Back in 2011, a mech combat game was announced that blew the internet’s socks clean off. With a Maschinen Krieger-inspired aesthetic and fast-paced, stomping robot action, Hawken looked like one of the coolest video games the world had ever seen.
That launch week would prove to be the high water mark for the game; while it would eventually be released as a free-to-play multiplayer shooter and got some live-action adaptation attention, the game itself wasn’t as interesting as its aesthetic, and in 2018 its servers were closed down.
But, man, it looked so good, and a lot of people remember and love it for that, so it’s perhaps not a huge surprise that 505 Games have decided to bring the franchise back, announcing Hawken Reborn earlier today:
“Bring it back” might be a little unfair here: this isn’t a rehash of the original but an all-new game, ditching the player-vs-player combat of Hawken for a singleplayer PvE game that will have missions and a “narrative”. Which will be a lovely surprise not just for fans who were into Hawken’s universe more than its actual gameplay, but also for anyone who is into Titanfall and is at peace with the fact we’re probably never getting another Titanfall.
Perhaps the only downside in all this is that, in coming back, the edges seem to have been sanded off the game’s aesthetic, with Hawken Reborn’s mech and world designs lacking the original’s bristling homage to Kow Yokoyama’s Maschinen Krieger.
Hawken Reborn is already up on Steam, with an Early Access release planned for May 17. “Play a part in the next chapter of mech warfare in the Hawken Universe with six opening missions to complete in this initial Arc”, the game’s description reads. “Venture out in your mech and fight alongside new characters to discover all new storylines hidden deep in Illal that will continue to evolve in the future.”