Today marks the launch of MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries on Windows PC, which is a pretty big deal for any gamer who likes blasting massive robots to bits. This is one of many video games based on the biggest Western mech-combat franchise out there, BattleTech, but most of the recent games have landed in tactical, top-down territory.
That befits a series that began life as a tabletop strategy game, but any hardcore PC gamer who came up in the '90s remembers when the series' bombastic, first-person offshoot, MechWarrior, debuted as a drool-worthy highlight of the 3D-gaming revolution. And it's been a while since we've seen a traditional MechWarrior campaign game: 17 years.
As such, you can't take a single mecha-stomp through MechWarrior 5's gameplay without trampling some fields of nostalgia. For some players, that rewind may go back to 2002's MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries. For others, it's a brief rewind to 2013's MechWarrior Online, an MMO that's still in operation and resembles MW5:M.