sun 15/12/2019

Titanfall | reviews, news & interviews

Titanfall

Titanfall

The most hyped action game of the 'next generation' is dumb, but great fun

'Titanfall': Giant walking mechs and parkour pilots combine sublimely

Flow states – experienced by athletes, religious zealots and videogamers playing Titanfall. This explosive action game is the most eagerly anticipated and hyped-up videogame of the "next generation" console war so far. It could singlehandedly transform Microsoft's slow start for its new Xbox One console. And while being deeply dull and reactionary in many ways, it encourages a gaming flow state of constant fun like little else in some time.

In Titanfall two off-world factions vie for control of a planet. Both are armed to the teeth, not just with conventional weaponry, but giant "Titan" walking tanks. With minimal plot, explanation or training, you're dropped into the battlefield as infantry – play for three minutes and you unlock the right to drop your personal Titan into the fray, jump on board and let rip. But for each enemy kill or assist, that time limit drops.

Titanfall - Respawn brings walking mech tanks to Call Of Duty actionEven as infantry, your powers are not insignificant. You're equipped with an anti-Titan weapon, a few shots of which can bring down one of these behemoths, but you can also double-jump into second storey building windows, run along walls with your jetpack and even clamber onto the backs of friendly Titans to hitch a ride, or enemy Titans to shoot at their circuitry through a hatch. And the battlefield is even populated with "grunts" – computer-controlled infantry that bolster the six-vs-six player sides, but also provide markers to where the action is and let new players get easier kills to let them feel properly part of the battle.

The result is gameplay that mixes hulking Titans with fast-moving infantry beautifully, inducing a flow state of travel through the map, of constant action and constant movement. Respawn, the makers of Titanfall, made some of the biggest, brashest games of the Call of Duty series. And here they apply all their online, multi-player expertise to play and map design to deliver a superbly polished "twitch" game that, unlike their previous games, is both far more fun and far more forgiving for new players.

Titanfall - Respawn brings walking mech tanks to Call Of Duty actionYou'll get your Titan quickly if you're good, but even the most useless players will get time in a mech. And AI "grunts" offer easy targets. Plus the fluid parkour movement of infantry and seamless switching between huge enemies and human-size is done with such flare and flow it's unbelievably addictive.

Layered on top of this are other tricks – levels you gain from kills, "Burn Cards" that give you one-use special perks for completing specific tasks and a constant dripfeed of new items and weapons etc. that before you know it, you've been online for days.

As you can see from the images, Titanfall also looks stunning – it's a showcase for next-generation graphical power. But beneath the fun and the visual flare, there's an empty heart – a walking tank with no pilot. Because while Titanfall is immense fun to play, it's repetitive and retrogressive with plot, action and innovation in play. It ultimately offers nothing more than a slightly reworked version of games players have been hammering for years. That said, for state-of-the-art flow/twitch fun, its pull is strong.

Switching between huge enemies and human-size is done with such flare and flow it's unbelievably addictive

rating

Editor Rating: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

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