I’ll freely admit it. Until several years ago I didn’t even know the universe of BattleTech existed. And while I’m still struggling to learn about the heaps of lore released over the past decades I have enjoyed getting to know the future history of the franchise. Which is why I jumped at the chance to get in on the Kickstarter when it launched. In just an hour after going live it got funded. And it’s not showing any signs of slowing down any time soon.
Here’s what little I know about the BattleTech universe (and admittedly it’s not a whole lot). The Inner Sphere is home to five major houses that vie for supremacy and are pretty much in constant war with each other. Between conflict and intrigue their borders constantly fluctuate, some gaining more ground while others are forced into smaller pockets of space. Of course, there’s a lot more to the lore than that but that’s a brief synopsis. It would take too long to cover everything.
Anyway, the game takes place during the Succession Wars in 3025. Each house is struggling to rebuild their forces after centuries of fighting. Mechs are in short supply and in order to continue to drive their individual agendas forward they started seeking out mercenary units as a sort of proxy. Which is where the player comes in. You’re fighting for one of the great houses: Steiner, Davion, Marik, Liao, or Kurita. And you’re in command of a group fighting other mercenaries in your Mechs.
BattleTech is a single player turn based melee between two groups of mecha. Your fighting force and one controlled by the computer. Customize your forces as you see fit and take to the field of battle. This “skirmish game” is already funded and with more stretch goals unlocked we’ll see expansions like a full campaign mode, side quests, and PvP on the popular sports planet of Solaris VII. Personally, I want to see everything unlock and blow through all of the stretch goals.
I’m a relative newb when it comes to BattleTech but what I do know about the universe I love. Giant robots beating the crap out of each other aside I’ve found myself drawn towards the more nuanced intrigue filled machinations of the five major powers and their relationship towards each other and the “Periphery States” bordering them on the fringes of the known universe. Which is why I really want to see at the very least the campaign mode unlock. And I honestly see that being reached by the end of the week at the rate the campaign’s been going.
None of the five houses have really captured my interest so seeing mercenaries be the focus of the game makes me happy. I’ve personally been more of a fan of the clans myself, so while I don’t see them anywhere I’ll be more than willing to work for the highest bidder, so to speak. Even so, BattleTech looks to be a great addition to Harebrained Schemes’ roster of already impressive titles and I’m glad to be a part of the journey.