At PAX Prime this year, I had the chance to check out Titanfall‘s demo. To be quite honest, I almost didn’t with the way that line materialized at 10 AM (after I’d wasted an hour perusing other games! For shame).
You may remember me mentioning that Titanfall was my favorite game of PAX, and that was a sentiment I heard echoed by other journalists around me.
The Angel City demo presents your typical shooter-in-the-city style map as you play campaign multiplayer, with generic buildings and generic boxes placed by the all-mighty in magically strategic places. The setting of Titanfall is nothing groundbreaking. It is, quite solidly, the gameplay itself that endears this game to me. And the mechs, because everyone loves mechs.
The demo featured campaign multiplayer in a mode called Attrition. The team objective is to hold off enemy forces in a team deathmatch style mode.
Players are either on the team trying to invade or the team beating off the invaders and amass points with kills, with more points for more awesome kills.
After a team wins via points, there is an epilogue mode, the goal of which is to get to the evac zone. Depending on which team you’re on, you either have to get to the zone or kill all of the fleeing pilots trying to get to the zone.
Titanfall has a really fun jump mechanic, allowing you to double jump and then wall run across the map. With the particular map shown, it was possible to get from one side to the other without touching the ground. The new vertical mobility adds a lot to the spectacular death possibilities, so it was pretty exhilarating. With the popularity of Attack on Titan, the timing for this kind of game couldn’t be better.
Being a solid shooter with awesome jumping skills wasn’t enough for Respawn Entertainment – oh no. They needed to add badass mechs to the mix, allowing players to interact intuitively with the giant warriors. You could rip someone out of it, jump into one, ride one, be flung out of one, or even (with the right weapon) kill them.
For this multiplayer demo, there were three pilot choices and three Titan choices. Players chose between the assault character, the tactical character (a woman!), and the CQB character. Basically, machine guns, pistols and shotguns, but in reality, they each have three very nuanced weapons that add to their strategic ability.
After picking your pilot, you get to pick your titan. The three Atlas Class titans available were the Main Battle (aka Battle Rifle) Titan, the Heavy Weapons Titan, and the High Explosives Titan. Since you can mix and match characters with Titans, and each character and Titan has at least three specific attacks, there is lots of room to experiment and mix your play style around.
Although I’m not generally interested in a city setting, I enjoyed that it didn’t look as boring as Call of Duty does. The colors are a little more metallic and a little sharper, so I didn’t hate the look quite as much as I generally hate realistic shooters. Oh, and the graphics were all pretty and sharp.
I had a blast, and all I wanted to do was get back in line to play again! I’m eager to see if the rest of the game is as much fun.