Titanfall 2: Everything You Need to Know

Titanfall is back, which means it's once again time to become a nimble parkour soldier and take control of a delightfully murderous robot. Titanfall 2 evolves Respawn Entertainment's beloved humans-meets-mechs shooter in a big way, introducing some neat new pilot abilities, a host of fun new Titan robots, and the series' first-ever single-player campaign.

While you wait for your Titan to drop, here's what you need to know about Titanfall 2 before it hits on Oct. 28 for PS4, Xbox One and PC.

What's Titanfall all about?

For those new to the series, Titanfall is a futuristic first-person shooter that lets you play as both nimble Pilots and lumbering Titans. As a Pilot, you can wall run, double-jump and do all kinds of other cool moves as you gun down your enemies. Once you take control of a Titan, you become a giant, mechanized force of destruction that can crush soldiers and down enemy robots with rocket launchers, flamethrowers and machine guns. This David-Goliath dynamic between Titans and Pilots is what makes Titanfall so uniquely thrilling.

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Whoa, there's finally a single-player campaign?

You bet there is. Titanfall 2's solo campaign casts you as Jack Cooper, a lowly grunt of the game's rag-tag Militia (think Rebel Alliance) who are wrapped up in conflict with the Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation (think Empire). Jack has dreams of becoming a Pilot -- the badass double-jumping, mech-riding soldiers you see in multiplayer -- and when a Titan named BT-7274 loses his original human partner, Jack finally gets his chance.

Titanfall 2's story seems simple, but there's something endearing about the idea of a soldier bonding with his robot pal as the two of them slaughter waves of enemies. The campaign looks like it'll offer a good mix of Pilot platforming, large-scale shootouts and intense boss fights that let you take on some of the game's new Titans.

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What can I expect from multiplayer?

Titanfall 2 builds on the foundation of its predecessor, introducing new multiplayer modes while retaining a few fan favorites. The new Bounty Hunt modes has both teams race to take down AI targets, while Amped Hardpoint is a sped-up version of the game's classic capture-the-point mode. The returning Attrition mode is essentially team deathmatch with a few AI enemies mixed in, while Pilots vs. Pilots focuses exclusively on on-foot combat. If you're the objective-based type, there's always Capture the Flag.

New to Titanfall 2 multiplayer are Networks, which work a bit like clans or guilds in other games. When you're part of a Network, the game will try to team you up with other players in it, which means you're more likely to get to play alongside friends and like-minded gamers.

What's new for Pilots and Titans?

Titanfall 2 introduces a handful of new Pilot abilities (dubbed "Tacticals"), but the only one that really matters is the grappling hook. Trust us. If you're fine with not joyously swinging from ledge to ledge, there's the Pulse Blade, a deadly throwing knife that also scans the area for enemies. Other key abilities include the A-Wall, a temporary stationary shield, and the Phase Shift, which lets your Pilot teleport.

The game also offers a whopping six Titans, each of which have a distinct look and moveset. Scorch is a flamethrowing Titan, Ion has lots of cool laser attacks and Legion is a beefy heavy weapons specialist. Tone has homing rockets and a sonar scanner, while the appropriately named Ronin is a big robot that fights with a friggin' sword. Want to fly? Go with Northstar.

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What about pre-order bonuses and crazy deluxe editions?

Don't worry, Titanfall 2's got those. The game's $79 Deluxe Edition features exclusive customization items for your Titans, Pilots and weapons, as well as "Prime" versions of Ion and Scorch that have unique sounds and designs.

If you want to go all out, the $249 Vanguard Collector's Edition bundles the Deluxe Edition with a bunch of physical goodies pulled right out of the Titanfall universe. You get a Dog Tag flash drive, a field journal, various patches, a scarf and, most importantly, a full-scale Pilot helmet with working LED lights.

Pre-ordering any version of Titanfall 2 will give you early access to Angel City, a remastered map from the first game. You'll also get various customization items. If you log in to both Titanfall 2 and Battlefield 1 with the same EA account by Dec. 31 2017, you'll get a special World War I-inspired Titan skin.

Titanfall 2

Can I play early?

Nope. While recent shooters such as Gears of War 4 and Battlefield 1 offered special early access editions, everyone will have to wait until Oct. 28 to play Titanfall 2.

Should I play Titanfall 2?

We really enjoyed our time with Titanfall 2 during various betas and demo periods, and early reviews of the game are very positive. The game's debut solo campaign is getting big praise for its smart pacing and level design, and its multiplayer is shaping up to be a refined version of what was already one of the most fluid and fun shooter experiences out there. We'll be playing tons of Titanfall 2 in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for more coverage.

Michael Andronico

Mike Andronico is Senior Writer at CNNUnderscored. He was formerly Managing Editor at Tom's Guide, where he wrote extensively on gaming, as well as running the show on the news front. When not at work, you can usually catch him playing Street Fighter, devouring Twitch streams and trying to convince people that Hawkeye is the best Avenger.