With the Titanfall 2 Technical Test offering players the opportunity to jump in and try this highly anticipated first-person shooter. After spending a few hours jumping, stomping, blasting, and rappeling through the few maps offered to us, I have emerged with mix feelings on the gameplay. As someone who adored the original Titanfall, this follow-up felt like it was lacking in several departments and could use some adjustments.
However, since the game is only a few months away, we have to be reasonable with what we would like to see changed, as a complete overhaul of the system feels highly unlikely. It’s also important to note that the developers of Titanfall 2 have already confirmed that they will be adjusting some of the multiplayer mechanics due to negative feedback from players. Hopefully, we can see some of these changes implemented into the core game before it’s released upon the world.
Titan Meter Needs Adjustments
In order to gain a Titan in combat, you will need to kill a lot of people, especially around the objective points. Each kill is worth a certain percentage and if you play well enough you will earn a Titan to stomp around in. This is a frustrating concept as it only ensures the most skilled players will actually get to pilot one of the mechs in a match. The developers have confirmed that they will be adjusting the meter so it now fills up over time, but we still do not know the extent of this. Given how fast rounds can end, if the meter builds up slowly over time and you’re stuck on defense you probably won’t see your Titan become available until the round ends.
The time mechanic in the original Titanfall felt balanced, rewarding players who performed well while still giving ample opportunity for lesser skilled users to get their Titans out onto the field. It only seems like the new Titan Meter system rewards players for kills, rather than playing the actual objective, which is highly disappointing. Currently, you’d be lucky to get a Titan out before the match is almost over even if you are going well in the game. However, the Titan issue leads into our second problem with the multiplayer…
Matches Need to be Longer
Games in Titanfall 2 feel like they are over before anything interesting really happens. While the Pilot vs. Pilot game mode is a bit slower, anything surrounding an objective is over incredibly fast. One of the biggest draws of the original Titanfall is that the rounds felt like epic struggles where control of territories could constantly shift and change over the course of a fight. Currently in Titanfall 2, most games end before half of either team have even gotten their Titans to drop in.
Many matches ended before we even saw more than one Titan roaming around the battlegrounds looking for pilots to blast. This was highly disappointing since it made the game feel like just another generic shooter, who was ashamed of the game’s biggest attraction. We want epic moments within our game and that’s rarely going to happen if the rounds end before either team gains a proper foothold.
The Amp Mechanic Feels Unwieldy
Yet, this concept leaks into the “Amp” mechanic surrounding control points which feels like an afterthought to how the game mode should play. In theory, the idea of defending a control point and rewarding your team for it sounds fantastic as it helps add focus to what players should be doing. However, the problem is as soon as you leave an objective the percentage you have “amped” will deplete fast, forcing you to always hang out around the control point if you want your team to succeed. This becomes problematic because if an objective is in a sealed off room, you may not see another enemy the entire game.
In order for the amp percentage to charge, you’ll need to sit around the objective during the entire match, which can be dreadfully boring if there is no action near your location. What’s worse is that you as a player are not rewarded for hanging about this area, meaning your Titan meter will not change at all. Given that you basically need control points to be amped if you want to win matches, this will force some players to literally sit out of the action so they can charge these points.
A.I. Soldiers Need to Return
This may be the biggest point of contention among Titanfall fans, but the lack of A.I. soldiers is extremely noticeable. In the original game, the A.I soldiers would rarely actually kill human players, but they lent the game a far grander feel. It gave us a sense that this was an actual war we were participating in, not a series of randomized deathmatches with people who can run on walls. While this does tie into the Titanfall 2 maps needing to be a bit larger in size, the A.I. helped populate the maps and make them feel far more intense.
Plus, the A.I. soliders acted as nice canon fodder for those lesser skilled players who couldn’t win every engagement they had with human users. It allowed them to still learn how to play the game and be helpful to the overall team. This seems to have been lost in Titanfall 2 as the game now feels two steps away from just playing like the latest Call of Duty title. Now, I understand that not all games should cater to lesser skilled players, but this was a core concept of the original game.
Now, there are small pockets of them scattered about the maps, but since your pilot moves at break neck speed they are hardly notiecable. In the original game, these A.I. soldiers could be seen everywhere and would actually help you push objectives. From what we’ve seen, the A.I. just stand around doing very little to help change the state of the game.
Let us really dive into the mechanics and fully customize not only the functionality of our Titan, but the look of it as well. If these massive mechs are the driving point of the entire franchise they should have more significance to the player beyond a giant machine you drop from the sky to get a bunch of kills. Titans are an important feature in this title and they should feel as if they have a larger role and more meaning. Allowing us to fully customize our mech would allow a deeper connection for players and inherently more interesting gameplay.
However, these are just our suggestions for what we’d change in Titanfall 2’s multiplayer. There is still time to make crucial adjustments, but as it stands this game has some serious kinks to work out. Hopefully, Titanfall 2 will be the success that Respawn Entertainment desperately needs and not another game that has the community leave it within the first few months.