Heavy Gear is a series of miniatures wargames, pen&paper RPGs, card games, and a video game. Dream Pod 9 published the first Heavy Gear product in 1994 and since then millions of words have been published in over a hundred books. As of 2012 the product lines focus on miniatures wargames and the RPG line. The series is characterized by it's namesake fighting machines, called gears, piloted mecha.
The Heavy Gear universe is a science fiction setting that takes place mostly on the extraterrestrial colony of Terra Nova 4000 years in the future. The colonists of Terra Nova were cut of from Earth and the other colonies for many years but did develop a unique civilization. Terra Nova's history has been one plagued by warfare and dominated by the Northern and Southern superpowers. Recently the forces of Earth's Colonial Expeditionary Force have rediscovered Terra Nova and attempted an unsuccessful invasion. The minor Terra Nova powers of Peace River and NuCoal have become a factor as have the Black Talons, an elite force of Terra Novans who have taken the fight off-world to other Earth colonies.
Heavy Gear has existed in one form or another for 18 years (as of 2012) and has gone through a number of changes. 1:144 scale miniatures (originally RAFM 1:87 scale) are a major feature of the product lines. Heavy Gear Tactical was the first dedicated set of Miniatures-only wargame rules for the family and was often described as being more realistic than it's competitors such as Warhammer. The current minatures ruleset is Heavy Gear Blitz Locked & Loaded and has been streamlined and revised for a faster-playing but detailed tactical wargame.