Posted by Raine Hutchens on Apr 5, 2012

MechWarrior Online’s MechLab Interface Revealed

The announcement of MechWarrior Online was a pretty big deal in the community at large, and there’s still plenty of buzz circulating around fans. Piranha Games is heading the charge to bring this robotic fan favorite to life in an all-new MMO form, and they’re giving it all they’ve got. The game will be Free-To-Play from the start, allowing all players and fans to get in on the action they’ve been anxiously waiting for.

On the game’s official blog, Piranha has just announced a brand new feature that will serve as a major piece of framework for MechWarrior Online at large. This new feature is called MechLab, and it’s the user-interface that players will navigate to access the game’s many features. This interface allows players to customize their BattleMech loadouts and visual representations, which is easily the most important feature to anyone playing the game.

Using the MechLab, players can swap out Mech components at the cost of C-Bills, the game’s currency. All together, you can swap out weapons, armor, engines, heat sinks, jump hets, ECM equipment, and modules all from within the Lab. There are tons of details that accompany the MechLab, such as the new Hardpoint system, which dictates that weapons can only be swapped out with weapons of the same type. Each location on a BattleMech may include any number of Hardpoints. As an example, a ’Mech that, by default, comes with 2 Medium Lasers and an Autocannon/2 in its Left Torso may actually have 3 energy weapon hard points and 2 ballistic hard points in that location. So, if the player is able to satisfy the weight and critical slot requirements, they could equip an additional energy weapon and ballistic weapon into that Left Torso, or swap out the Medium Lasers for other energy weapons, etc.

The entire MechLab system is detailed out on the game’s site, and it’s well worth a read. It’s in a blog post that’s over thirteen pages long, so it’s quite a look. The post covers everything from the Hardpoint system to tips on swapping out pieces of equipment. There’s even diagrams and illustrations to help layout the system’s details. So far it looks like the MechLab system is going to be just what players need to have total control over their BattleMechs and customization sets. Head on over to the blog when you’ve the chance, and give it a look. From the way it’s coming, MechWarrior Online is going to be one wild ride.

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