they’d get it pretty faithfully onto the PC.

    • radishlaw says:

      I do think the recent patches make MWO a better game, with another large patch coming next week.
      I guess my point is that it remains to be seen how will this game hold up in comparsion.

  10. TechnicalBen says:

    Well, this is basically the game I wanted to make if I ever learned to program (no chance :P ). Although I’d be fair and not copy their mech designs. As stuff is going DRM/F2P/online etc, I doubt they’d allow modding for me to put my own designs in?

  11. wu wei says:

    I would pay good money to shoot at Randroids.

  12. JauntyAngle says:

    What is with the horrible Optimus Prime color scheme they have on those mechs?

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