It's a long time since the first sighting of a Personal Armor Unit on Tabula Rasa - and that one was disassembled.

Now, on TR's public test server, the first prototype mech has been unveiled that players can test-drive. board poster RWScissors has bagged a couple of screenshots of the stompy vehicle in action.

The original plan for PAUs called for one specific type per tier-4 class. It's not yet clear whether the developers have stuck to this plan or revised it, though the hint given by new lead designer Susan Kath of 'a cool new system to allow you to customize your mechs through a type of alternative advancement' may suggest the latter. The possibilities have Tabula Rasa players very excited, if unsure about the exact role the mech is meant to play.

For the immediate future, the best source for definitive information on the PAUs must surely be Dev_Ridout, who's going to be doing a podcast with PlanetTR any day now. More PlayStation 3 News...