Heavy Gear Assault Now Promises Single-Player

By Jim Rossignol on May 25th, 2013 at 3:00 pm.


The Kickstarter for Heavy Gear Assault caused some consternation with its focus on multiplayer, so the team have revised their goals against that feedback. The $800,000 base goal now includes: “Episode 1 of the single-player story that makes you a part of Heavy Gear history. This first offline, single-player episode details the initial contact with Earth’s Colonial Expeditionary Force (CEF) and sets the stage for Terra Nova’s bid for independence. Bitter enemies will unite to repel the CEF in what will be known as the War of the Alliance. This gripping first episode will be told through the eyes of military veterans turned duelists.”

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43 Comments »

  1. Yosharian says:

    This is like pissing in the wind at this point. “WAIT GUYZ, PLZ FUND US, WE GIVE YOU A TINY BIT OF STORY CAMPAIGN TOO!”

    If their focus is multiplayer arena then they likely don’t have a team competent in the area of singleplayer campaigns. Where are they going to get decent writers, VA talent, etc.

    Not meaning to sound harsh, I just feel like the original was ALL about the singleplayer campaign, it was never a frickin multiplayer arena game… sorry bros

    • The_Great_Skratsby says:

      To be fair the developers have specialised in multiplayer mech games for a long, long time now in the MechWarrior modding scene, but yeah, it’s the singleplayer I’m looking for too.

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    • Bhazor says:

      I think the real reason this is failing is that they’re trying to sell a F2P game on Kickstarter. No one wants to pay for something that everyone else will get for free.

      Grimlands, Victory how many more before they learn?

    • LionsPhil says:

      And last-minute singleplayer additions to multiplayer designs usually end up as “OK, fine, here’s a string of skirmish missions with some plot cutscenes drizzled between them”.

      • Noodlefighter says:

        It’s an 800k budget as their main goal what do you expect especially for this type of game, also they originally wanted 10 million to make a full proper single player campaign

        • Styles says:

          Well see, that’s not our fault or our problem. Other companies are doing amazing kickstarter work with low budgets. What do I expect? I expect them to try to please the fans of the original game, and clearly those people want a single player campaign, so why not just drop multiplayer until later? Even if the single player campaign is episodic (which is appears to be) so that they can do good work in small sections. But as it stands, they’re splitting their attention and we know they were only planning on making it multiplayer focused so people are more than warranted being suspicious of the potential single player campaign quality.

          • Noodlefighter says:

            I’d like to see these kickstarter games you’re talking about. Why? Adhesive games and both piranha games want single player in their mech games and they both know its hard stuff to achieve in an industry that wants CoD shooter #456 and you need a decent budget to put in a proper single player campaign. The fact mek tek are making their single player Episodic is laying off the pressure plus they seem pretty happy about the ease of use of UE4 which is why they’re even capable of showing 3 months worth of work, when most games before need at least a year to give you an idea of anything.

            Lets face it Multiplayer is bringing in more money than singleplayer games nowadays so you can’t blame them for focusing on it first in their crowd funding, Plus money they make with multiplayer can help their funds.

            Ironic there are basically no mech games with singleplayer or any mech games in this day n age at all but somehow when one shows up people are whining because they’re also doing multiplayer. Welp either put up with this or basically get single player never or years from now. It is your problem if you want a mech game with Singleplayer

            Will the original fans actually put enough to meet the 10 million or even half of what they want for a full proper campaign ? People wanted singleplayer out of MechWarrior Online even though they didn’t get it, the game made $5 million before open beta. See?

          • KDR_11k says:

            There’s Armored Core. AC5 tried to go heavy on the online with the SP content pretty gimped but it got a critical panning for that and people just preferred AC4A.

        • LionsPhil says:

          I expect a poor outcome, therefore I have no interest in backing it.

          Making a bad singleplayer campaign is a complete waste of time and money. Do it properly, or don’t do it at all.

    • Alextended says:

      Writers? Va? I’d think priorities should lie in AI, level design, etc…

      • Zenicetus says:

        Agreed. I can live without voices and cutscenes in a singleplayer game. Many of the classic first and second-generation PC games got by just fine, with text boxes for interaction.

        But if you don’t have plausible AI and good level design, then you don’t have a good singleplayer game. Nothing breaks immersion like an enemy with broken pathfinding or stupid behavior.

        This is why we’re flooded with indie/kickstarter games that are MP-only. Writing and play-testing plausible AI is hard, and I’m always happy to throw money at a game that includes it for a great singleplayer experience.

    • Styles says:

      Yep, it’s too late now …..I don’t trust these guys at all to do a decent single player campaign, knowing that they wanted to focus entirely on multiplayer. No dice. No money from me.

  2. The_Great_Skratsby says:

    Hmmm I do like the sound of this. Guess I can still dream of having the FMV cutscenes and melodrama of the first game.

  3. guygodbois00 says:

    When you combine multiplayer, mecha and Unreal engine, Hawken comes on the very top. This Heavy Gear stuff has some potential, though. Will follow further developments. Also, great news about singleplayer, Mr Rossignol.

    • Claidheamh says:

      I’m not entirely convinced Hawken should qualify as a mech game, despite the fact that you’re supposed to be in one. It plays a lot more like a traditional FPS.

      • CrispinFister says:

        You know, it’s almost as if people are deliberately taking advantage of the fact that 99% of humanity is stuck inside a massive nostalgia-circlejerk or something. Maybe it’s just me but 90% of kickstarters are like OMG GAIZ DO YOU REMEMBERS DAT GAME WHEN YOU WAS A KIDD?!?! IT WASS SO RADICALISMS SO WE ARE GONNA MAKE A GAME JUST LIKE IT BUT TOTES DIFFERENT AND ORIG’NAL!!! PAY US NOW OR DIE, SCUM.

        RPS: Your comment system is rubbish.

        • Alextended says:

          If you don’t like it you don’t fund it or later don’t buy it.

          Personally I’m glad that’s the case because they’re styles or even whole genres that aren’t being made any more, not because they’re no good but because they’re somewhat niche (and I’m part of that audience in many cases) and don’t bring in the profits bigger companies would wish for as they chase the elusive COD or whatever other trend they believe will profit the most.

          Not that I fund everything, just favorites like Wasteland 2 and then wait for the products for the rest, which luckily others did fund. Yay for me, completely and easily ignored for you. Hurray.

        • mwoody says:

          Exactly! I mean, back in our day, people weren’t so insanely nostalgic.

      • KDR_11k says:

        To be fair most mech games tend to approach FPS gameplay with a few extra gauges. Since the line is so blurred I consider Section 8 almost a mech game.

  4. guygodbois00 says:

    EDIT: this is reply to Claidheamh post
    Yes, the stiff vertical axis, loadout not as quite interchangeable, heat management nonexistent, and such. But these concepts come from Mechwarrior types of mecha. This is some other type of Mech(a), I presume. All this withstanding, Hawken is an excellent game. Well, for me and the types that frequent the servers, at least. I just wish Heavy Gear can induce such intense experience as Hawken team death match ( no melodrama intended).

  5. kwyjibo says:

    Does anyone actually remember Heavy Gear 2? Because it wasn’t a stompy robot game at all. It was a stealth robot game.

    There you are inside a 20ft exoskeleton, and instead of punching other robots, you’re lying prone crawling around trees.

    Also, rollerskates.

    • Shieldmaiden says:

      That was always the point of Heavy Gear. The gears are treated like giant infantry rather than walking tanks, although they have striders which fill that niche.

    • Swanny says:

      Yes! I remember sneaking in on grass and just wrecking stuff with mortars. Run away, repeat.

    • KDR_11k says:

      Prone mechs are kinda silly since you could just replace the limbs with wheels then or make them quadrupeds. Humans go prone because we walk upright and we walk upright because we only have four limbs and need two of them for tool manipulation.

    • Jerricho says:

      OH yes. I loved it. I would equip my Gears so that they had a minimal radar profile. I particularly loved that you could introduce weaknesses to gain sufficient mission points to put on some other sweet ability. Usually meant susceptability to haywire grenades in favour of speed and stealth.

  6. AlienMind says:

    Steam exclusive?

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  8. MeestaNob says:

    They should have known this before they began, the apathy for MechWarrior Online was primarily due to the lack of single player – in fact, many good multiplayer games of late (kickstarter funded or otherwise) have died from lack of interest purely because they didn’t have the much more desired single player mode.

    I’ll watch this games development and if it looks good I’ll buy it when it comes out, but I’m not funding a game that shifts focus the moment funding begins. How can I feel confident about what they will produce?

    • Moraven says:

      And it did not stop MWO getting millions in founder’s money before open beta and before they enabled the ability to spend more real money.

      There is still room for a single player Mechwarrior, just probably not more F2P mech games. Alas you need a lot more money to do all the engine work then AI, Writing, Scripts, etc. Vs Engine, half balanced weapons and a few maps.

  9. TheBigBookOfTerror says:

    Mentioning Heavy Gears just makes me think of the game that shared its engine, Interstate 76. Ah, those lovely curved roads and rolling hills. Best videogame roads for a long time. And then Terra Nova is mentioned in the article and now I want to play Terra Nova: Strike Force Centari.

  10. Jerricho says:

    “Bitter enemies will unite to repel the CEF in what will be known as the War of the Alliance.”

    Isn’t that the plot of Heavy Gear 2?

    • notlimahc says:

      No, the War of the Alliance is about 25 years earlier.

    • Autel says:

      The War of the Alliance was the pre-cursor war that took place on Terra Nova 20 cycles before the first video game. The Colonial Expedition Force (CEF) was a large military push by Earth’s central government to retake the old colonies that had been abandoned nearly 500 cycles prior to the invasion. The first colony to repel the invasion, and at a great cost to their population was Terra Nova, the setting for Heavy Gear. The reason it’s called the War of the Alliance is because of the planet’s factions setting aside centuries of grudges and joining forces to fight back against the invaders. In fact when Earth invaded Terra Nova, the two largest factions, the Confederated Northern City States and the Allied Southern Territories, were building up to fight a global war. Earth landed troops in between two heavily armed opponents, and nearly succeeded in taking over the planet.

      If you played the second Heavy Gear game one of the missions had the players going after GREL, the genetically modified vat grown soldiers. Over 120,000 CEF forces were left behind after Earth withdrew. Of those left behind, the bulk of them would go on and found the city-state of Port Arthur. The second largest group would settle down in a peaceful city-state they would name after their GREL leader, Jan Mayen. The last major group was lead by Colonel Proust, a GREL supremacist and leader of the New Human Republic. Proust figures heavily in the early missions of Heavy Gear 2. By the way, if anybody has any questions about the setting, I’d be happy answer them for you. I work for Dream Pod 9 as their line developer.

      As fan of the setting and employee of Dream Pod 9 (the guys that made the setting and table top game), I’m thrilled to see single player being added at the first funding goal. Vince McMullin said the episodes would run roughly about 3 hours of game play. If they reach 900k, they’ll add a second episode, and another at 950k. At three hours an episode, that’s nine hours of single player game play. They are working directly with us at Dream Pod 9 to develop these episodes. These won’t be simple skirmish missions with no substance.

      Jason Dickerson
      Dream Pod 9 Line Developer
      http://www.dp9.com
      http://www.heavygear.com

  11. Valaska says:

    Alright a lot of misconception and no one reading the developers actual comments or website, forum or even interpenetrating their intentions. Hopefully I can sort some of this out.

    MekTek was planning on releasing a SinglePlayer all along, however; they needed to complete a working model of the game first and one that would bring in some profit in order to hire the writers, voice actors, level designers, more artists and so fourth. A single player takes a lot more work in, and they wanted to have something out as soon as possible to work on this, but, they put it in a very high stretch goal albeit painstakingly high, and realized an alternative.

    Episodic single player allows them to use their small team to focus on one… Well, episode. They don’t have to have a storyboard at all times, and commit the massive amounts of resources it would take for the single player to flesh out. It also allows the team to keep to their kickstarter pledge launch, which is in 2014, a full story, a good one, would take much, much longer to flesh out.

    MekTek is a team that was born from MW4, Microsoft graciously provided us dedicated servers with a lot of freedom, map tools that were reasonable easy to use, and eventually due to MekTek’s support of the game provided them with the source code. MekTek is a community driven team, literally the community helped them a long those days, we told them what we wanted, what we didn’t want and they delivered. MW4 was STILL running up to the launch of MWO, which is a dismal mess, and the Heavy Gear team know how much of a disappointment MWO is, its the exact thing they are trying to avoid.

    They are exactly trying to do the opposite of PGI with MWO, they are trying to create another community empowered mech game, dedicated server options are available, map tools as well are available, and they are making an extremely deep system. This system was to release before the single player so they could have all of the core elements of the game done, and when they state they are going to listen to what we the community have asked for, and you guys literally shit talk them for it, you’re basically signing away with the crap that is MechWarrior Online and other shallow uninteresting projects, full of teams that want one thing, your dollar.

    So instead of pledging and getting the game you all demanded, a single player game for Heavy Gear, with a deep and rich multiplayer mode, and a team that actually listens and gives a crap about their community, you bicker about what it means they are now working a single player element into a launch that could already be considered stressful enough. Good show, Rock Paper Shotgun.

    • David Bliff says:

      Yeah the MWO and Hawken devs are just greedy bankers and the MekTek guys are perfect and devoted to nothing but the game. They actually get in fights on the street.

    • AlienMind says:

      If they are trying to avoid MWO, why don’t they promise
      - DRM FREE
      - No Microtransactions
      up front? And throw in a little Non-Steam-Exclusive to round it up. THEN i’ll back.

  12. sebmojo says:

    MWO is pretty splendid, actually. With the most recent patch it’s at a really good place. It absoluely nails the solidity and intensity of ridiculous stompy robots shooting each other with lasers and artillery.

    Assuming they manage to implement Community Warfare properly, I’m really looking forward to seeing where it ends up.

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  14. phylum sinter says:

    If only they had assessed the fanbase more before deciding the world wants another f2p mech runner – I don’t think there’s room for another one right now – meanwhile the singleplayer mech campaign game field stretches so far into the horizon it makes me wonder if these chaps have any sense of the rest of the world at all.

    How wonderful it would have been if they hadn’t announced their priorities completely backwards on this one. Maybe someone will revive Mechwarrior: Assault (for PC please?) now that this license has been soiled beyond recognition.

    As anime as it feels, Strike Suit Zero is as close as i’ve gotten to a mech game this generation.

    Other Kickstarter-ready ideas that would sell better than another F2P mech game:

    -An ARPG mech game.
    -A Mech Dating simulator
    -A Mech football game
    -A Mech wordpad assistant
    -A Mech-based underpants sales application

    So you know, these guys can slap some of those as stretch goals on to try to instill confidence and hype for an otherwise tumbleweed-level of desired reboot, or maybe someone else will come along and grab the clear pool of dollars in want of anything but another mech MP shooter.

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