Small failures in excellent mech game BattleTech can easily snowball and wreck your whole campaign, but you might not realise until hours later. On my first run as the leader of a freelance crew, I dug myself into a hole around ten hours in: I was low on cash, my mechs were battered, and my pilots were on bed rest. I tried to find a solution, but the only way I could fix such a dire situation was to jump back a full three hours to replay a mission that had started me down the path to my woes. I didn’t fancy it, and so I booted up a new game instead.
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While I did learn a lot from that run it still felt like time wasted (maybe I could have kick started it by reading Jules's BattleTech tips). That’s probably why I’ve been loving a mod that reduces the length of campaigns in BattleTech to eight hours. It’s called FTL Prototype, and it basically transforms BattleTech into space roguelike FTL, or as close as it’s going to get to it. Every time you start a new campaign you generate a randomised star map, and you only have 120 days of in-game time to build up your fleet and prepare for the final mission.
It’s like playing the base game on fast forward. You can build up your squad quicker because you need less salvage to build new mechs, you’re more likely to find rare loot at the end of missions, and you can hire pilots with more skill than usual. You also start with the Argo, a ship that you usually only find after a few hours into the main campaign.