TOP 100 REVIEWERon 11 April 2014
This is a long in-depth review, if you can't be bothered to read it all then skip down to the Verdict towards the bottom.
Before I talk about the game itself, it's only fair I talk about my background to playing this game, after which I will get into the meat and veg of the game in the next paragraph. I own both the Xbox One and PC versions of this game as there are some of my friends who to this day refuse to get a gaming console, hence i needed both versions. "So why then did I get this?" you must be thinking. Well truth be told although i bought it I didn't get the Xbox 360 version for myself rather I got it for my younger brother but I have had a good few hours with it and noted a few differences. First off be in no doubt that the PC version is the nicest looking, next is the Xbox One version which believe it or not is actually very impressive and looks gorgeous so don't listen to people saying those versions are rubbish. The Xbox 360 version is slightly uninspiring however. Graphically this version of the game DOES suffer with particularly bad textures and resolutions while everything you see on screen almost has a grey film over it, almost as if they have removed a whole layer of graphical detail. Regarding gameplay, maps and indeed the modes the game is identical to the PC and Xbox One version of the game. I must note that one map in particular that has dinosaurs moving in the background did look flat in this game almost as if they removed some of the background animation. Indeed, you often got random things flying across the maps and I didn't see much of that in this version so they have definitely stripped some of the moving background cinematic out. An interesting feature that the 360 version has is the ability to lock the frame rate at either 30 or allow it to fluctuate, for the sake of the game running at its smoothest I would STRONGLY recommend that you lock game play at 30 frames per second and that can be done through the menu system.
So now I've talked about the differences between the 360 version and the PC and Xbox One versions I now want to talk about what Titanfall is.
Titanfall is a First Person Shooter and online multiplayer game and has no offline mode or single player functionality whatsoever so keep that in mind before purchase. If you want a very simplistic view then think of it as Call of Duty with Mech's (Titans) which you can enter and directly control or allow them to guard you in automatic mode. There are a few different game modes and 15 maps to begin with. Each match is limited to 12 players so 6v6 and in my honest opinion it works well especially when you have a few Titans on the map as any more and it would become crowded. Don't forget each player can have a Titan at the same time so potentially each map can have 12 players and 12 Titans plus the 12 AI controlled bots on each team.
When you call in your Titan to drop at any location you choose, a force field immediately protects it from damage but also so it can't be stolen by another player which believe me is a good thing, without it I can tell you virtually every Titan that is called in would be stolen and part of the fun of giving everyone a chance in them would be lost. There is an automatic 4 minute countdown timer for each player after which you can call in your titan to drop but the timer can be reduced by killing other players and bots. There are three class of Titan; Atlas class which is the multi purpose Titan and the one you can use to begin with, Stryder class which is the fastest moving Titan and able to quickly move out of the line of fire and Ogre class which is an ultra-armoured Titan which is absolutely deadly especially when using the add-ons like the particle shield. Each type has a different "core" upgrade so the atlas can have more damage, and the Ogre can have a beefed up shield. The Stryder has a "dash" core upgrade for increased manoeuvrability.
When you're in the Titan you get to see the mini-map and the score at all times so you don't lose out on any info. The Titans weapons are deadly but also include releasing smoke and a vortex blocker which collect and fires bullets back at enemy Titans. The Titan naturally has a health bar and when it gets low you can eject which fires you up into the air and you can choose your landing spot either in safety or if you're lucky on an enemy Titan where you can remove some protective shielding and quickly shred the Titans health. You can also climb onto friendly titans and use them as cover. There are also numerous ziplines across many maps to which you can use to travel quickly from place to place but keep on your toes as enemy pilots may end up using them at the other end!
Speaking of "you", you play the part of a "pilot" and every pilot has a mini jetpack on the back which gives you a boost while jumping (you press jump again while jumping to activate the jetpack boost). It makes climbing through high windows and indeed onto roofs quite easy. Not just roofs, you can also walk on walls (temporarily for a few seconds) and then use your jetpack to stay in the air, it makes moving from one building to another easy, it also makes the game more challenging as you never know where enemy pilots are going to come from.
The Pilot weapons aren't as extensive as they are in a call of duty or battlefield game but the weapons that are available are varied enough and include standard weapons for shooting other pilots and weapons for taking Titans down while on foot, just like Call of Duty you can create personalized load outs which saves you messing around for each match. There is a Smart Pistol which enables you to lock onto an enemy and the bullets tracks to the target without you specifically aiming. You can also have C4 charges which are increasingly becoming overused in all platforms I have played. You also get things called "burn cards" which you unlock and can preselect up to 3 before each match, during the match you can choose to use one when you spawn the next time and they can be anything from reduce the waiting time for a Titan to more damage from primary weapons, once you die again that burn card terminates. Think of them as a single use perk to give you a boost but don't worry as you unlock plenty as you progress!
Among the many modes, there is "Last Titan Standing" where by everyone starts in a Titan and although you can get out of the Titan once it is destroyed that's it, you won't be getting another one, the team that has the last Titan standing on the map wins and believe me it forces people to work together rather than everyone going lone wolf. Hardpoint mode is where each team tries to hold 3 points on the map like domination, at the end of each match the losers have to try and evacuate on their drop ship by getting to it in time before it evacuates unless you've been killed while escaping. The winners get to place the final nail in the coffin by destroying the drop ship before it evacuates although that requires lots of co-operation and firepower! The third mode is Attrition which is essentially team deathmatch. The fourth mode is called "Pilot Hunter" where basically you get a point each time you kill an enemy Pilot which helps boost your teams score and certainly moves your attention away from Titans and onto Pilots (so best played for those that prefer ground warfare although the Titans and bots are still there but you don't get points for them) There is also a capture the flag mode.
So where's the catch you must be asking? Well there are a few, firstly you get AI controlled bots on the map which drop on the map with you as allies (and the same for the other team) which you can take out but half the time you can get confused between them and actual players, meaning half the time you get killed by a real player while your looking at these stupid bots (think of the dumbest bots you've ever come across and that's how they are). Secondly, there are issues with servers disconnecting although considering the game has only just been released I suspect those problems will be sorted out pretty quickly.
Now some people have said that the environments should be destructible like in Battlefield, personally I think that would be a mistake as you do require cover from the Titans, on a plus side all the buildings have multiple ways in and out so campers beware, having said that all the campers I have seen so far tend to stay on the roofs!
Pros: "Bluepoint Games" who ported the game to xbox 360 for Respawn Entertainment have on the whole done an impressive job * Fantastic non stop competitive action * Graphics are on a par with many shooter games on the 360 but don't match the consoles best like Crysis 3 for example * jetpacks and ability to run on walls is awesome * using a Titan feels brutal against pilots and makes you feel epic * titan vs titan battles are well balanced * playing with friends takes this game to the next level * Some of the best Multiplayer maps I've seen in years with good variety * Pilot and Titan weapons are awesome * 6v6 player count works well when you factor in Titans and bots * Audio including the music is gorgeous * People who spend whole matches camping in Call of Duty won't last long in this!
Cons: Bots are stupid and only serve to boost XP and shorten the wait for your Titan * so called "multiplayer campaign" feels pointless (effectively it's multiplayer with set objectives and audio chit-chat to provide a background to the story), it feels like an afterthought to be honest * lack of graphical shadows e.g. Titans don't create a shadow on the ground * C4 is already overused * Servers need to balance players out more i.e. you sometimes get a whole team of level 1's on one side and a bunch of level 30s on the other * EA is the publisher which doesn't fill me with confidence.
VERDICT: The people at Respawn Entertainment were the original creators at Infinity Ward of the Modern Warfare series of games. After Modern Warfare 2 had been created they left due to a disagreement with Activision regarding the direction they wanted to take the series, so they went and created their own company (Respawn Entertainment) and Titanfall is the first fruit of their ideas. Respawn created both the PC and Xbox One versions and then asked Bluepoint Games to make a 360 version and the game on the whole has ported well even though the graphics have been restricted. You can tell in more ways than one the links between this game and the original Modern Warfare games in the way it plays while on foot, with the map designs being spot on with a good combination of close quarters and long distance on each map and of course the ability to scale building at the same time. Titanfall is a great multiplayer experience and if you like first person shooters then this is a must for any gamer to get.
I'm not going to over paint the canvas and say it's the best game since sliced bread as without the titans in the game it's very similar to call of duty but with less features and fewer game modes, with the titans however, you have two battles going on; the one on foot between pilots and pilots and the other between titans and titans. When the two meet and you're stuck in the middle the action never gets dull to say the least. If you don't have an Xbox One yet, then the 360 version is definitely worth getting. However, if you plan on getting a new console soon I would honestly hold off and get the next generation version as graphically there is a huge leap.
If you still have a 360 and don't plan on getting a next generation console then this version is for you, it's not the best looking Titanfall but it plays well and will probably sell the most copies. Enjoy!