Here it is! The game that could possibly bring Xbox One back into contention with the PS4 for sales and also perhaps change up what has become a somewhat stagnant FPS genre.
So what are we liking about Titanfall? Well firstly Mechs, 3 of them to be precise with many customisation options for how they can be used (although many would say this is not enough) and a dynamic system that mixes Pilot combat (when outside of your Mech) and Titan combat (inside of your Mech).
The way that this game has managed to balance the fast paced Pilot combat with the big blasting Titan combat is very impressive! A good player can take down a Titan in one on one combat as well as getting crushed underfoot (or blasted to bits with one good shot) and this is where Titanfall really has got things right.
What they have also included is basic level AI which serve as cannonfodder and a way to see how the flow of the battle is moving. Yes, many people say that they would prefer just PVP. However, I am a fan of how “Grunts & Spectres” move around the map giving ample opportunity to shoot or even sneak behind and snap a little bit of neck! By killing opponents your Titan is effectively built faster and once this is achieved, can be summoned from the sky by activating Titanfall (ahhh man they used the name of the game for what happens! That’s so cool).
The player then has the option of either jumping inside of this giant Mech to start causing mayhem, or use them more defensively as a guard or a follower much like a big brother looming over the shoulder of a 14yr old ready to pound the face of any would-be bully.
The Burn card system has been implemented as a new type of perk system where by playing the game you will collect useable cards to be used in later fights. These vary from the useless and stupid, to upgraded versions of weapons all the way to calling a Titan instantly in or giving double xp. I like the system I would not call it perfect however I definately like it and find myself saving certain cards for when I know I can get the most out of them.
Quick action is the name of this game. Jumping in from a drop ship players run towards the other team opting to attack AI opponents, reducing build time towards the all important Titanfall and you getting into your giant robot of death. There are of course various play modes available for you to decide on how you want to bring carnage to the battlefield.
Personally I find myself playing a mix between Attrition (which is your classic death match), Last Titan Standing (which is a team based battle between 6 Titans and the last man standing wins) and Capture The Flag. The parkour elements of the game really gives this last mode a bit more of a twist on the classic type of game play and can make for some crazy matches!This is not saying that the other modes are bad, just that I have found my time split mainly between these modes. Out of all of them, I must say I have fallen in love with Last Titan Standing.
The bad bits???
While the gameplay is brilliant, it does feel rushed as there is certainly a lack of dynamic game modes and no private servers! Customisation although there is a little bit is limited and we are yet to know if the season pass which they have kindly charged us 20 bucks for will have anymore weapons or content or just more maps!
AND THE MAPS! The maps do well mixing up terrain and areas so that there are places to move out of sight and mix the Titan VS Pilot game up. I was however hoping for a little more out of a next generation title. One level has Dragons (or Alien creatures that look like Dragons)that you are told to watch out for but all they really do is randomly gobble up an AI unit not really affecting the player in anyway.
Also this is next generation! Now completely destructable maps would ruin the gameplay (as all you would do is level the field and just Titan up), but I would love to see some elements in the map that change as the battle progresses. I guess we will just have to wait till later instalments to see if we receive such wonders!
The Game doesn’t look amazing at certain times on Xbox One where there is a definite wobble on the screen, but this is mainly at the beginning drop screen and doesn’t really affect when actually in the game play itself. I cannot speak for PC gamers, but it does look pretty nice on the screen shots that I have seen.
The campaign is a joke! You are forced to do it to unlock two extra Titans and regardless if you win or lose on a map you still go through to the next mission. Overall, each factions campaign can easily be done in less than 2 hours! The story line itself is weak and you have no real interest in what is going on in it as you are trying to concentrate on the gameplay itself rather than the silly voice overs, cinematics and people giving up their lives for the sake of doing the right thing (this isn’t even really a spoiler as you will care as little about the story line as I did).
IS TITANFALL THE ULTIMATE FPS?
The simple answer to this is no. While it does bring something totally new to the table, there are big parts missing. No doubt this game has done well and Xbox must be happy with the 96% uplift in console sales due to this game, but after a recent announcement Titanfall 2 will be cross platform and I am sure a lot of the things you could do to add to this entertaining game will be saved for the second installment.
If you had to describe Titanfall in one word, it would have to be fun! This genre has become quite stale over the years and Titanfall brings new ideas and mechanics to the FPS genre that it was longing for! Burn cards are a nice twist on a perks system but need fine tuning. Many of the cards really are pointless such as cloaking as a spectre which actually does not help the player at all.
In short, this is a great game that unfortunately was rushed to market. That does not mean you should not get involved with it, far from that I urge anyone with a compatible system to pick up this game and have hours of multiplayer fun shooting from Titans and jumping wall to wall throwing grenades at packs of AI. This game is exactly what the Xbox One needed, a game to actually make people want to buy the next generation of consoles and so far is showing to have worked.
I do not remember the last console game with this much hype. It certainly was not in 2014 and this has the chance to get in early as a contendee for game of the year. Will it win? Well probably not, but just having your game associated with such prestige is certainly a very good thing.
Now if you will excuse me, my Titan has just fallen and I need to jump in and start blowing stuff up again. If you need me just hit me with a Plasma shot as that will certainly get my attention!
GRUNTS, MOVE OUT!