In 2001, Dream Pod 9 partnered with Sony Pictures Family Entertainment and Mainframe Entertainment to create the Heavy Gear animated series.

The Heavy Gear: the Animated Series followed the adventures of Marcus Steven Rover, a young Gear pilot just recruited into the Shadow Dragons, a special independent dueling squad of the Southern MILICIA. His team is pitted against the Vanguards of Justice, their counterparts from the Northern Guard. Both squads meet in a series of events and battles in the arena desert town of Trash City to determine who will take home the coveted Heavy Gear Championship cup and its associated glory. Major Alexander Wallis III, the leader of the Vanguards, will let his team do anything to secure a victory against the ragtag team of Southerners.

Characters:

"Boom Boom" Von Maddox was a fight promoter nearly financially ruined by the Interpolar War. After the war ended, he offered his creditors a deal: if they would erase his standing debts and provide him with additional contacts and financing, he would cut them in on his new dueling league, the Heavy Gear Championship Tournament (HGCT). He already had the fighters, most of the Gears and all the electronic equipment he needed - with their backing, he could make it one of the biggest media events ever seen on the planet!
The group, now known as the Heavy Gear Council, accepted Maddox's proposal and secured the rights to several abandoned arenas in the Badlands. Contracts were signed, duelists recruited and trained, and soon the show was a breakaway hit! Terranovan viewers tuned in every week to follow the latest intrigues between the conniving, scheming pilots and their managers. Maddox himself appears in the show as the main promoter, blurring the line between fiction and reality even further!

The Shadow Dragons

The Shadow Dragons were the heroes of the series.
MARCUS STEVEN ROVER is a twenty-cycle-old boy who has always wanted to be an Ace Gear pilot. His life takes a dramatic turn when he steps into a tournament event to help out his hero, the leader of the Shadow Dragons. When Marcus is recruited as a rookie pilot for the team, he finds that he has a lot of growing up to do. The charismatic teen soon begins to mature, bonding with his new friends and proving his courage both on and off the arena field. Marcus has an unconventional, grassroots approach to life, and it is reflected in his rebellious attitude and unorthodox fighting style.
 
DIRX is a muscle-bound, loudmouthed Gear pilot: he is big, brash and boisterous. He loves one-on-one matches, and the word "defeat" is not part of his vocabulary. Dirx sees dark humor in everything, and he uses that to hide his negative emotions like fear or pain. He loves to poke fun at anyone he considers to be arrogant or stuck-up.
ZERVE is laid-back and considered 'odd' by almost everyone. He takes everything in stride, only occasionally "stressing out." He is also a practical joker who loves to play pranks on his squadmates. Zerve likes Marcus, especially the kid's seat-of-the-pants style. Being off-center himself, he likes anyone who marches to the beat of a different drummer.
SONJA BRIGGS has won more awards for racing than any man or woman on Terra Nova. Even out of her Gear, she is fast on her feet. Though roughly the same age as her squadmates, Sonja is extremely mature and levelheaded. She is also a jock at heart: a superb athlete and an avid extreme sports enthusiast, she loves a good challenge.
 
KUSUNOKI TACHI is a serious duelist. In addition to its ranged weapons, his Gear carries a samurai-like vibrokatana that can cut through durasheet armor. Tachi is relentless, often seeming superhuman as he dodges past incoming rounds. Deep underneath his tough exterior, however, Tachi is a gentle soul with a sense of humor.
 
GREL SOLDIER SEBASTIAN is a genetically enhanced supersoldier left behind by retreating CEF troops. Unlike others of his kind, however, Sebastian has a high intelligence and unusual independence. He works hard to overcome his hypno-training and genetic programming. Sebastian has strong ties to his squadmates.
 

The Vanguards of Justice

The Vanguards of Justice were the villians of the series.
MAJOR DRAKE ALEXANDER WALLIS III was educated in the finest military schools the North had to offer. Wallis firmly believes in the Duelist's Proviso, the legendary code of honor - until he meets his nemesis, Marcus Rover. From then on, Wallis' own code becomes twisted and largely subordinate to his desire to win back his HGCT Champion status at any cost.
YOJI KIRAKOWA is a former street brat and gang member. Now she is a master saboteur, using disguises and other methods of subterfuge to gather information and set booby traps. An expert hacker, Yoji also enjoys cyber-sabotage. When Yoji is in the midst of battle, she turns into a "dirty fighter," giving free reign to her explosive, fiery personality.
RANK is the ultimate tournament duelist - he literally lives to fight, especially when the odds are against him. Loud and boisterous, he loves to play up to the crowd, taunting opponents any chance he can get. This is a guy with a very short fuse, and he has a long history of getting into trouble because of his temper.
SERGE GARPENLOV is a man of many trades. Older than his squadmates, Serge is someone who's seen it all. He is an expert marksman and knows all the ins and outs of sabotage. Serge judges a situation quickly, devises a plan of action and sticks to it. When he moves in for the kill, he strikes first, fast and hard.
GUNTHER GROONZ is the perfect squadmate - he is completely loyal to his squad and to his adored commanding officer, Major Wallis. He will risk his life hoping to gain the respect and appreciation of his superiors. He especially loves to design and detonate explosive devices; he is so personally "attached" to his bombs, he actually names them!