Every Xbox Console, Ranked By Their Games
Xbox has seen four console generations and introduced impressive hardware. At the end of the day, it’s the games that make or break a console.
Xbox has released some of the most popular consoles ever created, and their best games prove just how notable each console is. Of course, multi-platform games like Grand Theft Auto 5 and Call of Duty have a significant history on Xbox consoles and often top the bestseller charts on the Xbox marketplace. However, exclusives and debut titles have enjoyed a solid track record on Xbox and drive interest in acquiring one of these consoles. These are the games that make Xbox stand out from the competition, but some Xbox console generations have had more success than others.
Since its debut in 2001, Xbox has released four major consoles, the Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and the Xbox Series X/S. The time between these console generations varies, and some have had improved versions released before the next big console, such as the Xbox One S and One X. Even though improved versions of a console can be game changers, they don’t stand out as a new console generation and, instead, help contribute to the quality of its respective generation. However, console generations aren’t defined by hardware alone; incredible games make a console successful.
Unfortunately, The Xbox One generation comes up short compared to Xbox’s other consoles, but there were still plenty of games to be excited about in this era. This generation saw the beginning of Xbox Game Pass, a brilliant service that offers access to a plethora of games at a low price point. The Xbox One also had great exclusives like Cuphead and Titanfall.
Overall, the Xbox One generation had fewer exclusives than other Xbox consoles. Still, multi-platform games sometimes were better experiences on the One consoles, especially when the One X was launched. Red Dead Redemption 2 is a notable example that performed better on the Xbox One X compared to other consoles. Fallout 4 is another game that was best experienced on Xbox One, as the ability to install mods here outperformed its Playstation counterpart (though the PlayStation 4 did eventually get Bethesda’s Creation Club).
The Xbox One also supported the release of some massively popular titles that still go strong today. Of course, Halo: The Master Chief Collection is a huge draw that compiles all the Master Chief Halo games, as well as Halo 3: ODST and Halo: Reach. This one is a big deal for Halo fans, and it makes these games much easier to access for players who haven’t yet experienced them. Another big Xbox One exclusive is Sea of Thieves, which still has a dedicated player base and receives new updates, such as the Monkey Island crossover announced at the Xbox Showcase 2023.
Xbox Series X/S
The Xbox Series X/S represents the current console generation, which launched in the holiday of 2020. Despite being very early in its lifespan, the Series X/S has shown exciting promise that it will be a good generation of games for Xbox. One of the most significant prospects for Xbox in this console generation is the acquisition of Bethesda, the publisher behind IPs such as Fallout and The Elder Scrolls.
Bethesda’s next title, Starfield, has been generating hype for a long time and will finally be released in September 2023. Starfield will be a massive experience that has the potential to rival Xbox’s other exclusives like Halo. This exclusivity deal was a big win for Xbox and its gaming ecosystem. However, Starfield only plays a part in what makes the Series X/S generation so promising.
The biggest draw for Xbox and its current consoles is Game Pass. It offers players an enormous catalog of games for a monthly subscription price. The service is constantly growing, regularly adding the best new and old AAA and indie titles. Game Pass helped make games like Pentiment and Hi-Fi Rush possible, and both have thrived on the service. New titles like Starfield will also be available on Game Pass when they launch, making the service a must-have for Xbox Series X/S players.
The Original Xbox was released in 2001 and forever changed the console gaming landscape. It was one of the most powerful consoles of its time, and its success was boosted by the immense popularity of Halo: Combat Evolved. The Original Xbox also revolutionized online gaming with Xbox Live, which launched a year after the console release. Online multiplayer was a huge draw for this console, especially when Halo 2 launched.
Halo wasn’t the only successful series exclusive to the Original Xbox. The Fable series debuted on the console, and the relationship between the IP and Xbox continues today with the announcement of the next Fable game coming to the Series X/S. The Original Xbox is also notable for being the only console players could experience the Star Wars games like Knights of the Old Republic and Republic Commando.
The Xbox 360 era was the best console generation for Xbox. This console had eight years in the spotlight until the Xbox One launched, and in that time, some of the best games ever were released. The Halo series, of course, enjoyed a massive era of success on the Xbox 360 with Halo 3 and Halo: Reach. impressively, however, was the launch of one of Xbox’s core exclusive IPs, Gears of War.
Just one year after the Xbox 360’s launch, the first Gears of War was released, which was an instant success and one of the most-played Xbox Live games of the era. It spawned a trilogy and a spin-off that was contained all on the Xbox 360, and the series continues into the current console generation. The Gears of War trilogy was a huge deal for the Xbox 360, providing a compelling experience that enticed players to get their hands on the console.
The Xbox 360 also helped launch some of the most famous video game franchises ever. IPs such as Mass Effect, Alan Wake, and BioShock all started on the Xbox 360 and continue to be relevant in the current generation, receiving sequels or film and television adaptations. These titles eventually found their way to other platforms, but their timed exclusivity on the Xbox 360 boosted the console’s reputation and appeal. The length of the Xbox 360 generation may have had a small hand in how great it was. Even still, a vast portion of this console’s best games were released in its early years, so it seems the 360 was marked for success from the start.
Xbox hasn’t been around as long as its competitors, but it has undoubtedly had a massive impact on the industry and continues to do so with the Xbox Series X/S generation. It’s still early, but Xbox has been making progress to cover the ground lost with the Xbox One generation. This can be seen in upcoming games like Starfield, and now that Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision-Blizzard appears to be going ahead, it stands to reason that even more cool things are on the way for Xbox. However, the Xbox 360 generation set a tremendously high bar that will be challenging for Xbox to beat.
The Future Of The Xbox One Is Riding On This Insane, Next-Generation Shoot-Em-Up Game
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On March 11, videogame fans will finally get their eager thumbs on one of the most breathlessly anticipated new titles of the year. Called Titanfall, it has taken four years and many millions to produce. And there is arguably more riding on its launch than any game released in recent memory.
The action is set in a futuristic, war-ravaged hellscape in which battling players called pilots man colossal robotic killing machines, or Titans, in a hyperkinetic fight to the death.
A visual and auditory extravaganza that could bring Michael Bay to tears, it’s just about as straightforward as a first-person shooter can be: You’re a guy with some very heavy weaponry, blowing people away before they do the same to you. In other words, it’s a variation on a very old theme. Microsoft is banking on the game to help turn around its console division. But more than that, Titanfall may well determine the future of console gaming in general, which is undergoing an identity crisis as consumers are increasingly bewitched by mobile games and quirky titles released by small, indie producers.
Sales of the new Xbox One have lagged behind those of rival Playstation 4 by a significant margin: Six million PS4s to just 4 million Xboxes so far. Early reviews of Microsoft’s new console were warm but not enthusiastic, and given a steep retail price of 500 (compared to 400 for the PlayStation 4) and a relative dearth of titles for the new device, most experts suggested a wait-and-see approach.
Lacking great software, the Xbox One has so far been a little like a Titan without a pilot at the controls: a heaving, unwieldy mass of powerful hardware that kind of just sits there waiting to be brought low by a canny rival.
One poor, ranting soul on YouTube may have put it best in a cri de coeur posted in mid-January over being shut out of the beta testing program for Titanfall. At one point, he gestures toward his Xbox One. That, right now, that fucking thing sitting over there, he says. Ain’t nothin’ to play for it.
The troubled Xbox One debut has already claimed a few casualties. Two executives who oversaw Microsoft’s gaming division recently departed the company. After initially agreeing to speak for this story, both Microsoft and Electronic Arts, the developer of Titanfall, reversed course. There’s a lot at stake, and the PR teams are not taking any chances.
The 50-year history of video games has been, at its root, a long-running contest between platforms — the so-called Console Wars. And there has never been a bigger battle than the one playing out right now between Sony and Microsoft. At the moment, Sony has the clear advantage. But if Titanfall lives up to its advance hype — some early reviews are positively rapturous — it may help Microsoft close the gap.
That outcome is by no means assured, however. Hubris has often been the x-factor in the Console Wars, and market leaders routinely fail to recognize how quickly the game can change. The last time around, Sony, which had captured nearly 60 percent of the worldwide market with the PS2, disastrously overplayed its hand by pricing the PS3 at 600. Plus, game-makers said it was notoriously difficult to program for.
This time around, it’s Microsoft that may have misread the market.
PlayStation 4’s advantages are clear: Unlike the Xbox One, it isn’t a hefty brick of a system with fat, unpliable wires, and it doesn’t force users to master an awkward new peripheral like Xbox’s Kinect, to control its games and apps. Crucially, it also costs 100 less. Given its history with the PS3, Sony realized early on that while we might be out of the recession, the rules of frugality that consumers learned during the bad times aren’t going away any time soon.
The economic collapse of 2008 has been brutal for gaming. THQ, a 25-year-old company that had revenues of 1 billion in May, 2008 (many of its titles were branded tie-ins like Avatar: The Last Airbender and the WWE series), liquidated its assets in early 2013, and died with nary a whimper. Many big publishers, including Activision and EA, laid off staff this year as part of a painful retrenchment. The latter shuttered its Los Angeles and its Montreal studios last year after a high-level executive shuffle which saw longtime CEO John Riccitiello step down. (Whether the move was prompted by the Consumerist naming EA the Worst Company in America wasn’t specified.)
Meanwhile, consoles themselves don’t have quite the appeal they once did. After the staggering success of the Wii, with sales of more than 100 million, the poor performance of the overly complicated Wii U led Nintendo’s beleaguered president Saturo Iwata to issue two public apologies: first, for the excruciating download times consumers encountered on the console’s launch day; then, for a poor financial forecast last month. At this point, the Wii U has sold fewer than 6 million units.
The industry is under increasing pressure from Angry Birds, Candy Crush Saga and the whole array of mobile games, with their cheap price tags, simplistic design and maddeningly addictive gameplay. Even free games like the idiotic but compelling Flappy Bird (R.I.P.) and the many clones that have sprung up in its wake are helping erode the console game market — competing for the money and time of all but the most hardcore gamers. Then, there’s the content-rich Steam service from Valve, a distribution platform for PC gamers that will soon — via a new console called the Steam Box — be playable on users’ TVs.
At the same time, indie games like Gone Home and Ridiculous Fishing are pushing the envelope with clever narrative or innovative design; such games generally retail for 20 or less, compared with to 60 for a new console game. Another plus for mainstream players: They don’t require a massive time investment, whereas some console games can take up to 100 hours to complete fully.
The console-makers have come up with two responses. One, they have turned their devices into multimedia hubs. The PlayStation 4 allows subscribers to the Playstation Plus service to watch Netflix or Hulu. The Xbox One is an even more elaborate entertainment device, allowing users to control live TV. Fundamentally, of course, such moves only reinforce the key issue, which is that even hardcore gamers have other services clamoring for their attention.
The second response console-game-producers have come up with is simply making their games so mind-blowing that a phone or tablet can’t possibly compete. That said, the cost of these lavish productions isn’t getting any cheaper. Budgets of 100 to 200 million and years of development are becoming more common — risky bets at a time when tastes are fickle and success is far from assured.
Even games that sell a few million copies may not make a healthy profit. For instance, Irrational Games, makers of last year’s BioShock series for Take-Two Interactive, is shuttering its doors after selling four million copies of its recent BioShock Infinite.
And even Sam Houser, the reclusive co-founder at Rockstar Games, told me he fretted about the release of Grand Theft Auto V. Would it sell? ‘Grand Theft Auto’ is a double-edged sword, Houser told me last year. The fans want bigger, better — you know, higher quality You have to meet their expectations. It did sell — to the tune of 800 million in 24 hours. But it was probably the only super-huge success story of last year. Even perennial favorite Call of Duty didn’t do as well as expected with its latest version, Ghosts.
What To Expect From Titanfall
It is into this swirling whirlpool of unease that Titanfall will drop next week. A sci-fi military shooter, it is set amid a devastated landscape dominated by an evil mining corporation that is stripping the environment of its natural resources. This is careful, risk-averse narrative territory, to say the least. Similar scenarios have been winning over gamers since the glory days of Doom twenty-some years ago.
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Where Titanfall really breaks new ground is in what it leaves out. A so-called online only game, it can only be played over a broadband Internet connection, pitting the user against other players around the world. Unlike Halo or Call of Duty, the biggest franchises in the shooter category, the game has no single-player mode: the scripted, cinematic approach that allows users to immerse themselves in a character and embark on an interactive odyssey.
That said, it’s not a massive multiplayer online game either, like the hugely successful World of Warcraft or EVE Online. Instead, it’s somewhere in between. Players of Titanfall are logged on to Microsoft’s servers, where they can team up with friends or be dropped into matches with strangers. Matches consist of two teams of up to six players each and average just 10 minutes in length, a decision that may help the game appeal to players beyond the hardcore shooter crowd.
Certainly, that’s the hope of Vince Zampella, the CEO of Titanfall’s San Fernando Valley-based development house, Respawn Entertainment.
A few weeks ago, I got a chance to play the beta version of Titanfall. The first surprise was that Zampella and his team have provided a tutorial, spelling out exactly what to do, step by step. Clearly, Respawn is on a mission to bring Titanfall to the masses. (Hardcore gamers aren’t eager for such assistance, preferring to claim they already know how to play, puzzle things out on their own, or secretly devour YouTube videos for tips.)
It’s a dangerous tightrope to walk, Zampella tells me. If you say to a core gamer, ‘We’re going to make the game more noob friendly,’ they’re going to hate you, he admits with a laugh. So the goal was to keep that core experience and expand on it. If you were to come and watch our test team — who’ve played hundreds of hours — play the game, it is such a fast-paced, hardcore experience. But a mid-level group has no less fun. To see that unfold well for both kinds of players means we’ve hit a good sweet spot. In fact we’ve made it more hardcore than most games that are out there now. At the same time we’ve made it inviting to new people. You don’t feel ‘I can’t touch that because everyone’s going to be better than me.’
Zampella, a college dropout who started out his game development career producing on NBA Tournament Jam and a unique, humorous game of strategy called Baldies in the mid-1990s before moving on to Call of Duty, is no longer a kid. In his mid-40s, he has spent decades in the industry and has the war wounds and graying hair to prove it.
In March 2010, Zampella and his then-partner Jason West, whose company, Infinity Ward, had been acquired by Activision following the blockbuster success of the original Call of Duty game in 2003, were escorted by security into an Activision conference room and fired. Gamers responded with shock, especially given that the most recent installment of the franchise, Modern Warfare 2, was well on its way to selling 22 million copies.
Fans of the game were a dedicated bunch. Many invested hours upon hours playing online with friends, bonding, trash-talking and nurturing the kind of couch-potato bromances that have long been the real killer app fueling the video game industry. And they wondered: How could a couple guys get fired after making one of the greatest games of all time?
Zampella and West weren’t just terminated, either; they were sued for breach of contract and insubordination, and Activision refused to pay 36 million in royalties owed. The issue, Activision claimed, was that the pair had held secret meetings with the top executives of its closest competitor, Electronic Arts, in clear violation of their contract.
Indeed, days after Activision filed its suit, Zampella and West signed a deal with EA to begin producing new games, prompting Activision to sue Electronic Arts for 400 million.
As if playing their own real-life version of Modern Warfare, Zampella and West fired back with a counter-suit, which claimed that they’d been sacked because Activision didn’t want to pay those royalties — not just to them but to employees of Infinity Ward, as well. In a press release issued by legal counsel, West talked about how saddened he was after putting heart and soul into working for the company.
After all we have given to Activision, he said, we shouldn’t have to sue to get paid.
Activision countersued, describing how the pair morphed from valued, responsible executives into insubordinate and self-serving schemers who attempted to hijack Activision’s assets for their own personal gain. The company pointed to a meeting arranged by former Xbox executive Seamus Blackley, now West’s and Zampella’s agent, without Activision’s knowledge. It was a secret trip by private jet to Northern California to meet with Electronic Arts’ then-CEO John Riccitiello.
As the potential lawsuits made their way through the legal system, it was found that an Activision employee had been instructed to hack into West and Zampella’s company computers, email exchanges, and cell phones to gather evidence against the pair.
After much public posturing and secret negotiations, the case was settled out of court in May 2012, with Activision ponying up an undisclosed sum.
Hitting The Reset Button
Zampella and West promptly launched a new company, appropriately dubbed Respawn Entertainment, and took most of Infinity Ward’s employees with them.
They negotiated a deal with EA that granted Respawn ownership of their intellectual property, which were unusually favorable terms. Better yet, Zampella says EA never interfered in the development process at all. A game like this is not what EA normally does, he explains. This game is a little bit scary, the exclusive platform stuff. It’s not the obvious choice for a big publisher. They could have lost faith and they didn’t. I give them a lot of credit for that.
In June 2011, Respawn’s website published an intentionally blurry piece of artwork that had game bloggers deconstructing the muddy image like conspiracy theorists poring over the Zapruder film. Zampella says Respawn would like to have been more transparent, but it’s only natural to try to build suspense. People don’t understand — we can’t tell you everything because it’s not part of our marketing and PR plan. We still have a set way that we’re going to unveil this game to build a lot of hype for it.
The production cycle of a AAA game, as the most ambitious and expensive games are dubbed, is not unlike the making of a big action movie. Separate teams work on design, graphics, programming and engineering.
First, though, comes a preproduction process during which ideas are proposed and furiously debated. In Respawn’s case, every employee was given the chance to pitch ideas. We hired a big team really quickly, Zampella recalls. We had a lot of Smart, strong-minded people sitting around with ideas of what we could do. Some of the ideas were not sci-fi at all. There were some single-player-only ideas. There were some single-player/multiplayer ideas. It was a little bit of everything. Zampella whittled the proposals down to two or three that were real contenders.
Originally, everyone agreed that the game would have to include a single-player element and be playable on the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3, the most recent generation of consoles.
But Zampella couldn’t help thinking maybe there was another way. He recognized, as did most hardcore gamers and industry insiders, that the narrative elements of shooters like Halo or Call of Duty have always more or less sucked. Though sometimes breathtakingly cinematic, these storylines are essentially window dressing — typically about 10 hours of it — that developers tack on to justify the 60 cost of a game. The amazing graphics, Hollywood actors, and dizzying camera angles are useful marketing tools, but they are also expensive, and are considered cliché by most critics. For instance, in a review of Call of Duty: Ghosts, Polygon’s Russ Frushtick expressed pity for Superman Returns star Brandon Routh for having to read the lines he was given. He was right — the script for Ghosts would never have been given the green light by a Hollywood studio, despite the fact that it was written by the screenwriter for Traffic.
Respawn came up with a new approach: ditching the single-player game entirely and injecting more narrative into the online multiplayer portion of the game. Not only did this strategy likely save the studio money but it may help to reinvent multiplayer games, which have long suffered from a conspicuous lack of storytelling.
What we wanted to do was bring great story and content to the multiplayer world, Zampella says. So there’ll be missions. You meet characters and they’ll explain the back story of the universe. The story invites you into the franchise and leaves you feeling good about the world.
That said, narrative will always be secondary. You’re still going to be mainly concerned about saving your butt, Zampella admits. Some people will be so concerned with saving their own butt that they’ll miss a lot of the campaign story stuff. Because it really just is flavor on top of the multiplayer game. We don’t want to hit you over the head with it. For the people who want to absorb it and notice it, it will be there for them.
The biggest challenge, Zampella says, was making the game equally appealing whether you are playing as a pilot or as a Titan (in a typical match, a player will often switch back and forth). There are areas in the map where only a pilot can go, he explains. Those have to be fun and set a certain way. There are areas on the map that have to be more open because that’s where Titans can go. Those two pieces have to be interesting on their own and work together. That interplay between the pilot and the Titan — that cat and mouse gameplay — the balance of weaving those together really well is not easy.
Meeting The Monster
In June last year, I traveled to E3, the videogame expo in Los Angeles, where Titanfall was unveiled to the public for the first time.
Joel Emslie, the game’s lead artist, is a dedicated, plain-spoken fellow with a beard that’s beginning to gray. In a small room off the convention floor, he talked over a live demonstration of the game, while hundreds of fans waited on line outside to get a peek. Onscreen, there was chaos in a futuristic city. Soldiers with jet packs jumped from the side of one building to another in parkour fashion, skipping up walls as easily as they ran along the ground. And then, down they came: giant machines dropping from the sky — the Titanfall.
The robots weren’t originally going to be as big as they are now, Emslie told us, noting that his first scale model, made by hand from parts salvaged from other action figures and purchased in a modeling store, was only the beginning of a long process of trial and error. He talked for nearly a half hour about how the game was more than a shooter — it was popular art as well.
The bigger bombshell had been dropped one day earlier at a Microsoft press conference, when a company executive revealed that Titanfall would launch exclusively on the Xbox One, its new game console. (It will also launch on the PC, and two weeks later, on the Xbox 360.)
This decision had been made without Zampella’s knowledge. EA made the deal to make it exclusive and we were not privy to that deal, he says.
Still, it seemed like a reasonable call. The Xbox One was receiving breathless pre-release hype as a welcome successor to the wondrous 360. But then came a series of missteps. In one bone-headed move, for instance, Microsoft revealed a digital-rights management scheme that would prevent Xbox One owners from swapping games or trading them in at chains such as GameStop.
Seven hours later, also at E3, Sony held its own press conference to promote the Playstation 4. Jack Tretton, Sony Computer Entertainment of America’s then-CEO, made a point of declaring outright that Sony was perfectly happy for customers to re-sell games they had already purchased. The crowd of game-makers, journalists, retailers, and financial analysts filling the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena auditorium burst into applause. It got louder. Then many rose to their feet to offer a standing ovation.
Other controversial issues involving Microsoft’s new console emerged. It turned out that Xbox One would not play old Xbox 360 games, a move that infuriated some of the platform’s most dedicated fans. It would have to be powered on at all times — a fact that spurred fears of Big Brother-like surveillance via the Kinect camera. Meanwhile, users would be required to employ the Kinect as a controller even if they didn’t want to, waving their arms and shouting commands, like that poor astronaut in 2001: A Space Odyssey, pleading with the computer HAL to open those pod-bay doors.
Finally, Microsoft’s high-handed treatment of indie game developers led many to cozy up to Sony instead.
Even one of the device’s major features — the ability to use it to watch live TV and web videos — became a subject of negative chatter in some circles. At various events, Microsoft marketed the Xbox One as a kind of interactive DVR, which would let you view NFL player stats, for instance, while watching a game. For most of us, this would seem a benefit. Many gamers, though, saw it as a signal that the machine’s makers were hedging their bets.
Still, most onlookers reserved judgment for the console’s launch, knowing that it’s the games themselves that make a device appealing. But when the Xbox One was finally released on Thanksgiving, the available games, including Ryse: Son of Rome, elicited a collective yawn.
Recognizing it had a problem, Microsoft began to backpedal. It revoked the always on edict. It eased some of the rules for independent producers and began courting them in earnest. And it decided gamers could sell their used Xbox One games at their chosen retailers after all.
recently, it even released the Xbox One Media Remote to free users from the annoying Kinect, letting them access their TV and entertainment with the touch of a button. The cost, 24.99.
Less than a month after E3, Don Mattrick, the bland executive who had been overseeing Microsoft’s games division, departed the company in a hurry — for embattled Zynga no less. His replacement, Julia Larson-Green, left her position last week.
In most respects, the launch of the Xbox One — eight years after the 360 — had landed with a thud.
But there was still Titanfall.
Titanfall would be the console’s killer app. It would have to be.
Down To The Wire
Zampella comes off as breezy and calm during our interview, but he’s under intense pressure. During crunch time for a major game, hundreds of animators, programmers, and engineers can be called upon to finish a title. With fewer than 75 employees, Respawn has a relatively tiny headcount. For comparison’s sake, Telltale games, which makes The Walking Dead adventure games, which are far less complex to produce than Titanfall, employs 180 people.
Perhaps in light of tighter margins for video games in general these days, Respawn is a very lean operation.
Which isn’t to say the development of Titanfall has been without its casualties. Early last year, Jason West, Zampella’s longtime partner, left the company citing family issues and generating no shortage of discussion in the gaming industry. To this day, Zampella won’t talk about what happened. Asked whether the erstwhile partners remain on friendly terms, he jokes, I’m sorry, the connection’s bad. I’m going through a tunnel. I’m going to dodge that one, yeah.
At this point, the real test will come on launch day. And Zampella doesn’t have to look far for a cautionary tale. EA’s earlier forays into online-only gaming have been fraught with problems. Last year’s launch of a revived SimCity was plagued by server issues. The most recent version of Battlefield, EA’s answer to Call of Duty, was so riddled with bugs and crashes on release that the company drew a class-action lawsuit, which is still pending.
That shouldn’t happen with Microsoft, Zampella promises.
Besides, online-only games are nothing new. EverQuest, which launched in 1999, is still being produced. World of Warcraft, released in 2004, still has nearly eight million monthly subscribers. But these are desktop-based role-playing games, not fast-paced shooters. Titanfall will require exponentially more processing power.
All the AI and physics are done on the Cloud, Zampella points out. So it takes away from your machine having to do it. He adds that in the past, one player’s machine would act as the server for a particular game, which meant every machine needed extra space in case it was called on for this role. Now that happens in the Cloud as well. It’s a more consistent experience, he notes. You’re not like, ‘Hey, today I’m the server so I’m going to do better than everybody because I have an advantage.’
Of course Cloud servers do occasionally go down, especially when demand is high, like when a few million gamers get their hands on a brand new, much-hyped title at the same time.
According to Mike Futter, news editor of Game Informer, The reason that launch periods are so rough for many online games is that it’s both difficult and costly to bring new servers online quickly to support an early spike that will taper quickly. Perhaps that explains why the company invested 700 million into a new data center in Iowa last year. Part of what Microsoft is banking on is the ability to spin up additional capacity as needed, with minimal incremental cost, Futter adds.
Microsoft is moving to address the price issue as well — releasing a special package to give the console a boost, which essentially throws Titanfall in for free with the cost of the device, along with one free month of Xbox Live, a 70 value in all. If Titanfall doesn’t help move Xbox One units, Microsoft is in big trouble, Futter notes. For a console that’s only three months old, that’s a drastic reduction and communicates volumes about how Microsoft sees its position in the current market.
That said, if Titanfall does significantly turn around sales of the Xbox One, Sony could well find itself playing catch-up. According to Billy Pidgeon, an independent industry analyst who’s covered video games since the 1990s, Exclusivity is potentially a huge win for Microsoft and the Xbox One and a negative for Sony, which established an early lead. I could see the Xbox One making up much of that because of ‘Titanfall,’ and even pulling ahead. Pidgeon, who estimates that Titanfall could sell between four and five million copies in its first week, adds that Sony needs to have a compelling exclusive as quickly as possible.
Then again, he says, If ‘Titanfall‘ sells just one or two million in the first week, I would be concerned.
As the game begins, I choose a bulky male or female pilot, along with weapons for my Titan, including a wickedly powerful thing called the Plasma Railgun. A character bearing a suspicious resemblance to Abbie Heppe, Respawn’s community manager, ushers me out of the spaceship as the game begins.
If you’ve ever jumped out of a plane, you’ll recognize the feeling of thrill, panic, gut-butterflies and vertigo that accompanies the beginning of a Titanfall match.
Down I go — no parachute, no lifeline. Part of me is thinking, Oh my god, just let me not get too dizzy because in a second I’ll be fighting for my life. The other part is thinking, Wheeeeeeeee!
I jump from a ship into an embattled world that demonstrates the enduring influence of Blade Runner. Here’s a shuttered amusement park. Further on are alleys and buildings that show the ravages of bombardment.
I die within seconds, having taken time to inspect that shuttered amusement park. But moments later, I respawn.
I race down ruined streets, then BAM! I’m engulfed in a spray of blood — a gruesome contrast to the resplendent cherry tree blossoming nearby. Again, I respawn immediately, and this time I begin to experiment with my jetpack. It lets me run on walls like a salamander, pinball off buildings, or perch on a high rooftop to begin picking off opponents. This kind of parkour-type play suggests the influence of Mirror’s Edge, which uses a similar style to move around its futuristic world.
I’m just a soldier at this point, but I’m nimble — considerably faster than the Titan looming nearby. Still, that thing is powerful. Just one rocket can wipe me and my teammates out in an instant. If I time it right, though, I can run up the back of the metal beast, tear open the cockpit, and shoot frenetically until I’ve killed it. I only manage to do this once or twice, and for a task accomplished mostly with my thumbs and index fingers, it’s surprisingly exhausting.
Like so many video games, Titanfall makes you feel bigger, better, and more powerful than you do in real life. But it’s only when you get inside one of the giant robots that the full effect becomes apparent. After a few minutes of gameplay, a Titan falls from the sky beside me. I press a button, and in an instant I’m inside, sitting in a cockpit, blasting away at other Titans. When I blow away my first mech, it’s like bringing down a moving redwood tree, and I let out this goofy whoop of relief.
It’s only a game. I know that. But I feel elated, accomplished, a nerd warrior of the highest order.
The feeling fades a moment later, just before my mech is blown to bits by another Titan. I eject from the cockpit, my pilot soaring high into the air. For a moment, I can see the world: the vast, glimmering sea before me, the skyscrapers on the horizon. The Console Wars seem a distant memory from a far-away place.
Then I plummet Earthward, shooting furiously as I fall.
Titanfall (for Xbox One) Review
Since 2004, I’ve penned gadget- and video game-related nerd-copy for a variety of publications, including the late, great 1UP; Laptop; Parenting; Sync; Wise Bread; and WWE. I now apply that knowledge and skillset as the Managing Editor of PCMag’s Apps Gaming team.
The Bottom Line
Titanfall, the Xbox One’s first big tent-pole release, thrills with fast-paced mech-shooting action that appeals to FPS noobs and vets alike.
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- Impressive weaponry.
- Fun to play as both Titans and pilots.
- Useful Burn Cards.
- Lots of maps.
Titanfall is a game with the weight of the industry riding its steel-plated shoulders. Respawn Entertainment’s mech-and-parkour first-person shooter has stockpiled awards since its E3 2013 reveal, and the hype escalated tenfold after a brief beta test this past February. Microsoft hopes that Titanfall will help push Xbox One units, and Respawn Entertainment hopes the title will be its first blockbuster. The new studio was founded by people who worked on the wildly popular Call of Duty series, so there’s some proven talent behind it.
Does Titanfall meet all the expectations? In a word: Yes. Titanfall (9.99 at Amazon) (Opens in a new window) (also available on PC and coming to Xbox 360) is a marvelous multiplayer shooter that manages to satisfy FPS diehards with its intense and varied gameplay modes. It also manages to ease newcomers into its world of guns, mechs, and jetpacks, without too much handholding. In short, Titanfall is a game you should sample if you own a Microsoft gaming platform.
The Facts Behind the Fall Titanfall chronicles two warring factions—Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation and Militia—as their pilots and mechs battle on a desolate planet. The generic party names are perfect representations of the ho-hum multiplayer campaign (that’s right, there’s no true single-player mode) that simply serves as a skeleton to support a reason for fighting. Most gamers will explore it simply for the unlockables and will never return once a mission’s accomplished. The game’s meat lies in Titanfall‘s Classic mode in which two teams of six shred each other in a near-storyless environment spread across five game modes (Attrition, Capture the Flag, Hardpoint Domination, Last Titan Standing, Pilot Hunter) and 15 maps.
Battlefield 4 (PC)
Some gamers gave Respawn Entertainment heat for limiting human battles to six-vs.-six action (Battlefield 4 has a whopping 64 players on screen at once), but that was a premature judgment. Titanfall‘s battlefields are bursting with activity. Besides the human-controlled pilots, Titanfall features several A.I.-controlled grunts and the Titans themselves, which can be set to operate independently of their human owners. It’s obvious that Respawn Entertainment took a long, hard look at what works in a multiplayer shooting environment—I didn’t encounter any extended lulls despite the low player count. The maps are nicely populated, and death can come from a variety of directions, thanks to Titanfall’s level layout and verticality.
Super-Soldiers and Iron GiantsThere’s an impressive combat flow on display when you’re on foot as a Titan-less pilot. The maps are designed to keep you moving at a fast clip as you wall-run, double-jump between large gaps, and climb obstacles. This means FPS veterans will need to rethink how they approach battlefield tactics. The impressive environments are detailed, but the firefights don’t put a scratch on the in-game structures. There are no collapsing towers, burning shrubbery, or exploding earth. The epic battles have no impact on the game-world, most likely in order to preserve pilots’ ability to freerun through maps. Still, I would’ve appreciated something toppling over.
An A.I. Titan dispatcher will chime in every now and then to update you on how much time remains before your mech is ready to deploy. Your Titan becomes available for use roughly 3 minutes after you start a match, but you can reduce its build time by being an effective player who claims hard points and kills Titans, A.I. grunts, and human pilots. The giants, thankfully, aren’t slow-moving hunks of metal. Titans are relatively fast-moving, and have an effective rechargeable dash move that helps you evade firepower (particularly dedicated anti-Titan weaponry). You can even have a Titan guard specific areas and fire on enemies. Alternatively, you can have it follow you as you trek the landscape on foot. This has the potential to open the door to many fresh gameplay strategies (for example, placing a Titan in guard mode to safeguard a hardpoint from capture).
Although the Titans are bullet sponges that can also dish out big damage, players who control pilots are not at an inherent disadvantage. Pilots have cloaking devices that make them invisible to Titans (but only blurred out to pilots on foot), the ability to duck into buildings, and anti-Titan weaponry designed to bring down the big guys. There’s something particularly thrilling about turning a corner, spotting a hulking Titan a short distance away, firing off homing rockets, and staggering the machine as a setup for a kill. You can even rodeo Titans; that is, jump on their backs, rip off their heads, and air-vent the rival pilot. Check out our Titanfall Beginner’s Guide and 10 Tips That’ll Make You a Titanfall God articles for learning the ropes.
Experience Points, Load Outs, and Burn Cards
Experience Points, Load Outs, and Burn CardsThere are multiple pilot and Titan classes designed to appeal to different players, and you can unlock more—as well as additional weaponry—with experience points (XP) earned on the battlefield. Fortunately, Respawn offers ample opportunity to collect XP. Every successful action, including melee-attacking pilots and destroying evacuation ships, puts XP in your Customization options let you select a pilot’s main gun, sidearm, anti-Titan weapon, tactical ability, and more. Likewise, you can select a Titan’s loadout both before and during matches. Titanfall’s classes aren’t as rigid as, say, the ones in Team Fortress 2. Teamwork will help you dominate an opponent, but it isn’t quite necessary here because of the flexibility of pilots.
Burn Cards are randomly supplied in-game bonuses that add limited-use goodies (XP multipliers, faster pilot foot-speed, and much more) as players complete challenges and level up. You can equip a Burn Card before the start of a match, but if your pilot dies, you immediately lose the bonus weapons/abilities. You start with the ability to play a single card, but, as you level up, you can equip multiple cards. Burn Cards add an addictive collectible element to the game, as well as additional customization options to help further differentiate pilots.
This Titan Doesn’t Fall Titanfall is the first-person shooter for people who see the Call of Duty and Battlefield series as the same old same old. Certainly being the first entry in a potential new franchise helps, but it’s more that that. The freshness really stems from the Titans themselves and the innovative pilot movements. Titanfall tickles that special place in geeks’ brains where fond memories of Gundam live. Titanfall is a highly enjoyable shooter that makes the Xbox One an attractive box if you’re thinking of making the next-gen leap.
Titanfall is a mecha first-person shooter developed by Respawn Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts. It was released on March 11, 2014 in North America and on March 13, 2014 in Europe and Australia and March 14, 2014 for the United Kingdom and New Zealand for Microsoft Windows and Xbox One. An Xbox 360 port developed by Bluepoint Games was released on April 8, 2014 for North America and April 11, 2014 for Europe.
Humanity lives in the deepest reaches of explored space in a vast region known as The Frontier. It contains many well-known and inhabited solar systems, but many more worlds remain uncharted. Most people will never travel this far away from normal civilization, but for pioneers, explorers, mercenaries, outlaws, and soldiers. the Frontier offers both adventure and opportunity.
The Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation originally funded many expeditions to the Frontier, promising veterans of their military campaigns in the Core Systems. the region of space containing the IMC’s inhabited worlds (including Earth). free land and other benefits in return for starting up businesses and colonies on the Frontier. Eventually, the IMC withdrew this support for several reasons, leaving the colonists stranded without outside assistance for more than one hundred years.
Over time, life continued on the Frontier largely independent from the Core Systems. However, when the IMC returned hundreds of years later to claim eminent domain over the Frontier’s land, people, and resources, the people of the Frontier united as the Frontier Militia, utilizing guerilla and terrorist actions to further their cause. Eventually, this led to the Titan Wars, a series of conflicts involving usage of the Titan platform. the ultimate evolution of modern-day powered exoskeletons. The war ended in a (presumed) IMC victory, solidifying their presence on the Frontier. For fifteen years, the IMC would relentlessly hunt down the Militia and push them to the verge of extinction.
Fifteen years following the end of the Titan Wars, the 1st Militia Fleet is now being pursued by Vice Admiral of the IMC, Marcus Graves. On the run for months, the fleet is now running low on fuel and supplies, and has no choice but to conduct a desperate raid on an IMC gas mining world. Landing their troops at the site of a refuelling pump supplying their capital ship, the Redeye, IMC and Militia forces fight for control of three Hardpoints that would allow the IMC to maintain their air defence and the Militia to siphon the fuel. The Militia escapes the planet with just enough fuel to last a few weeks.
Tracking the remains of the fleet that survived the battle, the IMC stumble upon a hidden colony in a believed-unexplored region of space. Upon further inspection, it is realised that the colony is created out of the remains of IMS Odyssey, the former IMC flagship during the Titan Wars that disappeared during a mutiny conducted by Executive Officer James MacAllan. The IMC uses this opportunity to test out their new BRD-01 Spectre combat drones, humanoid robots designed to replace traditional infantry, in a massacre of the town. Detecting an S.O.S signal sent out by the colony, the Militia fleet investigates the site, clashing with IMC forces in the town. Ultimately, the Militia make contact with MacAllan, who agrees to help them on the condition that they evacuate the colonists. As an offer of trust, MacAllan provides the Militia with schematics for the IMC refuelling station that allows the fleet access to the Frontier, situated on the planet Demeter- if the facility were to be destroyed, it would take reinforcements years to arrive on the Frontier.
Having succesfully recruited an ex-IMC officer to their cause, the Marauder Corps next moves to Angel City to extract ex-IMC Pilot Robert Barker Taube; once one of the best Pilots around. MacAllan’s plan to take out Demeter necessitates taking out the airbase that defends it. however, a full-scale assault would be impossible, meaning that the Militia must employ other means to destroy it. This would involve taking out the Repulsor Towers located on the site, which keep the extremely hostile wildlife away from the base. To take out the Towers, the Militia must first find one they can access to ascertain the tower’s weaknesses. Barker was once stationed at a site involved in prototyping the technology, and could thus provide the Militia with the opportunity they need.
However, Barker refuses to fly the troops to the base unless one significant obstacle; flagship IMS Sentinel, is destroyed. The Militia formulates a plan to attack the ship while in drydock, hijacking the IMC’s own orbital defenses to use in destroying the ship. With the carrier down, the Militia then proceed to Base Golden to formulate a way to destroy the Repulsor Towers at Airbase Sierra. They succeed in this task, and Cheng Bish Lorck is able to modify a Data Knife to send a pulse through the tower to render it inoperable. The Miltia fleet then gathers in the outskirts of the Demeter system, and waits for the base to be destroyed.
During the Battle of Airbase Sierra, Sarah Briggs deploys into the base alone while mainline infantry distract the IMC forces outside. She eventually succeeds in bringing down the towers, though is shot in the arm by Kuben Blisk in the process. The fleet then moves onto Demeter, with Pilots and Titans battling on the ground to control the stations that would allow the reactor core to overheat. Ultimately, the Core proves more resilient than expected, requiring someone to manually detonate it. MacAllan sacrifices his own life to ensure this victory for the Militia, resulting in the complete destruction of the Demeter gateway and the stranding of IMC forces on the Frontier.
In the months following the Battle of Demeter, Vice Admiral Graves defects to the Militia cause alongside vast quantities of human personnel. In his wake, IMC AI Spyglass is promoted to the rank of Vice Admiral, proceeding the reorganise the remaining forces (now composed mostly of robotic infantry) as the Remnant Fleet. Three months following Demeter, the Militia strike at the first of a number of Spectre production plants, hoping to cut off the IMC’s endless supply of expendable infantry.
As the campaign ends, the IMC still controls a vast portion of the Frontier, but is now on the defensive due to the expected two year wait for reinforcements to arrive. However, as of Titanfall 2 (five years later), these reinforcements are nowhere in sight.
The Titanfall campaign takes the form of a series of multiplayer matches on Attrition and Hardpoint Domination. The story plays out with character dialogue playing in pre-game lobbies and in the matches, with the campaign versions for each map having several unique setpieces not seen in regular multiplayer (such as the railgun of Outpost 207 destroying IMS Sentinel). However, an update to the game’s matchmaking system means the pre-mission dialogue is no longer available, and is transcribed on each mission’s page for convenience.
- Training. Solo training mission, used to guide the player through the game’s mechanics.
- The Refueling Raid. Desperately low on fuel, the 1st Militia Fleet prepares to raid an IMC gas mining world.
- The Colony. A battle between IMC and Militia forces at a remote colony forces a reclusive war Hero out of hiding.
- The Odyssey. While the Militia seek MacAllan’s expertise as a former IMC officer, the IMC deploy forces to prevent his escape.
- Get Barker. IMC forces scour the harbor district of Angel City in search of MacAllan, who is attempting to extract his old friend Barker from the area.
- Assault on the Sentinel
- Here Be Dragons
- The Three Towers
- The Battle of Demeter
- Made Men
The gameplay in Titanfall is similar to that of many other first-person shooters, with the player wielding a standard weapon and gunning down enemies. Compared to shooters like Halo and Call of Duty, there are points awarded for performing certain actions, such as killing enemy soldiers, Titans, and scoring headshots or unique methods of killing. While not piloting a Titan, players can sprint, double jump through the use of a small, but powerful Jump Kits, climb up structures through the use of said jump pack, and Wall-Run. making it possible to clear whole maps without ever setting foot on the ground. While piloting a Titan, the double jumping and wall-running abilities are removed, as well as the ability to fit into certain spaces only accessible to Pilots, but gameplay is quite similar.
Titanfall is an online-only multiplayer title, with no single player campaign or offline features. As a result the game’s story is told through a series of multiplayer matches with unique setpieces and dialogue to relate context for the fighting going on in the mission.
At the end of a multiplayer match, players will enter the Epilogue. where the losing team has to get to an evacuation dropship within a certain amount of time. If the player is successful in returning to the dropship, they are rewarded with extra XP. The opposing team can pick them off, preventing them from going to the dropship.
Respawn Entertainment begun development on Titanfall in 2010, with early pre-production and concept art being created shortly after the studio’s formation. Respawn Entertainment was founded by ex-Infinity Ward employees Vince Zampella and Jason West after being fired by Activision. In April 2010, Respawn would announce a 30 million contract with Electronic Arts to produce a new game. codenamed R1 in development. for the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. During the early days of the company, the studio explored a number of ideas for what their new game could be about, with many different science fiction and fantasy ideas pitched. The first piece of concept art was developed by Joel Emslie, featuring a rocket launcher firing at a dragon in an urban cityscape. 
Eventually, the team was able to get computers, and begun using the Source Engine to experiment with fluid motion, similar to that of Tony Hawk Pro Skater and Crackdown. Wall-running would be implemented after the release of the film Kick Ass, with a scene near the end of the film used as inspiration for reprogramming a setpiece of Half-Life 2 where the player is confronted by a Combine soldier in a long hallway, with the level modified so that the player could wallrun around the soldier and take him down from behind. This would prove to be popular, with the studio later using Half-Life as a basis in which to begin experimenting with the addition of mechanics such as double and triple-jumping and a Grappling Hook. The Sidewinder would also find its origins in this period, beginning as an automatic rocket launcher, alongside the Smart Pistol MK5. 
Although the Source Engine was used for initial experimentation, it wasn’t seriously considered at first as the engine for the final product, with the studio looking to other engines such as Epic Games’ Unreal Engine and the engine used by Pandemic for their Lord of the Rings: Conquest game. Ultimately, the team decided on the Luna engine developed by Insomniac Games for the Ratchet and Clank games, due to its ability to hit 60fps on the Playstation 3 console. However, there was still no clear vision of what Respawn’s game would be, initial tests and demos proved unsatisfying. During this time, artist Joel Emslie began creating physical models of character concepts, inspired by models used in older pre-CGI films such as Star Wars. One of these concepts was an Iron Man-esque power suit, resembling a diving suit. Although the design was initially developed as a human-sized exoskeleton suit, the idea for a Titan was born when Emslie placed a small 6-inch soldier figurine against the suit, with the model now appearing like a large robot. That would later be the inspiration for the design of the Ogre. The team implemented a Titan in the Ratchet and Clank engine in early 2011, in a test known as XO_ACTION_TEST. 
By July 2011, the game still had no real direction, leading to game director Steve Fukuda to take initiative and begin pitching a story direction for the game to begin focusing around. This pitch would involve the player character. MacAllan, alongside Bish, using a turret to defend MRVNs from native wildlife while they repaired a ship called the Redeye, which would also serve as the name of the level. This pitch would also involve the character Sarah and a character known as Vektor, who was to have been voiced by YouTuber FPSRussia. 
However, the game would continue to have an increasingly troubled development, with tensions between developers nearly escalating to physical violence. The stress of the lawsuit held against the former Infinity Ward employees would further exacerbate this issue as the lawsuit would often take time away from the game’s development, leaving parts of the team with no direction or leadership for days at a time. This led to an internal rift forming in the studio between those involved in the lawsuit, and those not. 
A pitch for R1‘s multiplayer would be developed, described as multiplayer MMA. There would be four player classes that could be controlled, with switching done by pressing different buttons on the controller’s D-Pad. These four classes would include Titans, Pilots and a squad of infantry wherein the player would control one soldier, and the AI would control three others who would follow the player, who would later become the Grunts seen in the final game, with the fourth class left undisclosed. Titans in this build of the game were able to have their canopy damaged, forcing the player to leave the Titan and join the battle as a Pilot. During this stage of the game’s development, a weapon known as the Vortex Rifle was developed, but would later evolve into the Vortex Shield seen in the final game. This demo was shown to EA executives in late 2011, though the campaign mode was still showing little signs of progress. 
In early 2012, the project was given a lucky break when Respawn were contacted by Xbox, who were interested in securing the game as a launch title for the then-upcoming Xbox One. As it looked increasingly unlikely that the game would hit its March 2013 release date, a release for the Xbox would secure an additional six months of time to develop the game. The studio also reached out to Sony in the hopes of being able to get details on the Playstation 4, but Sony wasn’t ready to talk about the console at that moment, and instead offered to help develop the game for the PS Vita. 
Another mission developed during the development of R1 was titled Worker Base, and featured MacAllan sneaking inside an IMC military base to rescue a character named Saito. The level’s would feature a sequence in which the player would bring down the Dog-Whistle Tower on the base, allowing the local fauna to destroy the base as a distraction for the mission at hand. This mission would feature stealth mechanics, in which enemies would be highlighted yellow while unaware of the player. then red when they spotted the player; and a mechanic wherein the player was required to hack MRVNs with the Data Knife to unlock doors in the base. The mission received a lukewarm reception within the studio, despite being the first prototype successfully completed. Over time, the studio would gradually grow more divided between single-player and multiplayer teams and those involved in the lawsuit vs. those not involved in the lawsuit. The lawsuit would eventually reach a settlement before going to court, but the fractures within the studio would be still evident, as the multiplayer teams felt that the studio had spent too much time working on the Worker Base prototype to not much progress, when the multiplayer was showing more progress. This led to several employees leaving the studio.  By late 2012, the maps Relic and Swampland had been concepted. 
To get the game back on track, Steve Fukuda created a document titled Titan Wars, attempting to create a more clear vision for the game. This document called for the fireteam element of multiplayer to be scrapped alongside the singleplayer campaign, with the campaign story being folded into the multiplayer component as part of a multiplayer campaign so that development resources could be prioritised. This document also suggested that the bridge of the Redeye would be a dynamic main menu lobby where the player could view their character interacting with other players inbetween games. However, this brought with it a new challenge, as the team no longer believed they had the manpower to develop for more than one or two systems. Additionally, the studio ran out of money and had to be given a final chance by EA to get back on track. 
To further complicate issues, studio co-founder Jason West began showing severe apprehension about the game’s quality, leading to a drop in morale amongst the development team. This period would mark the development of multiplayer maps such as Angel City, Fracture and Boneyard. Eventually, an eight-minute build of Titan Wars was shown at EA’s GPMM meeting in early 2013, with intentions to fully announce it at E3 of that year and release the following year. Early playtesting received positive feedback, though it was felt that Titans were too tanky and that the game felt too much like playing bumpercars with the Titans. During this phase of the game’s development, players spawned in Titans, then transitioned to Pilot gameplay once their Titan was destroyed (similar to the gamemode Last Titan Standing in the final product), and both Pilots and Titans had regenerating health. To mitigate this, the Titan shield system was implemented, so that Titans had a permanent health bar that could tick down over time once the shield collapsed. The decision would also be made to make players spawn as a Pilot first, then call in their Titan mid-game, leading to the game’s new name of Titanfall. 
Due to a lack of information about the Playstation 4, Respawn made the decision to FOCUS the game as being a game for the Xbox One and PC, with an outside studio. Bluepoint Games. brought in to port the game to the Xbox 360. The game was revealed at E3 to critical acclaim, but internally was still partially unfinished. Initially, Titanfall was slated to be a 13-month console exclusive for the Xbox platform, with a Playstation release shortly after; however, Respawn were informed in summer 2013 that EA had made a deal without the studio’s involvement that turned the original Titanfall into a permanent Xbox exclusive.  The team experimented with player numbers ranging from 4v4 to 8v8, but ultimately settled on 6v6 as best to mitigate the game’s chaos factor. During August 2013, the studio debated cutting the Ogre and Stryder Titans to keep FOCUS on just the Atlas, but were kept in by Vince Zampella’s insistence. Burn Cards were also started in August 2013, and were still under development until December. The campaign’s script and voice recording were still not complete in September 2013, while Regeneration was thought of and implemented in December. The game entered Alpha on October 18, 2013, and had its closed Alpha test in January 2013, and held an open beta in February. 
Titanfall released on March 11, 2014, for Xbox One and Windows platforms, while the Xbox 360 version was planned for launch on March 25 in North America and March 28 in Europe, though on March 19, EA announced that the Xbox 360 version would be delayed to an April 1 launch, to allow Bluepoint Games more time to finalise the port. 
Alongside the regular edition, the game launched with a special edition called the Titanfall Collector’s Edition. The Collector’s Edition came with a copy of the game, a large statue of an Atlas Titan and a copy of The Art of Titanfall, among others.
On November 28, 2014, the TitanfallDeluxe Edition was released for digital platforms. The Deluxe Edition comes with the Season Pass bundled, and replaced regular purchases of Titanfall on those platforms.
Following its release, Titanfall had three major pieces of paid Downloadable Content, included in the game’s Season Pass. Each DLC pack included three new maps and several new achievements. The Season Pass and all accompanying DLC were made free to all players to celebrate the first anniversary of Titanfall‘s release.
Throughout its lifespan, Titanfall also had several free game updates that offered balance reworks and bugfixes. One of the more major updates, Game Update 8, added in a large variety of new content including the addition of the Frontier Defense mode alongside a host of new features and achievements. Private match lobbies were also implemented in post-launch support.
The votes are in from E3, Gamescom, PAX Prime, and Tokyo Game Show and the Titanfall team is proud to be the recipient of these prestigious gaming awards. Thank You!
Titanfall and Respawn Entertainment has been nominated and won over 75 awards. Most of which have been awarded from Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2013, Gamescom 2013, PAX Prime 2013 and Tokyo Game Show 2013.