In the same year as EarthSiege, Dynamix released this little-known title. Situating itself somewhere between an addon and a standalone game, Battledrome removes the career modes and strategic elements of the previous game to focus on multi-player and the recent upsurge in popularity of this new-fangled technology known as The Internet. What we have, ladies and gentlemen is an early online battle arena.
Okay, so it's not the first of its type nor is it the best, but it is important in the history of online gaming. Even though LAN / Moden modes are two-player only experiences due to the limited technology of the time, they were highly entertaining for the time. It performed quite well with a modest connection too and ultimately became the precursor to Activision's NetMech which was created for Mechwarrior 2. I won't quite replace the visceral online action of its contemporaries like Doom or Wing Commander: Armada but it definitely has its own style and rhythm.
There is a single-player option to keep the friendless busy, although this may be the only option after over 20 years of existence. In this mode, without the limited network constraints, the arena can consist of more than just two HERCs. This is the only mode that can be played unless you have like-minded friends with the know-how to host it.
The complex controls that seem to come with every mid-nineties mech title returns and proves to be counter-intuitive to the twitch-based gameplay that this genre demands. It may have been one of the first, and there's definitely some enjoyment to be had, but other games did it better.
To download the game, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses DOSBox to bring the game to modern systems. Manual and Reference Card included. Tested on Windows Windows 10.
File Size: 98 Mb. Install Size: 158 Mb. Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ
Metaltech: Battledrome is © Dynamix / Sierra On-Line
Review, Cover Design and Installer created by me