Mechwarrior 2 Overview

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On July 24, 1995, Mechwarrior 2 finally managed to see the light of day. After several delays, fallouts with the development team, and threats of cancellation, the game would go on to win several awards and become a benchmark of three dimensional gaming in the mid 90s.


The year is 3057. A struggle for power fuels a society of warring clans. Bitter infighting perpetuates a universe of unrest. Ware is constant. Victory is temporary. Cease-fire is nonexistent. A pause in a stream of salvos is only a signal to re-calibrate crosshairs and redirect missiles. Time is scarce before the next unrelenting mission begins. For a Mechwarrior, war is life, and death is the only true peace.

What's taken so long?

Oof. This is a tough one. There are many factors that have led MW2 to this state. Here are a few: a) over-eager PR people hyping a game that was not even close to being done. This led to forced promises of release dates that were IMPOSSIBLE to make. b) lack of a design. There was no clear direction for the first year and a half on the game, and no solid style. c) Featuritis: A disease that often afflicts game developers, causing them to want to keep adding more and more features to a game, rather than debugging and shipping what they already have. d) Morale. As they fell further and further behind schedule, the programmers and artists felt less and less inclined to produce. This led to departures.

The fact is that not ONE of the original mech team members was ever fired by Activision. They all left of their own accord to go to other companies. I'm sure the Activision management has no interest in dispelling this particular myth. :)

- Scott Goffman, 18 Mar 1995

The code for MechWarrior was never 'scrapped.' It was converted to protected mode so we could access more memory. We have been developing non-stop for 3 years (and trust me, I'm tired <G>).

- Tim Morten, 14 Jun 1995

We had to convert the engine to protected mode before we could even begin to design missions. Protected mode allowed us to access all available memory in a computer rather than just 640k. In the words of that lame wine commercial: 'We will serve no wine before its time.' On July 24th, it's time.

- Tim Morten, 24 Jun 1995


Mechwarrior 2 Game Manual (1.36 MB) - This is a pdf version of the game manual for Mechwarrior 2. If you've lost your copy or have never seen it in the first place, check it out.

Ghost Bear's Legacy Game Manual (399 KB) - The manual for the Mechwarrior 2 expansion pack Ghost Bear's Legacy is available here in pdf format.