Published on March 16th, 2014 | by admin
Summary: Titanfall is definitely a breath of fresh and features a very sturdy gaming engine that is let down by an almost non-existent story.
Developer: Respawn Entertainment
Format: XBox One (Also available on PC)
Genre: First Person Shooter
Reviewer: James Wright
Titanfall is an online cooperative game that is set in the distant future with giant Mechs called Titans that has two warring factions, the Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation (IMC) and the Militia are battling for supremacy over a scarred frontier planet in a distant galaxy. Although single-player is absent from this title, the developers have injected single-player elements into the title to help with the overall story which does create a gaming dilemma.
The story of Titanfall does feel quite disjointed but where the game does shine is through its extremely sturdy gaming mechanics that lets players control both a soldier and a Titan. This is probably my only gripe about Titanfall and I would have loved to have seen the story more fleshed out. Also for the price, it could be considered a little steep as it’s an multiplayer game only.
Before starting Titanfall, there is a tutorial available that teaches players the basic gaming mechanics of the game which is controlling both the human soldier and their giant Titans. Whereas the human characters are quite fast, Titans are a lumbering beast but have a huge amount of firepower behind them. I love the speed of humans and how they can nimbly climb and also reach high places by using a quick boost of their jetpacks or double jumps. You can even wall run which gives the game this Parkour feel that is actually quite fluid and works well with the control system. Titans on the other hand are considerably slower and feel like tanks as they go up against the infantry and their nemesis, enemy Titans.
Even though both characters play quite differently, nothing feels disjointed in terms of gameplay as each have their pros and cons. This definitely opens up the gameplay for some fun mechanics, especially when you’re engaged in enemy combat. I remember one level where I encountered another player who started shooting at me and I jumped on the wall for a wall run in order to bypass his fire and then come up behind him with a kick. It’s these little subtleties that puts Titanfall on a different playing field when it comes to multiplayer.
Humans can even do a Luke Skywalker and jump on enemy Titans in order to attempt to disable them by shooting into their computer systems. It’s quite a challenge but it is achievable. Another cool feature is the cloak which hides your whereabouts from Titans which does assist trying to take down a Titan. Weapons are quite diverse in the game and as you level up, both your characters and Titans have more weapons available for their loadouts.
Level design is quite detailed and complex which means enemies can come from a number of places that makes it almost impossible to catch your breath. Depending on which side you play, either the IMC or the militia, you have a set number of objectives to complete in the level and these are generally stock standard multiplayer objectives.
Apart from just human opponents, the game does include some AI controlled soldiers which are quite easy to kill. The game also informs you when your Titans are ready and by pushing down on the d-pad, you can summon your Titan from the heavens as you hear this machine being sent down from space as it breaks the sound barrier. Seeing your Titan arrive the first time is extremely impressive and still is. Once your Titan has been called, you press X to enter the machine and then it’s clobbering time. In regards to Titans, the more enemies that you kill, the faster your Titan will be available.
As mentioned, Titans are extremely powerful when it comes to weaponry and damage with both primary and secondary weapons available being available to the player. Some weapons such as rocket launchers are insanely powerful but you are limited to how many times you can use it. Whereas chain guns are great for taking out soldiers and they charge faster. Although I have not mastered this tactic but Titans can also engage in melee battles with a powerful punch that does remind me of Voltron. I also like that some Titans can hold enemy rocket fire from other Titans and then send it back in their direction. If things do become a little dangerous, you can release smoke to cover your position and when it’s time for your Titan to meet its maker, they literally explode and shoot their pilots out to safety.
As you play these online matches, you are awarded experience points for how well you played which allows you to increase the abilities and weapons at your disposal. Also by completing challenges, you are awarded bonuses such as more powerful weapons or additional bonuses which definitely improves your chances of survival. Apart from the “campaign” mode, there are classic gameplay modes such as Last Titan Standing or other interpretations of Death Match that are equally if not more enjoyable than the campaign mode.
One issue that I did have with Titanfall is finding other players. At times, a game would start straight away but other times, I needed to wait or quit the lobby and try again. Hopefully with more players, this won’t become an issue. Titanfall is also the only game where I’ve used the XBox One headset religiously as it really helps in communicating with your team. All in all, Titanfall really delivers a very immersive multiplayer experience.
Graphically, Titanfall is a very impressive title on the XBox One and Respawn Entertainment have done a wonderful job in creating this futuristic colony world that although is reminiscent of Earth has enough differences to be unique. Level design works well with the gameplay and there are a variety of places both indoors and out to explore and even high birdseye locations to get a better look at the action or to enjoy a bout of sniping.
Characters are well animated but the star of Titanfall are the Titans themselves that really twist the perspective of the gamer. Add in some realistic lighting, texture details and special effects and Titanfall is definitely a great looking title on the XBox One. Audio sounds great, especially when the Titans land on the planet and voice chatter is a little clichéd. The game does sound quite awesome through surround sound however.
Titanfall is definitely a breath of fresh air when it comes to playing online multiplayer and although the story is largely absent in the game, the gaming mechanics really helps in creating a very sturdy gaming experience. Developers Respawn Entertainment should be commended in successfully merging a traditional first person shooter experience with Mechs, especially with the flawless gameplay.
• Fast-Paced Future Warfare – In Titanfall the advanced warfare of tomorrow gives you the freedom to fight your way as both elite assault Pilot and agile, heavily armored 24’ tall Titans. Titanfall rethinks fundamental combat and movement giving players the ability to change tactics on the fly, attacking or escaping depending on the situation.
• The Future of Online Multiplayer Action – The game is entirely multiplayer, in a new experience that combines fast-paced online action with the heroic set piece moments traditionally found in campaign mode. The intersection of the two is a big part of what gives Ttianfall its iconic identity.
• The Visionaries that Defined Gaming for a Generation are back! – Founded in 2010, Respawn Entertainment was formed by Vince Zampella and Jason West, former co-founders of Infinity Ward and two of the co-creators of the multi-billion dollar franchise Call of Duty™ They are building on their pedigree and taking a new approach to game design and creating an all new universe with Titanfall.