MechWarrior Online is an upcoming massively multiplayer simulation game developed by Piranha Games, and distributed by Infinite Game Publishing. Set in FASA's venerable BattleTech universe, MWO will put players in the role of the eponymous giant robot pilots, allowing them to re-enact battles involving the houses of the Inner Sphere and mercenary corps, both player-made and canonical. The game is set just before the Clan Invasion in the year 3049, and is not
a continuity reboot, but a modernized re-telling of the established timeline.
SOUNDS NIFTY! WHAT DOES IT PLAY LIKE?
- We've been repeatedly assured by Piranha Games that MechWarrior Online is a simulator first, and an action game second.
- The battles are purposefully paced but brutal, and you'll have to coordinate with your lance, exploit your enemies' weaknesses, and think on your feet to succeed.
- The basic gametype consists of three lances (groups of four BattleMechs) pitted against each other on large maps. The battle ends when a team is completely wiped out, or when one team captures the other's base, whichever comes first.
- Actual 'Mech warfare is a combination of classic MechWarrior games, faithful depictions of BattleTech canon from the tabletop game and novels, in addition to some newly introduced elements.
- 'Mechs come in all shapes and sizes, from 20 ton Light 'Mechs that specialize in scouting and evading enemy fire, to the 100+ ton Assault class decked out with weapons and heavy armor.
- Players have a pilot skill tree that allows them to unlock modules that can modify the performance of any 'Mech, and can also progress through a skill tree to improve the performance of each 'Mech and 'Mech variant they pilot.
- MWO will include full support for joysticks, throttles, pedals, and gamepads, as well as a default control scheme optimized for keyboard and mouse.
- There is confirmation of a MechLab, though the degree to which each model can be customized has not yet been disclosed.
- MWO is powered by CryEngine 3, so expect eye-pleasing visuals and respectable performance on modern machines.
HOW MUCH DOES THIS THING COST?
MechWarrior Online is free to play!
A niche franchise like MechWarrior needs all the exposure it can get, so having absolutely no barrier to entry ensures that everyone has a chance to at least give the game a try. If you're worried about "pay2win" shenanigans, rest assured that Piranha Games will only be offering convenience features and cosmetics, and will not sell anything that could grant paying players an unfair advantage in battle.
FREE TO PLAY? "RE-IMAGINING?" IS THIS IS GOING TO BE A CRAPPY GENERIC ACTION GAME WITH GIANT ROBOTS TACKED ON?
Absolutely not! The senior staff at Piranha Games include a number of long-time fans of MechWarrior. Randall Bills
, who served as continuity editor for dozens of products set in the BattleTech universe, is also on board to ensure that everything conforms to standards. What we've seen and heard of the game so far has actually been more faithful to canon than MechWarrior 4!
Piranha Games' own site for MWO
is a great resource, with media, forums, game info, and registration for the beta. Be sure to check out the official Facebook page
Below are some previous videos, collected for your convenience.
First Teaser Trailer
GDC Interview and First Gameplay
GDC Gameplay Trailer
The official MechWarrior Online site updates with in-universe news daily, and with info on the game weekly - The mundane stuff will be linked and summarized here by yours truly. As the "information" part of the title implies, this thread is also the place to go if anyone wants to ask questions, speculate about the game, or just chatter about the giant walking death machines we all love so very much.