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Titanfall Review Roundup: What the Critics Say

By - Source: Tom's Guide US | B 30 comments
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Depending on whom you ask, "Titanfall" is either the best thing to happen to multiplayer shooters in years, or the overhyped product of an easily dazzled games media.

Either way, the game finally arrives today (March 11), and the reviews are in. If you're one of the few who's on the fence about "Titanfall," read on to find what the heavy hitters of games criticism think about it.

MORE: 10 Most Anticipated Games of 2014

"Titanfall" is a multiplayer-only shooter for the Xbox One and PC (an Xbox 360 version is due out later this month, but there will be no PlayStation version).

Players take on the roles of foot soldiers in a futuristic war for resources between two factions. They can duke it out with guns and rocket launchers on foot, or summon gigantic mechs — robot-like weapons — called Titans. The balance between powerful giant robot and agile human soldier keeps the game fast and exciting.

Tom's Guide

We gave Titanfall 4 stars out of 5, praising the frenetic shooter for its inventive design, explosive gameplay and accessible mechanics.

"Many multiplayer shooters make you grind away to access their coolest features, but 'Titanfall' lets you punch giant robots in the face from the get-go," said Mike Andronico in his full review. "Features like the Smart Pistol make novice shooters feel powerful, while there's no shortage of intricacies for competitive players to master."

Despite our positive experience with the game, we did note that solo-minded players might be turned off by the lack of a dedicated single-player campaign.

IGN

On IGN, reviewer Ryan McCaffrey decided to hold off on a final score until he logged more playtime, but his review is generally positive.

"'Titanfall' represents a potent fusion of established and modern design ideas, creating a tense and rewarding balance of power and moment-to-moment unpredictability," McCaffrey writes. He does lament, however, the game's sparse customization features and the few multiplayer modes it offers.

Gamespot (9/10)

Gamespot's Chris Watters awarded the game a 9 out of 10, highlighting how both the on-foot and mech combat excel, and how the well-designed maps highlight each mode's strengths.

"The high-flying action intertwines beautifully with the brutish, tactical Titan battles, creating battlefields that crackle with possibility," Watters explains.

The reviewer comes down somewhat harder on the game's story mode, which is still multiplayer only, describing it as uncreative and lacking.

Polygon (9/10)

Arthur Gies reviewed "Titanfall" for Polygon and gave the game a 9 out of 10. He also praised how well the on-foot and robot combat modes complemented each other.

"'Titanfall' has all the makings of the next big thing," Gies concluded. His complaints mostly referenced the game's frame rate, which can dip well below its advertised 60 fps when the screen fills with robots, pilots and rockets.

The Escapist (4/5)

For The Escapist, Jim Sterling took the reins and gave the game a 4 out of 5. "Titanfall" was overhyped, he said, but still delivers where it counts.

"Respawn Entertainment most certainly satisfies, providing a solid shooter with a laudable amount of unique extras draped over a durable and familiar framework," Sterling wrote. He also pointed out that the game's weak writing and well-worn central shooting mechanics held it back a bit.

Eurogamer

Like McCaffrey, Eurogamer's Dan Whitehead explained that he needed more time to test the game's servers before assigning a final score. That said, he was pleased with the game so far.

"Quite simply, if you feel like you're in danger of falling out of love with multiplayer shooters, 'Titanfall' is the game to win you back," Whitehead claimed. The story, the frame rate and the familiarity of the core mechanics were all sticking points, he said, but not deal-breakers.

Joystiq (4.5/5)

Ludwig Kietzmann at Joystiq gave "Titanfall" one if its most enthusiastic major reviews, awarding the game a 4.5 out of 5. The gameplay hit almost every cooperative and competitive shooter sweet spot for him.

"'Titanfall' isn't tuned to perfection for everyone yet, but it starts as a smart, swift and startling movement in well-traveled space," Kietzmann writes. That said, he also thought the story was inoffensive, at best, and offered little for players who prefer support roles in cooperative shooters.

Metacritic (87/100)

The game currently sits at 87 (out of 100) on Metacritic, with more scores coming in as the day progresses. Generally, reviewers adore the balanced combat, the forgiving loss scenarios and the satisfying feel of controlling Titans. Users tend to dislike the game's bland story and occasionally choppy frame rate.

If all of this sounds good, you can download "Titanfall" for Xbox One or PC right now. If not, the ultra-difficult action/role-playing game "Dark Souls II" also arrives today.

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Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    maxiim , March 11, 2014 11:09 AM
    CoD with mech suits and wall running...while the game is fun I dont think it remotely reaches the hype around it...plus we know majority of these sites like ign/gamespot are easily bought for reviews so they mean absolutely nothing
Other Comments
  • 0 Hide
    brarboy , March 11, 2014 10:24 AM
    Thanks :) 
  • -7 Hide
    Christopher Shaffer , March 11, 2014 10:41 AM
    Quote:
    He does lament, however, the game's sparse customization features and the few multiplayer modes it offers.
    That's what DLC is for. Yes, I know, people feel like publishers like devs to intentionally leave out parts so they can sell DLC later, but as we've seen with many big-name shooters, sometimes that's okay so long as what you DO include is solid. Do a few good things, do them very well and you'll have a solid classic. Adding on to that is just icing on the cake.Regarding customization, I think we'll see that develop a bit down the road, but really the appeal of this game isn't nearly as tactical as say, BF4 (though I LOVE that about BF4) - it's really the insanely fast-paced and unpredictable interactions with other players and AI.I don't think we should be too critical of a game's campaign when it does such a damn good job at multiplayer. The best thing about this game is that it's fun. Pure fun. Sure, there's a competitive side, but I don't lament about getting blown to bits or getting my Titan destroyed. Everything that happens is simply thrilling, and that's a lot more than I can say for a lot of games. I love BF4 for competitive gaming, and I now love Titanfall for stupid-fast fun, a la Quake Arena and Tribes 2.
  • Display all 30 comments.
  • 10 Hide
    maxiim , March 11, 2014 11:09 AM
    CoD with mech suits and wall running...while the game is fun I dont think it remotely reaches the hype around it...plus we know majority of these sites like ign/gamespot are easily bought for reviews so they mean absolutely nothing
  • 7 Hide
    gm0n3y , March 11, 2014 11:41 AM
    If only it wasn't published by the devil.
  • 7 Hide
    nebun , March 11, 2014 11:55 AM
    the install size is masive....45gb....you have got to be kiding me
  • -2 Hide
    chibiwings , March 11, 2014 12:11 PM
    another FPS again.
  • 6 Hide
    Zeh , March 11, 2014 12:27 PM
    It's really weird that the first games to be launched on this new generation of consoles are already struggling with FPS. Hopefully it is because devs haven't learned how to optimize yet.
  • 5 Hide
    p05esto , March 11, 2014 12:57 PM
    I personally hated the demo.... Just too much, dizzy, chaotic, bored after 15 minutes of getting blasted in the back every 5 minutes. I find it boring (and other games like that). Each to his own, but it's not something I would buy (I liked Tomb Raider and DR3 was good).
  • 6 Hide
    Phillip Wager , March 11, 2014 1:14 PM
    just seems odd that all of the critics are so positive on release day seems so fishy. i can't really comment because after my expereience i decided the game is just not for me. if everyone who purchased the game is having a blast playing it good for them
  • 5 Hide
    nbraybrook , March 11, 2014 1:16 PM
    Titanfall most over hyped game of 2014, what do you expect from the makers of COD? its OK at best... Get ready for a new Titanfall every 12 months...
  • 3 Hide
    Sam Bittermann , March 11, 2014 1:43 PM
    Don't care what the paid critics say so I didn't read the article synopsis. I'd rather get the official word from actual game players (paying customers), forums, etc...
  • 0 Hide
    Ramshot , March 11, 2014 6:24 PM
    Quote:
    It's really weird that the first games to be launched on this new generation of consoles are already struggling with FPS. Hopefully it is because devs haven't learned how to optimize yet.
    Yup PS4 to me is dated, not like PS3 it was ahead of its time. I would expect to see ps5 in a couple more years instead of like 8 years.
  • -2 Hide
    Ramshot , March 11, 2014 6:28 PM
    Quote:
    It's really weird that the first games to be launched on this new generation of consoles are already struggling with FPS. Hopefully it is because devs haven't learned how to optimize yet.
    Yup PS4 to me is dated, not like PS3 it was ahead of its time. I would expect to see ps5 in a couple more years instead of like 8 years.
  • 6 Hide
    The Indomitable , March 11, 2014 7:49 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    He does lament, however, the game's sparse customization features and the few multiplayer modes it offers.
    That's what DLC is for. Yes, I know, people feel like publishers like devs to intentionally leave out parts so they can sell DLC later, but as we've seen with many big-name shooters, sometimes that's okay so long as what you DO include is solid. Do a few good things, do them very well and you'll have a solid classic. Adding on to that is just icing on the cake.Regarding customization, I think we'll see that develop a bit down the road, but really the appeal of this game isn't nearly as tactical as say, BF4 (though I LOVE that about BF4) - it's really the insanely fast-paced and unpredictable interactions with other players and AI.I don't think we should be too critical of a game's campaign when it does such a damn good job at multiplayer. The best thing about this game is that it's fun. Pure fun. Sure, there's a competitive side, but I don't lament about getting blown to bits or getting my Titan destroyed. Everything that happens is simply thrilling, and that's a lot more than I can say for a lot of games. I love BF4 for competitive gaming, and I now love Titanfall for stupid-fast fun, a la Quake Arena and Tribes 2.
    Sorry bro you had me until "BF4 for competitive gaming"
  • 2 Hide
    weavermsi , March 11, 2014 10:14 PM
    Started playing last night, and boy oh boy is it disappointing - and that's with my anti-expectation shields set at 100%. I could almost ignore the fact that the game is tiny, boring, repetitive and wafer-shallow if the visuals were great, but they're not. They're unconvincing, flat and almost cartoon-like, and 720p doesn't help either; it's simply not immersive. I don't feel the need to play it again.
  • 0 Hide
    hoofhearted , March 12, 2014 2:51 AM
    Lost Connection To ServerDisconnect: ORIGIN error retrieving player datafrom storage - code 503.Not even the ability to play single player while servers are down. No offline mode whatsoever.
  • 4 Hide
    wtfxxxgp , March 12, 2014 4:24 AM
    Quote:
    Started playing last night, and boy oh boy is it disappointing - and that's with my anti-expectation shields set at 100%. I could almost ignore the fact that the game is tiny, boring, repetitive and wafer-shallow if the visuals were great, but they're not. They're unconvincing, flat and almost cartoon-like, and 720p doesn't help either; it's simply not immersive. I don't feel the need to play it again.
    This is why it will almost certainly be better on PC with everything cranked up to 11 :p 
  • 1 Hide
    Christopher Shaffer , March 12, 2014 11:57 AM
    And why, exactly, is BF4 *not* competitive gaming?So, it's not EVE or WoW so it doesn't qualify? Sure, EVE is far more statistical and involved, and I'd never argue to compare the two, but that doesn't mean people aren't seriously competing and waging clan wars on BF4.Considering it's a stats-driven, rank-driven game I'd say there's a pretty serious level of competition.I didn't say "pro gaming" or "competition level" I just said competitive. And I meant specifically, competitive shooter. I suppose COD is competitive, then? That's a joke.It was more of a general description, not to be taken literally. Titanfall is more about short-term arcade-style gaming, whereas BF4 is more about tactics and action.Sure, it's not Arma, but it's still competitive, that's all I meant.Also, Titanfall is not COD with mechs. If you think that, I'm pretty sure you haven't played it. If you think that, you're probably also a person who dismisses Battlefield as COD with tanks.
  • 0 Hide
    cobra5000 , March 12, 2014 1:51 PM
    It's good but it does NOT deserve the fanfare. The game is paper thin, nothing to do but play round after round with noobs that stink. Don't get me wrong, it is a fun game and the graphics look great (pc) but there is almost ZERO substance to this game. Wait for a price drop, because I sure feel stupid for paying $60 for a $30 game! That and it hogs up 50 gb of your hard drive.
  • 0 Hide
    nutmanmatt , March 12, 2014 2:31 PM
    This game is alright but certainly not worth the hype. Its worth a try but certainly not at $60 if you must have it wait till its more around $30. Being in a titan is fun but on the ground I'm being shot in the back, shotgunned and getting killed by roof campers all the time. Also there is allot of server lag right now.
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