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MechWarrior Online

MechWarrior vlog talks achievements, the Banshee, and more

Sci-Fi, Video, Classes, Game Mechanics, MMO Industry, PvP, News Items, Free-to-Play, Dev Diaries, MechWarrior Online

MechWarrior jump-jetting
Interested in MechWarrior Online? Got a spare 11 minutes and 43 seconds? Then you'll want to watch the latest Ask the Devs vlog which covers a wide range of topics relating to the sci-fi MMO's ongoing development.

Topics include recent jump-jet changes, the game's achievement system, design challenges on the Banshee, and more. The full video clip is embedded after the cut. If you're unable to view it, there's a transcript on the official MWO forums via the links below.

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Take a peek at MechWarrior Online's UI 2.0 upgrade

Sci-Fi, Video, Patches, PvP, News Items, War, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, MechWarrior Online

MWO
Piranha Games recently conducted a public test of the changes it is planning for MechWarrior Online's UI 2.0 upgrade, and No Guts No Galaxy's Phil Langenberg managed to snag a lengthy video of the new UI in action. According to Piranha, UI 2.0 is "a complete rework of the existing UI" designed to streamline mech customization and MWO's social features. The redesign is set for release February 4th.

Check out the VOD of the stream after the break to get a closer look, with commentary, of what MWO will look like post-2.0.

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MechWarrior Online's Bullock on golden mechs and future content

Sci-Fi, Video, Business Models, Interviews, PvP, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, Post-Apocalyptic, MechWarrior Online

MechWarrior Online screenshot
Pirahna Game's president Russ Bullock is listening to the playerbase of MechWarrior Online. He is very aware of the number of complaints that have come in after a recent announcement of the pre-order sell of Clan 'Mechs, with prices ranging from under $30.00 to $500.00 for a gold-plated version. Although the complaints come from a range of topics, many concentrate on the timing of the announcement. After all, the developers only recently announced the Project Phoenix pre-order program. Some players see this new DLC pre-order only as a chance to make more money in lieu of producing more content.

Other complaints stem from the prices of the pre-orders, and it's easy to see why. When we sat down with him recently, Bullock explained the costs in a few ways. First, the highest-priced items are simply collector's items. They look cool and do not have extras that go along with them that give them an advantage during combat. Second, all of the 'Mechs on the list can be paid for with in-game funds once released, minus some of the non-combat bonuses attached, meaning that any player who wants to can continue to pay nothing at all.

Bullock wanted to emphasize that despite all of this, he knows that what the playerbase is really asking for is community-based features.

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MechWarrior Online's clan warfare bundles now available for pre-order

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MechWarrior Online
MechWarrior Online's implementation of clan warfare is scheduled for Soon TM, and Piranha Games is celebrating by making clan mechs available for pre-order in the form of special bundles. Each bundle includes one or more clan mechs with variants, XP boosts, and other exclusive items.

Piranha also unveiled the Gold Khan collection of mechs, which have gold skin and are priced to match at $500 each. Non-gold variants of the mechs will be available for in-game currency at a later date. According to the official collection website, pre-ordering ensures you receive the collection by June 17th.

[Source: Piranha Games press release]

MechWarrior Online looks forward to the next month

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Next month's update consists of giant war machines blowing each other up.  And the month after that, too.
Are you ready for another month of MechWarrior Online? The team behind the game certainly is. Creative Director Bryan Ekman took to the forums to outline what players can expect from the next month of updates, including items for players who purchase one of the game's Phoenix packages (aside from the Saber tier) before October 15th. That includes bugfixes, new content, and of course new 'Mechs to enjoy.

Slated for release this month are the Locust, the Hero Atlas, and the Champion Spider, along with the Shadow Hawk, Thunderbolt, and Battlemaster 'Mechs for Phoenix package owners. The game will also drop a new map and a new paint pattern. Meanwhile, the team is working hard on optimizing game performance and UI accessibility. The letter closes by examining where several proposed pieces of the Community Warfare are in the development process. Dedicated MechWarriors will want to take a careful look at what's coming up next and probably start blasting away in preparation.

MechWarrior Online launch-day roundup

Sci-Fi, Launches, News Items, Free-to-Play, MechWarrior Online

MechWarrior Online launchday roundup
Many mech pilots may have already been duking it out on the battlefield during the soft launch open beta. But if anyone was waiting for MechWarrior Online to officially launch before getting really serious, today's the day. From here on out, MWO loses the beta tag and forges ahead as a fully launched title. Will that fact make the battles any more intense? You'll have to be the judge of that, so slip into your favorite mech and take to the battlefield to find out. And to help you gear up for those battles, we've assembled a collection of updates, tutorials, trailers, interviews, and hands-on experiences here for you.

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MechWarrior Online adds Protector Orion and new tutorial

Betas, Sci-Fi, Trailers, Video, Patches, Free-to-Play, MechWarrior Online, MOBA

MechWarrior Online adds Protector Orion and new tutorial
Are you amped up for this month's official launch of MechWarrior Online -- or will it not really change anything for you whatsoever? Perhaps we can get you more excited about a new content update that went live today and features an improved tutorial and a new hero 'mech.

The update adds the first of several announed tutorials that will help players acclimate to the to the unique challenges of piloting a 'mech. Today's tutorial is just about the basics of movement and combat, but that's what tutorials are for, right?

The Protector Orion hero 'mech has come online today as well, a hard-hitting, tough-as-nails machine that's got a nice array of weapon choices. The Protector Orion comes with a 30% boost to C-bill acquisition and can be spotted in the trailer after the break.

[Source: Piranha Games press release]

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MechWarrior Online announces launch party, new Project Phoenix loyalty rewards

Sci-Fi, Launches, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Free-to-Play, MechWarrior Online

MechWarrior Online announces launch party, new Project Phoenix loyalty rewards
If you're a MechWarrior fan and you'll be in San Francisco on September 26th, you might want to enter Piranha Games' launch event ticket lotto. "Tickets are strictly limited, each person must apply below for your chance to be to selected to attend this exclusive once-in-a-lifetime event," says the MWO website.

Festivities include a tournament, developer meet-and-greets, upcoming feature sneak peeks, and more. Piranha has also announced new loyalty rewards as part of its Project Phoenix package program. The rewards will be unlocked as more packages are purchased. So far, players have managed to unlock the phase one Phoenix colors reward.

[Thanks Dire Phoenix!]

Robots by the dozen: 12v12 goes live in MechWarrior Online

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MechWarrior Online
If you've played MechWarrior Online and thought to yourself, "This is fun and all, but I wish there were even more giant robots shooting my face off," today's news from Piranha Games might be what you've been waiting to hear. The studio announced that 12v12 battles are now live on MWO servers, bringing new strategies and opportunities for sharp tactical minds.

Along with 12v12 matches comes a new hero mech by the name of Golden Boy and the Terra Therma map. Terra Therma is a volatile environment that features tectonic and volcanic activity that must be considered when developing attack and defense plans.

MechWarrior Online is still in "beta," set for release on September 17th. In the meantime, check out the new game mode and mech in the trailers after the break.

[Source: Piranha Games press release]

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MechWarrior Online, Sarah's Jenner pull in $100k for cancer research

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MechWarrior Online, Sarah's Jenner pull in $100k for cancer research
A while back we reported on Piranha Games' decision to honor MechWarrior Online fan Sarah Parries with with Sarah's Jenner. Sarah, age five, favored the Jenner while playing MWO with her father, so when she succumbed to cancer, Pirahna decided to sell a special version of her favorite ride and donate all of the proceeds to the Canadian Cancer Society in her name.

Game Informer reports that the event has brought in $100,000, with more to come since Sarah's Jenner remains on sale through August 20th. "The response from the MechWarrior community and from the games industry at large has been overwhelming," said Piranha creative director Bryan Ekman. "We can't thank everyone enough for unifying in this effort to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society and cancer research."

[Thanks SpaceCobra!]

Piranha Games on why MechWarrior Online is getting a third-person mode

Betas, Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, MechWarrior Online

Sometimes, of course, you'd rather not have the ability to see your 'Mech.
Sometimes you find yourself railing against something at one point only to support it later on. That's the process that Piranha Games president Russ Bullock went through regarding a third-person viewing mode in MechWarrior Online. Bullock addresses player concerns about the inclusion by detailing his own experience with the project and how he went from vehemently opposing a third-person view to arguing that its inclusion is necessary for the long-term health of the game.

One of the key elements to understand about movement in MechWarrior Online is that your machine moves more like a bipedal tank with an independently rotating torso. Bullock states that he's watched new players trying the game in first-person and third-person modes, and being able to see how 'Mechs move on the screen instantly translates to better play. He also remains adamant that the inclusion of this new view mode is not meant to unbalance the game by allowing players to see things outside of their normal fields of vision.

[Thanks to Dire Phoenix for the tip!]

MechWarrior Online discusses the state of the game and the road to launch

Betas, Sci-Fi, Game Mechanics, Patches, Previews, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, MechWarrior Online

You shouldn't have to jump for joy.  Jump for target locks, though.
MechWarrior Online has already gone into open beta with a functional cash shop, but the game still isn't officially launching until September. So how's the road to launch looking so far? According to creative developer Bryan Ekman, it's going quite well. Despite summer traditionally being one of the slowest times for games like MWO, the community has been strong and growing. The development team is also thrilled that response to the game's first charity drive was immensely positive, with Sarah's 'Mech raising over $40,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society on the first day of release.

So what comes next? According to Ekman, the development is currently split into two teams, one focused upon major features and the other on content. A revamped UI and the Community Warfare system are the two biggest elements for the feature team, while a new map, Terra Therma, is set to debut next week. Third-person mode is also in testing for those who prefer to see their multi-ton death machines from the outside. Players would be well-served to look at the full letter for more dispatches about the game's future as September creeps closer.

MechWarrior Online launches Sarah's Jenner in honor of 5-year-old cancer victim

Sci-Fi, Culture, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, Promotions, MechWarrior Online

Never has a machine been so immune to criticism.
Five-year-old Sarah Parries loved the Jenner in MechWarrior Online. She and her father would sit and play the game, with Sarah loving the streak SRM variant so that she could lock on and move quickly. Unfortunately, Sarah was a victim of cancer, but her story made an impact on the developers of MechWarrior Online and led to the creation of a new champion 'Mech crafted in her image, the appropriately named Sarah's Jenner.

Sarah's Jenner will set you back $10, but the team at Piranha Games won't be seeing a nickel of it. Minus sales tax, all of the proceeds from the sale of this 'Mech will be donated to the Canadian Cancer Society, supporting others suffering from the same ailment as the girl who inspired this decor. You can take a look at the machine in action just past the break, and if you're an experienced 'Mech pilot you should consider picking up a special machine to honor an unfortunate victim.

[Source: Piranha Games press release]

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MechWarrior Online runs the numbers and announces a launch date

Sci-Fi, Culture, Launches, News Items, Free-to-Play, MMOFPS, MechWarrior Online

Go ahead and divide the played time by the player number.
There are a lot of people stomping around in MechWarrior Online right now. More than one million, according to a recent dispatch by Piranha Games, which puts the total number of registered accounts at about 1.1 million. These players have collectively logged 9.6 million hours to the game, destroyed a total of 46 million 'Mechs consisting of 80 billion tons of metal, and fired more than 12.6 billion missiles alone. It's a bit of a violent game, in short.

It's also a game about to finally shed the open beta title. Piranha Games has announced an official launch of September 17th, 2013. How much will actually change versus the current open beta is up for debate, but it's good to see a game fixing a launch date and sticking to it. So if you're a die-hard MechWarrior Online fan, get out there and start raising those destructive totals one 50-ton target at a time.

[Source: Piranha Games press release]

The Daily Grind: What's your pre-order spending limit?

Sci-Fi, Business Models, MMO Industry, New Titles, News Items, Free-to-Play, MechWarrior Online

This is some sort of BattleMech from MechWarrior Online
I was paging through the comments for our recent MechWarrior Online Phoenix Project post yesterday, and it struck me as somewhat nutty that Piranha has basically been operating the game for a year, has already offered a $120 founder's program, and is now offering what amounts to another pre-order program on top of that.

I get that companies need to make money, but I'm also glad that MechWarrior isn't one of those IPs I care enough about to drop hundreds of dollars on a beta and various avatar skins! So, how about it, Massively readers? What's the most you'd spend -- or have spent -- on an MMO pre-order program for a game or a franchise that you really love?

Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!

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