- It's Mechwarrior. That should be enough for anyone
|» Pros|| |
- It's also Battletech, or at least a version of it. Again, enough for anyone.
- You get to stomp around in 100-ton heavily armed death machines, slaughtering anything in sight.
- Hell of a lot of fun
-Mercenary? Uh no. How about "scripted choices"?
|» Cons|| |
-This is a freaking expansion pack...
Right, cheap plug: I co-run the Mech Lord League (http://mechlord.ca) with my best friend. Have done so for many years, dating back to the ORIGINAL Mercenaries. In such capacity, I've been intimately involved with all the finer points of every Mech game from the original mercs on out, and so I've been rather critical of each.
|» Review|| |
This game had the premise of being the original mercs re-incarnated with better graphics, and more adaptability. Well, as with almost all releases these days, it failed to live up to its billing in my opinion.
I realize that as a league admin, that has seen thousands of players come through the door, and being an avid fan of the Battletech universe on which this game is based, I tend to adopy a "purist" point of view. It doesn't stop me from enjoying this game, but it does make me shake my head occassionally.
Right. Rant over. The game itself is more or less an over-price expansion pack, as all you *really* get is another campaign, and a few mechs over Mechwarrior 4: Vengeance. Graphics, sound, ambience, interface, weapons - all more or less exactly the same, with little variation. Obviously then, the game would have to offer a totally unique game-play to differentiate itself from, and improve upon MW4. This missed the mark on a number of items.
Firstly, the plot. The very idea of being a mercenary should preclude any plot whatsoever. The first mercs only had a cursory one, but had an engaging universe which was all it needed. You didn't have to choose sides, hell, you didn't even have to fight any of the campaigns. Here, that's gone.
After only a handful of missions, the whole mercenary idea is flushed down the crapper, and you have to pick sides in a burgeoning civil war. Mercs don't have sides! Did someone forget the definition on the word? What happened to highest bidder?
The only two employers in the whole freaking game (apart from a couple of minor missions) are the two sides to the civil war, meaning there's no way to play off the sides.
To make the point brief as possible, you're no merc. You're a scripted soldier. Sorry.
The main game premise being a disaster, lets turn to at least the good parts that do exist.
Solaris - a much storied place in the Battletech universe, here one competes in mech gladiator games for a championship title, for what else - fortune and glory. A totally superfluous, but highly entertaining diversion from the main game, when you get irritated by the fact that you've now clued in that the game isn't really a mercenary game at all. The announcer is great, the competition fierce, and the arenas diverse and tactically enticing.
The actual combat is wonderfully entertaining. However, the weapons actual damage is totally wrong - one quickly discovers that the good old medium laser is about as useful as a toothpick. The same goes for almost all other weapons, save the big ones. Sad, and making the game less interesting, but a fact of life. Ne'ertheless, the actual mech-to-mech battles are truly impressive - especially when you have up to SIXTEEN assault mechs duking it out.
In conclusion, the game is still a ton of fun, if you simply want raw war at its purest. Like I mentioned in the "pro's" section, smashing the hell out of anything that moves with a death-headed Atlas assault mech is enough to shoot testosterone levels through the roof. I'd be stunned if any women play this.
The game plot/premise/concept is a massive dissapoinment, but the actual combat is engaging enough to significantly lessen this negative influence.