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MechWarrior (1989 Video Game)

Emblem-important.svg Apocryphal Product
Although it is an official BattleTech product, the subject of this article does not meet the current criteria for Canon for the BattleTech universe.
See the article's section on Canonicity for details.

Product information
Type Computer game
Development Dynamix
Publication information
Publisher Activision
First published 1989, 1992, 1993
MSRP $ 49.95[1]
Era Succession Wars era
Timeline 3024 - 3028 and beyond
Series MechWarrior computer games
Followed by MechWarrior 2

MechWarrior is a 1989 computer game published by Activision that is set in the BattleTech universe. The game was originally released on MSDOS, but to coincide with the release of BattleTech in Japan it got ported to the systems popular there at the time. These ports for X68000 and PC-98 were released under the name BattleTech: Stolen Chalice and were created by Victor Musical Industries, Inc.. They are identical to the 1989 release, except for completely new, high quality pixel art.

A SNES port of the game exists, but in this version the backstory was altered and it has a different main protagonist, among other changes; it should be regarded as a separate game (see MechWarrior (SNES)).


In the PC game, the player (as Gideon Braver) takes command of the Blazing Aces mercenary unit in his quest to uncover a hideous plot, retrieve a vital artifact and avenge the murder of his family within only five years. He gets to manage the unit's finances and negotiate contracts, can purchase and sell BattleMechs, hire and fire other MechWarriors for the unit (which can thus grow up to Lance size), and controls Gideon's 'Mech in combat. Most importantly, however, he must follow leads and gather information about the events on his homeworld. Ultimately, he must find and defeat the Dark Wing unit to reclaim his heritage.

Text scenes in the game sometimes require the player to choose between the alternatives on how to proceed. Choosing the wrong alternative can result in Gideon's death. It is also possible for Gideon to die during the 'Mech combat, but this rarely happens and usually requires the direct hit to the cockpit. Returning to Ander's Moon also results in arrest and execution, unless the game's objectives are already entirely accomplished and Gideon's innocence is proven.

Over the course of the game, prominent events taken from various novels are mentioned in the news, covering items from The Gray Death Trilogy (Verthandi Rebellion, Sirius massacre, events on Helm) and The Warrior Trilogy (following the Solaris career of Justin Xiang Allard up to the wedding of Hanse Davion and Melissa Steiner and the subsequent Fourth Succession War).


Computer games are explicitly excluded from the list of products that contribute straight Canon to the BattleTech universe yet at the same time it was stated that the IP owners are "not in total denial about these sources either". It has also expressly been stated that fluff from certain official, licensed products (namely certain computer games including those produced by Activision) can be assumed to be part of the shared universe as long as it is "not directly contradicted, and makes sense".

Plot summaryEdit


Gideon Braver Vandenburg is the son of Duke Cameron Vandenburg of Ander's Moon. The world was colonized centuries ago by the Vandenburg and McBrin families and was rewarded with a Dukedom by Prince Davion for the valor of its warriors in the Succession Wars. Upon the death of the old Duke, the new Duke is elected by the Council of Representatives and anointed with oil from the sacred Chalice of Herne, an ancient artifact from old Terra that had come to symbolize the office of Duke. The title has thus passed between Houses Vandenburg and McBrin over the centuries, creating a bitter rivalry.

On March 1, 3024, Gideon Braver Vandenburg left Castle Vandenburg, his father's stronghold, for an inspection of the family's holdings. Upon his return two days later he found that a Lance of BattleMechs had attacked the Castle, killed his family and stolen the Chalice of Herne along with other treasure. This turned out to be an intrigue by Jarris McBrin, who coveted the title of Duke for himself. To discredit and vanquish House Vandenburg, McBrin forged evidence to suggest that they had worked with and then double-crossed the pirates. He failed to convince the Council of Representatives to elect him Duke, however. Instead, they chose to delay the election of a new Duke until Gideon Braver Vandenburg had reached adulthood (23 years of age) on April 8, 3029.

Shortly after the Council's decision, Gideon Braver Vandenburg found himself falsely accused of conspiracy and crimes against the state and was forced to flee off-world. Jordan Rowe, a friend of the Vandenburg family, provided him with safe passage on a DropShip, some money and an old Jenner. Upon arriving at a nearby world, he abbreviated his name to Gideon Braver to avoid "complications", and created a small mercenary outfit, the Blazing Aces.

Game storylineEdit

Inquiries about the insignia seen on the BattleMechs that had pillaged Castle Vandenburg point Gideon to Grig Griez, a wanted crimelord operating from within the Draconis Combine. On Land's End he finally meets one of Griez's henchmen. Eventually, Gideon Braver gets to meet Grig Griez in person and agrees to deliver a message to one of Griez's agents on Dustball in exchange for information.

On Dustball, the recipient who calls himself Brown draws a gun on Gideon Braver (apparently acting as the message ordered him to do) but does not kill him when the "message" turns out to contain a deadly poison; Griez obviously wanted both Gideon Braver and Brown dead. Brown then tips Gideon off to a JumpShip named the Stone Arrow, a smuggler ship operated by a man known as Kangaroo Jack. To contact him, Gideon tracks down Jack's estranged brother who serves as a Scorpion pilot with Smithson's Chinese Bandits on garrison duty in the Free Worlds League. He points Gideon to a world in the Federated Suns where Jack "has a woman". Immediately after meeting with the Scorpion pilot, another assassination attempt is made against Gideon Braver near the garrison's Saladin hovertank garages - he suddenly finds himself under attack from a sniper with a heavy gyroslug carbine. The attack is carried on the news on the next day, where it is reported that terrorists attacked the 5th Armored Rangers at their garages.

In the Federated Suns, a man named Kearny is named as a contact to meet Kangaroo Jack. Kearny gives Gideon a slip of paper with an address where Gideon is to meet with Kearny in one hour if he wants to meet Jack, and also informs Gideon that it had been the Black Widow Company who had been moved to Ander's Moon with the Stone Arrow and attacked Castle Vandenburg bearing false unit insignia. However, Kangaroo Jack is murdered before Gideon can meet him.

(The player can choose whether or not to go to the address indicated by Kearny's note. If he does, he finds Kangaroo Jack dead and is assaulted by the assassin, whom Gideon then either kills in self defense, or is killed. Regardless of whether or not the player elects to visit the address, however, the newscast will subsequently report the death of Kangaroo Jack at the hands of a gangland assassin known as "Grim Jim", who was also found dead at the murder site.)

For a lack of other leads Gideon Braver then approaches Natasha Kerensky, commander of the Black Widow Company, in a bar in the Draconis Combine. Confronted with the accusations, Kerensky denies any involvement and a barfight ensues where only the intervention of a mysterious woman named Tasha saves Gideon Braver from a very severe beating by the Black Widows. Tasha reveals herself as a MI6 operative to Gideon and later provides him with data files that reveal a Draconis Combine company, Matabushi Incorporated, to be behind the Dark Wing and the attack on Castle Vandenburg as part of their Operation INROAD. She also reveals Kearny as a Kurita agent working for the ISF; the Black Widows really had nothing to do with it. Kearny had just set Gideon up to get himself killed by the Black Widows. On the sidelines, Jordan Rowe is also implied to be working for Matabushi.

Following a message to seek out alleged MIIO agent Kearny on Albiero, Gideon winds up in an attack by the MI6 against the Matabushi HQ there that culminates in a showdown aboard a Karnov heavy transport helicopter between Tasha and Kearny, accusing each other of being Kurita operatives at gunpoint before Gideon's eyes. Gideon elects to trust Tasha who subdues Kearny and explains that the MI6 had an independent mission against Matabushi underway, but saw Gideon Braver as having the same target. Her own mission accomplished, she provides the Blazing Aces with detailed data on the whereabouts of the Chalice of Herne, which is guarded by the Dark Wing for Matabushi. She also hands him a share of the loot: 5,000,000 C-Bills.

With this information, Gideon Braver Vandenburg and the Blazing Aces eventually find and defeat the Dark Wing, and reclaim the Chalice of Herne within five years after it had been stolen from Ander's Moon. The retrieval of the Chalice, together with the data disk on Operation Inroad, clear the Vandenburg name and the family title and honor is restored.

Over the course of his adventures, Gideon Braver accepted many short term contracts for the Blazing Aces from one or more Successor States of the Inner Sphere.

(It is theoretically possible to win the game without ever accepting a mercenary contract or hiring another member for the Blazing Aces, but managing the unit, building it up and improving it to the point where it can take on the Dark Wing with any hope of success is what the game is really about.)


Featured BattleMechsEdit

Within the game's combat sequences, only eight different 'Mech designs are available for either side: Locust, Jenner, Phoenix Hawk, Shadow Hawk, Rifleman, Warhammer, Marauder and BattleMaster.

Neither the player and his unit nor enemy forces can acquire or field 'Mechs of any other type. However, over the course of the storyline, a Scorpion features prominently in the narrative and yet other 'Mech models (including Atlas and Griffin) are mentioned at various points in the game, although they are not playable.

The game data files do contain the stats for the Wasp and Wolverine, but they are not playable either.[citation needed]


The player can recruit lancemates from numerous applicants, although experienced MechWarriors only become available once the unit has gained a certain reputation. They can be hired and fired at the player's discretion, and can also die in battle. There are 24 men and 18 women, and 21 character portraits depict the crew in the game (each portrait is shared by 2 characters). The pool of available personnel includes a variety of minor characters (with their respective starting skill at Gunnery/'Mech Pilot), some of whom are recurring characters in the BattleTech universe:


Name Gunry [sic] Pilot Pay Quote
T. D. Bente Poor Average 400 "Put a mech under me and I'll kick some tail."
Billy Chow Average Average 600 "Get me off this rock and I'll fight anything."
Kevin Call Good Excellent 1,000 "The Gray Death Legion is where I learned to fight."
A. Cooper Good Average 1,000 "Trained in the Federated Suns but I've been around since."
Jim Eagle Excellent Good 2,000 "Lindon's Company recon lance was my last tour."
Ted Hegel Average Poor 600 "Had a brush with the Widow, now I need another mech."
B. Hendrik Average Good 600 "Started with Narhal's Raiders but I've kicked around."
J. Holmaas Excellent Excellent 2,000 "I've worked with the best and so have they."
Darc Horse Good Excellent 1,000 "I work alone or with Team Banzai. Maybe with you."
"Killer" Good Good 1,000 "I want to burn villages, eat dead, burnt bodies, kill, kill, kill."
G. Lofall Excellent Good 2,000 "I'll warn you I party hard, but then I fight hard."
"Nasty Bill" Excellent Excellent 2,000 "I got my name from the way I fight -- I win."
Z. Rodgers Poor Average 400 "I used to work tech for Richard's Panzer Brigade."
Pete Ryan Good Average 1,000 "Fortune cookie I got today said take any deal. Name it."
Tim Seers Poor Poor 400 "I used to be infantry, but I'm moving up."
Tank Smith Good Excellent 1,000 "I prefer assault mechs, but then don't we all?"
"Tricky Nik" Good Good 1,000 "Ever hear of Redjack Ryan? I did some fighting for him."
T. Rich Average Poor 600 "I learned a thing or two with Hansen's Rough Riders."
R. Torsak Good Excellent 1,000 "Drove a Marauder for the 21st Centauri Lancers."
Kelly T. Average Good 600 "If you've got the money, I've got the time."
Bob True Poor Poor 400 "I know my way around mechs and I've seen my share of battles."
Kinji Tsi Excellent Excellent 2,000 "I follow bushido the way of the warrior."
Alex Veer Average Good 600 "I got my training on Solaris, the game world."
John Zoe Average Average 600 " My last gig was with Wolf's Dragoons."


Name Gunry [sic] Pilot Pay Description
Ara Good Average 1,000 "No last name. Just Ara, and mechs aren't my only specialty."
Rose Artz Good Average 1,000 "I last drove a Thunderbolt for the Eridani Lighthorse."
Karen Blak Average Poor 600 "Don't have much experience but I can shoot straight."
Tara Ellis Average Good 600 "Last tour I worked a Griffin for the Eridani Lighthorse."
Erin Falls Good Excellent 1,000 "There isn't any mech I can't master."
Elli Gujar Poor Poor 400 "I'm just starting out, but I'm loyal and I work hard."
JJ Kitter Good Excellent 1,000 "Spent some time with the Waco Rangers and Miller's Marauders."
A. Chu Lai Excellent Excellent 2,000 "Ran a Javelin for Winston's Scout Lance in the Waco Rangers."
Ilsa Marn Average Good 600 "I'm no stranger to... how shall I put it... covert operations"
Emma Meyer Excellent Good 2,000 "I've worked recon and strike lances in Brion's Legion."
S. Miller Average Good 600 "I practically grew up in the 3rd Recon Company."
A. Morris Good Average 1,000 "I had my Locust shot out from under me in a Kurita Riad."
Pam North Average Poor 600 "My last tour was with the 12th Vegan Rangers"
Taris Ren Poor Poor 400 "I say no job's too tough and no fee too high."
D. Sajak Poor Average 400 "D is for Desire. Tell anyone and I'll kill you."
Chaney Ti Excellent Excellent 2,000 "I worked for the Black Widow. 'Nuff said."
Zera Tith Excellent Good 2,000 "I've been around. Last gig was Helmar Valasek, The Bandit King."
"TJ" Average Poor 600 "Just tell me where to shoot and I'll do the rest."

Featured Planetary dataEdit

The world of Ander's Moon is not mentioned anywhere else in the BattleTech canon, but its position on the game's somewhat warped starmap roughly corresponds with Elidere IV, as does much of the political and economical information.

Only a fraction of the worlds from the BattleTech universe can be visited in the game - 30 planets from each House except for House Liao who have only 25 worlds on the game map; no periphery worlds can be travelled to. A short one-line description is provided for each of these worlds, as is a population estimate and a rough impression of the environment as either tropical, ice or desert. The data given is as follows:

House Planet Environment Population Description
Kurita Albiero Desert 856,000,000 Main headquarters for Matabushi Inc
Kurita Alshain Tropical 2,759,000,000 Supports a thriving BattleMech factory
Kurita Benjamin Tropical 4,655,000,000 Supports much heavy industry
Kurita Buckminster Tropical 2,641,000,000 2nd Sword of Light stationed here
Kurita Delacruz Desert 879,000,000 War torn - some large industry
Kurita Dieron Desert 5,284,000,000 Capital of the Dieron Military District
Kurita Galedon V Tropical 1,595,000,000 Known for its high grade industrial diamonds
Kurita Galuzzo Tropical 2,945,000,000 Exotic wines and the best pizza in known space
Kurita Irurzun Tropical 5,090,000,000 A valuable world housing a sizable military force
Kurita Karbala Tropical 1,841,000,000 Tropical paradise - known for its precious gems
Kurita Kaznejov Desert 1,009,000,000 Home of the 17th Galedon Regulars
Kurita Kessel Desert 2,310,000,000 Strong rebel forces - visits may be dangerous
Kurita Kirchbach Tropical 784,000,000 Few resources but a temperate climate
Kurita Land's End Ice 123,000,000 Desolate rock on the periphery
Kurita Luthien Tropical 5,203,000,000 Capital of the Draconis Combine
Kurita Matsuida Tropical 1,009,000,000 Nicknamed 'Nausea' - planet is known for seafood
Kurita Misery Ice 100,000,000 Notable only for mining operations
Kurita New Samarkand Desert 950,000,000 Home of the Internal Security Force
Kurita Oshika Desert 4,207,000,000 Home of the 16th Galedon Regulars
Kurita Pesht Tropical 4,890,000,000 Heavy military garrison
Kurita Proserpina Desert 1,872,000,000 Home of the 9th Benjamin Regulars
Kurita Qandahar Desert 2,304,000,000 Highly toxic environment
Kurita Radstadt Tropical 841,000,000 One of the largest prisons of the Combine is here
Kurita Rasalhague Tropical 2,284,000,000 Large industries and plentiful resources
Kurita Rubigen Ice 2,932,000,000 An ice world known for its wolverine pelts
Kurita Skokie Ice 765,000,000 An ice world rich in minerals
Kurita Tabayama Tropical 2,000,000,000 Capital of Galedon's periphery prefecture
Kurita Thestria Ice 125,000,000 Frozen ball known only for precious metal deposits
Kurita Vega Desert 2,284,000,000 Home of Cosby Myomer Research Company
Kurita Xinyang Tropical 1,010,000,000 Resort atmosphere catering to soldiers on leave
Steiner Alarion Tropical 2,434,000,00 Heavy industry and orbiting shipyards
Steiner Alexandria Desert 2,450,000,000 War ravaged from struggles with House Kurita
Steiner Anembo Desert 450,000,000 Unremarkable world scarce in everything
Steiner Anywhere Ice 5,000,000 A real nowhere unless you're a pirate
Steiner Arcadia Tropical 1,323,000,000 Strong in agriculture and manufacturing
Steiner Bountiful Harvest Tropical 3,275,000,000 Largest agricultural planet in the Commonwealth
Steiner Carse Ice 1,453,000,000 Center for plastic and plastisteel manufacturing
Steiner Chuckchi III [sic] Tropical 2,500,000,000 Large titanium mining operations
Steiner Coventry Tropical 1,549,000,000 Home of 2nd largest Commonwealth BattleMech Co
Steiner Dixie Tropical 2,567,000,000 Known for good food and warm hospitality
Steiner Donegal Tropical 3,651,000,000 Rich in diamonds, rare metals, and traders
Steiner Dustball Desert 25,000,000 Where the elite satisfy their most wicked desires
Steiner Garrison Desert 1,879,000,000 Military training center and post
Steiner Hesperus II Desert 235,000,000 Supports a large BattleMech factory
Steiner Kobe Ice 1,009,000,000 Major producer of electronics and chemical engines
Steiner Mizar Tropical 2,186,000,000 A pleasant resort world
Steiner Niangol Tropical 567,000,000 Petroleum and ore processing center
Steiner Port Moseby Desert 4,535,000,000 Major trading center - anything for a price
Steiner Poulsbo Tropical 1,239,000,000 Jumping off point for regiments attacking Marik
Steiner Rahne Desert 1,234,000,000 A miserable place - 2 seasons allow humans outside
Steiner Sevren Desert 1,543,000,000 Large fission core manufacturing facilities
Steiner Skye Tropical 3,256,000,000 Plenty of unspoiled landscape as well as industry
Steiner Suk II Desert 987,000,000 Mining world rich in metal ores
Steiner Tamar Tropical 879,000,000 Strong trading and manufacturing center
Steiner Tharkad Ice 4,529,000,000 Capital of the Lyran Commonwealth
Steiner Thorin Tropical 3,879,000,000 Ancient world rich in minerals and precious gems
Steiner Timbiqui Desert 1,506,000,000 Manufacturing center rich in minerals
Steiner Timbuktu Desert 879,000,000 Home of the 11th Arcturan Guards
Steiner Valloire Tropical 879,000,000 Producer of the best teas in the Commonwealth
Steiner Winfield Tropical 1,150,000,000 Agricultural world with long growing season
Marik Alula Australis Tropical 3,119,000,000 Mineral source for Cirebon, Lengkong, and Mosiro
Marik Amity Tropical 2,324,000,000 Large and varied manufacturing facilities
Marik Andurien Tropical 4,950,000,000 Famous for its botanical gardens
Marik Angell II Tropical 1,145,000,000 One of Marik's biggest sources of wealth
Marik Atreus Tropical 5,391,000,000 Capital of the Free Worlds League
Marik Autumn Wind Desert 3,297,000,000 Garden planet catering to vacationers
Marik Calloway VI Tropical 1,250,000,000 Large trade center with BattleMech factories
Marik Chalouba Tropical 2,416,000,000 Pastoral but with growing electronics industry
Marik Cirebon Tropical 4,631,000,000 Large computer and aerospace industries
Marik Claybrooke Tropical 3,592,000,000 Major exports are ranch and dairy products
Marik Gibson Desert 4,137,000,000 Amazing diversity of peoples and religions
Marik Goodna Tropical 3,491,000,000 A planet filled with rare edible delicacies
Marik Griffith Ice 2,461,000,000 Small but important weapons business
Marik Irian Desert 2,169,000,000 Houses vast BattleMech factories
Marik Lesnovo Desert 2,631,000,000 Often raided by bandits of the Marian Hegemony
Marik Marik Desert 4,780,000,000 Winter residence of the Captain-General
Marik Mosiro Desert 3,399,000,000 Mostly moslem, strong in astrophysics and the arts
Marik Nestor Tropical 3,286,000,000 Agricultural mostly rice and other cereals
Marik New Delos Tropical 2,110,000,000 Beautiful world but a depressed economy
Marik Oliver Tropical 2,329,000,000 Much industry including a Mech plant
Marik Oriente Tropical 3,972,000,000 Lush, green world of rolling grassland and forests
Marik Procyon Tropical 5,250,000,000 Once home to the Brigadier Mech Co. - now extinct
Marik Regulus Tropical 3,139,000,000 Home of John 'Icepick' Melton, man of many talents
Marik Sadurni Ice 456,000,000 A frozen, barren, lifeless rock - see you there
Marik Shiloh Desert 1,000,000 Main exports include woodcarvings and silkscreens
Marik Silver Desert 1,756,000,000 Named for its large deposits of that ore
Marik Sophie's World Desert 4,512,000,000 A center for the arts and learning
Marik Suzano Ice 1,546,000,000 Famous for Ando Bass fished from its frozen seas
Marik Tamarind Desert 3,562,000,000 The talent of the artists here is legendary
Marik Zortman Desert 879,000,000 Center for technology research
Liao Aldebaran Tropical 4,261,000,000 Major commercial and industrial center
Liao Ares Desert 4,227,000,000 Free port, also houses a Mech factory
Liao Betelgeuse Tropical 3,792,000,000 Major industrial center including a Mech complex
Liao Bharat Tropical 1,817,000,000 A planetwide hunting preserve
Liao Bithinia Tropical 3,298,000,000 Planetwide entertainment center - steel industry
Liao Buenos Aires Tropical 2,186,000,000 Subterranean and offshore hydroponic agriculture
Liao Capella Tropical 5,375,000,000 HQ for Ceres Metals and Capellan Commonality Bank
Liao Exedor Desert 1,000,000 Liao personal treasures guarded by crack troops
Liao Grand Base Desert 3,467,000,000 Military staging, training and repair facility
Liao Keid Tropical 4,573,000,000 Many military, training and research facilities
Liao Matsu Ice 2,153,000,000 Precious metals mining center
Liao Menke Tropical 4,514,000,000 Home of McCarron's Armored Cavalry
Liao Milos Tropical 3,481,000,000 Agricultural world of some strategic importance
Liao Nanking Tropical 5,918,000,000 Home of the Warrior House Daidachi Regiment
Liao Necromo Desert 1,000,000 Liao Dropship repair facility
Liao New Hessen Desert 2,139,000,000 Main recruiting and training center for House Liao
Liao Raballa Tropical 3,871,000,000 Houses major aerospace support installation
Liao Sian Tropical 4,796,000,000 Capital of the Capellan Confederation
Liao Styk Tropical 4,725,000,000 2nd largest trading and industrial center
Liao Tall Trees Tropical 964,000,000 Genetic research facility which developed Nuplague
Liao Tikonov Tropical 5,279,000,000 Largest Mech production center in Capellan space
Liao Tsinghai Tropical 4,185,000,000 Best known for its wines, also uranium deposits
Liao Turin Tropical 3,267,000,000 Noted for its horses and special cattle
Liao Warlock Ice 4,128,000,000 Military research and development center
Liao Zanzibar Desert 1,549,000,000 Famous black market - anything can be bought here
Davion Ander's Moon Desert 50,000,000 Small backwater world mostly agricultural
Davion Baxley Desert 1,752,000,000 A real backwater world of absolutely no importance
Davion Beecher Tropical 3,689,000,000 Strong industry and agriculture, excellent wines
Davion Caph Desert 2,349,000,000 Major connection between Davion and Steiner space
Davion Cogdell Tropical 1,536,000,000 Agri-world in deep political turmoil
Davion Delacambre Tropical 3,215,000,000 Agricultural world supporting several near planets
Davion Frazer Tropical 899,000,000 Large producer of rice, some petroleum
Davion Galax Desert 3,527,000,000 Major mining and industrial center
Davion Gambler [sic] Tropical 2,145,000,000 Entertainment world with some industry
Davion Great Gorge Desert 1,988,000,000 Nice world rich in minerals on the edge of nowhere
Davion Greely [sic] Ice 1,492,000,000 Recently rebuilt into a military center
Davion Hobbs Desert 1,325,000,000 Giant cave systems here used as warehouses
Davion Hoff Tropical 1,263,000,000 Houses the Friden Aerospace research facility
Davion Hyalite Desert 1,598,000,000 Strong chemical industries
Davion Immenstadt Ice 21,000,000 Cold much of the year, strong hydroponic industry
Davion Kathil Desert 1,567,000,000 Major Jumpship and Dropship facilities
Davion Kesai IV Desert 1,426,000,000 Strategic military center and nothing else
Davion Kittery Tropical 2,381,000,000 Inhospitable jungle world, natives in rebellion
Davion Mallory's World Tropical 2,163,000,000 Once plentiful agri-world now war torn
Davion Marduk Tropical 3,691,000,000 Home of the Norse BattleMech Works
Davion Moravian Desert 2,157,000,000 Mining industry smashed by war, depressed economy
Davion New Aragon Tropical 2,349,000,000 Captured in 2832, House Liao still claims it
Davion New Avalon Tropical 5,876,000,000 Capital of the Federated Suns
Davion New Syrtis Ice 3,682,000,000 Military capital of the Capellan March
Davion Noatak Ice 1,389,000,000 Known for its whales, seals and aquatic life
Davion Okefenokee Tropical 478,000,000 Rich petroleum deposits just discovered
Davion Redfield Tropical 1,004,000,000 Such a constant battlefield nothing else happens
Davion Robinson Tropical 3,428,000,000 Military capital of the Terran March
Davion Tancredi IV Tropical 3,251,000,000 Strong mining and industrial center
Davion Xhosa VII Tropical 2,975,000,000 Aerospace industry somewhat depressed by war

Contracts and missionsEdit

Screenshot of the contract negotiation screen.

Contracts are offered by the ruling state of whichever planet and region you're on/in, and affect your standing with both that state and whoever the action is against (eg. an incursion into Kurita territory will lower your popularity in Kurita space). Take enough action against a particular state and they will refuse to sign contracts with you, and you'll get unfriendly messages landing on any planet in their region.

Some contract terms - the overall price, your percentage of salvage, and what proportion is paid in advance - are negotiable to some extent. Steiner seem to pay the most, agreeing to larger increases in terms in your favour than others. Kurita will get sick of negotiating and give up if they don't like your suggested terms the third time round - you will need to fly to a different planet to 'reset' this if it happens. There is a small chance, at the end of a contract, that the other party will renege on the deal and pay you much less than what was agreed.

The value of contracts generally increases with the number of 'mechs you will face. Each contract will estimate the number of light, heavy and medium 'mechs the enemy will field against you, although this is not guaranteed correct - a contract to square up against two heavies may find an additional light or medium 'mech on the battlefield once you actually make planetfall.


There are five different single mission scenarios in the game, with 34 possible text descriptions of them, randomly generated for each contract (and which are basically flavour text for variety). There are also three extended campaign missions, which consist of three randomly picked missions which are played one after the other, with no chance to fully repair.

There is a small chance for a mission to end instantly, without dropping you on the battlefield. You will be paid the negotiated price for the contract and the mission debrief will conclude that it amounted to an uneventful tour of garrison duty.

These mission descriptions were created after extensive gameplay testing and basically reverse-engineering the game. Mission descriptions are not from game material, however mission names are copied verbatim from game files including spelling errors.


Deathmatch missions pit you in direct combat against enemy 'mechs. They will immediately charge you from their starting positions on the map. You must destroy all enemy 'mechs in combat to win the scenario. You will lose the scenario if all of your 'mechs are destroyed.



Enemy 'mechs are guarding a structure. They will hold position and only charge once you close to a certain distance (about 1500 metres). You must destroy all enemy 'mechs OR destroy the structure to win the scenario. You will lose the scenario if all of your 'mechs are destroyed.



Enemy 'mechs are guarding a structure. They will hold position and only charge once you close to a certain distance (about 1500 metres). You must destroy all enemy 'mechs OR physically touch the structure with your 'mech to win the scenario. You will lose the scenario if all of your 'mechs are destroyed.



You are guarding a structure. The enemy 'mechs will immediately charge you from their starting position and prioritise attacking your structure. You must destroy all enemy 'mechs to win the scenario. You will lose the scenario if all of your 'mechs OR the structure are destroyed.



Enemy 'mechs start at one side of the battlefield and will attempt to reach the other side, crossing your path. You must destroy all enemy 'mechs to win the scenario. You will lose the scenario if all of your 'mechs are destroyed OR any enemy 'mechs reach the other side. (There are no missions in the game where you win by crossing the map boundary - doing so counts as fleeing the battlefield and and an instant loss, and any enemy or friendly 'mech that crosses the map boundary while fleeing disappears permanently from the map for that mission.)


Extended campaignsEdit

Campaign contracts are made up of three random missions played one after the other. You don't get the ability to fully repair between missions, but you can buy additional ammo which is reloaded automatically throughout a campaign, and any 'mech that is disabled but not destroyed is minimally repaired to get it up and walking again for the next mission (even if a single shot will still take it down again).

These contracts can command very high prices, and once you've built up a full lance of four Battlemasters and are facing 12 other heavies across the course of an extended campaign, even Steiner will readily agree to the maximum price you can ask for (9,990k C-bills), so once you reach the end stages of the game, it may stop being economical to agree to these as your repair costs rise.

Each extended campaign may contain any random three other mission types, and whether it's named an offensive, defensive or siege campaign makes no difference to the number of offensive or defensive missions you'll actually have to do.

At the start of each individual mission in a campaign, you'll be shown the title and thus type of mission. You must successfully finish all three missions in sequence to be paid for the contract - fleeing even after the first two will result in zero payment and loss of status with the state you contracted with.



Map of the Inner Sphere in Mechwarrior 1, showing the economic tier of each planet.

MW1's economy system, which determines the buy and sell price of 'mechs, the price of ammo, repairs, and travel between planets, is very simple. Each planet belongs to one of four 'tiers', and prices for everything depends on which tier that planet is in.

  • Tier 1 planets have the cheapest 'mechs, ammo, and repairs. They also have a greater abundance of spare parts, 'mechs for sale, and generally more missions available.
  • Tier 4 planets have the most expensive of everything. Buying 'mechs on tier 1/2 planets and selling them on tier 3/4 planets is a very viable way to generate cash in-game.
  • The capital planets of each region are tier 1 planets. Ander's Moon, the protagonist's home planet, is a tier 4 planet, but flying to it before completing the game means you instantly lose the game, so trading there is only possible after you've beaten the game entirely.
  • Ammo is not taken into account when calculating a 'mech's buy or sell price - a fully repaired Jenner with a full SRM-4 rack will sell for exactly the same as a top-condition Jenner with no ammo at all, so if you are trading 'mechs to generate cash, don't bother reloading ballistic or missile weapons.
  • The cost to reload 'mechs increases as you go from tier 1 to tier 4 worlds, by about 50% overall, but also vary slightly at random from planet to planet within a tier.

Interplanetary travelEdit

Travel in MW1 costs a varying amount based on the distance (number of jumps), how many pilots you've hired, and how many 'mechs you're taking with you.

  • The cost per pilot (including the player) is 2,500 C-bills, up to a maximum of 10,000 C-bills to move four pilots one jump.
  • Transporting a 'mech costs 20,000 C-bills per 'mech, plus 25,000 C-bills per 'mech per jump. Taking one 'mech one jump away is 45,000 C-bills. Moving four 'mechs one jump is 180,000 C-bills. The weight of a 'mech does not factor into this calculation at all - a Locust costs the same to transport as a Battlemaster
  • If you have any 'mechs at all, the cost of transporting pilots is ignored - moving four pilots and one 'mech one jump costs 45,000 C-bills.
  • The longest single journey in the game is from Okefenokee in Davion space to Timbuktu or Niangol in Steiner space, which is 11 jumps. It costs 1,180,000 C-bills to move four 'mechs this far.
  • The maximum number of 'mechs you can own in the game is 12, making the most expensive jump possible - 12 'mechs between Timbuktu or Niangol and Okefenokee - cost 3.54 million C-bills.

Trading BattlemechsEdit

  • Buying 'mechs on a tier 1 planet, and reselling on a tier 4 planet, is a viable strategy for making money in MW1. You will make approximately 71.4% profit on every tier 1 to tier 4 sale.
  • You can sell all of your 'mechs (a maximum of 12) on a tier 1 or 2 planet at any time. A tier 3 planet will only accept a random amount from 2-4 before saying "we don't need any more 'mechs at this time, thanks". A tier 4 planet will only buy 1, 2 or 3 'mechs at a time. Leaving the planet and returning will reset this to a new random number.
  • As tier 4 planets might only accept 1 'mech at a time, to generate cash quickly, you should be prepared to flit between two tier 4 planets to sell off a haul from tier 1 planets. The Davion complex of tier 1 planets New Avalon and Galax, and tier 4 planets Noatak and Baxley, is ideal for this as they are all within 1 jump of each other, minimising both transport costs and time spent in transit.
  • Other regions of space in other political states are viable for this strategy as well. While different successor states bargain differently for actual contracts, factors around buying and selling 'mechs remains identical across planets of the same tier regardless of location.
  • Which 'mechs are available for purchase on a planet is random. Any planet can sell any 'mech, but tier 3/4 planets tend to have fewer available than tier 1/2 planets.
  • Smaller 'mechs are far more common than larger ones. It's common to land on a tier 1 planet and see mostly Locusts and Jenners, and a couple of Phoenix Hawks and Shadow Hawks. If you're after a particular heavy 'mech, you will probably need to jump between two tier 1 planets several times.
  • It is possible for any planet, including tier 1 planets, to have zero 'mechs for sale.
  • Battlemechs cost 11.1% more to buy at tier 1 than they do to sell, 9.1% more at tier 2, 8.3% more at tier 3 and 7.1% more at tier 4 planets.

Battlemech pricesEdit

The prices in this table are for 'mechs in 100% fully repaired condition. The actual cost to buy and fully repair a 'mech may differ from the buy prices below by a few hundred C-bills at most.

Tier Locust Jenner Phoenix Hawk Shadow Hawk Rifleman Warhammer Marauder Battlemaster
1 - Buy price 1504000 3183000 4022000 4622000 5500000 6021000 6729000 8410000
1 - Sell price 1353000 2864000 3619000 4159000 4950000 5418000 6056000 7569000
2 - Buy price 1804000 3819000 4826000 5546000 6600000 7225000 8074000 10092000
2 - Sell price 1654000 3501000 4424000 5084000 6050000 6623000 7401000 9251000
3 - Buy price 1955000 4137000 5228000 6008000 7150000 7827000 8747000 10933000
3 - Sell price 1804000 3819000 4826000 5546000 6600000 7225000 8074000 10092000
4 - Buy price 2256000 4774000 6033000 6933000 8250000 9031000 10093000 12615000
4 - Sell price 2105000 4456000 5630000 6470000 7700000 8429000 9420000 11774000



  1. According to a review in Dragon Magazine #161 (September 1990), p. 48


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