MechWarrior Online will be free to play, PC exclusive

There's a new MechWarrior game in the works, and it'll be exclusive to the PC. Dubbed MechWarrior Online, the new title will focus on multiplayer combat and be free to play. In-game items will be available for purchase with real money, of course, but Creative Director Bryan Ekman promises that players won't be able to buy items that give them a tactical advantage. Those goodies will have to be earned by actually playing, he says.

Elkman and Russ Bullock, President of the Piranha Games studio behind MechWarrior Online, go into more detail in an interview with PC Gamer. In it, they reveal that the game will be viewed from a first-person perspective and have a style of play similar to MechWarrior 2 through MW 4. There will be an increased focus on squad-based combat, complete with new roles for smaller mechs to help them be more of a part of the action among giants. Players will be able to organize themselves into four-person squads, which will then be able to join others in mercenary corporations not unlike the guilds in typical MMOs.

If you've been following along with the BattleTech universe, you'll be pleased to note that this new game will stay true to the storylines established by previous games and novels. MechWarrior Online will take place in the year 3049, which is apparently a time of great change for the universe.

With a release scheduled for the second half of next year, it'll still be a while before MechWarrior Online comes out. As a fan of the old games, I'm curious to see how this modern makeover will turn out. You can learn more about the game at the official website.

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