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Mechwarrior Miniatures Game

Updated on October 31, 2012

Information on the Mechwarrior Collectible Miniature Game

in 2002 game makers WizKids created a collectible miniatures game based on the Mechwarrior universe. This was Mechwarrior: Dark Age. (MW:DA) It featured play pieces depicting infantry units, armored vehicles and the iconic Battlemechs, the giant war machines of the milieu. For fans of the original Battletech/ Mechwarrior boardgame, this was a welcome arrival. Not only could you play a simplified and more portable game, the figures could be used in the more complex original format.

Just like Magic the Gathering the miniatures were sold in starter and booster sets. The boxes had random assortments of items much like any trading card game. Battletech evolved with various expansions adding more unit types and more detailed rules. Eventually, Wizkids discontinued random content boxes in favor of prepackaged sets of figures called Battle Packs. A second edition of the rules tweaked unit abilities and the game was renamed Mechwarrior: Age of Destruction (MW:AoD).

Unfortunately its manufacturer, Wizkids, could not sustain their operations. In 2008 the game was discontinued. Fans continue to hope for another revival.

Expansions and Releases

The Mechwarrior Collectible Miniatures Game had a fairly long production run with a number of rules expansions. The game offered the players even more unit options. Aircraft, artillery and other support units created a more dynamic battlefield. For a time, the massive Battlemechs were supplanted by powerful artillery units. It wasn't until the release of the Mechwarrior: Age of Destruction rule set that the Mech regained preeminence.

Dark Age Sets

  • Dark Age (August 2002)
  • Fire For Effect (February 2003)
  • Death From Above (May 2003)
  • Liao Incursion (September 2003)
  • Counterassault (January 2004)
  • Falcon's Prey (August 2004)

Age of Destruction Sets

  • Age of Destruction (January 2005)
  • Firepower (May 2005)
  • Annihilation (November 2005)
  • Domination (January 2006)
  • Vanguard (May 2006)
  • Wolf Strike (September 2006)

Battleforce series

  • Clan Jade Falcon (January 2006)
  • Republic of the Sphere (May 2006)
  • War College (Summer 2006)
  • Ares 3-Pack (Debuted at GenCon 2006; general release September 2006)
  • Phantom War Battleforce Set (September 2006)
  • Poseidon (October 2006)

Action Pack releases

  • House Davion Action Pack (May 2007)
  • Champions Vol.1 (June 2007)
  • Champions Vol.2 (July 2007)

MechWarrior World Championships

  • MechWarrior: Solaris VII (August 2007)
  • Undead Lance (October 2007)
  • Wolf's Dragoons Wolf Spiders Action Pack (November 2007)
  • Wolf's Dragoons Gamma Regiment Action Pack (December 2007)

Strengthen your Forces - Buy Mechwarrior Minis here

The best way to round out your fighting force is to buy Mechwarrior singles. That way you know exactly what you're getting and you're paying only for the items you need.

Mechwarrior Factions

Each Mechwarrior faction has its own special abilities. That allowed players to develop their own play styles.

Bannson's Raiders

Dragon's Fury

Federated Suns

Jade Falcons

Knights of the Sphere

Highlanders

Liao

Mercenary

Spirit Cats

Steel Wolves

Stormhammers

Swordsworn

Mechwarrior on your PC - Step inside your own Mech

Whenever the tabletop games wavered in popularity the Mechwarrior series of PC games gave new life to the franchise. Players got the chance to pilot a virtual mech, in the same vein as other vehicle simulation games. The interplay of digital and analog games kept the brand interest alive through the decades.

Terrain in Mechwarrior

Miniature Battles depend on terrain

Like most wargames, terrain plays an important part of any tabletop conflict. Even the slightest adjustments in terrain will change the dynamics of the battlefield.

The original tabletop game used hex maps to help players track combatant positions. The Mechwarrior CMG did away with this and relied on old fashioned tape measures to determine distance. Originally, Wizkids published terrain templates to provide some more order to the playing field. Only these terrain could be used for tournament play. Later editions, altered the terrain rules giving incentives for more creative terrain design. In a strange twist, terrain creation continues to evolve after the end of organized tournaments and the end of the game's manufacture.

Check out Dungeon Crawlers for Official Terrain Templates

Official Mechwarrior Terrain - Commercial Terrain pieces built to specifications

These terrain features use the standard Mechwarrior Terrain Template to determine their shape. The 3D elements were built up to add more visual impact. These 3D components can be removed so your Battlemechs can fit nicely onto the terrain.

Mechwarrior Terrain Video Report

Mechwarrior Terrain Links - Official Templates and Creative Pieces

The natural formation of the country is the soldier's best ally

Sun Tzu

Mechwarrior Scale

N gauge or 12mm or 1/160

Some terrain builders may want to know what is the scale of those Mechwarrior Miniatures. The consensus seems to be they are around N gauge/ N scale in railroad modelling. Since N gauge is a range, some opt for the upper end at 1/160 scale. In wargamer terms that's about 12mm scale. So if you're planning to purchase, convert or build 3d terrain these are the scales you should look at.

Be warned that there is some inconsistency with the sizes. Based on older Battletech material some mech should be much smaller than presented. In comparison, the classic battletech minis are smaller at 1/285 scale. However, their scale is much more consistent throughout the product line.

References:

boardgame geek

mini wargaming wiki

classic battletech

list of scale

Terrain Pieces for Battletech - some off-scale pieces will work

If you can't find terrain in the exact scale, look for items where the difference is not very noticeable. These terrain features may suit the larger battlemechs from Mechwarrior. The elements that would give a clue to their intended scale are not very evident (door and window sizes). Plus they look appropriately Sci-Fi.

The Mechwarrior Dial

Can you take the heat?

People familiar with the Mageknight and Heroclix figures will know about the dial at the bottom of the miniature. This describes the unit's stats and powers. The Mechwarrior figures have an additional dial for heat. Whenever a Mech takes certain actions the heat builds up. Heat impairs the unit's abilities giving it penalties. Just like in the original tabletop game, managing heat becomes critical. Ignore it and your mech engine will blow up, taking your heavy hitter out of the game.

Mechwarrior for the Next Generation - Robotech, Battletech, Mechwarrior

A child sized walker mech from Sakakibara-Kikai. They also have a larger unit mounted with a nerf cannon. I wonder If I can bring one to an airsoft match...

Mechwarrior Minis Rules

The rules set you use will obviously impact the way your game is played. Here are some rules that survived the closure of Wizkids. Some links are for the older Mechwarrior: Dark Ages rules and some are for the sequel Mechwarriors: Age of Destruction. Many advise that you use M: AoD because it balances out some abilities considered too strong in the previous edition.

Here are links to the various Mechwarrior rules.

Mechwarrior Templates - Make custom Mechwarrior units and cards

These templates are for various components from Dark Age and Age of Destruction. Use them to create custom units, gear and pilots.

Featured Site: Mechwarrior Mobile Command

Mechwarrior Mobile Command is a fan site with a near complete set of Mechwarrior official documents. It appears the site owner had the forsight to save them prior to the closure of the Official Mechwarrior site. Look under the documents tab at Mechwarrior Mobile Command

And for the rpg players here is a homebrew Mechwarrior CMG/ RPG in pdf format. This might be a good system to get the two different gamers on one table.

Featured Site: Mechwarrior Living Legends

Online game development

Some very creative people created a Mechwarrior mod for Crysis. Dubbed Mechwarrior Living Legend it is an online MMO and it's open beta. it is also free. Check out Mechwarrior Living Legend

Mechwarrior Repaints

Players sometimes take the extra effort to redo the paint job on their Mechwarrior units.

Lens Trivia

first updated lens for 2011: 01 01 2011

last updated lens for 2010: 12 31 2010

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Unit Bulletin Board

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    • khael profile image
      Author

      khael 5 years ago

      @youthministry: Thanks for dropping by! The clix games were great for a quick game fix. I really wish they'd revive Mechwarrior.

    • youthministry profile image

      Paul Turner 5 years ago from Birmingham, Al.

      Sweet page. I remember playing the game once or twice and it was cool. Hope it makes a comeback.

    • khael profile image
      Author

      khael 5 years ago

      @anonymous: That's a good idea! I sure hope Wizkids is listening to the Mechwarrior fans.

    • khael profile image
      Author

      khael 5 years ago

      @scaguy: It's very unfortunate when these things happen. I guess I'm luckier that people are more open minded where I come from. Gamers tend to have multiple interest and belong to numerous fan associations/ interest groups. I think finding a common ground amongst the subcultures is a more fulfilling path than finding differences.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I want to see wizkids revive the line by remaking all of the older series in Age of destruction format.

    • scaguy profile image

      scaguy 5 years ago

      In my area the "clicky" game was met ill a lot of ill will. A lot of the player of what is now called classic Battletech considered the name of the new game to be quite well suited: Dark Ages.

    • khael profile image
      Author

      khael 6 years ago

      @Bus Stop Toy Shop: I agree. The Mage Knight and Heroclix revivals are encouraging signs. I'm hoping Wizkids/NECA goes for a third with Mechwarrior.

    • Bus Stop Toy Shop profile image

      Bus Stop Toy Shop 6 years ago

      Great game - such a pity its not around at the moment - fingers crossed for a revival like Heroclix.