Mechwarriors of MWO

Like all competitive games, in MWO, there are different type of player groups with different mindsets. What I started as a serious article about the unending "meta vs others" wars, took an unexpected turn to be a semi-serious profiling of Mechwarriors out there in your average match. Enjoy!


"Mmmm the conditions are perfect"

Some just play casually on and off, using builds they found themselves without too much thought into them. They're the players who didn't improve much either because of lack of time or interest, but somehow made it past the initial 25 matches. "Casuals" seems to be the right word for them. They don't care if they win or not, if their mech is optimized or not, they just do it for the 2-3 rounds of mech porn they get. They are the tasty fillers of PUGs.

How to recognize them: That occasional founder Atlas with 200 damage.


Didn't want to win that round anyway

Some, let's call them "competitive", they just want to win no matter what. They play MWO regularly and have a good understanding of underlying mechanics. They usually belong to a unit and prefer dropping with 4-mans to maximize their chance of winning. These units theorycraft after every weapon balance shift and come up with an "optimized build" which ensure advantage over any other weapon/mech combination in pretty much every situation. They play with these builds en-masse to ensure a W/L ratio in two digits. They "train" in PUGs on these same builds for months, boosting their Elo to highest levels possible. So much that the matchmaker struggles to find comparable opponents for them, leading to long stares at the "Searching" animation. Accustomed to the standards of 12 mans, they consider every non-meta peasant mech a liability to their team, that has to be "carried".

How to recognize them: Sometimes at the sight of 4 assault mechs all lifting off with their jumpjets in perfect synchronization when they see you. Sometimes the scoreboard showing 4-0 at the second minute mark. Sometimes right at the beginning when the chat gets spammed by their chest beatings.

Tough guys

"L2P nerd!"

Some, no offense but I like to call them "tryhards", are those casuals who have a competitive mindset, but not yet the experience and understanding of the game mechanics yet. They know the "best" builds but not why they're the best. It's not certain if they have what it takes to make it into the competitive bracket, but they are on the way. They're those AC40/Gauss Jagers that are easily taken out,PPC Ravens chewing at your leg, or that poptart who is awkward to spectate. Still, by using these builds they enjoy instant gratification once in a while and enjoy a better success rate than casuals.

How to recognize them: That 2xPPC Kintaro confidently charging your team. That LRM Boat Atlas calling his team noobs. That Jagerbomb with 4 kills but with armlock and throttle decay still on.


"Can you imagine what 6 MG spider could do to an Atlas?"

There is a different breed that forks from casuals, a much rarer but interesting sight. These guys have the same understanding of game mechanics and roughly the same skill level of the competitive players. The difference? It's the mindset. They're in this for the customization, variety and the sheer challenge of "making it work". They're those idealist types who believe every type of weapon and mechs should be valid in different conditions and spend most of their time trying to find the optimal playstyle for a mech. They hate the static nature of meta builds and if possible, like to keep their mechs as close to their intended role as possible like the true Mechwarriors they are. "Masochists" is the fitting term for them. Masochists are also the essential fuel of the flaming beast that is called the "Gameplay Balance" section of the forums.

How to recognize them: That flying crazy Trebuchet topping your team in damage/kills. With ML's and SRM's of course.

The Champions


Lastly comes the type of player who strike terror into your heart or fill it with joy, depending on which side they're on. They're the guys who make you feel guilty after an easy kill. Yes, you know it, they're those who are usually called "trials". No matter what Elo range you're in, there's no escape from these guys. Overloaded by sheer information needed to play this game, confused by the lack of tutorials, gimped by the very settings which are supposed to help them, screwed by the matchmaker who put them against seasoned players, they're the most unfortunate souls playing this game. They don't have a specific mindset, rather than trying to understand what the **** is going on.

How to recognize them: The dreaded (C).

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About Rak

I'm an engineer who likes to write extremely long articles about games that border simulation and mainstream.
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