Battletech

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Mafty
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Battletech

Post by Mafty » Wed Feb 17, 2021 7:03 pm

Look I know the Battletech/Mechwarrior franchise is caught up in the whole Harmony Gold/Macross mess. But where did the original concept for the series come from? Mecha Anime wasn't really imported into North America at the time (this predates Robotechs release), so did they come up with the idea and then license the designs?

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Seto Kaiba
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Re: Battletech

Post by Seto Kaiba » Wed Feb 17, 2021 8:55 pm

Mafty wrote:
Wed Feb 17, 2021 7:03 pm
Look I know the Battletech/Mechwarrior franchise is caught up in the whole Harmony Gold/Macross mess. But where did the original concept for the series come from? Mecha Anime wasn't really imported into North America at the time (this predates Robotechs release), so did they come up with the idea and then license the designs?
It's inextricably linked to the blatant copyright infringement that's gotten them sued a bunch of times, so somewhat understandably they don't seem to talk about it much.

Jordan Weisman's account attributed the inspiration for the game to discovering a bunch of Macross model kits at the 1984 Hobby Industry Association trade show in Anaheim. From his description, they were probably mainly the Nichimo 1/200 scale kits. They cut a deal with the importer to acquire a bunch of the kits right away, and began to develop a game based around them with a goal of having it ready to ship by that Christmas.

Said importer was presumably Twentieth Century Imports, the firm that Weisman would later cite as the source of a license agreement FASA claimed to have struck (but could never produce in court) to acquire permission to use that selection of kits and their box art in their game. They put out the first edition near year-end, promptly faced their first threat of litigation from LucasFilm over the use of the trademarked term "Droid", and changed the name of the game to "BattleTech". The rest... is courtroom comedy.
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