At Mech_Con 2016 this weekend Piranha Games announced that it had started development of MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries. Whetting our appetites further, Piranha had prepared a 7 minute pre-alpha video trailer consisting of footage from the first section of the game as played. This tactical, first-person PvE game uses the Unreal Engine 4 and is scheduled for release in 2018.
The video begins with you in a Mech hangar. An engineer or mechanic alerts you that he is warming up a 500 year old Mech, ready for you to take out for a recce. About four minutes in you eventually leave the hangar and hear of a mission: base command has lost contact with sentry post and wants to know if any explanation can be seen.
On your way out of the base a smaller Mech with unknown markings, thought to be a scout, is encountered and taken on. After a brief battle that your Mech wins you are instructed to return to the Hangar while command seeks to find out what's going on. Interrupting your return to base some space ships appear delivering a large expeditionary force…
On the official MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries site you can find out more about the background and history to the game's story. In a nutshell, it is the year 3015, you are on a planet in the 'Inner Sphere', and you are a rookie Mech warrior. During the game you will accept contracts to play through a career-based Mercenary campaign of your own bearing. As you succeed in the contracts you take on, you will hone your skills and maintain, enhance and acquire new Mechs.
Piranha is the developer behind the existing F2P multiplayer MechWarrior Online. The pricing / charging model for the upcoming single player game of MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries wasn't touched upon in this initial news release. The game looks like it would be a good fit for VR headset experiences - and by 2018 I might have bought into VR.