Battletech – A Game of Armored Combat

So, as I was drifting off to sleep last night I realized I had failed at writing a blog yesterday.  So I thought to myself, what game should I write about?  A lot (if not all) of my posts thus far have been written from my perspective and how they influenced who I am and how they held a special place in my collection of games.  As odd as it sounds…Battletech, reminds me of many special times and many special memories.  Besides who cannot love a game where you pretend to pilot a machine capable of obliterating a small city?

Battletech Mechs
Pictured above – Plastic Battletech Miniatures that are now being sold with the latest revision of the board game from Cataclysm Games.

Battletech, for those not familiar with the franchise or the game, was initially owned by FASA and in a nutshell is a combat strategy game.  Players choose to control a Battlemech (or Mech) or multiple mechs in mech to mech combat.  Games can also include foot soldiers, tanks, planes, helecopters, dropships (space ships that carry forces from planet to planet).  It can be a complicated game, I won’t go over the rules, but once you learn them, you can have all sorts of fun.

When I was 12 or 13, my dad and I took an adventure to Boscos Comics in Anchorage, Alaska (I was living in Alaska at the time).  I am not certain what prompted the need to visit this store…but what I found inside was amazing.  (Side Note: This is an amazing comic book, game shop for those who live in the Anchorage are, you should go visit.)

As I made mention in a prior post, I was introduced to the Battletech universe through a video game, so when I found that this game was based on a board game…I knew I had to have it.  I have since purchased this game two or three times and knowing the price of the game…I can assume I had to do a lot of convincing to let my dad let me walk out the door with a 50 dollar board game.  Needless to say Battletech, A Game of Armored Combat 2nd Edition was now mine.  I spent hours reading through the rules…unfortunately, I didn’t have anyone to play with.  At the time…

Mech SheetI am a bit fuzzy on the chain of events that lead up to it, but I remember spending summers playing this game with a few of my friends for hours at a time.  I’d beg my dad to make photocopies of the blank Mech sheet (Here) and then we’d spend hours filling them in with the mechs we wanted to play with.  Once that was done, we’d play out our battles, then do it all over again.

All throughout my teenage years, with different friends and “Lancemates” and then again in my twenties.  I’ve learned the rules to Citytech (which consists of rules needed to play in a Cityscape as opposed to a open battlefield), Aerotech (which consists of rules for playing aircraft and in space).  I’ve played this game through it’s various PC Game Mechwarrior versions, and it never gets old.  Strategic wargames aren’t everyone’s cup of tea.  The rules for this game can get complicated and you can never play a game within an hour…as players tend to act out their combat moves and discuss at great length why something should (or shouldn’t) be possible.  It is no longer published by FASA (Big Legal Issue with the makers of Robotech and the mech design) and is now owned in part with Cataclysm Games, Wizards of the Coast and Microsoft.

You can start playing the game by buying the basic box set, but if you take the time to collect all the expansions, and technical readouts you really do get so much more from the game.  If you are a gamer who enjoys wargames, I definately suggest adding this game to your collection.


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