Category Archives: News

Catalyst Game Labs Showcases Upcoming Merch At Mech_Con

Catalyst Game Labs Showcases Upcoming Merch At Mech_Con

Catalyst Game Labs took over Mech_Con last Saturday to not only showcase their upcoming products but also put on a huge tabletop experience. And I am not even joking – an entire corner of the convention was entirely devoted to CGL’s massive game tables. Technically, Catalyst had more space devoted to them than any other company present.

Tabletop

But it’s not the size that matters – it’s what you do with it. Catalyst was certainly no slouch there, putting on a workshop for BattleTech veterans and newcomers to the tabletop alike, featuring incredible hand-painted miniatures and sprawling campaign maps. For new BattleTech players, it was a chance to see what inspired the computer games that were on center stage.

Catalyst wasn’t just there to put on a workshop though. They were also there to showcase the latest designs for their upcoming products, of which they announced many, and all of them to be appearing in 2018.

Presentation

The first big announcement was two new box sets for the tabletop game. The first box, simply titled BattleTech: Beginner’s Box Set, is intended as a quick start to the BattleTech game. Consider it BattleTech on training wheels, very similar to the quickstart rules that were given in previous editions of BattleTech. The box will come with two minis – a Griffin and a Wolverine – and one map sheet to play on. This will also be one of the cheapest BattleTech boxes ever at just $25.

Griffin

The second box will be the main course. BattleTech: A Game Of Armored Combat will feature eight miniatures, two map sheets, and the full rules to BattleTech. The eight minis included will be a Battlemaster, Awesome, Thunderbolt, Catapult, Shadowhawk, Wolverine, Commando, and Locust. Each of the minis is based on the redesigned art featured in BattleTech: Alpha Strike and are hella cool. Take a look at some of the snapshots I grabbed at Mech_Con to see what I mean.

Randall Bills also said that these will be out before next year’s GenCon in Spring of 2018.

Locust

The new minis are currently only going to be available in the new box sets, so keep this in mind for the BattleTech mini aficionado in your life (I’m lookin’ at you, CamoSpecs).

Along with the new box sets, Brent Evans also announced brand new BattleTech fiction coming in the new year. He was mum on much of the details, but he did tease a new short story that deals with Durant Carlyle, Grayson Carlyle’s father, and his exploits as part of Carlyle’s Commandos. There will also be short fiction to be found in the campaign books set to come out in 2018 as well, of which precious little info was provided.

New Minis

Veteran MechWarriors will also be happy to note there will be brand new map sheets available soon that will be based on the new fiction. They’ll also be included in the new box set, so if you want to kill two birds with one stone you can shell out for the latest version of the tabletop to save on shipping.

And finally, the biggest news of all for classic BattleTech fans: CGL plans on hosting a series of events in 2018 to take place worldwide. I don’t have any other details than that, but expect to find out more on that bombshell before the new year.

That’s it for Catalyst! Stay tuned as we hit all of the big names to attend Mech_Con in the coming days.

And as always, MechWarriors: Stay Syrupy.

stay syrupy

Note: An earlier version of this article stated that the redesigned minis would available separately, but they aren’t. So buy that new box set to get your mitts on them!

Mech_Con 2017 Recap

Mech_Con

If there were any doubts as to what is the new mecca (hah) of ‘Mech conventions, they were put to rest on December 9th, 2017.

Mech_Con brought together the biggest names from all things BattleTech, from PGI and Harebrained Schemes in video games to Catalyst Game Labs on the tabletop, and there has been a slew of super exciting announcements that will give any ‘Mech-head the chills.

We’ll certainly get more in-depth with each announcement in future articles, but first a quick recap of what went down at Mech_Con 2017.

Continue reading

Update On The Harmony Gold Lawsuit

Update On The Harmony Hold Lawsuit

courtesy of marcomazzoni.dunked.com

Things are looking bad for Harmony Gold, and good for our BattleTech heroes!

Piranha Games (not to be confused with the Piranha ‘Mech), makers of the successful MechWarrior Online game, have recently filed court documents that would dismiss the case brought against them by the much-reviled Harmony Gold.

If you recall from our last update on the case, there was some confusion on the part of Harmony Gold as they had entered into arbitration against the very company they said gave them the copyrights to the Unseen ‘Mechs, Tatsunoko Productions. At the time it appeared that Tatsunoko never actually owned the copyrights in the first place, which meant that Harmony Gold couldn’t have bought them and thus can’t sue anybody over them.

It looks like PGI found out how that case went since they’ve filed a request for summary judgment to dismiss the case entirely on the grounds that Harmony Gold doesn’t have the standing to bring any case of infringement to the courts.

Dismissal Dismissal 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

PGI’s lawyers make three compelling arguments that the judge should dismiss the case with prejudice:

  1. Harmony Gold does not own the copyrights for the Unseen ‘Mechs. Those copyrights are actually owned by a Japanese company called Big West Co. Ltd., a company I have literally never heard of.
  2. The Unseen copyrights were never licensed to Harmony Gold, and the licensing agreement actually excludes the copyrights they’re suing over. Which, by the way, they never owned in the first place since Harmony Gold licensed from Tatsunoko, not Big West.
  3. And here’s the big deal, and should be the nail in Harmony Gold’s coffin. That arbitration that took place between Harmony Gold and Tatsunoko in US District Court found a judgment that shows Harmony Gold officially does not have the license to the copyrights they’re trying to sue over.

That last bit is huge. If there’s a previous court case that a lawyer can point to that says Harmony Gold doesn’t legally own the copyrights, then it torpedoes their whole case. Not that it was a particularly strong case to begin with, if you remember the arguments they made when filing their suit originally.

I know that BattleTech has had some bad luck with judges in the past, but you’d have to be blind, deaf, and dumb to think that Harmony Gold has any legal standing to enforce a copyright they don’t even own. Here’s hoping the judge throws their case, and them, flat out on their asses.

And this time let’s hope they stay gone for good.

 

Ogre Video Game Released

Ogreing Away!

Last month, the official digitized version of OGRE was released on a few formats, including PC.  What is OGRE, how does it relate to BattleTech, and what can it do?

Ogreing Around the Map in Style!

OGRE was a futuristic science-fiction tabletop wargame released in 1977.  It was the first game made by famous game designer Steven Jackson, who would create games like Munchkin and GURPS.  OGRE was a very interesting design that had a few interesting things going for it, and in some ways, felt a little like BattleTech light.  It’s been so popular that countless versions, including some video game inspirations, followed.  There was even a sequel based around one of the units – GEV.

OGRE was a good example of an asymmetrical game.  One player played a single unit, the great, powerful, battletank, the OGRE.  Then the foe had units like hovertanks, normal tanks, missile launchers, and infantry to try and take it out.  Each of these units had their own rules.  Take the GEV hovercraft, for example.  It was the only unit that could move, fire, and then move again, enabling powerful hit-and-fade tactics.

The Doom Arrives!

OGRE has been pretty popular since its release.  It’s not difficult to finish a game quickly, sometimes in just 30 minutes, which enables fun at the table.  Different versions of the games introduce new rules to help make the game more interesting.  And the game’s design holds up very well after these years.  Some of the rules seem to evoke a sort of spirit of BattleTech.  For example, if a GEV begins and ends its movements on a road, railroad, or water, then it gets +1 to its move.  Sound similar to tanks in BattleTech?

I’ve always felt a connection with OGRE and BatteTech.  Can you imagine a game where one side has a single BattleMech and the other side conventional forces with the same BV?  Who wins?  Let’s find out!  From the hexagonal maps to the futuristic feel, the games play into a similar space.

Last month, an official updated version of OGRE was released in video game form by Auroch Digital, and you can pick it up on Steam if you want. Since any game you purchase on Steam can be returned with fewer than 2 hours of gaming, why not grab a copy, take it for a spin, and then try it out?  If you have never played OGRE, then this is a great time to check it out!  And if you have, then this is a great time to come back to the game!

Battletank Away!

Get your battletank on!

 

 

 

MegaBots Returns With Kickstarter For Giant Robot Tournament (or not)

MegaBots

courtesy of Kickstarter

(update 2017-11-21The campaign was cancelled early.)

MegaBots has returned after their first ever successful international giant robot bout with yet another Kickstarter aimed at creating the world’s first Giant Robot Fighting Tournament.

You might remember MegaBots from their longstanding feud with Japan’s Kuratas creators, Suidobashi Heavy Industries. The two titans of robotics finally came to blows after a two-year wait on October 17, with the Kuratas taking the first fight and the MegaBots Eagle Prime taking the second. Although the fight fell a little short of our dreams for Solaris VII style gladiatorial combat, the video was watched over 20 million times across all its media platforms.

With that kind of viewership, MegaBots decided to take things to the next level and start a Kickstarter campaign to fund the next logical step: the creation of an international league of giant robot combat.

Billed as the world’s first Giant Robot Tournament, it would see competitors not just from America and Japan, but also China, South Korea, Canada, and Australia. The Chinese already have two fully completed robots: the Fighting My Bots Yamantaka and GREATMETAL’s Monkey King. No word on what giant robots the other countries have in store, but hopefully the Canadian entry is a giant mechanical beaver that fires maple syrup.

What? I’m allowed to say that. I’m Canadian.

Yamantaka

courtesy of Kickstarter

MegaBots has got a steep hill to climb though. They’re asking for $950,000.00 in funding, and say that if they can’t meet that as a minimum they’re going to shut their doors for good, forever ending the dream of giant robot combat. They say the cash is needed to help other teams enter the sport with footing the cost of R&D, which MegaBots will help out with by making their schematics for the Mk.II Iron Glory open source. That means anybody with a bunch of spare parts and some engineering know-how could make their very own combat capable ‘Mech.

Some of the stretch goals include creating a comic book series, an 8-team battle royale, and at $5 million, the holy grail: actual walking ‘Mechs.

They’ve also got some artists’ renditions of the tournament that seems straight out of a Solaris VII TRO. I’m guessing part of that money will be spent on figuring out how to have a live audience anywhere near a combat zone without getting killed.

Tournament

courtesy of Kickstarter

So far they’re at a little over $30 grand, so a bit of a slow start, but hopefully things pick up when the word gets out. And if you’re the type to support giant robot fighting (and I know you are) there’s some cool merch available for backers too.

So what are you waiting for?! Be the BattleTech change you want to see in the world!

Update 2017-11-21The campaign was cancelled early.

Lead Developer Brent Evans Answers Big Questions On The Future Of BattleTech

Hang on your neurohelmets, BattleTech fans, because we’ve got a veritable bonanza of info for you to sink your into.

In an impromptu Q&A over on the Catalyst Games BattleTech forums, lead developer Brent Evans has answered burning questions on the future of the franchise. Before we get into the nitty-gritty, huge thanks to Dragon over at Aries Games And Miniatures for posting these questions last June, and thanks to Evans for actually getting around to responding. Better late than never, right?

Lead Developer Brent Evans Answers Big Questions On The Future Of BattleTech

via battletechgame.com

The Big News

To start, the big question of what’s going to happen politically with the entire BattleTech universe is not actually something that Evans can answer directly. As lead developer, Evans and his team are currently working on a larger metaplot that “will endure for the next generation of the game”, but the details remain fluid. The reason for this is that the BattleTech fiction is being driven by Catalyst‘s writers rather than the product developers.

“I’ve been beating them with sticks to forge stories worthy of BattleTech”

The creative process at Catalyst is somewhat extreme. In Evans’ own words: “I’m no writer… more a Creative Director. I grab the best team members, throw ’em together with some direction, gas and matches, and then shake. Prior to GenCon I recruited the team, locked them in a room at GenCon, and since then I’ve been beating them with sticks to forge stories worthy of BattleTech.”

One of the biggest questions on everyone’s mind is the release of IlClan, the source book that would see the end of the Dark Age era of BattleTech and the beginning of a new era where the Clans have rallied behind a new leader and have begun a new drive to retake Terra from the Republic of the Sphere. Evans has now promised that IlClan will be the driving force for the next release of fiction, which will include sourcebooks and novels.

Wars of Reaving

via battletechgame.com

As for what events may transpire, he’s promised upheaval among the Clans as well as Inner Sphere Houses, and that “sh** will definitely hit fans.”  

While the new fiction direction will certainly please fans of the series, there’s a renewed push to bring in new players to BattleTech with the release of “box sets and support products that serve as gateway products into the game.”  There will be two new box sets: one Game of Armored Combat and one Beginner’s Set, the details of which were released at GenCon.

The big news out of the way, let’s hit the small stuff.

Lots Of Little News

Evans was asked a ton of questions, not all of which can be reported on here (although they’re all good, and you can read the whole Q&A here). However, there are a few points that we felt should be shared as far and wide as possible.

First, there are redesigns of the Valkyrie and Wasp in the works. The current lawsuit with Harmony Gold has unfortunately put a kibosh on their release until the legal dust settles. Evans did say “that the redesigns on these were AWESOME and we went to great lengths to change/overhaul these units so they didn’t share any details with the Unseen.”

Evans was also asked to prove his BattleTech chops, to which he responded, “I’ve read every piece of fiction – many of them many times.  I consider TROs to be ‘light bathroom reading material.'” And what he’d love to see in BattleTech? “I want to see a story that tells the full story of the Black Thorns (which were unintentionally killed off camera) AND I want to see a rebirth of the Gray Death Legion.”

Wraith

via battletechgame.com

Many of us will be happy to know that Dark Age is finally getting the ax, but a few questions will be answered before it goes. One of the bigger ones will be who exactly took down the HPG Network, however Evans did say we may never know the answer to why or who sought to gain from it.

Tragically, there will be no novels released in 2018 concerning the Homeworld Clans during the Wars of Reaving. That period seems ripe with potential stories, but we’ll just have to be satisfied with hearing about things second-hand from the novels set to be released during the IlClan era.

“Once ilClan comes out you’ll see a steady flow of product once again”

And finally, we received a bit of an explanation as to why 2017 has fallen a bit short of its promise when it came to the IlClan:

“When it was clear we needed to overhaul ilClan and redesign the whole BT plot and product line, it put a hold on lots of products large & small because they were going to one direction and we were taking the IP in another. What you ask about is just the price paid for abandoning a failing plan and forging a new one. Once ilClan comes out you’ll see a steady flow of product once again.”

This is great news for fans of the series, and great news for BattleTech in general. We here at Sarna can’t wait to see what 2018 will bring to our most beloved universe of giant stompy robots.

New Details Emerge For MechWarrior 5

New Details Emerge For MechWarrior 5

courtesy of mw5mercs.com

As Mech_Con once again fast approaches, we’re being teased with more details on the upcoming single-player BattleTech simulator, MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries. Just this month, PC Gamer revealed they will be running a feature article in their November issue which provides us with tantalizing info on what to expect in the first new single-player MechWarrior in over a decade.

We know from a PC Gamer article earlier this year that MechWarrior 5 will take place in the classic era of BattleTech, between the years 3015 and 3049, and much like its spiritual predecessor MechWarrior 2: Mercenaries, you’ll start with a single beat-up light ‘Mech and work your way up to becoming a full lance of the biggest and toughest ‘Mechs the Inner Sphere has to offer.

What the upcoming PC Gamer issue reveals is that unlike previous MechWarrior titles, this one won’t allow nearly as much customization as previous entries in the series. Gone are the days when you can buy any old ‘Mech and turn it into a one-man army with some Endo Steel and XL Engine upgrades, as many aspects of a ‘Mech’s anatomy will be fixed to the chassis. Instead, prospective buyers will have to scour the constantly changing market to find a ‘Mech with the specific features they want, and then tweak the existing weaponry to get it just how they like it.

Shadowhawk

courtesy of mw5mercs.com

While ‘Mechs themselves won’t have nearly as much customization when it comes to their weapons loadout, the weapons themselves will have slight variations for pilots to play with. Each weapon system will have multiple manufacturers with each manufacturer giving slightly different performance. One AC/5 might have a bit more power, but another manufacturer’s AC/5 might reload a second faster, and so on. It’s not what we’re used to, but it does seem to fit more with the lore than the anything-goes customization of games gone past.

Everything about MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries will be dynamic: missions will be dynamically created, terrain will be randomly generated, and armor and structure will have multiple stages of destruction (rather than going from “chipped paint” to “on fire” all at once). Perhaps best of all, the entire environment will be destructible, so if you want to walk your 55-ton engine of death through a building to surprise the tank platoon on the other side you can do that too.

Finally, we’ve got two new ‘Mechs to add to the known list of machines included in the game. The Shadow Hawk and Raven were revealed last year with their pre-alpha footage, and now we know the Jagermech and Atlas will also make an appearance.

The PC Gamer article goes into way more detail, as well as providing a first-hand account of the author’s time with the playable alpha, so I encourage you all to pick up a copy of the November issue when it releases. Or you can get a digital copy here.

Giant Robots Finally Set To Do Battle In September

Megabots

courtesy of qz.com

After 2 years of waiting, it’s finally going to happen: giant robots from Japan and America will engage in Solaris-style combat to determine which nation is the greatest ‘Mech builder on Earth.

You may remember from our previous articles on current technologies that mimic those in BattleTech that MegaBots Inc., the builder of the formidable Mk. II MegaBot has challenged Suidobashi Heavy Industries to a duel against their impressive Kuratas quad ’Mech. The original challenge was issued in August of 2015 to take place a year later, and that deadline came and went with not much in the way of giant robot combat.

Well, apparently the delay was because MegaBots was designing an all new robot, the Mk. IIIEagle Prime”, to take on the Kuratas. I guess multi-million dollar machines take more than a year to both design and manufacture. Who knew?

The new date is set for September 2017, and we can’t wait to see the new robot in action. Eagle Prime is a significant upgrade over the Mk. II, weighing nearly 7 tons more and over a full foot taller than the older ‘Mech (that puts Eagle Prime at a whopping 12 tons and 16 feet tall). It’s powered by a 430 hp Chevy LS3 V8 engine which drives a pair of tank treads much like the Mk. II, but while the Mk II. had a pair of air cannons firing massive paintballs, the Mk. III has a double-barreled paintball cannon in the left arm and a massive crusher claw in the right.

Eagle Prime

courtesy of qz.com

Eagle Prime even takes a page out of the OmniMech textbook with swappable armaments. Either arm can be replaced with an enormous chainsaw or an armor shattering drill.

The cost to create Eagle Prime was just over $2.5 million, with $550,000.00 coming from Kickstarter backers and the rest coming from corporate sponsors.

While it certainly seems like a significant upgrade, I can’t help but feel that the Mk. III has lost some armor protection over the Mk. II. It has gained some speed, according to MegaBots, but given the fact that the ‘Mech weighs twice as much as its little brother but is powered by a similar sized engine it’s a little hard to believe them.

Kuratas

courtesy of Suidobiashi Heavy Industries

Development of Eagle Prime has been well documented on the MegaBots YouTube channel, but there hasn’t been much response from Suidobashi Heavy Industries as to what development, if any, has occurred with the Kuratas. If it remains the same design as debuted in 2012, it will be nearly a third of the weight of Eagle Prime while also having a significantly smaller power source. On paper, it looks like the Mk. III will wipe the floor with the Kuratas – provided MegaBots manages to work out all the bugs in their software.

The duel will occur at an undisclosed location, and no spectators will be allowed. Unlike on Solaris, there are no Star League-era defense systems available to protect the public from two multi-ton death machines on a rampage. As for the safety of the pilots, that’s also something that hasn’t been discussed much. Neither ‘Mech has an ejection system, so I’m guessing it’ll be Queensberry rules when it comes time for hand-to-hand combat.

Fans eager for their first taste of giant robot fighting will be able to check out the fight on the MegaBots YouTube channel and Facebook page.

Monkey King

courtesy of BOOM on YouTube

And in a strange twist, it seems that China has also thrown down the gauntlet and announced its arrival in the giant robot fighting game. Shiqian Sun, a Chinese artist known for creating multiple giant robot statues, has created the Monkey King as China’s first gladiator robot. The Monkey King is due for completion next year, so won’t be done in time to take part in the Kuratas/Eagle Prime duel.

The exact date of the duel is not yet known, but we expect to learn more in the coming days. Could this be the beginning of a global giant robot fighting league? We can only hope.

And as always, MechWarriors: Stay Syrupy.

stay syrupy

Mech_Con Details Revealed On Fancy New Website

courtesy of mechwarrior.com/mechcon

Mech_Con is making its triumphant return next December and has recently released their schedule of events along with ticket sales on a fancy new website.

We knew Mech_Con would return as early as May, but PGI hadn’t yet ironed out the details back then. It looks like they have now, as revealed in the aforementioned fancy new website recently posted in the new mechwarrior.com portal (itself being a new development in PGI’s web presence). This year looks like it’ll be better than ever, so let’s go over a few of the highlights on the schedule.

Banners

courtesy of mechwarrior.com/mechcon

First off, and most excitingly, there will be a MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries development build available for attendees to try out all day long.The first new single player MechWarrior experience in over a decade is a highly anticipated new game from PGI, and this may very well be the first time anyone outside the company will be able to get their hands on a demo.

Along with MechWarrior 5, BattleTech and MechWarrior Online will also have development builds available for trying out the latest iterations of both games before they go live, as well as 1v1 “Solaris style” MWO battle stations, where you can duel your friend mono a mono to see who is the best MechWarrior. Catalyst Game Labs will also be demoing their latest and greatest creations, as well as having a tabletop BattleTech game running all day long.

Bombadil

courtesy of mechwarrior.com/mechcon

The Main Stage will be home to the MechWarrior Online World Championships, where the top teams in the world will be duking it out for the title of best MechWarriors in the world. In between matches will be presentations by Catalyst Game Labs, Harebrained Schemes and Piranha Games on the latest developments each BattleTech company has to share. Each company will also have 1 hour a meet & greet and Q&A session throughout the day, followed by an autograph table.

The full schedule of events (as well as when the all important munchies will be provided) is available on the Mech_Con website here.

It’s not all presentations and MWO tournaments of course. There will be a merch booth set up for you to purchase the best BattleTech swag around, as well as prizes, raffles, and giveaways. Keep an eye out for your favorite YouTube and Twitch streamers too, as they’ll be wandering around the convention floor and maybe even taking on would-be champions at the Solaris stations.

Tournament Casters

courtesy of mechwarrior.com/mechcon

Tickets are on sale now, and Mech_Con begins at noon on December 9th. If you can’t attend, consider picking up the 2017 Tournament Supporter Pack. Proceeds go towards the World Championship prize fund, and you get a ton of awesome in-game loot and an extra 10% to all your c-bill and experience gains.

We hope to see you there!

Harmony Gold Is At It Again…

Yup. You read that right. Harmony Gold is at it again with another round of lawsuits aimed at BattleTech IP.

The story broke a few days ago (thanks to user Clanfighter for the comment tip!), and the Harebrained Schemes (HBS) and MechWarrior Online forums are ablaze. There’s a lot of vitriol being spewed (rightly) against Harmony Gold for being litigious parasites and trying to cash in on BattleTech‘s and MechWarrior Online’s success, and while that’s certainly true, there’s a little more to it than that.

First, let’s take a look at the actual lawsuit itself. Court documents filed last March by the law firm Calfo Eakes & Ostrovsky PLLC reveal that Harmony Gold is suing both Harebrained Schemes and PGI for copyright infringement on their Robotech imagery, which so far sounds just like what happened with the Unseen saga. That ended with Catalyst Game Labs releasing new artwork for the unseen ‘Mechs, and we all thought everything was done for good.

Harmony Gold apparently felt differently. The new suit names PGI as the primary defendants, saying the current models used for the Rifleman, Archer, Warhammer, Marauder and Phoenix Hawk are similar enough to the original Robotech images that they infringe the copyright. It also names HBS as another defendant saying that their use of the Atlas, Locust, and Shadowhawk are too similar to their property to be used in the upcoming BattleTech game.

Marauder PHawk

via unitedstatescourts.org

I took out some of the images filed in the court documents so we can take a look. For the complaint against PGI, you can maybe make an argument they’re similar but so similar they infringe? That’s harder to say. I’m no lawyer, but I do know that courts often look to specifics rather than general shapes when determining these kinds of cases, and you can easily spot dozens of differences between the two designs being compared.

Warhammer Archer

via unitedstatescourts.org

Rifleman

via unitedstatescourts.org

The pictures being used against HBS look even less alike. In fact, the whole argument seems spurious at best. An Atlas looks like a Crusader? A Shadowhawk looks like an Archer? A Locust looks like a Marauder? These ‘Mechs don’t even share the same silhouette, let alone any specific details. It’s like Harmony Gold is trying to say that nobody else can have giant robots since they have a passing resemblance to their giant robots.

Atlas Shadowhawk

via unitedstatescourts.org

Locust

via unitedstatescourts.org

The case against HBS is sure to be tossed as soon as it goes before a judge. The case for PGI might linger on, but I’m fairly confident that PGI has prepared for this day and has numerous counter arguments to keep their game safe.

The case against HBS is sure to be tossed as soon as it goes before a judge.

There were a few more interesting tidbits to be gleaned from the court docs. Apparently, PGI had been in contact with Harmony Gold in 2013 when they were planning on releasing the Warhammer and Marauder ‘Mechs in MechWarrior Online. Both times Harmony Gold said the submitted designs were too similar and infringed on their copyright. We don’t know what those earlier designs might have looked like, but you can see from the images above that the current models for the Warhammer and Marauder are very different from the original Robotech designs.

Also mentioned in the suit is how Harmony Gold “discovered” the infringing materials. Evidently, it was an old news post by Catalyst Game Labs on their partnership with PGI in creating some “lore vignettes” in 2016. The blog post featured a schematic image of the Warhammer, which was released in MechWarrior Online in January 2016. Both the Marauder and the Marauder IIC were released later in 2016.

Warhammer

via unitedstatescourts.org

It says something about how confident PGI is in their position that they still released both the Marauder and Warhammer despite having the court documents filed just before their release in MWO.

So why is Harmony Gold pursuing this case when they seem to have a very good chance of losing? Well, they could be hoping for a quick settlement with both PGI and HBS, however, given the strength of their defense, I doubt either would be inclined to let Harmony Gold win this time.

On the other hand, Harmony Gold has a very good reason to pursue this case as aggressively as they can. The Robotech live action movie is going full steam ahead, and there are probably plans to have both game and action figure tie-ins with the movie. Nevermind the fact the movie has no script, no cast, and has just recently changed directors to the same guy that did Stephen King’s It adaptation.

Harmony Gold could also be using this case as a means of testing the legal waters for a future lawsuit against MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries.

Harmony Gold could also be using this case as a means of testing the legal waters for a future lawsuit against MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries. We know that PGI’s upcoming single-player game will feature some of the Unseen designs, and if it’s as financially successful as it’s expected to be (and if the Robotech movie doesn’t crash and burn like every other live-action anime movie) then Harmony Gold could stand to make a bundle.

One thing for certain is that neither PGI nor HBS is likely to comment on the case anytime soon as the trial is set for September of 2018. Here’s hoping they lose, and badly.