Titanfall 2: Campaign Review

Note: I will only be posting on Monday for the next couple weeks with the hope of being back on track mid-March. I have other priorities that require more of my time than usual.

Anyway, for now, here’s my review of Titanfall 2’s campaign.

No spoilers and TL,DR at the bottom.

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Story:

I went into Titanfall 2 with high expectations for the story and they were definitely exceeded. I never expected to care about BT (your titan) and Cooper as much as I did. Well, I guess I care more about their relationship then I do them but I am beyond impressed with this story.

I wasn’t sold on them in the beginning because I thought I would start out loving the story and I really didn’t. However, the more I played the more I realized that I was invested in this narrative and wanted to see it through.

The way BT and Cooper build their relationship and trust throughout the story creates a wonderful experience that gets better over time.

I really think the writing enabled the fantastic story and the voice actors sold it. The writers Steve Fukuda, Manny Hagopian, and Jesse Stern deserve 40 tons of credit. While shooters don’t necessarily lend themselves to story-driven games, that doesn’t mean there aren’t excellent stories within shooters. This is one of my favorites.

Looking into those three writers, I’m not surprised to enjoy this game. Fukuda and Stern helped write Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, two of my favorite COD games. Stern and Hagopian have TV writing credits as well, but it’s not like any of these three are “established” writers in a traditional sense. They have all contributed to a great video game story.

While the story feels convoluted in the middle and starts to get off the rails, BT and Cooper’s relationship grounds it. There are some big moments and big stories developing around those two but they just keep grinding and keep working together for their cause.

The story is paced well and never goes on too long. I didn’t know how the ending would go, but ultimately I’m impressed by the ability to capture a friendship between a robot and a human.

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Gameplay:

Alright, so the gunplay isn’t especially incredible. But, pair the guns with fun levels and the ability to traverse the levels in the sky and off the walls combine to make great gameplay overall.

I’m a bit disappointed with the feel of the guns. I know they are quite a few weapons and types in the game, but they didn’t feel varied or unique. I couldn’t tell you if I used SMGs or assault rifles more because I couldn’t tell the difference and even then I think some of the assault rifles I used were actually sniper rifles.

I’ve found this to be a common issue among shooters. Many weapons are balanced around multiplayer and seeing how Titanfall started out as multiplayer only, it makes sense to be true for the sequel.

Again, the platforming and level design make up for the lack of weapon variety. You can run, jump, and almost fly through levels. The wall running and movement variation makes the game feel fun. You have to be aware of your surrounding more so with Titanfall 2 than other shooters.

Since you are running and gunning throughout the level enemies will be shooting you from all directions and it can sometimes be difficult to keep track of them, which is awesome. You can move and shoot, never slowing down. The challenge is of your own making. The game doesn’t necessarily complicate itself, it just allows you to make it more complicated.

I think that represents brilliant level design and balance. You are allowed to experience the world from whatever angle you want. You get to choose how the game plays out and it isn’t a straight line from point a to point b.

Sure, you move from one end to the other, but you get to choose how to get there.

I think the game only works because the levels are well designed and the movement is more free form. I’m impressed by the whole, rather than each piece of the gameplay.

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Graphics:

Some of the things in Titanfall 2 look really awesome and other things don’t look awesome at all.

For example, the character models are pretty bad. While the world itself looks great. An issue I see with many FPS games, the enemy models, besides the big bads, look the same. Titanfall 2 enemies look the same. You can see the difference between humans and robots, but humans all look the same.

There are some more important adversaries that have different models, so about half a dozen different models for enemies. At least that’s what it feels like.

I don’t think each area of the game looked that much different. However, I do remember taking screenshots of the vistas in the game.

Nor do I think the levels differed much. The whole game felt like the same area, with a couple exceptions.

Nothing really stands out graphically with this game. I would even lean a little bit towards looking bad but not get there entirely. The game just doesn’t blow me away.

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World:

I’d like to see the universe of Titanfall more developed. For now, I can appreciate the depth and the sci-fi nature of the universe. I do think it’s lacking in background.

Since I enjoyed the story of Titanfall 2, I think they’ve got room to grow with the world as a whole. I want to see them give more background in order to see the game more realized. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the world more fleshed out in Titanfall 3, assuming it happens.

I want to know more about the world and more about what’s happening and why we have two competing factions.

Either I wasn’t paying attention or there isn’t much there. I’m not sure if that’s because this world was built before the story, or if the developers just don’t see much need for development because that doesn’t necessarily sell games.

I think the world in which this takes place is ready to be explored more and developed into a more a fleshed out universe.

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Sound:

The only two things I can say for certain about the sound in this game are that the voices of the two main characters are well done and everything else is forgettable.

BT and Cooper, played by Glenn Steinbaum and Matthew Mercer respectively, nail their performances. I really believed in these two characters and their relationship because they were well-voiced. Just awesome voice acting.

And that’s about it. I don’t even remember much else about the sound. I don’t recall any memorable music nor do I recall any memorable sound effects. Nothing sticks out. Which I guess is better than being bad sound

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TL,DR:

A wonderful story within the shooter genre. I loved the BT and Cooper relationship. Pair that with some great gameplay and your in for a fun time.

Thanks for reading.

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