Sat, 20 Feb 1999 13:23:51 -0800
At 22:14 2/19/99 -0800, you wrote:
>Ah, the great Battletech debate again...
>>What happened is that BattleTech was released in Japan, where the
>>derivative mecha would've been painfully and laughably obvious. So they
>>hired a Japanese artist to redo all of the mecha with the same specs, but
>>different imagery. Then they went back and "updated" the Western version
>>with all new mecha.
>Actually, FASA didn't update the Western versions of the mecha. What they
>did do was wipe them out of the Battletech continutity (no more Maurader,
>Rifleman, sniff...). It turns out, FASA got in more Licensing trouble when
>they realeased the MechWarrior II computer game, and people in Japan saw
>familiar Macross mecha running around. By the time Mechwarrior::
>Mercanaries was released all the "borrowed" mecha had been purged, and the
>new versions of all their products make no mention of mechs with names like
>Locust, Maurader, Warhammer, etc.
We both said the same thing, we just said it differently.
I put "updated" in quotes on purpose to indicate that the sweeping revision
of the Western version wasn't an update so much as a complete makeover
with, as noted, "all new mecha"....
This is a shame, in a way, since one of the joys of BattleTech was that the
marchandizing allowed you to glom onto otherwise unavailable Macross,
Dougram and Crusher Joe stuff being hawked as game-play pieces. Anyone
here remember PlasTech, FASA's short-lived attempt to replace the
traditional pewter pieces with molded plastic ones?
Me, I bought a Takara 75mm die-cast metal Dougram D7 and introduced it as
an SHD-2H Shadowhawk game piece that made the other folks jaws drop. That
sucker was beautifully enamelled in all the right colors, with squadron
marking stickers in all the reight places, and had a clear plastic cockpit
and even a PVC cord connecting the forearm gun to the backpack. I was the
hero just for showing up with this thing.
Mekton brought the first Gundam RPG scenarios to the table, evolving
through Mekton II and Mekton Z. Now we have Jovian Chronicles, which is
Gundam writ large across the entire solar system, but most of the players
these days want to duke it out Doom-style in mecha-sim games pioneered by
BattleTech. They want personal Avatars in these games, but turn up their
noses at table-top RPG unless they can turn it into a set board game like
I find that 50mm (2") SD Gundam figures also make great game pieces....
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