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BATTLETECH

Created by Harebrained Schemes LLC

Turn-based tactical 'Mech combat set in the classic 3025 era of the BattleTech Universe. From the creators of the Shadowrun Series!

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Final Total $2,865,422! All Hail Our BATTLETECH Backers!
about 7 years ago – Tue, Nov 03, 2015 at 10:55:11 PM

Including PayPal, our final Kickstarter total is a whopping $2,865,422 and you’ve unlocked ALL FOUR FUNDING STAGES. Incredible!


What an amazing month of excitement around BattleTech.We are deeply appreciative of the outpouring of support that the Global BattleTech Community has shown for our Kickstarter project. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Backer Missions Final Tally

Wow. When we asked for the Global BattleTech Community to come together to complete a set of Backer Missions, we had no idea how cool the outcome would be! We asked for you to share your passion, your art, and your stories with us. We’ve seen your pumpkins and costumes, your decades-old BattleTech collections, and your carefully painted and papercrafted ‘Mechs.

You’ve joined your voices to become one loud, booming voice that has rallied folks across social media to our BATTLETECH cause, and we are so grateful! Look at all the stuff you did!

Yowza!
Yowza!

Through your continued effort, you’ve unlocked EVERY SINGLE Mission Reward including cameos from classic BattleTech characters, a full length novel from Michael A. Stackpole, and livestreams galore.

Yesterday Mike, Mitch, and Jordan did an Alcohol-Fueled (read: drunk) Livestream Q&A which you can watch here:

Drunk game developer is drunk.
Drunk game developer is drunk.

Click the image or this link to watch the... fun. http://www.twitch.tv/ngngtv/v/23674097

Speaking of livestreams- we have to be completely honest, we were nervous about reaching the final Backer Mission Reward: a Livestream of Mike, Mitch, and Jordan playing Tabletop BattleTech with Randall Bills, Loren Coleman, and Brent Evans from Catalyst Game Labs! Six Beards Enter, Three Beards Leave - winners keep their beards! 

We’re not sure when this will be yet (gotta get past pre-production & the holidays and then find a good time for everyone), but keep an eye out for an update on that.  Again, thank you so much for rallying your friends and family to back us and take part in our Backer Missions!    

And for those about to lose your beards...we salute you.

ComStar: The Global BattleTech Community Forum

The sharing of BattleTech memories, war stories, and fiction along with future hopes and desires has been a big and rewarding part of this campaign. The discussions these stories and experiences have generated has hopefully been as exciting for you as they have been for us!

It’s abundantly clear that we’re part of a passionate, dedicated community and we want to help you continue the great discussions that have developed. So, in that spirit, we are happy to bring you ComStar: The Global BattleTech Community Forum!

http://community.battletechgame.com

We invite you to join the fun and get in on the ground floor. This will be a much easier and more enjoyable place to communicate with your fellow MechWarriors than the Kickstarter Comments page (for sure). The new forum (obviously) looks a bit bare at the moment, so jump in and get the conversation rolling!

Consider this our first baby step in creating a place for BattleTech fans around the world to connect, discover all the great BattleTech-related community sites out there, have fun, and (cross your fingers) eventually buy cool physical items like the ones in our backer rewards.

If you have initial questions about the ComStar forum, your backer rewards or our BATTLETECH game itself, please check the FAQ section of the forum first:

http://community.battletechgame.com/forums/categories/15

Kickstarter, BackerKit, and Rewards - What’s Next?

We know a lot of you have never backed a Kickstarter before, so we thought we’d share what happens to your pledge and how we manage your 41,000 (!) Backer accounts.

Starting today, Kickstarter will begin charging your pledges on your credit card but it will take a FEW WEEKS to process over 41,000 backers. If there is a problem charging your account, you’ll receive an email and will have a couple weeks to work that out.

If your pledge payment doesn’t go through on Kickstarter, don’t panic. Your pledge will remain in the system and you’ll be able to make your payment through our pledge management tool - a website called BackerKit.

BackerKit is where you’ll tell us which store you want your game key from, which Heraldry kit you want, the size of your jacket, and shipping information. If you added extra funds to your Kickstarter pledge, it will show as a credit that you’ll be able to apply towards Add-Ons. You’ll also have the option to upgrade your Reward Level or choose more Add-Ons.

Perhaps most important, BackerKit is where you will return to find all your digital rewards as they become available.

We anticipate opening BackerKit accounts during the early part of December, so be sure to keep an eye out for a Kickstarter update with more details around then.

Second Chance Backer Opportunity

From our experience running Kickstarters in the past, we know that there are people out there who won’t find out about the Kickstarter campaign until after it’s over. Our Second Chance Backer site is open so latecomers can support the project and join the community.

Thanks again, y'all!

- HBS

OBJECTIVE COMPLETE: Stage 4 - PVP Multiplayer Unlocked!
about 7 years ago – Mon, Nov 02, 2015 at 10:52:26 PM

Wow! In just over a month, you have managed to fund ALL of the features and content in our BATTLETECH Kickstarter Campaign.

Congratulations on this tremendous achievement!

You did it!
You did it!

So what happens now that the project has passed $2,500,000? Will we add additional funding goals and make the game even larger in scope?

No.

As we said in our first Live Stream Twitch Q&A session, after Stage 4 is unlocked, additional funding will go towards polishing the features and content we’ve already committed to. After that, any additional funds will go toward funding a Post-Launch Live Team that will continue developing additional features and content. First among them will be Cooperative Multiplayer, which will allow you and a friend to face-off against AI opponents.

So, in the time remaining, please help get the word out to new people who haven’t backed the project yet! They still have the chance to get the game for only $25 and the whole community will benefit from their early faith in the project.

Here’s what you can do to help: 

1. Like, Share, and Retweet this video recapping our Kickstarter campaign for new folks.

2. Take and share our “Which ‘Mech Are You?” quiz and post the results on Facebook and Twitter! 

Thanks again for your support and don’t forget to join us LIVE at 6pm GMT / 11am Pacific time for our last Q&A session of the campaign!

Oh, and this time, we’ll also be taking your questions on Twitter at #BTdrunkstream, too!  

HBS

Our FINAL 48 HOURS UPDATE Featuring the LAST Bonus Backer Mission! Blood & Sand: The Arenas of Solaris VII! And… a Love Letter from Jordan!
about 7 years ago – Sun, Nov 01, 2015 at 10:47:28 PM

Our LAST Bonus Backer Mission!

Okay, MechWarriors, listen up! We’ve got only hours left to go, and we want you to unlock as many Backer Mission Rewards as possible. With that in mind, we’ve got a final Backer Mission for you: The Final 48 Push.

We made a quick little video recapping our Kickstarter campaign for BATTLETECH and we want to get it out far and wide to reach folks who either haven’t heard about it yet or don’t know it’s almost over.

So your final mission is all about liking, sharing, and retweeting it!

Twitter link ​- https://twitter.com/WeBeHarebrained/status/660903403439034368

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/HarebrainedSchemes/posts/902894599778708 

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The TOTAL of the COMBINED likes, shares, and retweets of The Final 48 Push will earn you points towards your Backer Missions Rewards! So far, through the Backer Missions, the Global BattleTech Community has rallied together to unlock cameos from beloved characters, novellas from acclaimed writer Michael A. Stackpole, and livestreams galore. With just a short time remaining, the GBC is inching their way to the final Rewards - a full length novel from Mike Stackpole and a Twitch livestream where Six Beards Enter... and Three Beards Leave.

Go, go, go!

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Blood & Sand: The Arenas of Solaris VII

Among the roughly 2,000 planets of the Inner Sphere, there’s no place like Solaris VII—it’s a unique amalgamation of the coliseums of ancient Rome, the hyper-exaggerated showmanship of WWE Wrestling, the high octane and battered metal of Monster Truck Rallies, the gambling and excesses of Las Vegas, the slums of Mumbai, and the political neutrality of Switzerland.

Highly industrialized since the Star League era, Solaris VII was home to several important armaments manufacturers which started staging matches to demonstrate their wares to Star League officials and representatives of the Great Houses. These demonstrations quickly led to staged competitions, which soon became popular entertainment not just on Solaris VII but across the Inner Sphere.

There are dozens of arenas in and around Solaris City, ranging from unofficial matches in junkyards to the cathedrals of ’Mech combat, the titanic Class Six arenas sponsored by the Great Noble Houses of the Inner Sphere.

We’re really excited to bring the arenas of Solaris VII to life and with your help, we can do it!


We’re Closing in on Stage 4!

Almost there! As we charge into the final hours of our Kickstarter campaign, the goal of adding PvP Multiplayer seems within our reach!

There are many reasons that we’re excited about including multiplayer in the game. Our goals for multiplayer range from reconnecting with friends, to making new ones via casual play, to offering organized competitions to test your strategy and tactics against those of other players, all within the incredibly dynamic setting of Solaris VII.

As we’ve seen during our Kickstarter campaign, you have many fond memories of battling friends across the tabletop. Well, those friends may be scattered around the world now, but with the power of multiplayer, you can reconnect across a BATTLETECH battlefield.

As the host of a multiplayer game, you will have control of things like the balance rating / size of each player’s Lance, the choice of arena, map, weather conditions, etc. and of course the victory conditions for the match.

When your friends are not available, we want you to have a good matchmaking system so you can find similarly experienced opponent for casual matches. These casual matches allow you to hone your combat skills against a wide array of other folks’ strategies and tactics without the pressure of your leaderboard standings being at risk.

We also envision a variety of competitive tracks that challenge you to design different types of Lances for different tactical situations - things like arenas periodically hosting championship tournaments which would encourage designing Lances appropriate for that arena, or maybe tournaments based around different victory conditions. That would also encourage players to design Lances appropriate for scouting, territory control, facility destruction, etc.

These organized competitive events would have leaderboards to recognize players’ accomplishments and likely some form of in-game prizes such as ‘Mech components for players that achieve certain levels.

A Love Letter From Jordan

To BattleTech Fans Around the World,

I just want to take a moment to thank you all for your amazing contributions. Yes, you’ve opened your wallets to help us make a fantastic BattleTech game but, more importantly, you’ve shared your memories of the game, the universe, and the story that brought you together with other fans - whether in person, online, or in spirit.

It's been deeply touching to reconnect with this game universe and more importantly, with all of you. By sharing your BattleTech memories, you have opened the floodgates of all the good memories I have of the game, the story, and you- the players.

I want you to know that we understand and deeply appreciate your amazing act of faith in backing us. We know you are trusting us with an important part of your gaming history and we take that trust very seriously. While it would be impossible to live up to every hope and dream of tens of thousands of people, I want you to know that we’ll do our damndest to do BattleTech justice and deliver a game that’s seriously fun to play!

All the best,

Jordan

p.s. I’m still trapped in this damn TV… a little help, please?

Lastly, Some Social Media Stuff!

Here’s some BATTLETECH Final Hours Facebook and Twitter images for our final assault on social media.

Post! Post like the wind, Bullseye!

New Add-Ons! A Timeline of the Inner Sphere! And Another Backer Mission Reward Unlocked!
about 7 years ago – Fri, Oct 30, 2015 at 11:09:09 PM

Here’s a little surprise for our FINAL WEEKEND- some new Add-Ons! 

We’ve added THREE hi-res, poster-sized digital ‘Mech Blueprints for you to download and print for your wall. (Up to 24” x 36” size.) Choose from three classic BattleMechs: the BattleMaster, the Warhammer, or the Mad Cat (note the Mad Cat won’t appear in our game since it’s not around yet in 3025). According to our friends at Catalyst, these digital versions won’t be available anywhere else - so get ‘em while they’re… digitally… hot!

A Timeline of the Inner Sphere

Our BATTLETECH game is set in the popular 3025 Succession Wars Era of the BattleTech Universe (often referred to as "Classic BattleTech") but the history leading up to that war is incredibly rich. We’ve created a new image of the events leading to the Succession Wars and hope it’s an interesting history lesson for veterans and newcomers alike.

Click to view the fullsize timeline of the Inner Sphere. (2271 - 3025)
Click to view the fullsize timeline of the Inner Sphere. (2271 - 3025)

Another Backer Mission Reward Unlocked!

Great work (again!) from the Global BattleTech Community - you’ve unlocked a Cameo In-Game Appearance for Natasha Kerensky AKA The Black Widow in the Campaign Game! This should be good news for Black Widow fans.

The studio is having a good laugh watching y’all rip through our Bonus Backer Missions because McCain is really starting to sweat losing his beard in the last Backer Mission Reward - The Beard Battle (™). On behalf of all of us, thank you! :)

Happy Halloween!

You folks have been sharing some kickass BattleTech pumpkins and costumes using #myBThalloween and #BATTLETECH. Here are some of our favorites… There’s still time to pick up some Backer Mission points by sharing yours. (Please stop. I like my beard. --Mike) 

Have fun! Be safe!

HBS

Legendary ‘Mechs & MechWarriors Funded! Check Out This In-Engine Visual Exploration! And a Peek Behind the Curtain with Artist Maury Weiss
about 7 years ago – Fri, Oct 30, 2015 at 10:08:27 PM

Huzzah! The Global BattleTech Community has achieved our penultimate funding goal of Legendary ‘Mechs and MechWarriors - putting Stage 4 PVP Multiplayer within sight! (We'll have a bit more to say about Solaris 7 and multiplayer in our next update.)

If you missed Wednesday's Kickstarter update, take a look - we’ve put together several new ways to help us spread the word in these final days of the campaign, such as taking and sharing our "Which 'Mech Are You?" Quiz and signing up to support our Final 48 Hours social media push on Thunderclap

Y'all have made some impressive progress on those extra Backer missions already!)
Y'all have made some impressive progress on those extra Backer missions already!)

EARLY In-Engine Visual Exploration

As we’ve said before, we’re still early in prototyping and pre-production on this project. Over the last couple of weeks, one of the pre-production tasks our art team’s been working on is a 3D test-scene in Unity (our game engine). This is an important internal pre-production goal, because it lets us explore how our 2D concept art translates to real-time 3D, uncovering some of the challenges we’ll be faced with during production, and allows us to start setting a target for the final look of the game. Explorations like this get the whole team on the same page, defining a vision that our artists, engineers and designers can all understand and evaluate. It also lets us iterate quickly to make sure our visual goals mesh well with our engineering and design goals. 

A couple days ago, this test scene started to really come together. We showed it to the rest of the team, and everyone got really excited seeing what this game could look like. So, while it’s still early work-in-progress, not final… we decided it was just too cool not to show you guys, too!

(Please note, our ‘Mechs themselves aren’t fully animation-rigged or posed yet!)

As with most endeavors here at Harebrained, developing a scene like this is a highly iterative and collaborative process. Below you can see how the scene shaped up as we passed it back and forth between 3D and paintovers in Photoshop.

We had several goals going into this exploration: How do we achieve the overall mood, light, atmosphere and sense of scale that we’re looking for in the game? How do we give our ‘Mechs a clear visual "read" and make them feel large and powerful? What’s the right amount of detail to include in a scene?

We decided to start with a snowy landscape because this would be a particularly atmospheric environment and would allow us to focus more on these effects and less so on the specific modeling and texturing of individual assets. In general, we’re looking for opportunities to push dramatic mood wherever we can!

Here's a breakdown showing some of the different elements that combine to create the final image.
Here's a breakdown showing some of the different elements that combine to create the final image.

Atmosphere also plays an important role in emphasizing the scale of ‘Mechs and in adding depth to the scene. You can see that we have a layer of fog moving along the ground that begins to fade out the bottom half of the ‘Mechs. This gradient reinforces scale because it makes the ‘Mechs appear so large that they are standing far above the fog, too tall to be completely covered. It also helps to ground the ‘Mechs in the environment and to increase their readability.

This effect is further enforced by additional animated effects such as fog and dust at the ground level. Right now, the effect is simulating snow blown up by the wind, but in a lot of cases it could be caused by the ‘Mechs’ effects on the environment. Whether it’s a desert, snow, or jungle map, we want to always have a variety of atmospheric effects present in the game to reinforce scale and readability.

Another important piece of the puzzle is a 3D pipeline called Physical Based Rendering (PBR). This pipeline has been used to make computer graphics for films for a long time but it’s relatively new to the gaming industry and is a new feature in Unity 5. Essentially, it’s a workflow that allows us to more accurately simulate real-world materials and lighting conditions by using image-based lighting, global illumination (reflected light) and physically-based materials that behave more naturally and predictably. One of the biggest advantages of PBR is that our 3D assets will look good in any lighting scenario.

We’re also utilizing post-processing effects like screen space ambient occlusion, bloom, color grading and tonemapping. These tools give us tons of control over the overall color, mood and contrast of the final game image.

Once again, this is just an early starting point for us here as we start to hone in on the visual style of the game and plan our art production pipeline. There’s plenty more to explore still but we wanted to give you guys a quick look at where we’re at with all this stuff!

A Peek Behind the Curtain With Artist Maury Weiss

Hello! My name is Maury Weiss and I have been working on BATTLETECH as both a concept and 3D artist.

I was hired on here at HBS as a 3D character artist right after the first Shadowrun Returns Kickstarter. I’ve been fortunate enough to be a part of almost every project since then. I had a large role as a 3D artist on Shadowrun Returns, though I had a smaller part to play on Shadowrun: Dragonfall since I was sculpting lots of figures for Golem Arcana at the time. Most recently I worked on Shadowrun: Hong Kong as the lead 3D artist.

So far on BATTLETECH, I’ve worked as a concept artist establishing the look and feel of the world, more specifically what the actual in-game world could look like. In recent weeks I’ve moved back into 3D and have been creating the real-time scene shown above.

I’m really excited to work on BATTLETECH because it’s a whole new world for me. I’m pretty new to the series and it’s been a breath of fresh air that has inspired my creativity and has made me want to push myself as an artist. The more I learn about this fallen, gritty world, with its feudal feel and politics, the more excited I get. It’s really unique and interesting and the sort of game I joined the industry to work on - from ‘Mechs, to landscapes, to the pilots themselves. I hope to make a visually appealing, immersive world that is true to the series and that both new and old fans can enjoy.

P.S. Shadowrun Series Sale on Steam This Weekend!

Lastly: this weekend only, all of our Shadowrun games are on sale as part of Steam’s Halloween Sale. If you haven’t played Shadowrun: Dragonfall or Shadowrun: Hong Kong yet, this is a great opportunity to check out the world of Shadowrun!