MechWarrior: Living Legends
Mechwarrior: Living Legends is an independantly-produced total conversion modification of the CryEngine 2 game engine (on which the game Crysis is based), and takes place within the BattleTech universe. It requires the ownership of Crysis and/or Crysis Warhead in order to play, but is itself available for free.
As of January 2011, Mechwarrior: Living Legends is in version 0.4.3 and has been in development since December 2006. Originally, development was done on the Doom 3 engine, with the team switching to CryEngine 2 after the release of Crysis. The most recent major release was in December 2010 with the deployment of v0.4. Development of 0.4.4 is currently underway.
The team has stated that development focus for the foreseeable future will be focused on the multiplayer aspect of the game.
Crysis and Crysis Warhead
Prior to 0.4, MW:LL was available only as a modification of Crysis. As of the latest release however support has been added for Crysis' standalone expansion, Crysis Warhead. This allows users to install the mod on Crysis or Crysis Warhead. The development team has stated that in the future only Crysis Warhead will be supported. Due to the way in which Gamespy, who runs hosting for Crysis and Crysis Warhead multiplayer servers, manages game versions, Crysis and Crysis Warhead can not share the same servers. As a result, users who install MW:LL on Crysis, and those who install it on Crysis Warhead, will not be able to play together and will see two different versions of the multiplayer lobby.
To date, Multiplayer remains the main focus of the development team and as such is at an advanced development stage. Multiplayer games are connected to using Gamespy Arcade integrated into the Crysis/Crysis Warhead engine. Connecting to multiplayer requires a Gamespy ID, which can be created in-game for free and does not require a valid email.
Multiplayer servers can host from 12 to 32 players in two different game modes, Territory Control and Team Solaris Arena, on a variety (up to a dozen) maps. Territory Control has opposing teams, either Inner Sphere or Clans, fighting over control of several Control Points around the map, which are usually housed within compounds or bases of various kinds. Team Solaris Arena pits the two teams against each other in a team deathmatch scenario with teams scoring points based on kills, and has no bases other than the Main Base of each side.
In both game modes, Players spawn at any bases under the control of their team. Often, only the Main Base will allow the purchase of 'Mechs. Most maps Include a seperate Air Base which allow Players to purchase Aerospace and VTOLs. When players spawn, they are automatically equipped with Battle Armor and an SRM-2. While Clan players will spawn with Elemental Battle Armor and Inner Sphere players in Longinus Battle Armor, both are functionally identical, equipped with jump jets and basic weaponry.
Upon spawning, Players receive a set amount of C-Bills according to their rank, with rank being gained as the player gains points through damaging or destroying opponents, capturing control points, and carrying out other team-oriented tasks. Players can also send C-Bills to other players on their team, and will earn further C-Bills as they earn points. Generally, upon dying, a player will respawn with only the amount of C-Bills afforded to his rank.
MW:LL features a large list of available 'Mechs and Vehicles for purchase, with many more in development and planning. The game currently contains 22 different 'Mechs, 9 vehicles, 3 Aerospace and 1 VTOL. Currently, individual unit customization is not available, so MW:LL offers anywhere from 4 to 6 variations of each model of 'Mech and Vehicle in different configurations for players to purchase which leads to a high amount of variety in gameplay styles from player to player.
Canonical lore plays an integral role to design and development but is often a secondary concern to gameplay balance and "fun factor", a necessity for a multiplayer-oriented game. This focus on balance is primarily seen in weapons configurations of various 'Mechs and Vehicles which often conflict or ignore canon sources for the sake of balance. For example, the development team has stated that non-'Mech assets such as vehicles, VTOLs and Battle Armor are made purposely more powerful in relation to 'Mechs, as otherwise they would be far too weak or ineffective for players to want to use in games.
The development team has stated that while a Single Player component to MW:LL is planned, no actual designing or planning has been put into it as development focus is fixed solely on Multiplayer and development of various assets.
Featured BattleMechs, Vehicles, Aerospace and VTOLs
- Sulla Aerospace Fighter
- Hunchback IIC
- Blood Asp
- Swift Wind
- Ares (Combat Vehicle)
MW:LL features approximately 13 different multiplayer maps based on various worlds within the BattleTech universe. Most maps have both Terrain Control and Team Solaris Arena versions. These maps range from expansive deserts, restricted canyons and overgrown marshes to snowstorm-ridden valleys and the surface of an asteroid.