Once most Exteel players complete the full range of tutorials and finish a few matches they should have enough in-game money (credits) to purchase a new Mechanaught, or at least purchase some new Mechanaught parts. One of the Mechanaught sets that will be immediately available for purchase is the Mekhi, a light Mechanaught design that is nearly superior in every fashion to the standard Pinkett Mechanaught that everyone receives when they first start playing.
Like the Pinkett, the Mekhi is a fast, nimble Mechanaught. It’s very maneuverable, much lighter, dissipates heat faster, and is much more accurate. In addition, the Mekhi head features two MPUs (Mechanaught Processing Units) instead of just one for the Pinkett. MPUs dictate how many special skills—which are purchasable in the game store—you can equip your Mechanaught. While the Mekhi doesn’t absorb nearly as much damage as a standard Pinkett, the Mekhi is clearly the better overall light Mechanaught and many veteran pilots favor it for reconnaissance and flag-capturing aspects. Pilots upgrading from a Pinkett should take note however that the Mekhi does have a durability rating, meaning it’ll degrade over time until it is either unusable or gets repaired.
- Spatter Gun – The Spatter Gun is one of the first types of shotgun weapons purchasable for starting players. The –C model costs only 4,000 credits and can be quite useful in dispatching nearby enemies. Exteel’s shotguns are similar to traditional shotguns; they fire giant rounds of ammunition that will cause decent amounts of damage against an opponent at close range. The weapon is very accurate (much more than SMGs or even some rifles) but can have a long reload time.
- Crimson Edge – A basic melee weapon, the Crimson Edge resembles a large one-handed longsword from eras long past. This sword, however, can penetrate even the thick armor plates and complex mechanisms of even a robotic Mechanaught. Typically, most pilots prefer using the sword with one hand and a shield in the other for protection, though some may wield two swords. Of course, the Crimson Edge can only be effective adjacent to an opponent (and, if you’re really close, you can hit more than one opponent at once). While ranged weapons are the preferred weapon of choice in Exteel, many pilots never leave their base without a melee weapon of some kind for close-range fighting.
- Destroyer – The Destroyer-C is a base model cannon that is a slight upgrade from the Poseidon-C, awarded to players for finishing the “Cannon Training” advanced tutorial. Cannons are massive two-handed weapons with tremendous range and damage capabilities, though their reloading and heat ratings are also extremely high. However, keeping a lock an opponent can be tricky… though once the enemy gets hit they’ll definitely feel it as cannons not only deal large amounts of damage, they also “stun” a Mechanaught for a brief second.
- Penetrator – Another melee weapon that harkens back to ancient times, the Penetrator resembles a great cavalry lance. Instead of swinging at an opponent like a sword, the Penetrator stabs with a great power-assisted thrust. While the Penetrator does more damage than the comparable Crimson Edge, it also generates more heat and therefore may overheat faster.
Battle Modes: Territory Control and Capture the Flag
Territory Control and Capture the Flag offer some of the most competitive modes of play Exteel has to offer. Territory Control involves two teams of players who battle over zones that can be captured—called Aerogates—that are spread out between the either team’s base (technically speaking the base is also an Aerogate). Aerogates are useful because Mechanaughts can spawn from them, and they control the nearby healing pads that let Mechanaughts regain some of their lost hit points.
A team can win Territory Control by one of two ways: accumulate more points than the other team (for Territory Control Exteel awards points for killing opponents, assisting in killing other opponents, and capturing Aerogates) or capturing the other team’s base. Of course, battles can be a bit of a trade-off; teams struggle for control over the middle-ground Aerogates as that’s where most of the players funnel. Control of these Aerogates also lets players spawn closer to the enemy base, which can be extremely useful. Though sometimes enemy bases can be captured by stealthy tactics (especially when the enemy is occupied elsewhere), usually the enemy team has to be overwhelmed by waves of Mechanaughts before the base can be captured by force.
Capture the Flag is a brand new battle mode we’ve introduced into Exteel within the last month. We started with two maps for CTF and we will be adding more as we go. While the maps are set up similarly, with home bases and scattered Aerogates throughout, the main purpose is to capture the enemy’s flag and return it to your home base. The team with the most flag captures wins the match (though draws, which are rare in the other battle modes, are comparatively common in Capture the Flag matches).
While battles for the middle-ground Aerogates still dominate portions of most matches (though players cannon capture bases in Capture the Flag), a wide variety of interesting and unique strategies have quickly developed regarding flag capturing. Players have purchased and built up Mechanaughts solely for speed, able to quickly grab a flag and run before the enemy can react. They equip themselves with dual shields to help defend from enemy fire. Some teammates serve as roving healers, while others utilize huge, bulky Mechanaughts armed with deadly cannons for base defense. Strategies are still emerging and balance is definitely an issue we’re keeping a close eye on. We want to see how we can further fine-tune the process for Capture the Flag and other battle modes we may introduce in the future.