Now celebrating 25 years, Catalyst Game Labs has positioned BattleTech to be easier to jump into than ever before.
It all began in 1984, as the giant anime craze began to make its way to the American market, FASA Corporation published BattleDroids (which would become BattleTech in 1985); a stand alone box set game that immersed players into a brand new, epic science fiction universe, with a fun game to back it up.
The visceral feel of metal titans storming across alien worlds, combined with the in-depth crafting of the universe and the dynamic, realistic characters created an instant success that has gone on to become one of the best selling and most recognized names in the adventure gaming industry. It has also reached far beyond that core market, spawning over a hundred novels, over a dozen computer game and computer game expansions, numerous virtual world centers, toys, comic books, a cartoon series and more.
Now, as we head fully into this anniversary year it’s back to BattleTech. The appellation of “Classic” was attached to the BattleTech name in 2002 and we’re very excited to revert to the original name that dominated gaming for so many years.
25 Years of Art & Fiction
As part of the 25th year celebration, Catalyst Game Labs is publishing BattleTech: 25 Years of Art and Fiction. An over-sized, full-color deluxe book, filled with a huge retrospective of 25 years worth of art. Additionally, we’ve got something extra special planned. We’ve selected over a dozen “premier” illustrations that cover the gamut of style, subject matter, time period and artists. Authors are then generating in the neighborhood of a hundred thousand words of new, original fiction to mesh with those illustrations. All the seminal BattleTech novelists are involved: Thurston, Charrette, Milan, Gressman, Coleman, Keith, Long, Pardoe, and Stackpole, as well as some new authors. A comprehensive universe timeline as well as detailed bibliography of all published material for BattleTech by FASA/FanPro/WizKids/Catalyst rounds out this fantastic product.
Appropriate for this anniversary year, Catalyst Game Labs will also be launching a full novel publishing program this fall, including brand new novels—such as A Bonfire of Worlds by Steven Mohan, Jr. and Shadows of Faith by Loren L. Coleman—as well as anniversary omnibus editions of some of the quintessential BattleTech novels, such as the Warrior Trilogy by Michael Stackpole.
BattleCorps.com—the official website for new, canon online fiction—has begun previewing A Bonfire of Worlds for free to BattleCorps members. A chapter will post every two weeks until the entire book is available.
Additionally, BattleCorps.com is further preparing the community for the return of print novels for BattleTech. The universe has a rich tradition of supporting novel publications, with over a hundred print novels produced across more than two decades. However, much of that rich history has been out of print for long years. BattleCorps.com is changing that in a big way! Just published is the novel Path of Glory by Randall N. Bills (originally published in 2000) in Electronic Advance Reader Copy (EARC) format. While these EARC publications can be purchased through the BattleShop by anyone, they’re free to BattleCorps members.
BattleCorps.com will publish one new EARC each month to the future; an entire, original print BattleTech novel, now available once more. Furthermore, BattleCorps.com members will decide in what order those novels will be published. Sample chapters from five novels are available for preview by anyone: Wolf Pack by Robert Charrette, Illusions of Victory by Loren Coleman, Natural Selection by Michael Stackpole, Highlander’s Gambit by Blaine Pardoe and Double-Blind by Loren Coleman. A poll for members is now available and the results of that pole will be tallied to determine publication order of the next five EARC novels. Once that selection of five novels has been released, the next series of novel choices will be posted for membership voting.
A host of other anniversary books and supporting books are planned, including a 25th Anniversary Edition of the Introductory Box Set…more than just a reprint.
Stay tuned to www.classicbattletech.com for more information!