Titanfall 2

SHORT REVIEW: PS4 VERSION

Let’s play a game: Guess the word of the review

Once or twice a year I (secretly) take the plunge into the murky world of online shooters. I consider them throwaway experiences. Pop in. Shoot some people. Get called Noob before moving on. I seldom speak of this odd behaviour as I never spend enough time with these games to have a strong opinion.

Wait. Does this indicate a strong opinion?

Titanfall 2 is a masterclass of player empowerment. It’s tremendous fun.

How does it do this?

Ha-Hah! Several reasons myself, thanks for asking. The control system is smooth and effortless. You can doublejump, run along walls and pull off cool knee slides (like kids at weddings). The growing sense of speed and perfect inertia means that even if you’re losing, you’re losing in style.

Thanks to the generous selection of crap AI grunts wandering the map, you’re never far from excitement, or screaming across the room to no-one “did you see that”. I did… I did. I ran across a wall, double jumped off and kicked someone in the head. Glorious. I mean’t it an’ everything. To compliment this sensation, aiming your gun is snappy and again, just right. The pace of the game is perfect….

It’s nice to see my gun’s ready.

… Because when the inevitable happens and you find yourself a little bit dead-ed, you can skip watching the kill cam and get thrown back into the action, doublequick. Despite how well you may or may not have done, it won’t be long until you are summoning a bloody big stompy robot from the skies. Yes. Even if your crap at the game, you’ll still get to ride in a giant murder-bot.

Side note – Spawning back into the action directly in a Titan is a nice touch, as I do end up a little bit dead quite often.

Brilliantly these Titan’s aren’t made from adamantium, even if you are in a towering inferno of death. Even if you’re are you’re not indestructible, you do have brute force on your side. Facing off against a bloody big robot head on, is quite rightly, lethal. What can kill a hulking metal bastard? Other hulking metal bastards for a start. You’ll find the silly little humans scrambling around your feet, and take great pleasure in the inevitable overkill. But you have to be careful as each pilot has access to a few anti-Titan weapons and they have to be dealt with quickly as those shields won’t last. Of course, some clever dick might try something a lil’ more risky. You might find someone attempting to jump on your chassis, stealing your precious battery, who can then use that to repair his own Titan. The bastard. You might find he’ll try again where he will now chuck a grenade directly into your hunky robot. The spiteful little sod (spiten-full). This sounds impossible to pull off yourself doesn’t it. The kinda thing only a Titanfall expert could pull off, with all manner of buttons to push and a degree in double jump. Ha-HAH.. the control system is smooth and forgiving, remember. All you really need to do is get to high ground and jump around, near the top of the robot, kinda… and the game does the rest. Amazing right. The balance of the game is just right.

What about the single player campaign? It’s fine. Some nice puzzles, jumpy sections and that. It’s fine.

You want to do something cool and the game replies “sure thing mate. Go for it”. If you’re feeling real fancy you can use the grappling hook to ride a Titan. Hell, you can turn invisible for a few seconds… Or even chuck a firebomb in it’s face. It’s all so empowering.

Casual fighting on a Tuesday.

Sounds too good to be true doesn’t it? There has to be a catch right? I bet it’s the other humans isn’t it. I bet they shout ‘noob’ at you don’t they.

Surprisingly I have’t had any of that. Strange. It appears no-one can be arsed. Everyone just get’s on with it. Maybe because everyone’s concentrating on their own flashy moves? Maybe they’re not angry about death, as death isn’t the great time punishment? Maybe it’s because you don’t have time to call someone a gay as you’re chucking a grenade into a bunch of AI. Who knows why, but it’s great.

Talking of great, there are plenty of weapons, upgrades and Titans to choose and unlock (don’t forget Titan weapons)… Nothing important is buried behind a giant paywall. I’ve never felt cheated and I’ve never felt any grind. Than again, I’ve never felt the need to pay for a fancy new Titan skin. Yes, micro-transactions are present, but as they’re superficial, I don’t mind.

The only force I care about… Excessive Force. Coming to a cinema near you.

Let’s bring it all back down to a sensible miserable malaise. Our default setting. We can’t get overly excited now, can we.

It is still an online shooty-shooty game. If you don’t like them, Titanfall won’t change your mind. After a few days play, you feel like you’ve seen all the maps… but isn’t that true of any multiplayer game you hammer. There’s a Titan only fight mode, which sounds fantastic but it’s strangely flat. Soon as you’re strapped into a lumbering Titan, that dynamics gone and the game feels neutered and restricted. The rounds are pretty swift and ultimately a bit dull. You even have to wait till everyone’s dead. Kinda reminds me of this: –

Rock em Robots

Hey. Punch that guy. Do it now. Yes in the face.

 

Ok… fine. Let’s end on a high. A four player co-op mission thingy appeared as a free downloadable extra and it’s not half-bad. Yes, the odds of coming across a hitch-pitched, know it all loudmouth is greatly increased, but I could imagine 3 like-minded friends could make for a jolly-fine time. You survive the waves as a team, up until the point you get overwhelmed and start blaming each other.

I hope more drip-fed content tickles our net connections. It’s much needed. After a spell these games, no matter how great they are, become samely. Online shooters have an inherit time limit to my frequently flighty mindset. There’s so much to see, do and play, I don’t have time to play the same maps over and over again. But hey… This is a personal gripe and if you don’t feel the same, do some mental math to bump the score by a single digit.

With extended play, you’ll find you’ve inextricably improved at shooting humans over the internet and can boost to all your friends about it. Your new internet friends. The best friends a man or woman, could ever have.

8An excellent online shooter, fully dependant on your own gaming perversions and tolerance for others.

Titanfall 2 is generous in its demeanor and intoxicating to play.

 


The word of the review was…..

Empowering.

Congratulations on those that got it! Sweaty socks on forehead for those that didn’t.