Heavy Gear Assault Enters The Kickstarter Arena

By Jim Rossignol on May 21st, 2013 at 11:00 am.


A new Heavy Gear game is coming, but Heavy Gear Assault will only appear at the mercy of the wallet-wielding crowd. The Unreal Engine powered game is asking for $800,000, and is looking pretty stompy. However, this proposition does not include a campaign, but instead is a multiplayer combat game: “Compete in tournaments and organized matches for fame and fortune. Spectate and sponsor other players. Vote on performances. Put bounties on poor sports and pay their enemies to take them out.” The final thing will be free to play, and backing now buys in-game items and other additional awards both virtual and physical.

Videos below, including a destructible environment demo that reminds me of the Red Faction demos of old.

Not looking half bad, but I have to say that no-one has ever really made a battlesuit game that really suits my tastes. I’m not even sure what the closest would be. Outwars, maybe? (Bonus points for being someone who played that to completion.)

Anyway, I am not wholly convinced this pitch – or Heavy Gear nostalgia – will be strong enough to raise the money they’re looking for. Kickstarter seems particularly cynical towards both multiplayer and F2P, so Stompy Bot could be in for an uphill struggle.

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94 Comments »

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  1. Svant says:

    Yay another arena shooter…. no thank you. Singleplayer or bust :(

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      Skeletor68 says:

      Completely agree. I played a lot of the first one years ago and the campaign was huge amounts of fun.

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      Snidesworth says:

      Likewise. No singleplayer, no interest.

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      Cinek says:

      Yep. We don’t need another MWO/Hawken mix. Already got these. And as far as HG might be quite interesting – multiplayer-only is a deal-breaker. (I would certainly support it though if it’d offer both: Single and multi)

    • notlimahc says:

      Single player and co-op military campaigns are the $10 million stretch goal.

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        Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

        Their ten gazillion dollar stretch goal is to build two armies of mechs in the real world and then have gamers across the world fight with razorblades. The winners survivors get to pilot the mechs in glorious combat to the death. It is my sincere hope that this would shame the military powers of the world into declaring world peace, as their paltry efforts wouldn’t be fun for them any more.

        Support Heavy Gear. Support world peace.

    • dE says:

      Awww, hell yeah. A new Heavy Gear gaming. Nothing is gonna turn me away from it. Well except for Multiplayer only. I have no use for these.

    • Shinikake says:

      Svant… I couldn’t have put it better myself…

    • ElVaquero says:

      Loved the original Heavy Gear as a child, would have backed this if it had a campaign. Shame

    • Brothabear says:

      I Think people can STFU with all that noise about (No single player no thx) Keep in mind Mechwarrior NEVER had plans on it and you all had hard-ons for it still. Heavygear is one of few games even publicly known to use Unreal4. I was against the No single player thing at first, but keep in mind they of they shit the plan to do with it. I look at Heavygear assault as a testbed. They got to see how all this works with you being able to exit you Gear and run around, with the destruction, ect. the whole watching matches, and customizing your gear on your mobile device. All this has to be test and made current.

      Heavygear was my very PC game I purchased on my own as a kid, so for me it hold a special place. You can be sure I pledged! Already got space for the poster ( is that concept artist badass or what?)

      and to the guy complaining about this being a shooter…..The hell are you even doing here?

      • F3ck says:

        “keep in mind they of they shit the plan to do”….”Heavygear was my very PC game”…

        Here at RPS we take our languages very seriously. Someone will be along to scold you shortly.

      • Homercleese says:

        As well as taking language seriously most RPSers I think take their games seriously and know what type of game it is they want to play. Everyone you’re referring to has simply said ‘I’m not interested’ because of, um, you know, the highly controversial issue that they don’t like arena only multiplayer shooters.
        The baxturds, how dare they!
        I’m also fairly confident that there’s a far higher awareness here of what’s required to complete a game than in the average gamer population.
        And finally, not liking shooters? This is RPS. This is where you go if you don’t like the pervasiveness of man/bot-shooters.

        Cop on to yourself.

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          Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

          I take language and gaming very seriously. I achieved a headshot in Battlefield 3 squad chat. I had the player’s head stuffed and mounted and now his apoplectic visage scowls down from the mantlepiece.

          • Homercleese says:

            How was this textual headshot confirmed? And what was it that determined who achieved the role of headshooter and who became the headshot? Style? Verboseness? Aggressively applied alliteration? Well toot toot to you on your victory, though mounting the head seems a little… visual.

      • malkav11 says:

        I never played the original Heavy Gear games, but my impression was that they, like the Mechwarrior games, were mech sims. Mech sim != shooter.

        Also, I totally want a new singleplayer Mechwarrior game and Mechwarrior Online in no way fulfills that desire, but the difference is, they weren’t crowdfunding it.

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      Jerricho says:

      This, a thousand times this. I loved the original Heavy Gear back in the day as a sort of spiritual successor to Terra Nova and HG2 has a marvelous single-player campaign. The environments were excellent a was the game-play in general.
      That said, the skirmish mode was great. HG3 with a opt-in co-op campaign and LAN multiplayer would make me a very happy man but it is a game that is greatly suited to arena shooting. Unfortunately that kind of multiplayer is inaccessable to me for the foreseeable future, as with HARDWARE. I hope they are successful so they can build upon it and develop a new campaign in the series. I’d almost kick it just to support the potential for a follow-on single player game.

      I can see their argument for leveraging the best from a small team and so not over-stretching to a full campaign. Also, delighted the Jeehun is still involved. I love his scores.

    • Autel says:

      Heavy Gear Assault has announced single player at its base level of funding today. Vince McMullin has announced a episode style single player military based story on Kickstarter. http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/stompybot/heavy-gear-assault-0/posts/490704

      As the line developer for the table top Heavy Gear game, I’m thrilled to hear that they’ve added the single player component to the game. The War of the Alliance is a fantastic setting to base a military game in. You’ll get to fight hovertanks and genetically engineered super soldiers in 12 to 15 foot tall Gears. If you have any questions about the setting let me know. I’ll be happy to answer them.

      Jason Dickerson
      Dream Pod 9 Line Developer

    • checkeredape says:

      They just announced a single player episode: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/stompybot/heavy-gear-assault-0/posts/490704

    • Noodlefighter says:

      Good news everyone wanting singleplayer, due to demand for it, they decided to make episodic singleplayer and the first part will be in the main goal

  2. Fenixius says:

    This actually looks like it’s going to have a strong Phantom Crash vibe, which makes me happy! I also sent them a message, and it will support local hosting and dedicated servers, so latency won’t be the end of the world. I’m going to back this, because I want to play it!

    • PatrickSwayze says:

      So are you the only other person who played that game on here?

      I spent months on that thing. That game was so far ahead of the curve on so many levels.

      Did you ever play the ps2 version? I never managed to track it down.

      • hazer says:

        I loved Phantom Crash on the Xbox and played it for hours. Fantastic game. I had hopes that Hawken would scratch that it, and while I like the game, it just doesn’t have the Phantom Crash vibe.

  3. Ultra Superior says:

    I would purchase the highest tier I could if anyone was to kickstart

    SHOGO: MAD 2

    Or a remake kickstarter. Ahhh the best mech game ever, best soundtrack ever and the first game I know of that pulled the “Witcher 2″ stunt of decision determining what levels you play and against whom.

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      RedViv says:

      Shogo 2 Kickstarter? I KNOW WE CAN MAKE IT TOGETHER

    • Walsh says:

      Calling Shogo a mech game is blasphemous. The mech portions played like a regular fps with different weapons.

      • PatrickSwayze says:

        So because of its interface… it wasn’t a mech game? Okay then!

        • MobileAssaultDuck says:

          While I never played the game myself, are you sure he meant just the interface? Lots of mech games get a lot of things wrong other than the interface. For example, weight and movement.

          A lot of mech games feel like walking in a human sized suit with human sized physics, despite that you’re supposed to be a several ton behemoth.

          Every step you take should shake the ground, accidentially bumping into objects should cause them to be destroyed.

          I just looked up a video of Shogo and it is definitely missing these key features of a good mech game.

          Also, more of a personal preference, mech games should have throttles, not forward and backward keys.

          • dE says:

            It is not missing those features. It’s just the age old battle between western mechs versus asian mechas. And I reckon to a degree it goes back to medieval armors even. Light and nimble, versus heavy and sturdy.

          • MobileAssaultDuck says:

            Actually, that is a misconception.

            Heavy leather and silk Samurai armor, with a full helm, weighed in around 65 lbs.

            Heavy european field plate only weighed 55 lbs.

            The stupidly heavy armor you see portrayed in games was jousting plate, no one wore that stuff in normal combat. It was only for jousting competitions and was super heavy so as knights wouldn’t injure themselves while jousting.

            European plate was 10 lbs lighter than the Japanese leather and silk equivalent. They didn’t use leather and silk because they wanted flexibility, they used it because the raw iron ore in Japan is among the worst iron on the planet while Europeans had access to large quantities of decent raw ore, so they used a lot more metal in general for lots of things.

          • Homercleese says:

            Also, from what I’ve read much of samurai swordsmanship is based fairly fixed and stable footing, not too much dancing around. This is reflected in what was the idealised physique for warriors. Japanese culture favoured fairly heavy, stocky, thick builds, with much of the weight on the waist and hips while European cultures emphasised the traditional athletic body; wide shoulders and thin hips/waist.
            While that certainly still holds sway here today I couldn’t tell you if Japanese aftershave and watches are advertised by short, stout models.

            Swat I read somewhere anyways.

      • Ultra Superior says:

        It was the mechest game. There were small mechs, big mechs and huge mechs and you could face them in a battle suit, afoot etc. Such variety of scale in FPS never seen again.

        Oh and the hilarious weapon drops when you killed the huge mech and the gigarmous collectible of its weapon hovered and rotated above your head. Sweet memories.

        Also, the cat squeaking toy. Mech games without squeaky cat toys don’t even qualify.

      • KDR_11k says:

        Come on, the majority of mech games these days play like a regular FPS/TPS with a dash button.

  4. RProxyOnly says:

    800k for lazy game design.

    Just no!

  5. Dhruun says:

    I’m not sure how I feel about this, on the one hand I like heavy gear and it’s VOTOMS-esque (is this word allowed?) styling, but on the other it’s free to play. I might send a bit of money their way.

  6. LionsPhil says:

    Robots that hold guns in their robot hands are the worst kind of robots.

    The worst.

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      RedViv says:

      Freedom to wield weapons however you like is the right of all sentient beings!

    • PatrickSwayze says:

      You sir are wrong.

      The worst kind of wrong

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        Cinek says:

        Oh is he? There’s no reason to have hand-held guns in a Mech. It’s easier to make simply interchangeable modules. And cheaper. And BY FAR more reliable. Which is something of a key importance for a military machine.
        Mechs holding guns in their hands feel like a dumb toys.

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          RedViv says:

          I bet you are really fun at parties.

        • Spacewalk says:

          Maybe have interchangeable hands?

        • PatrickSwayze says:

          What if they need to reload the gun, clear a jam, strip it down, all while in the field?

          Mech sized weapons need mech sized hands.

        • Spacewalk says:

          Hands on mechs do have the advantage that you can pick up a weapon and go instead of waiting around for a crew of mechanics to install and hardwire weapon systems.

          • Shinikake says:

            Like the battletech universe’s hatchetman?

          • KDR_11k says:

            I think manipulator hands make sense on a mech (sometimes you just need to move stuff, especially ammo from a supply truck to your magazine) but probably not as weapon holders. Attach the weapons to the torso and have the hands in a parking position when they’re not being used to grab things off the ground or something. In Armored Core it looks just ridiculous to have these tiny hands hold gigantic cannons. This goes especially for weapons that draw energy from the mech’s main engine and thus need to be plugged in anyway.

            Shinikake: AFAIK it’s always a good idea to have hands in Battletech since they don’t add any weight and allow you to use the improvised melee weapon rules. I believe you get penalties to accuracy if you skimp on hands and elbows as well. They take up slots in the arm but I think most ‘mechs have spare room in the arms anyway.

  7. Crosmando says:

    F2P + Multiplayer = It will fail, trust me I’m a Kickstarter expert.

    Kickstarters most diehard potential backers just don’t back super-duper graphics and gameplay types that are already mainstream in the gaming market. You go to Kickstarter for a video game, you go full nerd.

  8. KwisatzHaderach says:

    It would have been worth mentioning that the game is being developed on UE4, not just UE.

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      Cinek says:

      And exactly why is it worth mentioning?

      • PatrickSwayze says:

        A greater of amount of graphics can be inserted.

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          RedViv says:

          I think I spotted at least eighteen more between UE3 and UE4.

        • KwisatzHaderach says:

          This + it kinda mighta explain to some extend the sorta steep funding goal they are aiming at.

          • KDR_11k says:

            Perhaps it would be a better idea not to use UE4 then. When you’re budget constrained like that you can’t make a AAA game anyway.

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            Cinek says:

            What’s the point of creating a kickstarter game where 70% (or whoever much) of budget goes for graphics? Since when Kickstarter was made to support Epic Games? Cause that’s what I see being done here – money spent to feed creators of UE instead of creating an awesome game.

          • Noodlefighter says:

            @Cinek and KDR_11
            Unreal Engine 4 is a lot easier to work, they wouldn’t have been able to show anything or anything of this quality with 3 months of development on any other engine.

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            Cinek says:

            Noodlefighter – Hahahaha, you obviously never worked with ANY engine what so ever if you talk garbage like that.

  9. PatrickSwayze says:

    Mechwarrior 2 Soundtrack composer is on board.

    Just because of that, I am all in.

    • Gurrah says:

      Of course you are :D.

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      c-Row says:

      Just as I wanted to be all cynical about its multiplayer-only F2P scheme… so, is there a tier that only rewards you with the soundtrack?

  10. choconutjoe says:

    The exploding bridge won me over. They have my $25.

  11. YogSo says:

    Hey, I played Outwars to completion! Awesome, severely underrated game. An amazing engine, too, capable of very nice vistas and HUGE levels without the need of having one of those new (by then) “graphic card accelerators” (I played it with my old, reliable Pentium 150 MHz, 24 MBs SDRAM and a 2MB undescripted graphic card; hah, those were the days!). I still remember playing the last level and timing how long it took to reach the bottom of that looong tunnel in freefall: about 2 minutes, if I recall rightly.

  12. Squirly says:

    Who’s publishing this thing? Is it the devs who handle it themselves? Does Activision still own the licence and are just letting them use it? it might sound petty, but if Acti still owns this and is letting them kickstart because they’re to shitty to fund it themselves… then that’ll make me sad.

    • notlimahc says:

      Activision didn’t renew their licensing deal with Dream Pod 9, so they’re out of the picture.

  13. Stef says:

    Outwars AND Heavygear, Jim you hit me right in the childhood. All the childhood.

    As a aside, I don’t care if this game has a combat system where you damage your opponent by purchasing dlc from the in game store. I don’t care if the entire user base is a mix of Xbox live and people that must constantly compare any game to World of Warcraft in order to prove their superiority.

    Its Heavy Gear and nothing else matters, now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to take the day off so I can find my Heavy Gear box. Not to install and play the game, no, I’m pretty sure the data has disappeared from the CD.

    I just want to cradle the box in my hands, and remember what love felt like.

  14. BobbyDylan says:

    This is a joke, right? A F2P Kickstarter?

  15. Bassem says:

    OUTWARS! OUTWARS.

    Still my #2 favourite game of all time, and I never ever find anyone who knows or remembers it, so excuse me for blabbing in excitement and nostalgia.

    When I get home tonight I’ll play through it again.

  16. Zorn says:

    Mechwarrior 2, even better yet, the FIRST Mechwarrior Mercenaries.
    Give me something in the vein that. That’s what I’d like to see.
    Until then I go with a spiritual successor to Syndicate.
    (Which I hope won’t be as shallow as Fireaxis’ X-Com)

  17. ElElegante says:

    Some one needs to remake Terra Nova: Strike Force Centauri.

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      ChainsawHands says:

      They really do! That game was so, so good.

    • PatrickSwayze says:

      That game had such a great sensation of motion.

      Is that not on GOG yet?

  18. islisis says:

    The talent on this seems sooo good, and yet what it looks to achieve seems nothing like what we’ve known HG to mean on the pc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GC5BUQS7s4c
    More like the TV series :/

  19. Yosharian says:

    Uh. No singleplayer campaign? No thanks.

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    Aerothorn says:

    I talked to one of the team members at GDC – really enthusiastic. It’s worth noting that they have team members from the Heavy Gear 2/Interstate ’76 team, including the lead designer.

  21. Bhale7 says:

    “Put bounties on poor sports and pay their enemies to take them out.”

    I like the idea of this! They should incorporate something like this in every PVP game ever made…

  22. Steel Paladin says:

    The way I see it is that I can get an artbook full of awesome giant robots and a soundtrack by the composer of the music from MechWarrior 2 (which I really, really enjoyed), and some money for an F2P Heavy Gear game as a little bonus. I’m cool with that!

    Besides, I think it’s a great compromise mechanically between MechWarrior Online’s complexity, and Hawken’s FPS-heavy style. Visually, I’d say it eschews the North American mech aesthetic and pulls from Japanese-style mecha design, especially something like VOTOMS or, to a much lesser extent, Gasaraki.

  23. MeestaNob says:

    I just don’t want another multiplayer game…

  24. ziusudra says:

    After the disappointment that was MWO I hope this one turns out good. Hawken is decent and I love its style, but needs more content. I think a tactical mech game benefits from not being a respawn shooter.

  25. AL13N says:

    Graphics look amazing! I have been wanting a Heavy Gear game for ever.

  26. AL13N says:

    However I think it needs a single player campaign or single player arena battles would be needed for success.

  27. buzzmong says:

    Outwars. Oh my, so good, yet so hard. I went back to play it a couple of years back, couldn’t get past the 3rd or 4th mission in the valley type thing.

    So unforgiving.

  28. ShinRyuuken says:

    I might back this, but I’m not sure. I want them to get it off the ground. So what if it’s another arena shooter? Gives me something else to play. I grew up with the TV series, but never played any of the games, so having this will give me much joy.