Tag Archives: Video Games

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!

 

 

 

Kickstarter Awards Arrive for BattleTech Video Game

Well, it arrived today!  I was one of many Kickstarter backers of the various levels for Harebrained Schemes’ BattleTech Video game, slated for release next year.

Like many folks I backed at a high enough pledge to get both some nice BattleTech swag, as well as some strong comfort in helping to bring back a major video game opportunity for the franchise.  We need an infusion of marketing and interest.  Hopefully the latest video game will prove just the ticket!

It’s hard for me to find swag anywhere but online these days, so it was nice for me to open up my sweet bag of Draconis Combine swag.  Here it is!

Swag = Mag

Swag = Mag

I’m pretty stoked! I’m wearing my Draconis Combine pin to work tomorrow!

Did you order anything?  Has it arrived?  What did you get?  And who’s ready for some BattleTech?

Sarna Wiki: Project Video Games

After some time off, I’ve returned to editing the Sarna.net wiki and have plenty of ideas for improving the wiki. As usual, there’s the constant need for new articles and article updates, as well as the ever-growing pile of articles that need proofreading. I want to pick up where I left off with the unofficial “project video games”.

'Mech combat on Cermak

‘Mech combat on the planet Cermak

With this project we are aiming to vastly improve our coverage of the various video games in the BattleTech universe. Though these games are not expressly canon, they still are an important part of the ongoing universe and deserve better coverage than they have gotten.

So far, we have quantified and organized all the MechCommander and MechCommander 2 equipment stats, but the ’Mech and vehicle pages for the original MechCommander need work. With more help for those pages and for all the MechWarrior games’ related pages, these video games could be much better covered.

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Techwars Online Reviewed

Get your Tech On!

Last week, Techwars Online, a Steam Greenlight success story, that made it through all of the hurdles, was released on Steam for ten dollars.  Well that certainly seems like a price worth trying out.  So I grabbed a copy of the game, and invested some time into figuring out this turn based tactical game featuring BattleMechs fighting it out.

To begin, you can move each of your units up to three hexes, with a twist of your torso counting as one.  And you can fire one weapon.  Each weapon has different ranges and firing arcs.  You may have short range lasers that can only reach 2-3 hexes away, or long range missiles which won’t fire close in at all, but which can hit with a spread out range.  Some weapons require a direct line to hit, like your main cannon, so moving, firing, and more is all important.  Also important is turning after firing to protect yourself.  It’s all about winning, not about how damaged your unit gets in the process, right?

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Techwars Online Released

Techwars Online is now out on Steam

Sometimes you are just looking for a little ‘Mech on ‘Mech action.  Whatever the Intellectual Property, and whatever the style, a quick little online PC action happening can solve that desire.  Load up the game, log on, and blast some folks.  That’s why a lot of us are playing games like Mechwarrior:  Online.  This week, another (mostly) online ‘Mech game was released as well.  Techwars Online.

Turn-Based Fun Times!

The game is an admitted throwback.  Slower, turned-based combat in a time of fast games.  It’s actually based on a Russian novel of the same name, set in the future as two mega-corps battle for supremacy with BattleMechs.  Starting in Greenlight, it arrived on Steam on May 17th.  You can pick it up from the Steam Store Page for $10.

In the game, you start with the same ‘Mech as others, and then can upgrade it or change out ammo over time.  Grab the game, try it out with others, and see if it’s your style!  Turn-based ‘Mech combat.  Doesn’t that sound familiar?  Even if it doesn’t evoke BattleTech per se, sometimes you just gotta get your ‘Mech on!

The First Slate of Changes at MegaMekNet is Complete

MMNET LOGO

Many Operations Await

As mentioned in a previous post, the online server for playing people online via MegaMek called MegaMekNet had instituted a new set of changes to shake things up.  The longest running server online, MMNet has decided to place the decisions for the latest cycle into the hands of the players.  Each faction elects a person to represent them on the stage, and then they suggest and vote on various rules changes that are fully player-suggested and supported.

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Alpha Strike mod for Table Top Simulator

A chance interception on Reddit alerted me to this new work-in-progress game mod for TableTop Simulator on the Steam Network. TTS is kind of a virtual reality environment for playing tabletop games. You manually move the pieces, dice and sheets interactively – just using a mouse instead of your hand.

I was told by one of the users that the BattleTech mod uses map tiles and differing altitude levels, which suggests a measure of customizability to the environment. Though they and the assorted models and preset record sheets are fairly limited in number at the moment. There are nineteen ‘spheroid ‘mechs in the first mech pack. Turduckens has a number of these terrains to choose from, including River Map, Open Terrain, etc. Traditional rule sets for BattleTech have also proven to be  too clunky to be used in TTS, but Alpha Strike works very well. Even when fighting with a company or more on each side. It almost reminds me of a less-flashy prototype of what MechWarrior Tactics was trying for.

It’s certainly no MegaMek – but perhaps that’s a good thing. With a simple rule set and richer graphical experience, not to mention Steam Network’s voice chat system, ‘River map’ might develop into quite a compliment to MegaMek.

Thanks to Tipsymahn260 for the image.

Thanks to Tipsymahn260 for the image.

If you’re on Steam and feel like a game of Alpha Strike, or just want to check out the virtual models, it might be worth a look.