Adhesive Games would like players to know that there's more than one mech-based shooter in town. The free-to-play Hawken has made its transition to Steam Early Access and current users have been sent Steam keys to make the transition easier. If you don't currently have a Hawken account and want to join the beta, then the game might not be so much free-to-play for you.
Hawken's Steam Transition Guide explains that new players will only be able to join the Hawken beta with purchase of a Nemesis bundle. The bundle comes with nine mechs with their weapons unlcoked, a Bloody Hawken Pilot Emblem, and the Spooky Ghost Repair Drone (RD-B00) for $29.99. Newcomers that attempt to enlist through the Hawken website will be required to punch in their Nemesis bundle Steam key.
"During the first phase of Early Access, new pilots will be required to purchase a bundle in order to play," explains Meteor Entertainment community manager Micah Monfrini in the initial announcement. "We felt this was necessary to help control our server load and offer the very best experience possible to all players. Once a bundle is purchased you'll be provided a code to assist with creating your pilot account on our website. Please note that a pilot account is required to play Hawken."
The paid barrier of entry isn't meant to be permanent, however. The Hawken Steam FAQ explains that this will only run through the Early Access period. Once the game exits Early Access, the Steam listing will be updated as a "Free-to-Play" title.
Check out Hawken's Steam launch trailer below. The full version of Hawken is expected to arrive later this year.