Last week, I go to The Escapist and see that I have a message. Their publisher's club had a special deal that you could get a Hawken closed beta key. Because this is one of the games I was sort of interested in, I jumped on it.
Mech combat games (and it's cousins, the Space combat games) were popular back in the 90s. But it seems like the Y2K bug hit them rather hard, and they all retreated from popular view. But after a decade, it seems like they are coming out of hibernation with eldritch excitement. It looks like there is a new Mechwarrior game coming out, and that one guy that made the Wing Commander game that everyone so fawns over is at it again with Star Citizen.
Hawken is one of these mech games. But unlike others, the gameplay is fast and fluid, more akin to Counterstrike than a galleon simulator. The mechs are equipped with jets and spritely move about.
The first thing I notice is that this game is graphically busy and dirty. All three maps (available in the beta) are run down places that no one has cared about for some time. The game types are the typical affair: deathmatch, team deathmatch, and territory control.
The gameplay itself quickly got boring. You can only kill one other guy before everything overheats, and usually the first guy to start shooting wins, and pray that you haven't run out of jet fuel just getting up to that ledge.
Of course, that meant only one thing. After an hour, I reinstalled Supreme Commander and started playing through that campaign instead.