Battletech by Harebrained Schemes (Shadowrun Returns)


The short version is that they sued Piranha Games and Harebrained Studios over depictions of the Unseen, and it came out that Harmony Gold never actually bought the rights to those designs in the first place.


The sad part of this is that FASA, Catalyst, and any number of video game developers have avoided the unseen mechs for almost 30 years due to this fallacy. That’s not to say any of those guys would/could have bought the rights, but at least they would have been potentially obtainable. The BT world is poorer for this. :(


I know. All this time, we could have been playing with LAMs. LAMs!


I don’t blame you, and I almost didn’t bother with that particular video myself, but I’m glad now to be going into the game with a good grasp of the mechanics/rules. I think it will help me get into it faster, and be less frustrated.

But in my case the only Battletech thing I’ve ever played were the FPS MechWarrior titles, and the last one of those I touched was 4. And all I ever did was load PPC’s onto massive mechs and dominate the single player, so I don’t think I learned much from them. ;)


You are in for a treat. Commanding a Lance of mech is so much more fun!

Now, if expansion to the game give me combined arms and ambushes, that would be awesome.
Also, hopefully we will get to see a lot of variants and maybe the ability to design our own mechs and vehicles in the future.


That reminded me I did play the old Mech Commander game back in the day, and I really enjoyed it. And yeah, I’m really excited to command a full lance of mechs in turn-based combat (finally)! I’m also really interested in the campaign with the mercenary/salvage aspect of the game. The overall experience should be really engaging and enjoyable, I hope it does well for them because I’d love more content down the road, like you.


I would love to see combined arms, but HBS has been so steadfast in their ‘max of one player-controlled lance’ stuff that I doubt we’ll see it. Armor and infantry is awesome in BT, but you need so much of it to compete with mechs that they’d need to allow players to control companies of the stuff.


Well and they only went through about 4 full turns because they were so excited about describing every single feature and decision that they ran out of time, so no loss there.

Actually i was a bit annoyed they were closing with a bunch of Jenners. Would have stood off and shot them from range ;).


Congrats, and best of luck and health to you all!


Congrats, man!

You’ll still have some gaming time yet for a little bit, babies mostly sleep (and poop and sometimes eat). But … enjoy it while you can, this may be the last game you get any decent amount of time with for some while. :)

MS Surface

I played through all of the XCom reboot with a sleeping infant cradled in my non-mouse arm. Games like this can be perfect because you can play in arbitrary bites.


We’re they even using the original robotech designs? I would have expected them to be using the reseen designs and modifications at that.

Although Harmony gold sues for everything.

Totally unrelated, but this made me think of how much of the original battletech TRO art was terrible. I always think of the Hollander art, where the perspective is totally whacked.


All the Battletech art post- technical readout 3050 was high school level trash and (in my mind) doesn’t exist. Technical Readout 3050, Comstar and … i think there was one other supplemental … were the only ones aside from 3025 and 3026.

That said they absolutely used Robotech art for some of the “most iconic” Mechs. Frankly it was a 1:1 copy, and oftentimes the fluff around it didn’t even match the art; you’d see Robotech-copied mechs carrying guns or carrying like, briefcases, and no in-game explanation as to why.

But 3025 also had all the original art that made the game what it is. Loose? He/she really worked the art styles together seamlessly and made “reasonable” Mechs that seemed balanced and feasible and at least somewhat militarily sound-ish for space opera fantasy.

Post 3050, or post FASA, Battletech was an embarassing hodge podge of teenaged nonsense.

From this

and this


and … ugh…


Duane (he) is still kicking it oldschool.

Remember, too, that the 80s when his stuff was done (and most of us here were still kids/teens/young men) was when military realism was The Awesome, which was why we got G.I. Joe, eye-check-passing Mechs, and not to mention a bunch of cool mil flight sims in the 90s (as the Reagan Babies learned to program). And it’s pretty clear based on Mr. Loose’s later development that he had some nascent design chops.

Kids growing up (and playing BT) after that had different influences, like, um, fuck I have no idea what the kid who drew that last mech was thinking.


Thanks guys. I must confess I had thought that a turn based game wouldn’t be impossible to play whilst fulfilling my fatherly duties. Might wait to broach it with the Mrs though!


I remember when my son was a very young baby yet I held him in my left arm while I played Baldur’s Gate 2 Throne of Bhaal (that was the game for me that I was dying to play but oops, now I’m a dad!) and I played that game for so long that when I finally went to put my son down I couldn’t unbend my left arm - the pain was excruciating, just horrible, like nothing I’ve felt before or since. I must have had him in the crook of my arm for hours playing that fucking expansion!

No regrets.


Here’s hoping battletech is good enough it’s worth courting temporary disability!

(if it is I might see if they want to use that as a box quote)


I think Timex was referring to the reseen mechs as seen in MWO. I think it would be extraordinarily generous to say these mechs aren’t heavily inspired by the original artwork. If HG actually had the license they claimed to, it doesn’t surprise me that they sued PGI over it.

Veritech from Robotech/Macross

versus Phoenix Hawk in MWO

Spartan destroid from Robotech/Macross:

versus Archer from BT

For reference:

NB: Some of the other unseen (Warhammer and Marauder, specifically) although similar, lack (in my opinion anyway) some of the flavor of the original mechs.


I actually hadn’t seen the mwo reseen, and would agree they are pretty much knock offs.

I was thinking of the original reseen designs, which were specifically redesigned to not really look the same.

For instance, the reseen Archer looked like this… similar, but with some significant redesigns like the cockpit.


My apologies :)

Yeah, at least the original reseen mechs were deviations. The MWO reseen are basically a 6 year old trying to convince his parents that he didn’t trace a drawing.