On March 11, what is arguably the most anticipated video game of 2014 fell on millions of gamers everywhere. The name of the game is Titanfall. It was developed by Respawn Entertainment. For those of you with only a small understanding of the video game world, Respawn Entertainment is composed of the former staff of the development company Infinity Ward, including its co-founders, Jason West and Vince Zampella. While at Infinity Ward, this staff did nothing of note. Except produce what is today the standard in the First Person Shooter genre, (for better or worse) Call of Duty. After the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (my personal favorite COD) in 2010, the team got into a major disagreement with the publisher of the game, Activision. After this disagreement led to several lawsuits, the co-founders and much of the staff left Infinity Ward and formed Respawn Entertainment. When they did, they began working on a new IP. This IP is called Titanfall, an FPS that combines mech warfare and Call of Duty-like first person shooter elements, with the addition of many cool parkour abilities. After three plus years of work, the game has been released for the Xbox One and PC. Did you enjoy the history lesson? Ready to talk about the actual game? Ok let's go.
So first I feel I must say: this game is f*cking fun. For me personally it is one of the funnest multiplayer games I have ever experienced, constantly creating new "water cooler" moments, such as the time I and my opponent ejected from our titans simultaneously and I killed him in midair, or the time I did some badass parkouring over an opponent and killed him from above, or the time I won a cat-and-mouse game with an opponent in a titan. Just to name a few. After about 6 hours of playing. Seriously. Respawn figured out exactly how to properly balance both the titan elements and the human elements of this game to create an incredibly original and fresh take on the the FPS genre. Something it DESPERATELY needed. And while many of you may say that the FPS genre is dying, I can honestly see myself playing this game for a long time. Sure it's a little shallow on multiplayer modes, but they will fix that in time! Have no fear there. But most of you know of the positives, so let's talk about the HUGE elephant in the room that many important "gaming journalists" have failed to elaborate on. The multiplayer campaign.
What if I told you that there was an FPS out there using many multiplayer elements in its story campaign to have people work together and against each other to complete for various objectives to try to further their individual group's causes? And that every success and failure your group had would either advance or diminish said cause? Sound cool? Sure does to me. Have you seen it in a game? No? Well sh*t. Cause it sure as hell ain't here. When I heard the premise of Titanfall's campaign mode, I got....moist. Wait what? Um....it sounded so cool! But as it turns out it's just hugely wasted potential. All it is is the classic multiplayer with a lot of background noise. It's 9 missions, lasting about 10 minutes each, of either Attrition (which is Titanfall's version of Team Deathmatch) or Domination. (Capture the Hill) No matter what you do, the "story" progresses from one mission to the next. There's not even a "well since we lost that was a little bit more difficult" line. Nope. Just an extremely simple progression. There's two sides to the same story, as we follow an apparent war between a group of either terrorists or freedom fighters (I could never figure out what we were supposed to think about them) and the government, called the IMC. One of them, the militia, is decently written. There are a couple of cool moments, enough to keep me entertained for 90 minutes. However the IMC side was laughably bad. While both campaigns felt tact on, the militia's side at least looked like they put a few months of time into it. The IMC's side looks like they spent a freaking week on it. Now I get that you're going to get the same events on both sides, which clearly favor the militia, but the VERY least you could do is create a cool espionage element with the IMC! Like that they were letting the militia achieve their goals in preparation for something, ANYTHING. But nope! When I was playing with the IMC, we kept on winning, and the word "Victory" would even pop up on the screen, but then the main guy providing exposition would tell us we won the mission but the militia achieved it's goal anyway. Wait what? And all of this is reading more into the story than I bet anyone else has been able to. After all, I could barely make out what was going on at any point on either side most of the time. And I was paying attention. In short, the campaign is a complete waste of time. A set list of multiplayer games with people yelling exposition over the top of it. After creating some of the coolest "water cooler" moments ever in MW2's short campaign, Infinity Ward aka Respawn Entertainment created basically none in Titanfall. Instead they decided to rely solely on the multiplayer portions doing it for them. I honestly feel that this game is not worth all of its asking price. What we have is not a $60 game. It's a $50 game. And while I can say that we can wait for DLC to hopefully create a more intricate campaign experience, that's going to cost even MORE money! YAY! MONEY EVERYWHERE. Damnit.....
To sum up, don't call me a Titanfall hater. I f*cking love this game. While it's only worth $50, I'm not complaining that I spent $60 on it. I will definitely get my money's worth. Just....you know what? TotalBiscuit said it best with our expectations for Titanfall. "We are going to have to make do with merely great. Not revolutionary." That's it. Sorry to disappoint, but this is not the revolutionary genre-defining game you were looking for. Now, let's have fun playing the great game that is Titanfall. I'll see you on Xbox Live.
If you have the game and want play some Titanfall, hit me up at LOL UR D3AD.
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