Titanfall will be one of the first games to release on Xbox One, as Microsoft showed at their E3 2013 presentation. Developed by Respawn, Titanfall is set in a futuristic world where players take control of huge war machines called Titans. The game, which promises lots of swift, relentless action, has features reminiscent to Call of Duty and Mirror’s Edge. The graphics weren’t nearly as stellar as other Xbox One games, but this could be because it will also release for Xbox 360 and Windows PC.
Clash of the Titans
The game takes place in the not-so-distant future on a remote planet, where human armies wage war against one another. There’s no sign of alien life yet, and players take the role of a yet unnamed soldier. The game is a first person shooter, with much of the time spent riding inside the massive Titans.
Titans are mechs, similar to those seen in other games such as Metal Gear or Xenogears, and players will be expert pilots. Despite their size, the Titans move at the speed you’d expect a foot soldier to move. They are also very powerful, but even the mighty machines can eventually be destroyed. When a Titan is near destruction, it propels the rider into the sky and away to safety.
While the fights between Titans are mesmerizing, players will need to be aware that pilots have their own set of skills, making them fierce elite warriors in their own right.
Outside of Titans, pilots are very agile soldiers in their own right, equipped to the teeth with powerful weapons. Pilots can double jump due to their jetpacks, and can even slide across walls. Movements like these are very similar to those found in Mirror’s Edge (soon to receive its own reboot). This movement creates many new and interesting strategic choices. For instance, instead of sneaking up on foes, you could run along a wall and drop on them.
Besides Mirror’s Edge, we noticed clear cues from the Call of Duty franchise. This makes sense, as members of the Modern Warfare 2 team are part of the Titanfall development team. The gameplay is fast and relentless, yet doesn’t ever seem messy or chaotic.
The game first seemed to have a steep learning curve, but as we watched the demo more closely it became very easy to orientate ourselves. With further observation, it was easy to see where player characters, enemies, and objectives were at all times.
War among humans
Titanfall has a clear focus on online multiplayer. In fact, no single player aspects were shown at the Microsoft press event. This could lead to speculation that Titanfall is better suited to multiplayer. The game’s conquest mode allows up to 14 players simultaneously. This might seem like a bit too many for the pace of the action, but as stated before it’s not hard to adjust to Titanfall’s swift gameplay.
Holding out for 360
We later discovered that the demo presented was of the Windows PC version of Titanfall. As with other multi-generation releases, it made us curious as to how Titanfall will look and play on the older Xbox 360. For now, we’re impressed with the smooth animations, intense explosions, and the Titan’s cockpit design. Will these graphics look nearly as good on the Xbox 360? While unlikely, we’re still looking forward to comparing versions.
Titanfall isn’t the most groundbreaking game we saw at E3 2013, but its futuristic action will likely appeal to the public. The gameplay is simple, clear, and looks like it can provide hours of fun.