Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Titanfall Round Two: Cool, but where's the old guy lobby???

This depicts one of the quickest and easiest ways to die in Titanfall: shooting at a titan with a pea shooter
So Titanfall is working much better tonight, I'm actually getting in to games and having some fun. However....and I bet there are a lot like me out there....I've missed approximately 24 hours since the game rolled out, which means I am woefully behind the learning curve already. I was getting into groups of guys ranked 35-38 on the opposition, and my piddling rank 2 wasn't much to boost confidence. My kill scores were god-awful, too. I can kill the bots that populate the maps to help feed the murder train necessary to induce the mighty titans to appear, but hitting these spazzy pros running around.....oh god, I have never been so conflicted about a game, feeling amazement at how cool it is and yet knowing that playing the game will be a cavalcade of ruinous losses for me. Can I get better over time? I dunno, maybe....I have on occasion gotten into Call of Duty games and managed to "not suck" much (but in Battlefield I might as well BE a bot for all I bring to a game...) and although I didn't get too much into it I found I was alarmingly good at Max Payne 3 multiplayer....so it's possible. But the question ultimately is: how much must I play Titanfall to reach that point? Can I manage to do it?

The lack of an actual campaign is unnerving....the idea that I have to rely entirely on the multiplayer for my dollar to hour value and even then I can't opt for a bot-only offline game is a disturbing trend and I hope Titanfall doesn't serve as a trailblazer here (even though I know it will). We need games with more options, not less. The again, maybe I got too sucked up into the hype. Maybe I missed the point that this is, ultimately, a game for the hardcore competitive multiplayer gamers, for the people who spend hundreds of hours in Planetfall 2 or Counterstrike.

If I get 40 hours out of Titanfall I'll be amazed. If they patch in some offline (or at least single player) action in some future expansion or sequel, I guess that's about as close to a win as I can hope for. For now....maybe I'll try it again with a controller this time instead of keyboard/mouse. Maybe that will help....I doubt it....I think only the fountain of youth, nothing else to do all day and a bad case of OCD behavior are going to help me catch up to the skill average in this game. Maybe the devs can get some better matchmaking in for ranks? It would be nice to play with a gang of other players who were all in single digit ranks with me....

UPDATE: Just played a few rounds using the Xbox 360 controller on the PC, and the experience was dramatically better; I was at least moving from the "people leave when the see my name in queue" status to "I don't suck!" status. Niiiiice.

This has happened on other games (i.e. Max Payne 3, for ex) where playing with a controller seems to improve the play experience dramatically and against the conventional elitist PC logic that the keyboard/controller combo is the only good way to play. Ironic, as I just recently upgraded to a Razor Naga mouse and Razor Blackwidow Ultimate keyboard....which in fact I'm using to type this now. It's a nice keyboard, but I'm not used to noisy mechanical keys anymore....gripe gripe gripe call this the bitchy old man blog tonight!


  1. That's a stiff retail price for a multiplayer only game. Yikes.

    1. It's a $30 game wrapped in a $60 veneer. The absence of other modes when the competition (CoD) serves up three entirely distinct styles of gameplay every year really makes Titanfall look like an incomplete package.

  2. Yeah, I'm too casual a player for PvP only games. I actually still play Battlefield 2 (there, I said it) because it has a bot mode for single player or coop games.

    1. Ah, I'd love it if they had kept the offline botmodes from BF2 in BF3 and 4....I really miss that. It's why I like CoD Ghosts and CoD Black Ops (great bot modes) as well as the GoW series.

      In Titanfall's defense, the multiplayer in campaign mode does feel very friendly to all players, despite the ass-kicking I was getting. But maybe "get this on a big sale for $20" friendly, not AAA game price friendly.