Every once in a while a game comes out that seems to bestow upon it's audience awe in it's execution. Beautiful graphics, great controls, and amazing quality that keeps you coming back for more. This is obviously an outlook that varies from person to person based solely on their personal opinion. But otherwise, I consider Titanfall a fantastic game that delivers on all fronts and establishes a great concept new to the classic first person shooter genera. But it wasn't perfect to other people. In fact, there were faults to a point.
Titanfall is the first of it's kind. Not in the sense of being a shooter, but a multiplayer only shooter completely lacking a single player campaign. As recently announced, the team behind upcoming TItanfall 2 will introduce a full single player campaign, one of which is closer to the likes of Call of Duty and even Battlefield which has a very active multiplayer community. But like every article of mine, there are some aspects in which we need to sit and wonder. Does Titanfall deem itself worthy of being a multiplayer only title? Let's discuss.
Single Player, Please
One of the biggest aspects that we need to consider as gamers is not everyone likes multiplayer. Just like how not everyone likes single player only games. Multiplayer sets up the concept of competitiveness within each other. We are fighting, but we aren't fighting to win as much as we are fighting for experience points to unlock a cool new weapon. On top of that, other players are far smarter and quicker compared to enemy AI. So it's easy to see how one can't enjoy a multiplayer only experience if they are spending 75% of their time dying. Unable to achieve a proper kill and perform at par could make players feel reluctant to even play further on. Titanfall attempted to alleviate this issue by also offering NPC combatants. They succeeded, because as someone who isn't great at FPS games, it did make me feel like a die hard killing machine.
By including a single player campaign, you have people that will experience the game for what it can offer minus the online douchebaggary of other people. Now some might argue that Titanfall does have a campaign, but it's only just a narrated version of a multiplayer match. It's like experiencing a Call of Duty campaign as a low ranked soldier instead of Captain Price or Soap Mactavish. Either way, it wasn't a "true" single player experience, and one that actually kept a lot of people from picking up this game.
Half of a game should be half the price
Speaking of Price, yeah, the concept and price definitely hit the gaming community with a rough punch. $60 for the game itself, without a proper single player campaign. Other games actually offer a campaign and multiplayer experience for the same price as Titanfall. This makes a lot of people ask if Titanfall should have been worth half the price, since we are only technically getting half of a game. Other people claim that the experience validates itself, and that you are getting what is advertised exactly. After seeing how many hours I poured into that game, I can fully condone and accept that the game not only deserved my money, but I did get a lot of bang for my buck.
It should have been on other consoles
Titanfall was developed for launch as an Xbox One exclusive title. It was seen as the system's killer app that would help sell consoles. Even though the launch of the game did end up selling some consoles, it wasn't enough. EA would be crazy to consider making Titanfall 2 exclusive to Microsoft again. So it's no surprise that Titanfall 2 will be landing on the Playstation 4 as well as the Xbox One in late 2016 or early 2017. This is due to the fact that Microsoft under-delivered to EA. EA most likely got a check from Microsoft and said "keep it exclusive to us, we got a hold on this market thanks to the wild success of the Xbox 360" and then didn't expect it to lose out so much to the Playstation 4. Remember, this was when Don Mattrick was in charge, not Phil Spencer. So everyone was still riding the collective money high that most shooters made off the Xbox 360.
So EA took that small check and cashed it, expecting another influx of money to come in from all the crazy sales of the Xbox One and their game. But that never happened. Sony was selling (and still is) almost 2 to 1 ratio of PS4s to Xbox Ones. EA had no choice, but they weren't taking a loss on the title. In order to make up additional profit for the franchise, they would have to go multi-platform. Not even the PC master race was able to salvage the funds properly. The game wasn't by any means a failure, but it didn't meet the sales expected. When something like that happens, changes are made.
Needs more customization
Titanfall is developed by Respawn, a studio made from all the important people from Infinity Ward after the Activision fiasco right around the time Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 released. EA games picked up the developers and gave them the freedoms that Activision couldn't give them, and it seemed to be the blessing they needed. Now I state this because we have all played the massive hit: Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. The game changed the way we play and build multiplayer games, and helped evolve an entire franchise into an annual release. So it's not surprising to say that when we picked up Titanfall, we were upset by the amount of content. Not in the layers of maps, or basic variety, but the customization was not as solid. We got so used to seeing a ton of options that it was a shock to see significantly less.
Now, a lot of people complain about this, but I see it as a "less is more" scenario. I also see it as a "this is a new IP, we are still trying to get this game to work, calm the hell down" scenario. After all, Call of Duty 4 wouldn't be as good as it was if it wasn't for Call of Duty: Finest Hour, Call of Duty 2, and Call of Duty 3. There is a sense of progression in each of these titles, and it only makes sense for a series to evolve over time. So of course we are going to be almost bare when it comes to the options given to us in the first title release. We don't want to jump into a game that throws too much at you, because that is how you make a game incredibly unbalanced to the core. How do you know if the game is even working out the way you want it to? It is nice to see how Respawn has been keeping updated with the title to include several more customization options and include new modes for free.
So all in all, is it okay to have multiplayer only titles? Sure it is. Not everyone is going to like it, but you can't cater to everyone. That is just a general rule of life. Some people aren't going to like you for any reason under the golden sun. Some people wrote off Titanfall and made negative comments just because the game was mutliplayer only, despite them actually never picking up the controller and experiencing the game themselves. Sure, you might consider some of the faults of the game, but it's up to you as a consumer to either pick up the game and deliver your criticism or not pick it up and not complain that it doesn't cater to your wants. If that was the case then we wouldn't have games like Dark Souls, which challenges players and can be difficult, yet is still wildly popular.
There is still a lot in store with the future of Titanfall 2, and we can only be more excited as we see this game become playable. Who knows, maybe we will see something come E3 2016.
Thank you for reading!