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Predator Pack: In The Mechbay With Mark Nicholson


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#21 w0qj

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Posted 18 December 2021 - 10:36 PM

Wow, happy to hear that you are now safe+healthy!
Do keep safe and have a cherished time with your family this Christmas!

By the way, Rivals Pack sale +1 just now, directly because of your write-up!
Congrats, you're a great salesman too ;)


View PostMark Nicholson, on 18 December 2021 - 10:15 AM, said:

We had an ambitious plan to release the Predator Pack in December, and right before we announced it I got sick with a cold and was in quarantine for 10 days. The MWO team is really small right now, I'm the only dedicated artist, and that was enough to push it from "ambitous" to "completely impossible". So the Predator pack got moved to January, where I think people would have expected it anyway. I'm the bottleneck on getting 'Mech packs out right now, and we started thinking about something we could do with the remainder of the extra month of time we had bought, and yet didn't require as much new art as the recent booster packs. We had original planned for the roughneck and sunspider to be the december free mechs again, and the results you see grew from there.


#22 Xaius

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Posted 19 December 2021 - 10:12 AM

I would be really happy if at some point, you guys went to older mechs and did minor buffs to hardpoint locations.

Essentially, just take any hardpoints located under a mech's wrists, and put them on top of their hands.

It would also be nice if you changed some mechs so that you could bump up hardpoint locations of heavier weapons with lighter ones. Such as putting a small lazer on a component so that a ppc would be equipped to a higher location the mechs has access to, instead of putting the small lazer up high. (This would benefit the panther for example)

Some similiar feedback that I have regarding hardpoints would be for missile tubes. Now that there are ammo quirks for missiles on many light and medium IS mechs, I have been testing our lrms on them, but quite a few of them, such as the St. Ives Blues, get shot in the foot by not having enough missile tubes on hardpoints to actually use lrm 15s or 20s. At the very least, please make it so that Lrm cooldowns on Innersphere mechs start when the weapon STARTS firing (instead of when it finishes firing). This flaw can quickly desync your weapons to absurd levels. (Just test a dual lrm15 St Ives to see what I mean)

#23 TELEFORCE

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Posted 19 December 2021 - 04:30 PM

View PostXaius, on 19 December 2021 - 10:12 AM, said:

I would be really happy if at some point, you guys went to older mechs and did minor buffs to hardpoint locations.

Essentially, just take any hardpoints located under a mech's wrists, and put them on top of their hands.

It would also be nice if you changed some mechs so that you could bump up hardpoint locations of heavier weapons with lighter ones. Such as putting a small lazer on a component so that a ppc would be equipped to a higher location the mechs has access to, instead of putting the small lazer up high. (This would benefit the panther for example)

Some similiar feedback that I have regarding hardpoints would be for missile tubes. Now that there are ammo quirks for missiles on many light and medium IS mechs, I have been testing our lrms on them, but quite a few of them, such as the St. Ives Blues, get shot in the foot by not having enough missile tubes on hardpoints to actually use lrm 15s or 20s. At the very least, please make it so that Lrm cooldowns on Innersphere mechs start when the weapon STARTS firing (instead of when it finishes firing). This flaw can quickly desync your weapons to absurd levels. (Just test a dual lrm15 St Ives to see what I mean)


Some of the hardpoints are like that from their canon designs. However I wouldn't mind having a choice for selecting weapon hardpoint locations in a given... location :)

#24 Nomad Tech

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Posted 19 December 2021 - 05:56 PM

I like the new look of that shadowcat better than the old ones. The arms look better.

Edited by Nomad Tech, 19 December 2021 - 05:56 PM.


#25 w0qj

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Posted 19 December 2021 - 08:52 PM

Ballistic LT + Ballastic RT for Atlas please ;)
(Other mechs have this already...Cyclops, Fafnir, Annihilator, Mauler, Nightstar, and heck even the Roughneck Bolt too!)


View PostTELEFORCE, on 19 December 2021 - 04:30 PM, said:

Some of the hardpoints are like that from their canon designs. However I wouldn't mind having a choice for selecting weapon hardpoint locations in a given... location Posted Image


#26 Mark Nicholson

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Posted 19 December 2021 - 09:10 PM

View PostXaius, on 19 December 2021 - 10:12 AM, said:

I would be really happy if at some point, you guys went to older mechs and did minor buffs to hardpoint locations.

Essentially, just take any hardpoints located under a mech's wrists, and put them on top of their hands.

It would also be nice if you changed some mechs so that you could bump up hardpoint locations of heavier weapons with lighter ones. Such as putting a small lazer on a component so that a ppc would be equipped to a higher location the mechs has access to, instead of putting the small lazer up high. (This would benefit the panther for example)

Some similiar feedback that I have regarding hardpoints would be for missile tubes. Now that there are ammo quirks for missiles on many light and medium IS mechs, I have been testing our lrms on them, but quite a few of them, such as the St. Ives Blues, get shot in the foot by not having enough missile tubes on hardpoints to actually use lrm 15s or 20s. At the very least, please make it so that Lrm cooldowns on Innersphere mechs start when the weapon STARTS firing (instead of when it finishes firing). This flaw can quickly desync your weapons to absurd levels. (Just test a dual lrm15 St Ives to see what I mean)


I understand where you're coming from, but each of these 3 requests could easily be multiple months of work. Right now, art resources are slim. I'm holding up map fixes right now because I haven't been able to spare a couple days. Let alone that these months of work would come at the expense of things like Booster Packs, which fund everything else we're doing.

I can't speak to the missile cooldown, but I'm recalling from the old days of the single tube raven that this has always been the case.

I'm sorry I can't offer you any better consolation than this picture of a shadowcat in his sunday best:

Posted Image

This skin is pretty straight forward, angular disruptive pattern shapes in dark gray, and a light gray base. The slightly brighter outlines are part of the light grey, and should appear slightly brighter no matter what color is chosen instead of light gray.

#27 D V Devnull

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 09:00 AM

View PostMark Nicholson, on 19 December 2021 - 09:10 PM, said:

I'm holding up map fixes right now because I haven't been able to spare a couple days.

Well, here's to my being confused again. Could you please define "map fixes" in this instance? Sorry that I'm at a complete loss here for understanding what you mean. :wacko:

~D. V. "seriously not understanding what 'map fixes' means in this context" Devnull

#28 Mark Nicholson

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 10:25 AM

View PostD V Devnull, on 20 December 2021 - 09:00 AM, said:

Well, here's to my being confused again. Could you please define "map fixes" in this instance? Sorry that I'm at a complete loss here for understanding what you mean. Posted Image


There's some minor art tasks required whenever a map is changed (like updating the minimap), and my schedule hasn't had room for those tasks in a while, despite their urgency.

#29 Kodan Black

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 01:05 PM

The camo on both… *chefs kiss*

And I spend far too much time in the mech lab giving my mechs their own unique scheme, but I may not even mess with these. Too much.

Edited by Kodan Black, 20 December 2021 - 01:05 PM.


#30 Xaius

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 03:30 PM

View PostMark Nicholson, on 19 December 2021 - 09:10 PM, said:


I understand where you're coming from, but each of these 3 requests could easily be multiple months of work. Right now, art resources are slim. I'm holding up map fixes right now because I haven't been able to spare a couple days. Let alone that these months of work would come at the expense of things like Booster Packs, which fund everything else we're doing.

I can't speak to the missile cooldown, but I'm recalling from the old days of the single tube raven that this has always been the case.

I'm sorry I can't offer you any better consolation than this picture of a shadowcat in his sunday best:

Posted Image

This skin is pretty straight forward, angular disruptive pattern shapes in dark gray, and a light gray base. The slightly brighter outlines are part of the light grey, and should appear slightly brighter no matter what color is chosen instead of light gray.

You guys have been killing it, and I will be happy to continue giving you my money for years to come. Hopefully one day, but I wouldn't consider these top priority changes myself either. I dream of the day that you guys will have more money and resources that you know what do to with, and I will emerge from the darkness then, with my wishlist prepared.

#31 M5000

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 04:00 PM

This year has seen some of the absolute coolest patterns to come out on mechs in a long time. Some of my favorites from this year:
-Warden skins, of course.
-The new BAS-E is looking EXTREMELY sharp. Shadow cat's nice too. SHC reminds me of the MW5 preorder variants (CPLT-C2, WHM-9D, MAD-9M, KGC-001) which is a good thing.
-I absolutely LOVE the Stalker 7D's hex camo and bolt ons.
-And I literally bought the Rivals pack specifically for that Ambush pattern. I've seen a few people complain that changing colors on it doesn't have much influence over the final look but I'm fine with how it looks out of the box, absolutely love the color choice. Reminds me of a Bird of Paradise or something.

Some of my favorite patterns I've seen from the past, too, whether you've done them or not:
-Loyalty Griffin 5M with the teal and the Heron and the ocean on the arm shields. I'm also weak for blue-teals like this.
-The Special Cyclops 11A - Very cool.
-Special Osiris 3D - I guess I like randomly placed eyeballs.
-All of the "Angelic" loyalty mechs - Centurion, but namely Atlas and King Crab - Wish I had an opportunity to get my hands on one of those KGC-000s again.
-Of course the MW5 preorder skins were awesome. Gold accents super cool.
-Special Annihilator 2A - Godzilla skin. I re-colored mine to a teal-blue color and it looks so cool.
-Special Hatamoto/Charger
-MAD-IIC Scorch - This is another one I got specifically because of the paint job, independent of it being an excellent mech in its own right. The heat-stressed metal look is so cool.
-Ice Ferret Rainbow Crow
-Hellfire Void

Sorry to get a bit off on a tangent but the new patterns are looking really cool. Honestly one of my favorite things in this game besides actually playing is poking around in the camo spec section seeing what I can come up with.

#32 Mark Nicholson

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 04:43 PM

View PostM5000, on 20 December 2021 - 04:00 PM, said:

-And I literally bought the Rivals pack specifically for that Ambush pattern. I've seen a few people complain that changing colors on it doesn't have much influence over the final look but I'm fine with how it looks out of the box, absolutely love the color choice. Reminds me of a Bird of Paradise or something.


Yeah, I can't make it metallic/shiny without sacrificing the ability to change colors. In this case I went nuts with that, and otherwise I've been trying to restrain how much of it I use, so people can enjoy color swapping. The camo was inspired by jewel bugs.


Today's update is some high poly bolt-on models in false color:

Posted Image

#33 catgirl

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Posted 20 December 2021 - 05:34 PM

View Postw0qj, on 18 December 2021 - 10:36 PM, said:

Wow, happy to hear that you are now safe+healthy!
Do keep safe and have a cherished time with your family this Christmas!

By the way, Rivals Pack sale +1 just now, directly because of your write-up!
Congrats, you're a great salesman too Posted Image


+1 another Rival Pack after reading the write-up. [Originally, I was against purchasing]
We appreciate you.

Edited by catgirl, 20 December 2021 - 05:35 PM.


#34 AnAnachronismAlive

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Posted 21 December 2021 - 12:39 AM

View PostMark Nicholson, on 18 December 2021 - 10:15 AM, said:

Fixing that crime has been on my list for a LONG time.


Thanks for the feedback, good sir. Certainly hard to receive those temporary community-punches (me included) while being the only available artist atm. But while talking about crimes: may we ask for some hardpoint-review/allocation on the Paralyzer-Hero should your time allow for it anywhere in the future?

It has these high mounted shoulder-racked triangle-boxes with ... nothing in it. Would it be possible/reasonable to delete em entirely or to move the E-hardpoints into them for a high-peek-profile?

Edited by AnAnachronismAlive, 21 December 2021 - 12:50 AM.


#35 Skydrive

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Posted 21 December 2021 - 12:24 PM

Is there any chances of new bolt-ons being introduced that are similar to the exclusives for those that pre-ordered the packs? I ask as, my favourite bolt-ons from these packs have to be the ones that came with the Warden pack, I just find them hilarious, but disappointed that they can only be applied to the Special versions of the Timberwolf BH and Dire Wolf C, and not even the non special version of them.

#36 PraetorGix

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Posted 21 December 2021 - 04:09 PM

Mark I remember you mentioning on the Warden pack post that you wanted to do some cleaning of the Timby's hardpoint locations but you ended up without time to do that.
Obviously, you're now busy but do you still have at least plans for squeezing some fixes for the Timby in the near future?

#37 Pariah Devalis

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Posted 21 December 2021 - 04:13 PM

View PostMark Nicholson, on 17 December 2021 - 05:31 PM, said:

Posted Image



If you opt not to install the ballistics, do any of the energy mounts migrate to the intake? Also, seeing that the shadow cat arm laser placement issue is finally being resolved fills me with unfathomable joy. That arm situation has irritated me since day one, and was even something I submitted as a bug way back when because it didn't seem like it was working as intended. XD


Here's hoping, one day, we get the India variant. That way we can have matching 2E arms. Posted Image I've always loved the SHC, but felt the mech was hindered way more by extremely limited hardpoint placement options than by its tonnage and hardwired equipment. Seeing more options make it into circulation for it, even if it is a hero mech, makes me very happy!

That sweet hero paint job only makes it better.

Edited by Pariah Devalis, 21 December 2021 - 04:14 PM.


#38 Mark Nicholson

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Posted 21 December 2021 - 07:54 PM

View PostAnAnachronismAlive, on 21 December 2021 - 12:39 AM, said:


Thanks for the feedback, good sir. Certainly hard to receive those temporary community-punches (me included) while being the only available artist atm. But while talking about crimes: may we ask for some hardpoint-review/allocation on the Paralyzer-Hero should your time allow for it anywhere in the future?

It has these high mounted shoulder-racked triangle-boxes with ... nothing in it. Would it be possible/reasonable to delete em entirely or to move the E-hardpoints into them for a high-peek-profile?

View PostPraetorGix, on 21 December 2021 - 04:09 PM, said:

Mark I remember you mentioning on the Warden pack post that you wanted to do some cleaning of the Timby's hardpoint locations but you ended up without time to do that.
Obviously, you're now busy but do you still have at least plans for squeezing some fixes for the Timby in the near future?


It's difficult to make these kinds of changes unless I'm already working on the 'Mech. Even then there needs to be time. I'd like to get back to the Timberwolf, but I'm not holding my breath. I know that for the Hellspawn it was balanced around having the shoulder pods stay. I agree it's kinda silly looking though, but then, so is the Hellspawn.

View PostSkydrive, on 21 December 2021 - 12:24 PM, said:

Is there any chances of new bolt-ons being introduced that are similar to the exclusives for those that pre-ordered the packs? I ask as, my favourite bolt-ons from these packs have to be the ones that came with the Warden pack, I just find them hilarious, but disappointed that they can only be applied to the Special versions of the Timberwolf BH and Dire Wolf C, and not even the non special version of them.


In general, the idea is that they are pre-order exclusives. However I can say that we noticed the keen interest in the Elementals, and our plan for them was always to do more than what we have done so far with them.

View PostPariah Devalis, on 21 December 2021 - 04:13 PM, said:

If you opt not to install the ballistics, do any of the energy mounts migrate to the intake? Also, seeing that the shadow cat arm laser placement issue is finally being resolved fills me with unfathomable joy. That arm situation has irritated me since day one, and was even something I submitted as a bug way back when because it didn't seem like it was working as intended. XD


Mount space always has been, and always will be exclusive (to do otherwise would be to starting making LITERALLY THOUSANDS of new weapons). If there's a ballistic weapon there, nothing else gets to be there, ever. The 2 energy slots remain up top, and the 2 ballistic slots remain in the vent.

How much more do you think the arm situation irritated me? I've had the ability to fix it (along with so many other minor issues), and just never have the time.

I should add that I'm not wholly responsible for all the cool art here, and need to mention both Matt Neuman, and Alex Iglesias have been contributing. It's usually the 3 of us, and sometimes Daeron coming up with ideas for skins and bolt-ons. Alex has been doing great work turning these ideas into concept art, and being patient with how many times I ask for revisions.

Anyway, you're all here to look at cool 'Mech stuff, so have some more. The bolt-on system is a bit restrictive, so I've sometimes had to resort to interesting ways to get them all to work. In this case, the vents near the cockpit, and the middle wing are a single unit, on the back slot. This means you could choose to have only the left and right portions of the back wing, or just the middle.

Posted Image

#39 Navid A1

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Posted 22 December 2021 - 08:05 AM

Posted Image

#40 1453 R

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Posted 22 December 2021 - 09:30 AM

Gotta admit - that is one sleek-lookin' Shadow Cat. Mmm...heckin' pretty.





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