is a science fiction universe akin to Star Trek or Star Wars. It began
with a board game/wargame, designed by FASA in 1984. The game simulates
warfare in the distant future of the 31st century, where humans battle
in gigantic walking machines (known as BattleMechs) powered by fusion
reactors, tanks, spaceships and aircraft, wielding weapons such as lasers,
particle projection cannons, Gauss rifles, autocannons, and missiles.
As the game and related stories are centered around the BattleMechs and
warfare, it can be considered a type of a military space opera. BattleTech
was originally released under the name BattleDroids, but was renamed with
the release of the second edition due to George Lucas and Lucasfilm Ltd.
holding a trademark on the term droid. BattleTech has won three Origins
Awards and its various spinoffs and expansions several more. The designs
of the original 'Mechs were transplanted from Macross and other anime,
but due to legal issues those images are no longer used.
An estimated twenty-five million people have played a BattleTech or MechWarrior
game or read a BattleTech or MechWarrior novel, and at least ten million
people have played the BattleTech computer games. More than eleven million
copies of MechWarrior PC games and a similar number of MechWarrior: Dark
Age Collectable Miniatures Game figures have been sold to date. Over three
hundred and fifty different BattleTech/MechWarrior game and toy products
have been produced to date; several products, such as the Technical Readout
series, the core rulebook and base box set, have been in continuous print
(in one form or another) since publication. More than five thousand World
Wide Web pages have been created to date by the online BattleTech community..