I would be lying if I said I went into Titanfall without any sort of reservations. The scene was similar. The atmosphere all too familiar. We’ve been here before, right? Military type individuals duking it out in a semi futuristic setting. Yeah, we’ve been there and similarities were preemptively drawn up before touching ground and taking my first jump… and it was on that jump that similarities went out the window. It was on my first wall run that I knew the horizontal combat we’ve become acustomed to in games like Call of Duty was a thing of the past. The moment to moment combat in Titanfall makes competitive shooter faire of the past seem archaic, sluggish, and outdated. Its pure exhileration to leap from a wall run, jump kick an enemy player and land on a giant mech. Player vs Player parkour combat is something I can see catching fire very quickly. Its mechanics are as smooth and intuitive as they are exciting and addictive. I found myself trying to wall run in other games only to quickly be disappointed that I was unable to do so. In my time with the game, no weapon really felt like it outclassed any other weapon. Everything felt like more of a “side-grade”. Its more of what fits your style as a player, rather than time invested=overwhelming advantage. Players can also be augments with special abilities including a cloaking device and a stim pack that makes you run/heal faster. These add another layer of depth and customization to playstyle that is often missing from competitive shooters.
Where Titanfall excells in its “on foot” mechanics, it absolutely impresses with balanced, easy to control, and BADASS call down mechs refered to as Titans that will fall out of the sky. Titan-fall, see what they did there? The Titans are huge and their presence can change the flow of the battlefield. Players can only call them down every so often, but killing enemy players and AI will speed up this process. Titan vs On Foot combat feels completely balanced. While Titans can be powerfull, the on foot players can be agile and out maneuver. Its like trying to swat a fly that can snap you neck if you dont get it first. Titans can also be equiped with various gadgets and enhancements to deter pilots (on foots) and other Titans. All of which adds to the feeling of customization thats ever present in Titanfall.
Mentioned above… there are AI combatants in Titanfall. A lot of folks might think… why? Isnt this a compeitive shooter and not a single player game. Well… yes. The bots are there, I believe to deter folks from camping. If youre not mobile, taking out AI and Players quickly… you will fall behind in the Titan race. This is a mechanic familiar to MOBAs, where if you fall behind in one area you can fall behind in the match as a whole. Sure snipers can have a place in Titanfall… but don’t ignore those grunts because it will cost you.
So is Titanfall just Call of Duty with mechs? No. In my opinion it is not. Does it share similarities with games of recent history? Sure. But really dont all games. Titanfall does though, offer experiences I’ve never come close to having in other games. Titanfall had me hooked from the first day of beta and has stayed in my mind since. If you missed the beta, I would suggest giving Titanfall a try. It’s an easy recommended BUY in my book. The hype is real. Its so very real.