The first major update (open beta update #8) since the holidays came to the free-to-playÂ MechWarrior Online earlier this week and with it,Â Infinite Game Publishing and Piranha Games announced the game’s first event weekend where players can earn bonus experience points just for playing as normal.
The latest patch adds four brand new – and very small – mechs, a new customization option and a few new modules to go a long with a series of bug fixes.
Bryan Ekman, creative director, Piranha Games:
“After a much-needed break over the holidays, we’re raring to go with exciting 2013 content updates. The addition of community-focused features such as the Double XP event, new Mechs and performance tweaks let’s us kickoff the New Year in a big way. This is just the beginning of a huge year for MechWarrior fans.”
The big news is the inclusion of a brand new mech, the Spider. It’s a 30-ton light mech, the fastest in the game, but also the least powerful when it comes to weapons. There are three variants (see detailed breakdown on page 2), one that sports extra jump jets for increased maneuverability and another the supports the ECM countermeasure system. The fourth mech is a new premium hero mech, a Commando (25 ton mech – smallest in the game) dubbed the Death’s Knell. It comes with a cool unique blue camo design.
The reaction to the Spider has been mixed thus far, mainly due to the fact that light mechs require a certain skill set and affinity for scouting as opposed to combat. With future game updates we expect the Spider to become a little more user-friendly, especially when the game can support it being able to move faster and when the weapons and countermeasure systems are better balanced. It does however, work well for MechWarrior Online’s new Conquest mode. You can see my awful attempt at using the basic Spider with default loadout up top. Screenshots of the Spider and Death’s Knell below:
Double XP Event Details:
This weekend weâ€™re offering DOUBLE XP for all matches! Join the mayhem andÂ maximizeÂ your XP from Jan 18thÂ 10am PST until Jan 21stÂ 10am PST.
Thatâ€™s right, every match you play will reward you with TWICE what youâ€™d normally earn â€“ and thatâ€™s on top of any Premium Time bonus you already get. Use a Hero Mech to stack your XP even higher, plus Founderâ€™s get ANOTHER boost on top! Hereâ€™s a handy-dandy graphic to highlight how toÂ maximizeÂ your XP, starting Jan 18thÂ 10am.
Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.