I like FPS (First Person Shooter) games. You know – games where the monitor shows the game world as seen through “your own” eyes, and the main purpose of the game is to run around and shoot stuff. Among the first well known FPS games were Doom, QuakeÂ and Half-life (in that order) during the 1990’s, and these are still played by old fans of the genre (including me). If you are younger you will perhaps be more familiar with later additions to the FPS genre such as HALO, Battlefield, Call of Duty, etc. This is in no way an exclusive list, I just mention a few commonly known FPS games to let you know it means.
The earliest FPS games were exclusively single-player (SP), meaning that that the player was only playing against computer-controlled “enemies” – not other players. The game developers very soon realized how fun it would be to play against other humans, and began to add multi-player (MP)Â functionality to their FPS games.
For several years, most FPS games that came out had both an SP part and an MPÂ part, and newer games seldom have any “real” SP at all – just some type of “campaign” where you play the MP maps but only against computer controlled enemies.
I have always prefered SP over MP – following a storyline and trying to “beat” the game, which can take hours or weeks depending on the game. MP is generally a completely different thing, where you team up with a bunch of other players against another team and try to beat the crap out of each other over the course of one “match”, which is typically half an hour long.
In MP you typicaly have a chat function where you can speak (by text or voice)Â with all the players at once, and a team chat where you speak exclusively with your team players. The chats are used between matches to greet other players, provide tips, set up things for the match, congratulate the other side after the match when you have lost, etc. The team chat is used to coordinate attacks and defense within your team during a match.
Well, that is what the chats are meant for. In reality they are rarely used for other things than verbal abuse of the other players in both the opposing and the own team. I got so sick of this that I lost all interest in MP many years ago.
I started reading about this new and upcoming game, Titanfall, early this year (2014). It had great graphics, an interesting game idea, and looked really, really cool, but when I found out that it was MP only, I lost all interest.
Then, this Easter, I visited my brother in Ã…kersberga, and my nephew David had recently bought Titanfall for PC (which came out just before that I believe) and wanted to show it to me. I was still a bit worried about the MP part, but I loved the game right away, so as soon as I got back home I bought it for download through Origin, and I have been playing it since.
The game has a short training mode where you play solo to learn what you can do in the game, and the controls to do it, but after that you are in Multi Player territory. This consists of Campaign and Multiplayer. Yes, the Campaign is also MP, but there is a difference which is explained below.
The combatting sides
Titanfall takes place in the future. I don’t recall seeing a specific year anyware but that is of no interest.
Mankind has discovered a way to fold space and soon we found a system of habitable worlds that we named The Frontier. This is where the game is played. Ill make the rest real simple for you; One side is IMC (the …) which we could refer to as “the government”. The opposing side is the Militia, which are the rebels, trying to free the Frontier worlds from the grasp of the (in the eyes of the Militia) evil government.
We are not given enough information about either side to know if one or the other side really is good or bad, and it is of no consequence for the game itself. It is just a background story to justify the exiscance of the two sides as well as the war itself.
Both sides have identical equipment, so there is no need to chose one side over the other. In fact, you don’t even have the opportunity to do so.
Titans and Pilots
A Titan is a mechanical, two-legged fighting machine controlled by a single Pilot who is sitting inside of it.
There are three types of Titans called theÂ Stryder (the slimmer and quicker of the three), the Ogre (a slower heavily armored monster), and the Atlas (sort of midway between Stryder and Ogre). They are all about six meters tall, walk on two legs, and have two arms. They are autonimous in that they can handle themselves on their, but a Titan will of course fight better when a pilot is sitting inside of it, controlling its moves – why would we otherwise be needed at all
You, my friend, are a Pilot. You will start each game (except in the Last Titan Standing game mode) on foot, and your Titan will arrive a couple of minutes later, dropping down from space (a “titan fall”). How long this takes depend on how well you are doing on foot. Killing enemies will speed up the clock so that you get your Titan earlier. You will be informed when your Titan is ready to drop, and you can then call it down. When it lands (or rather smashes down – killing any enemy that might be standing on the spot) it will be protected by a strong force field for a couple of seconds. That is a good time to run up to it and enter it under the protection of the shield.
You are now in control of your Titan, and to my great happines there are no special controls for this. You keep playing using the same controls as on foot.
Your Titan is protected by its armor and by the shield that it generates on its own. As long as your shield is up, it will absorb most of the damage that your TitanÂ takes, but some of it will always get through and beat on your armor. You can never replenish broken armor, but your shield will regenerate as long as your Titan is strong enough to support it. So if you are taking a beating and your shield is low, try to get out of harms way for a while, and your shields will come back on.
When your Titan’sÂ armor is gone,Â it will die. When your Titan is beaten to a point where it is not quite dead, but does not have the energy to restore its shields, it is “doomed” and will inform you of that. Depending on the situation it will explode and die in a few seconds, or it might be able to stay alive for maybe a minute. In aither case, it will finally explode, and if you are still in it at that time, you will die with it.
Titanfall has a Campaign mode which is typically what you begin with as a new player. There is nothing to say that you must do this, but it is a good way to learn some of the maps and game mode with and against other new players. If you skip the Campaign and jump right into a CTF (Capture the Flag) match against seasoned players you are probably juyst going to sit there and wonder “What the hell is going on????”.