Found this old unpublished post and wanted to get it out there.
I did end up getting the full game for,y birthday after it came out because my son wanted to watch me play.
Pre:release thoughts on the beta:
I don’t feel like I was as impressed with Titanfall as I should have been. I think people are still going gaga for it, I haven’t checked in again to even see if the beta is still up and running. I played it a bit, I wanted to give it a fair shake but it really felt far too COD to me. Arcady physics, particularly balstics oriented. The small space and rampant running around was reminiscent of Quake or UT deathmatch. The addition of the Titan did make it different, it added another flavor to it, but it wasn’t enough to flesh out an otherwise cookie cutter run around and shooter.
The bullets went straight, seemingly through objects and the collision detection was off as well – from a person perspective, mech perspective, and ballistics. From the second I touched down (and I didn’t do too badly) I knew this was not my thing.
Technically it wasn’t all that impressive either. I’m sure beta and all but the detail wasn’t there. Rubble abounded, but there wasn’t anything alive about it. It was a rock with a different texture. No pieces hanging, jutting out – a la Battlefield Metro where there is rubble but it’s in chunks, as if it was actually made above and then broken and what resulted is what they kept as the level.
I think I would have had more fun if the levels were bigger, if there were more soldiers. They had 8 v 8 and they filled in the lack of enemies that would otherwise plague it with “bots” – team members that are actually robots who attack. They’re not dumb, but they’re no supporting cast. The best you can hope for is they’ll distract the titan long enough so you can pull out your big gung and blast it before it knows where you are.
I would say the levels are even smaller than Hawken, and that felt cramped to me. I like the idea of being dropped into a city, but let that happen – let there be a city and the mechs destroy it through movement and battle, it makes sense to me. I don’t really feel the connection to an already destroyed rubble pile. At least in Battlefield the building can be broken in such a way that you can use it strategically. In Titanfall you have your buildings with the same windows, same levels, same broken walls all the time. It’s pretty easy to know where they may pop up, or if someone is on the ground where they are headed to hide.
Mech Warrior has probably the most expansive levels, but they have always been more of an open field war than a city. They had probably about the same number of mechs in battle but the levels just feel bigger. There wasn’t much detail last time I played (it was a while ago) but trees and such littered the waterfront. It was certainly designed with Mechs in mind and Titanfall has open spaces with tight hiding spots in-between keeping the non-titan people in mind.
All in all I would still probably rate Mech Warrior at the top of the “mech game” genre. Titanfall doesn’t quite fit though because it’s not all about the giant robots. Just the fact that you can get out and back in makes for some basic differences so they can’t really be compared, but Hawken is similar from a level design perspective. I’d put Hawken at number two. It was the same fast paced blasting you see in Titanfall, but again – no running around sans-mech.