After being in Beta for almost sixteen months, Mechwarrior Online was released without its core feature: Community warfare. Still suffering from many problems which plagued it during the beta and seemingly unchanging upon release, the title has been getting largely average reviews among many gaming websites. While founding member Russ Bullock has spoken about why the game was released in the state it was on No Guts No Galaxy, effectively in competition with GTA V no less, it does not change that the title was sorely lacking features. The news of community warfare might be a sign of hope, but when it will come is yet another area it will likely draw criticism.
Covered by PCGamer, revealed amid quotes by creative director Bryan Eckman that community warfare would be introduced. Eckman stressed how this will change the game giving new importance to playing in matches as every one “has a reference now, a meaning, a purpose.” He further spoke about how this would influence sell-sword corporations with contracts, allow for greater purpose of lone wolf mercenaries and faction loyalist. Chief among these was the addition of “loyalist points” where faction players would be able to gain additional ranks and bonuses. While this sounds exactly like what the game needs, the problem is the time period: With these features being added over the next six months.
This is a definite chance for PGI to make amends to its community and backers, but the obvious question is this: Why will this take another six months?
Including the closed beta, this will mean some players will be waiting almost two years for a feature it was supposed to have relatively early on in its life. Even given the addition of news mechs and elements like Conquest, why did they spend this time developing ECM, third person mode, seismic sensors and other elements than what it was initially advertised as having? In one video interview Bullock and Ekman stated that the launch was only the beginning and that they had “now laid the base and framework of this game.” The base and framework tends to consist of features the game was advertised to have, then move on from there. Not for the inclusion of just one feature to take half a year’s additional work post-launch.
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