Spotlight On (series)
The Spotlight On series is one of five ebook-only product series announced by Catalyst Game Labs on 24 Jul 2015. The other four series announced were:
- Gladiator Gazette, close looks at individuals, equipment and locations associated with the various game worlds such as Solaris VII.
- Milestones, focusing on putting players on the front lines of key Inner Sphere events of the late Dark Age and beyond,
- OpFor, a publication series dedicated to detailed small, specialized units of lance, Star or Level I size with more character and less randomness than randomly-generated opponents, and
- Touring the Stars, a series dedicated to providing a detailed look at individual worlds within the BattleTech universe.
For every Kell Hounds or Wolf's Dragoons, there are a hundred similar outfits that are just as talented—and just as deadly—that you have never heard of. Or worse, you have not heard enough. Sure, the glory hounds who make the evening tri-vid news are movers and shakers, and can change national borders whenever they want, but they're not the only ones. For every Eridani Light Horse brigade, there is a mercenary crew with a storied battlefield history just as spectacular. These are the unit commands that have gone largely unnoticed in the long, bloody history of the Inner Sphere, their stories untold or nearly forgotten. Take a closer look at the battles and events that have shaped the human sphere, and you'll find even two-bit troops like Wilson's Hussars have made a difference.
|— Catalyst Game Labs, Upcoming Releases Announcement, 24 Jul 2015|
Beginning with Spotlight On: Crescent Hawks, each Spotlight On publication has followed a similar format. Priced at $3.99-$4.99 each, a Spotlight On volume is in full color, and features a unit history and description including details on the unit traditions, tactics, force composition and insignia; a selection of personalities from the unit, a roster for the unit covering one or more eras, a number of scenarios featuring the unit, details of the special command abilities of the unit - for both Total Warfare and Alpha Strike rulesets - and strategic BattleForce formation details. Some also contain record sheets. Each volume has averaged between 18 and 24 pages in total.
In common with other ebook-only releases, each Spotlight On volume lacks a table of contents.
Spotlight On: Crescent Hawks - Published 17 October 2016. For every Kell Hounds or Wolf's Dragoons, there are a hundred similar outfits that are just as talented—and just as deadly—that you have never heard of. Or worse, you have not heard enough. Sure, the glory hounds who make the evening tri-vid news are movers and shakers, and can change national borders whenever they want, but they're not the only ones. For every Eridani Light Horse brigade, there is a mercenary crew with a storied battlefield history just as spectacular. These are the unit commands that have gone largely unnoticed in the long, bloody history of the Inner Sphere, their stories untold or nearly forgotten. Take a closer look at the battles and events that have shaped the human sphere, and you'll find even two-bit troops like Wilson's Hussars have made a difference.
Spotlight On: Stone's Trackers - Published 16 March 2016. Backstabbers. Assassins. Cowards. Dezgra.
To the elite headhunters of Stone's Trackers, these labels mean nothing. The only true measure of a warrior is success, and the Trackers will go to any length to ensure that Devlin Stone's vision does not falter.
Forged in the flames of the Jihad from a secret Clan Nova Cat unit and comprised of Inner Sphere and Clan veterans alike, the Trackers take on the missions too dirty for regular commands to touch. Masters of infiltration, ambush, and marksmanship, they are the ghosts at the edge of the firelight, the wraiths that even MechWarriors have learned to fear.
From the battlefields of Operation SCOUR to glory of the Capellan Crusades, Stone's Trackers hold to a code of honor of their own making, one that demands victory at any cost.
Spotlight On: First Marik Protectors - Published 10 September 2018. In the fires of the Jihad, a handful of brave souls placed honor before duty, service before survival, and the people of their shattered nation before all others.
Considered traitors by some but heroes by those they watch over, the First Marik Protectors rose from the ashes of the Free Worlds League to protect worlds at the far-flung edge of their fallen nation. An elite cadre of warriors, the Protectors' dedication to safeguarding the lives of their countrymen is nearly unmatched in the Inner Sphere.
The Marik Protectors exist to offer a single hope to the citizens of these outcast worlds: that when darkness closes in, there will be a light shining for them, a hammer and anvil to smite any who would disrupt their peace, a shield against all the ills the Periphery holds. Protectors, behind whom they may rest.
Spotlight On: Unending Faith - Published October 26th, 2018. Nearly every faith in human history has had its militant, stalwart protectors of the light ready to cast down those who would question the true path. The vision of Blessed Blake is no different. The creation of the Republic and its disbanding of the Com Guard cast a deep shadow, but true faith endures. Now, amid a Dark Age, the light of Blake is needed more than ever and the Blessed Order stands ready to share it with the Inner Sphere. For the warriors of Unending Faith, the end of the Com Guard was only the beginning.
Spotlight On: Holt's Hilltoppers - Published November 30th, 2018. Born in the fires of Operation: GUERRERO, Holt's Hilltoppers took on missions from the Periphery to the Chaos March, displaying grit and tenacity to rival any famed mercenary command. Action against Periphery pirates earned the Hilltoppers a reputation as savage defenders, but disaster during the St. Ives War nearly ended the command's existence. Steadfast courage and resilience kept them together, aided by an alliance with Periphery renegades. Glory and infamy awaited in the FedCom Civil War, along with respect and eternal enmity in equal measure. Tiring of the vagabond life, the Hilltoppers found a new home outside the boundaries of the Inner Sphere. The Fronc Reaches offer constancy, but safety is always in short supply.'
Spotlight On: Crimson Seeker Star - Published January 19th, 2019. In the right place, a few small rocks can change the course of a river. The Seekers of Clan Goliath Scorpion and the Escorpion Imperio have long sought out relics of the past which they believe will steer their course. But relics are not the only rocks: one small unit and its warriors changed the path of the Clan and the Imperio. The saKhan of fifty years who formed them. The Star Colonel who returned to guide them in their darkest hour. The survivors who escaped the Reavings to claim a new home. Those who continue to use the relics of the past to guide the future. Come discover the small rocks of the Crimson Seeker Star, who changed the course of the Seekers, the Goliath Scorpions, the Escorpion Imperio and many more.
Spotlight On: Nakayama's Blood - Published February 2nd, 2019. When Federated Suns forces stormed into the Draconis Combine during the FedCom Civil War, proud samurai Chu-sa Harold Nakayama and the Forty-Sixth Dieron Regulars deployed to Ashio to repel the invaders. Disaster struck when an all-but-unknown mercenary command slaughtered Nakayama's troops, humiliating him. Nakayama swore an oath to exterminate mercenaries wherever they tainted Combine soil, and gathered around him an independent company whose BattleMechs were anointed by the blood of their MechWarriors in an oath to seek out and destroy mercenary scum. The Jihad provided Nakayama's Blood with rich hunting grounds and the opportunity to strike fear into the hearts of mercenaries operating anywhere near Combine territory.
Spotlight On: The Crazy Eights - Published 15 May 2020. There is no company more fitting as heralds of the Davion sword and sunburst than the Crazy Eights, and even fewer regiments in the AFFS with as storied and lengthy history as the Eighth Company of the Twentieth Avalon Hussars. Disbanded and lost during the Word of Blake's Jihad, the Crazy Eights were reformed when the call to war once again compelled the Federated Suns to raise new regiments for the protection of the realm. Now, as House Davion's ancient enemy bears down on New Avalon in this new Dark Age, the Crazy Eights are one of the few to stand in the Dragon's path.
Spotlight On: Thermo Police - Published 15 May 2020. Beyond the edge of acknowledged civilization lie the Outworlds Wastes. Planets abandoned by the Star League centuries ago. Governments shattered by apathy, obscurity, and the march of time struggle to provide even the most basic needs of their people. From these meager surroundings one small but zealously dedicated unit stands to serve and protect the remnants of their realm. The Thermo Police may be enrolled as mercenaries but in truth they patrol these lawless stars seeking to bring the order they once knew. Specializing in non-lethal tactics, and trained beyond the typical pirates and bandits prowling the Wastes, their next encounter could be from past the distant stars they call home. But will it be a threat or an opportunity?
Spotlight On: Schmidt's Petraries - Published 10 September 2021. Captain-Marshal Rudolf Schmidt took command of the Hanseatic Defense Force at a critical juncture. The nearby Scorpion Empire posed an existential threat to the Hanseatic League. While reorganizing the HDF, he recognized a crucial need for an elite company to inspire the troops. Thus was born Schmidt’s Petraries, the HDF’s overall command company and home to the best of the best. Intense training with their comrades was far different from the trial by fire that the Petraries faced when the Scorpion Empire finally invaded. The Petraries rose to the occasion, defying the fearsome invaders and inspiring a nation with their deeds.
Spotlight On: Hellion Keshik - Published 04 February 2022. Death From Above. No words better describe Hellion Keshik, the bodyguard Trinary for Clan Goliath Scorpion's saKhan. Few formations conjure terror amongst their enemies more than this assemblage of warriors. Forged from tattered remnants of two Clans, one absorbed and the other abjured, Hellion Keshik welded their disparate philosophies into one. As the tip of the spear for Hellion Galaxy, the Keshik does more than protect the saKhan. These warriors train endlessly and fight savagely like no others in the Scorpion touman. The Keshik has never tasted defeat, because victory is so sweet.
Spotlight On: Manyfold Paths - Published 25 March 2022. Few Com Guard commands claim a more storied history than the Manyfold Paths. History remembers them fighting the Jade Falcons to great effect on Tukayyid and elsewhere. They also took the fight to the Word of Blake in the Chaos March. Later, they fought in the Great Refusal before the formation met its final end on Terra during Case White. Today the Manyfold Paths legacy continues in both spirit and will in the White Lions mercenary company, commanded by Seth Nicholson, a direct descendant of one of Manyfold Paths’ commanders. The White Lions made a name for themselves fighting Malvina Hazen’s Jade Falcons.
- Three of the E-book series announced with the Spotlight series (Gladiator Gazette, Milestones and OpFor) were not released. They have been removed from the Coming Releases section of the main Battletech Website as of this writing.