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Turn-based tactical 'Mech combat set in the classic 3025 era of the BattleTech Universe. From the creators of the Shadowrun Series!
Missed the Kickstarter? Become a Late Reinforcement Backer at battletechgame.com
Missed the Kickstarter? Become a Late Reinforcement Backer at battletechgame.com
41,733 backers pledged $2,785,537 to help bring this project to life.

A Quick Dev Update and a Special Peek Behind the Curtain with Classic BattleTech Artist Duane Loose

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Happy Anniversary, MechWarriors!

Can you believe that it was one year ago today that you funded our Kickstarter Alpha Strike in 53 minutes, raising over $1,000,000 in just 24 hours

We were blown away by your support, not just financially, but also by your passion for the BattleTech universe and everything it means to you. We’re working hard to live up to your expectations for the game and can’t wait to get it in your hands next year!

Welcome Late Reinforcement Backers!

We also want to give a hearty MechWarrior salute to all of our *new* Backers! We’re so happy to have you along for the ride as we develop the game! If this is your first Kickstarter Update, here are some highlights of our past Updates and announcements since the Kickstarter campaign concluded late last year.
 

Development Update

So, what’s the team been up to since GenCon? In a word, EVERYTHING. Seriously. Not only did we get right back to work on the combat experience - finishing up features like melee, MechWarrior abilities, airstrikes, and more - but we’ve been busy spinning up on ‘Mech production, environment art production, map design, multiplayer, story development, and last but not least, breaking ground on development on the “simulation game” (which is our internal term to describe all the fun aspects of managing your Mercenary outfit in-between combat missions).

Whew!

Our spring and summer summer were all about two things: 1) Turning our early combat prototype into a complete, fun, and robust combat experience, and 2) Getting all of our systems, pipelines and architecture in place for full content production on the game. Objective #1 was proven out by the #SuperPreAlpha (thanks again to everyone who watched the Backer video or was able to play it at GenCon and PAX!) Objective #2 has taken a little bit longer to solidify, but I’m pleased to report that we’re also turning that corner this month into content production in all areas of the game. This is one of the great challenges of game development - sometimes one team is furiously trying to finish building the car while other teams are simultaneously trying to paint and test drive it.
 

To continue with the weird car analogy, I really couldn’t be more proud of this team and feel like everyone is really firing on all cylinders. Jordan and Mitch and I would like to give a particular shoutout here to our engineering team though, they have been absolutely crushing it in their efforts to get a huge amount of features into the game quickly while maintaining a quality, scalable codebase.

We expect to be back with one more Kickstarter update towards the end of 2016 including another progress update and some Kickstarter Beta details. After that, expect our KS updates to slow down a bit as production ramps WAY up.

Until then!
Mike

Meet the Team Guest-Star: Duane Loose

1984 – I’m working as an Industrial Designer in the Boston area. A friend of mine from design school, Dave Deitrick, contacts me about a possible freelance job designing/drawing 30­-meter tall vertical tanks. Not really understanding what that means, I’m soon connected with Jordan Weisman who introduces me to Battletech and explains what he’s looking for ­a Technical Readout illustrating the units in a way not previously seen. I’m excited, intrigued and commit to draw a Battlemech as a test to see if I can do it.

Since my early days as a designer I’ve been fascinated by the way industrial design principles have been applied to the design of machines in Science Fiction universes. The production design work of Joe Johnston in the original Star Wars, as documented in the first sketchbooks featuring his artwork, was specifically inspiring. When Jordan told me of his idea to create a Technical Readout detailing the machines of the Battletech universe, I embraced the opportunity to learn how to design ‘mechs and to grow as an artist.

After Jordan explained the basic technical specifications of a Battlemech, I started sketching. It took about a week to find my “way” of approaching the design of the mech. My sketching process was the one I’d used (and continue to use) as an Industrial Designer – a rough underlay to establish proportion, scale and perspective, then using that underlay for a final sketch. I focused on visual cues to show function – joints, gears, engine nacelles, weapon details, and so forth – all designed to detail accurate, though imaginary, engineering. I wanted to show “real” technology – or at least a plausible version of “real”. I finished the first sketch and sent it off to Jordan for review. The ‘mech was Hatchetman, the first of many mechs and vehicles I would draw and design over the next 10 years.

In the years since my last Battletech project in 1994, I watched, with interest and pride, the success and growth of the Battletech universe. Fast forward to 2015, Jordan contacted me, in November, to see if I had some time to help out with a new Battletech game ­specifically the re­design of some of the units I’d helped create decades ago. I was soon introduced to Mike McCain and we began our collaboration on the redesign of the first two: Striker and the J. Edgar. Mike’s direction was to make the units feel more reflective of current military design ideas while still retaining the intent, spirit and design of the originals ­- to make the units more believable. What a great and rare opportunity ­to learn how to achieve that ideal and, once again, to grow as an artist.

When Mike asked me to write about what it’s like to be able to rework some of the units I’d designed so long ago, my initial answer and feeling was “It’s Awesome and very gratifying!” Especially being a part of Mike’s team and making another contribution to a universe worthy of devotion.

As designers we live with our work forever. What we create, especially in the internet age, lives on, often unexpectedly, to our credit and our critique. To have my name associated with Battletech has always been a blessing for which I am grateful. This association has created many opportunities to connect with designers and artists who grew up playing Battletech and enjoying the art from so many of my amazing Battletech artist colleagues. They inspired me then, as they do today.

I often tell my students that drawing 100 ‘mechs and machines, in three months, for the first technical readout, is where I really learned how to draw. The experience working in the Battletech universe paved the way for my career as an art director and production designer in game development and animated film production. I still look at many of the drawings of mechs I’ve done and think of them as some of the best work in my career. The Atlas for example ­and definitely the Hatchetman ­my first ‘Mech.

I say thank you, once again, to Jordan ­ who took a chance in 1984 and gave me the opportunity to be a Battletech artist, then and now. I’m excited for you to see the redesigned units we’ve created and look forward to the success of the game.

Sincere regards,
Duane “Dr.D” Loose
Lake Elsinore, CA
___________________________

I had an absolute blast working with Duane on the new vehicle designs, and I love where he was able to take these designs, refreshing the art while retaining the spirit of the original designs - much like Piranha was able to accomplish with their great ‘Mech design updates for MWO. Here’s an example of his concept art for the Striker Light Tank and the resulting in-game unit made by the talented Maury Weiss. We’ve got many more classic BattleTech vehicles heading into production soon based on Duane’s designs, and I’m excited for you all to see them in game next year! 

- Mike

 

In Other News

See You in Vancouver for Mech_Con this December!
We’ll be heading up to the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver for Mech_Con on Saturday, December 3rd. It’s a special one-day event dedicated to the celebration of BattleTech hosted by Piranha Games.

 

Mech_Con is a full day of BATTLETECH with Catalyst Game Labs running play-sessions throughout the day and Pirahna’s Grand Finals of the MechWarrior Online World Championship Tournament. 

Jordan, Mitch, and Mike will be there doing presentations and panels, a couple of Q&A sessions, signing autographs AND we’ll be bringing the game for folks to play. They’d love to meet you, so come join them and other members of the Dev Team!

PAX West 2016
It’s hard to believe it’s been less than a month since PAX West. What a whirlwind! Showing the BATTLETECH #SuperPreAlpha demo (the same one we showed at GenCon) in our own backyard was a blast as was meeting so many Backers (and seeing so many of you wearing Kickstarter swag)!

 

 

 

 And, in case you didn’t catch them, here are a few interviews and gameplay videos that came out around PAX from GeekWire, Polygon, and PCGamer.

Kickstarter Reward Update
If you’re in the United States: The last of the United States bound Jacket + Heraldry shipments left the warehouse late last week and you should have received an email with your tracking information. If you haven’t, please contact us.

If you are NOT in the United States: This week, the warehouse really pounced on the international-bound shipments with a vengeance -- and blasted out 63% of our international orders so far! We have around 300 packages left to go which should ship over the next week.

A few reminders:
---The following countries are all benefiting from the upgraded shipping with door-to-door tracking: Canada, Great Britain, Germany, Mexico, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand

---Total transit for international shipping is typically between 3-4 weeks + customs time 

---If you are getting static from customs about declared values or showing your Kickstarter receipt, contact us, because we have some extra paperwork to provide that might help you. 

September BATTLETECH Q&A
Our September BATTLETECH Q&A focused on “how the sausage is made” as Mitch and Jordan like to put it. Lots of great questions asked and lots of answers given about making choices when creating a game. You can find all the BATTLETECH Q&A’s along with the BattleTech Charity Beard-Off here.

And, just a quick heads up, after our October Q&A, we’re going to take a break as we head into full production and then the holidays. We’ll come back in January and continue with the Q&A’s on a bi-monthly basis instead of every month. We really enjoy answering questions and interacting with the community live but we need to stay focused and heads down while we’re in full production mode.

But, the Dev Team will still be around to answer questions on the BATTLETECH Forums and we encourage you to join the conversation there!

That's all for now!

-  HBS

Steve Hayes, CaGeRit, and 175 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Missing avatar

      Tom Jones on October 21, 2016

      Nice to see vehicles not neglected. Hope it will be more like Battletech than Mechcommander with vehicles being a dangerous threat rather than a minor nuisance.

    2. David Fernandez
      Superbacker
      on October 13, 2016

      Striker!, Striker!, Striker!

    3. ThomasN on September 30, 2016

      Duane Loose: Love your illustrations (Jenner, BattleMaster with the high tech grid in the background) since I was in school playing the board game. Always thought you were a gal lol.

    4. Jason on September 30, 2016

      Love the Striker update. Happy anniversary!

    5. Khell on September 30, 2016

      Loose was my favorite mech artist through all the years I've played Battletech. There is a coherent style to all his works that sadly went missing as the TROs moved to other artists.

      Glad it's the '58 Striker. Second only to the Typhoon UAV, visually it's my one of my favorite wheeled vehicles, and the triple-axle '58 always had more presence than the '26. (Sadly, spec-wise the Striker isn't near as impressive as its look - too much compromise being both an LRM and SRM carrier.)

    6. Ben Denton on September 30, 2016

      It's really cool to read that article by Duane Loose! When I was a kid in the early '90s I spent countless hours looking through those technical readouts. Reading about the notable pilots, imagination running wild. Redrawing the artwork as best as I could.
      Can't wait to see more of the new designs! I'd love to get a download of the new drawings or a "modernized" 3025 technical readout. Wink-wink, nudge-nudge

    7. Missing avatar

      Jeffrey Barnes on September 29, 2016

      It was great to read the Duane Loose article. David Deitrick is a close friend of mine. A "brother of another mother." I forwarded the update to David. David did a lot of work for BattleTech early on. He did the cover art for the original printings of the first three or four BattleTech novels that FASA put out. Later on he did some card art for the BattleTech Collectible Card Game. I have one of those originals in addition to other pieces he has painted and sculpted, but the original BattleTech book cover paintings were all sold before I met him.

    8. Tyler Witter on September 29, 2016

      That Striker model is mouth-watering. Happy to see further contribution from Duane Loose. I also have some much-battered Technical Readouts and the art has always been a huge part of my love for Battletech.

    9. Jacob Albers on September 29, 2016

      It's just so great to see, from an outsider's perspective, where this project has come in a year. Thank you devs and team, seriously. It can't be easy. I might be crying like a 30 year old nerd way harder now than when I first heard "Chewie, we're home." Grayson, we're home.

    10. JusitnKase
      Superbacker
      on September 29, 2016

      ... now where is the J Edgar art!! :D

      Looking good, and great insight from Duane, his work very much shaped the B-Tech universe for me !!

    11. Michael Barnhart on September 29, 2016

      I underestimated those Strikers in the super pre-alpha. Those are vicious Little Devils.

    12. Missing avatar

      Jason A on September 29, 2016

      I'd just like to say that Duane Loose art is some of my favorite from Battletech! I've still got (in rather poor shape now, sadly, the spine is gone and it's held together with a binder clip) a copy of the "Technical Readout: 3025" with his art in it.
      Really, really looking forward to this when it's released!
      Keep up the good work all!

    13. RC on September 29, 2016

      HAPPY BATTLETECHVERSARY, MechWarriors! ^_^