I'm just going to gush a little.
Like a good number of players who have hopped onto MAV, I was an avid Chromehounds player back in the day, playing up until the moment the servers died. I've spent the years since then looking for another Chromehounds-like game; it captured a certain beauty in cooperative team play and customization that I haven't seen in any other game since. It was astounding to see that such an amazing gem of a game was being lost to time, with no new titles hoping to revive its unique play.
In looking for a new Chromehounds, I stumbled onto MAV a couple of years ago, when it was in very early stages. I remembered the name and checked back every so often to see how progress was going. After several months of forgetting, I came back recently, and was truly impressed with the progress so far; finally happy with the project, I decided to buy a copy.
It was a great decision.
MAV looks and plays like it was designed by somebody who loved Chromehounds and is serious about creating a game that embodies what made it great. Customization is true to the original game, giving the player a handful of parts and full control over how to build them. Moving across the battlefield, controlling the cameras, manuevering the mech, lobbing artillery and missiles; it all feels like playing Chromehounds again.
Alongside the clear dedication to reviving Chromehounds-style play, Bombdog Studios has provided some much-needed updated to the game design. Damaged parts no longer become shortcuts to cockpit damage; they are blown off the mech completely. Removing the (usually heavily armored) legs now completely destroys the mech instead of leaving them sitting and hoping an enemy comes by. Repair and reload stations have been added, where a player can restore a partially damaged mech after a tough fight - if they can get away from battle long enough to do it! New equippable modules add another layer of strategy, with players able to deploy walls, repairs, and communication devices on the field.
As it stands, the game is short a progression system; all parts will be unlocked on purchase. This will be streamlined when money and shops are added, providing players with decent progression and a slow introduction to the different parts to get used to them. Certain concerns that were big with Chromehounds, like balancing the cost of a mech's repairs and ammo against the amount that can be won from the enemy, don't exist just yet. That being said, it's very clear that the developers have other great ideas that are being implemented as the game develops, serving not only to shadow Chromehounds, but to use it as a stepping stone to create a better game.
I am eager and excited to see what comes next. Thank you so much, Bombdog Studios, for ressurecting my favorite game with a passion and reintroducing me to a world I thought I would never see realized again.