|Type||Novella/serialized Novel (part 1 of 4)|
|Author||Michael A. Stackpole|
|Pages||114 (PDF edition)|
|Cover artwork||Jenn Tran|
|First published||7 February 2017|
|Era||Succession Wars era|
|Timeline||15 October - 15 November 3000|
|Followed by||Apparent Catastrophe|
Heir Apparent is an original BattleTech novella penned by Michael A. Stackpole, the first of four parts of a serial novel. It was offered as a backer reward for Harebrained Schemes' successful BattleTech Video Game crowdfunding campaign, and was released in electronic format on 7 February 2017 to backers who had pledged at least 50 US$ to the project.
For the time being, the novella's Canon status is unclear and is therefore flagged as apocryphal.
While the book is called "A BattleTech novella" on the cover, this does not necessarily refer to the same setting in the sense of meeting the current criteria for canon: The main BattleTech IP is notably a separate IP from the computer games IP ever since the latter were sold separately to Microsoft by FASA, and the book was written for a computer game that derives from the Microsoft license, not the core BattleTech license.
Line Developer Randall N. Bills had explicitly stated that the storyline of HBS's game was planned to become fully canonical; this would presumably extend to the novellas offered on the sidelines as well. However, as of this writing no actual statement has been made yet to actually declare the novella as canonical.
- Packrat Long Range Patrol Vehicle
- DropShips of undetermined classes (Vulture's Egg)
- The BattleMechs on the cover—a Blackjack and a Trebuchet, implicitly Walter de Mesnil's and Ivan Litzau's 'Mech, respectively—are drawn using the graphics from the MechWarrior Online computer game, which were also used by Harebrained Schemes for their game. It would seem, however, that the artist was only given the "basic" mesh models from the game without any of the various possible weapon loadouts. The 'Mechs in the picture have no visible weapon ports, barrels or launchers whatsoever unlike their counterparts in the story which were fully equipped with what seem to be standard configurations.