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The following is a 'current' quick and dirty guide to troubleshooting loading issues:

Game seems to enter an endless loading loop

Likely you've put a .json in the manifest that you've named wrong, check and you can also check the log in the battletech_data/ folder and hunt through it for a file does not exist error they look like this:

FileNotFoundException: File doesn't exist: D:/Steam/steamapps/common/BattleTech - Private beta/BattleTech_Data/StreamingAssets\data/pilot/pilot_kell.json
at HBS.Data.DataLoader.GetEntry (System.String path, Boolean createIfNecessary) [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at HBS.Data.DataLoader.LoadResource (System.String path, System.Action`2 handler, Boolean monitor) [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at HBS.Data.DataLoader.LoadResource (System.String path, System.Action`1 handler, Boolean monitor) [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at HBS.Data.DataLoader.LoadResource (System.String path, System.Action`1 handler) [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at BattleTech.Data.DataManager+PilotDefLoadRequest.Load () [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at BattleTech.Data.DataManager.ProcessRequests () [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at BattleTech.UI.SkirmishSettings_Beta.LoadLanceConfiguratorData () [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at BattleTech.UI.SkirmishSettings_Beta.<OnAddedToHierarchy>m__0 () [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at BattleTech.UI.LoadingCurtain+<DelayExecuteVisibilityAction>c__Iterator0.MoveNext () [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
at UnityEngine.SetupCoroutine.InvokeMoveNext (IEnumerator enumerator, IntPtr returnValueAddress) [0x00000] in <filename unknown>:0
(Filename: Line: -1)

Find the entry and fix it and things should work again.

Another reason may be after a mech inventory edit. The Weapon listed in mechdef_{MechName}_{Variant}.json has to match the hardpoint type listed in chassisdef_{MechName}_{Variant}.json

If the game loads to a black screen with FPS counter

Make certain you don't have the manifest open in Excel or anything that 'locks' the file from data access by another process.

My Lance is not showing up!

Is the value of the mechs below the actual values in the skirmish mode? the game adds up the MECH's price individually.