Big big robot news.
A little history
If you purchased a box of BattleTech some time around 1989 it included plastic figures known to American fans of Robotech, a Japanese cartoon imported to America in the 80s. Robotech was actually several different shows in Japan. The figures included in the BattleTech box came from shows called Macross, Dougram and Crusher Joe (in Japan). The publisher of BattleTech, FASA, believed that they had license to use the images, but they were sued and settled for a large sum. (The number that I was quoted by a person in a position to know had six zeroes.) BattleTech fans would no longer be able to purchase and paint anime-style figures for tabletop play.
The worm turns
But that may change next summer. Enter Robotech Battles, a table-top tactical game set in the Robotech universe.
The game and accessory sets of Robotech mecha and spaceships are in development right now, and should see a debut release this summer. We plan to do similar games and 1/285th scale game pieces for each era of Robotech® including The Masters Saga, New Generation and Shadow Chronicles. All to scale. All gorgeous.
It seems Palladium has noticed the success had by the new BattleTech box (packaged with different plastic figures) and wants in.
For the BattleTech fan this is a boon. We can finally have our Warhammers, Wolverines and Marauders again. And if the figures become available next summer as promised, it will be a year after the release of a half-dozen books set in the Star League era, when these designs were in heavy use. Of course, we’ve had our hopes dashed before, so don’t count your chicken-walkers yet.
Best of Times, Worst of Time jumps
This is a precarious time for BattleTech fans. Throughout the entire history of the game, the setting of the story has stayed in the 31st century, beginning in 3025 and terminating in the latest updates set in 3085 and 3090–a single human lifespan. Despite all the changes in the setting, This Fan never felt as though were were getting Next Generationed. Now we’re told to expect a time jump to the 33rd century and a probable rejiggering of the setting’s tech and politics. Will the zeitgeist follow us down the warp tunnel? It’s in the stars, my friends. Stay tuned.