Gamescom 2013: Hands on with TitanFall

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Ow ow ow ow ow

It’s Monday and we all feel the same; we need a longer weekend and we are really not up for starting work this week. Which is why I have something incredible for you.

Ladies and Gentlemen may I present one of the most amazing multiplayer experiences I have ever experienced in my life: TitanFall

That’s a major statement to make right up front and the game is still a long way from completion – but I have no doubt it will live up to the hype and that this could well become the title that knocks the Goliath that is Call of Duty off its multiplayer perch.

TitanFall revolves around the basic idea that you are a mech pilot. You can choose which type of pilot you want to be from a selection of 3. These are broken down into your basic assault, recon and close quarter infantry. Each one has its own upgradeable tech tree and customisable  weapons.

Personally I found the close quarter pilot the best for taking down mechs as his third weapon is a rocket launcher which has a devastating effect on the titans.

Then you have a choice of 3 types of Titans and once again they all have their own upgrade path. My favourite Titan was the heavy metal one which could shoot multiple rockets at once which also caused serious problems for the other titans.

Titans spawn for your pilot every 2 minutes and you are notified that it is ready and you then need to choose a spot for it to be dropped into. You can then enter the mech or turn it onto autopilot for that randomised destruction everyone loves.

Run Forest Run

As you can see from my picks I found the Titans the main things to worry about in the game because if you come face to face with one while on foot it is going to take a lot of skill to survive.

But that doesn’t mean that you are weak while on foot; in fact it is quite the opposite as you have some amazing parkour-esque abilities that see you double jumping, wall running and sliding around. According to the developers you can get across the entire map without once touching the floor and when there is a squad of you moving around in a team it becomes relatively easy to take down the slow Titans.

This balance was my one major worries about the game and with over 7 months to go before release (at the earliest) I was very happy to see that they appear to have nailed it already. My other big worry was that the game was going to turn out more like Halo than Call of Duty and that the fighting would be overly space aged.

Thankfully this isn’t the case with all the weapons I used shooting bullets or explosive projectiles which felt realistic enough to believe this is in the not too distant future for our society.

Check out the scenery

Respawn has also included a brand new multiplayer feature that I haven’t seen before and which they are calling the Epilogue.

Once your team dies the game isn’t actually over. Your commander comes over the mic to announce that you are losing and that you need to get to the extraction ship to get out of there. You are then tasked with finding the ship and getting on board without getting killed. 

If you escape you are given a huge amount of bonus XP and if the opposing team stops you then they are given a big bonus.

I played two games, lost both times, and in the second game I was the only soldier to make it to the extraction craft which rewarded me with 4000 experience points. So well worth the attempt I’d say. It’s a fun way to end the round and it works.

TitanFall is a fast paced, smooth, fantastic looking experience and one that I could easily continue to have played for the entire time I was at Gamescom; which is quite something as the game isn’t actually built on a next gen engine. Amazingly it has been created using the Source engine, the very same engine that powered the Half Life 2 experience and it really doesn’t look any worse for it.

TitanFall is all about movement and verticality and if you think you are going to win by running around on the ground you are going to have a bad time.

It arrives on Xbox One, Xbox 360 and PC next year and if you are a multiplayer fan then this is one experience you will not miss. It’s one of our nominations for game of the show and I can tell you it is on our shortlist right now.

Last Updated: August 26, 2013

Gavin Mannion

I for one welcome our future robotic overlords

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