I’m pleased to report that, if anecdotal evidence from my colleagues is any indication, playing Hawken has been a rewarding experience for quite some time. Our mad post-Xbox culture dictates it must also be meta-rewarding, however, and since last week’s Technician Update it’s been just that.
Service Awards are medals abstractly pinned to players for achievements ranging from killing a mech dead (Terminator 1), to killing 1,000 mechs dead (Terminator 5).
Last week’s patch saw the introduction of 300 awards to the game. You’ll know them by the song and dance they make in the corner of your screen when triggered, and can view them through your in-game callsign by selecting the Service Awards tab.
Under the tab, Service Awards can be sorted by category, and filtered to reveal incomplete requirements. Here you’ll also be able to track your progress toward some of the more demanding achievements - developers Adhesive Games cite Demolition 5, which asks for five million points of damage to be dealt to enemy mechs, as an example of a slow-burn Award.
Each achievement belongs to one of the following sub-categories:
- General: Damage/Repair, Eliminations, Kill Streaks, Mobility, Play Time, Misc
- Game Modes: Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Missile Assault, Siege
- Mech Specific: Type-A Light, Type-B Medium, Type-C Heavy
- Maps: Bazaar, Facility, Front Line, Origin, Prosk, Uptown
While most Awards presumably pay off in bragging rights - yet to be accepted in any Bureau de Change I’ve visited - some will deliver Hawken Credits to your account for use in the in-game store. Here are a few examples:
- Thank You for Flying 1: Eliminate an enemy mech while it's in the air (25 AP, 100 HC)
- I've Made a Huge Mistake: Deal over 10,000 damage to yourself with your own explosive weapons (25 AP, 250 HC)
- Neo: Quick Dodge 1,000 times (10 AP, 150 HC)
- You're My Only Hope: Drop a holo-taunt (10 AP, 50 HC)
- You Sunk My Battleship: Land the killing blow on the enemy battleship with your weapons (50 AP, 100 HC)
“There's even a Service Award that rewards players with [usually real-cash only] Meteor Credits, but we won't tell you how to get that one,” tease Adhesive Games. “You'll just have to play for an hour or two and see if you can figure out how to unlock it yourself!”
What do you think of the new system? More opportunities to stave off the ‘pay’ part of free-to-play are always welcome, aren’t they?