EDIT- Check out the Multiplayer Trailer below:
EDIT 2- New facts released about the game:
- 6 new titans
- more customisation options
- super smooth gameplay
- multiplayer beta before launch
- single player campaign
It’s been over two years since Titanfall dropped onto the gaming landscape and on June 12th Electronic Arts and Respawn Entertainment will finally reveal the sequel to one of the most innovative shooters since Modern Warfare. Despite criticisms due to the lack of a true single-player campaign, Titanfall was both a critical and commercial success that brought a host of innovations to the industry and went on to influence prominent developers such as Treyarch and Naughty Dog. It also reminded gamers of an era when classic titles such as Quake 3 Arena and Unreal Tournament dominated the multiplayer landscape with an emphasis on fast-paced shooting, superb movement mechanics and finely-tuned core gameplay.
Free of the shackles that the addition of a single-player campaign could have placed on a development studio that excels in multiplayer game design, Respawn Entertainment forged a brave new path that combined PvP with PvE mechanics, intuitive free running and of course, towering Titans that fall from the sky and enable the classic David and Goliath dynamic that managed to empower both the pilots controlling those machines of destruction and the soldiers that battled them on foot. Now that the worldwide reveal of Titanfall 2 draws closer it’s worth taking a look back at what worked, what didn’t work and what additions the game would benefit from.
Perhaps the greatest achievement of Titanfall, and something that’s unfortunately a rarity these days, is the commitment to providing dedicated servers rather than the traditional peer-to-peer matchmaking systems that plague many console shooters. Respawn Entertainment partnered with Microsoft to utilize the Azure service to provide dedicated servers for Titanfall and also power the AI combatants that populated multiplayer levels. This was a huge benefit to the game across all platforms and one can only hope that Respawn Entertainment will utilize the service once more for Titanfall 2. While some fans of the game may fear that the sequel launching on PlayStation 4 could jeopardize the possibility of dedicated servers making a return, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has publicly stated that the Azure service is available to any game on any platform, making it very likely that the multiplayer component of Titanfall 2 will be as smooth and lag-free as its predecessor.
As for the single-player component of Titanfall 2, fans who craved more story to accompany their wall running and robot-punching mayhem will be pleased to know that Titanfall 2 will launch with a proper single-player campaign this time round. While details are scarce at the moment, lead writer Jesse Stern has confirmed the existence of a single-player mode to Forbes, noting that the campaign will portray a world where science meets magic but also be “grounded, dirty, human and real.”
Rounding out the suite of content will hopefully be the return of the superb wave-based cooperative survival mode Frontier Defense, which was a free addition to the original game seven months after launch. The mode tasked groups of four players to cooperatively protect harvesters from AI soldiers, spectres and titans in wave-based rounds that were uniquely tailored to each map in the game. The mode was incredibly fun and popular with the player base, introducing new gameplay mechanics not previously seen such as placeable turrets to assist in defense. If Respawn Entertainment are able to offer these cooperative and single-player modes in Titanfall 2, the game could shine in a market suffering from fatigue due to yearly Call of Duty and Battlefield releases.
Aside from the new modes however, what else can we expect from the game? The most exciting addition so far is the confirmation of swords for titans, as seen in the original teaser trailer that was revealed back in April (see above), which will add an interesting dynamic to titan melee combat that was present in the original game but did not extend much beyond punching and ripping pilots out of doomed titans prior to ejection. Certain maps, such as Outpost 207 and Overlook, also offered the opportunity for punching enemy titans off the level. In this writers opinion however, it’s much more satisfying to team-up with titan allies to punch enemy dropships into oblivion before they’re able to flee the area at the end of a hard-fought victory. A recent leak by the moderator of the Titanfall subreddit also claims that Titanfall 2 will see the introduction of grappling hooks to further expand the traversal options of pilots in the game, allowing players to get into Titans from a distance, extend free-running and most exciting of all, pull enemies out of the air.
A recent leak claims that Titanfall 2 will see the introduction of grappling hooks to further expand the traversal options of pilots in the game
While all of the above would no doubt be stellar additions to the game there is one aspect of Titanfall that Respawn Entertainment will hopefully reassess and perhaps even remove. No matter how great a multiplayer game is, there will always be one weapon which draws the ire of the player base and in this case that weapon is the Smart Pistol MK5. From a design standpoint the weapon is an intelligent addition, it enables players to engage in combat without the need for precision aiming during incredible feats of acrobatics and traversal, which is increasingly vital when playing the game with a controller, while also enabling the speedy dispatch of AI soldiers and spectres that litter the combat zones. Despite this however, it is difficult to avoid a feeling of frustration when viewing a killcam that highlights an enemy player locking-on as you bounce from wall to wall before the speedy burst of auto-targeting bullets put you down in the blink of an eye. Respawn Entertainment opted to balance the weapon via a lock-on timer, but hopefully their designers have put more careful consideration into the operation of the weapon in Titanfall 2 if it makes a return.
Titanfall 2 could be a serious contender for game of the year.
As it stands however, Titanfall was and still is an incredible game full of genius design choices (smart pistol aside…) that continues to enjoy an active player base to this day. If the rumors of new weapons and abilities are true, alongside the supposedly increased player count and larger maps, then Titanfall 2 could be a serious contender for game of the year. Respawn Entertainment debuted a new IP with a solid and well-executed foundation that they need only build upon with the upcoming sequel, and with the development team increasing by almost 30% since making the original game, it’s a safe bet that there will be more than enough content to satisfy players of all tastes this time around. The world reveal of Titanfall 2 will take place on June 12 at EA Play – 1PM PDT/9PM BST, you can catch a sneak preview of what to expect below:
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