'Titanfall 2' Hands-On At E3: Move Faster, Hit Harder

Two years after the initial launch of Titanfall, Respawn Entertainment finally revealed Titanfall 2 earlier this week. In addition to the introduction of a single-player story mode, the game would feature six new Titans. For the demo at EA Play, I could choose from two of the six new Titans to get an idea of how the sequel differs from its predecessor.

New Pilot, New Titan

The two Titans in questions differed in abilities. Ion was more of a precision-based Titan with its rifle and laser beam ability, whereas Scorch used a flamethrower as well as a gun loaded with thermite ammunition. As appealing as it was to choose Scorch, I opted for Ion instead. For the pilot, it was an obvious choice to pick the front rifleman class because it had the grappling hook, which was teased in the gameplay trailer.

For the demo, we played a round of Bounty Hunt, where both multiplayer teams scored points by taking out marked targets on the map, such as AI-controlled Grunt units, turrets or even opposing Titans. The arena for the game was a map called Boomtown, a small city with multiple streets and bridges. To start the game, the pilots jumped from a plane onto the village.

A Game-Changer

For the first few minutes, it was easy to slip back into some old tactics from the previous game. I would weave in and out of buildings, trying to take out as many AI Grunts or enemy Pilots as possible. However, the marked targets contributed more points to either team.

As I continued to run around the battlefield, I began to make use of my grappling hook, and I immediately realized that the simple tool could easily give any player an advantage in speed. I could use it twice before it had to recharge, but if I planned my route correctly, I could run up a wall, use the hook to boost myself to the rooftops, and then find an enemy Titan to jump onto in order to disable it before coming back around for the kill.

I could also use it quickly flank enemies. If there was a sniper on a rooftop, I could use the tool to move from building to building like Spider-Man and quickly reach the enemy before he or she took out another Pilot. If you thought you moved fast before, think again. The grappling hook is one of the most useful tools in the game, and I could see many players exploiting it.

Other than the addition of the grappling hook, most of the gameplay experience felt like the previous Titanfall title, but it felt refreshing to play a new mode with a new Titan. As always, combat was chaotic and fast, and there were many explosions from grenades and Titan weapons. Bullets were flying from multiple directions as player and AI alike battled for the most points for their respective team. There wasn’t a single moment of rest. After I died, I rapidly pressed the respawn button because I wanted to get back into the fight as soon possible in order to help my teammates.

Standby For Titanfall…2

Eventually, we racked up enough scores to win. We prevented the enemy players from escaping the area, which provided more experience points. As we were shuttled out of the small tent where EA hosted the demo, I wanted to get back in line to play it again. I wanted to see how the different classes work with different Titans, but more importantly, I wanted more of the fast-paced action.

Based on what Respawn Entertainment had to offer at E3, Titanfall 2 is more of what fans loved about the first game: an exciting round from start to finish. Whether you won or lost, the experience was addictive, and if I didn’t have more appointments to get to, I would have jumped back in line to try it again. It’s just a first glimpse into what’s new in the game, but for a first showing, Titanfall 2 doesn’t disappoint.

NameTitanfall 2
TypeFirst-Person Shooter
DeveloperRespawn Entertainment
Release DateOctober 28, 2016
PlatformsPC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Where To BuyOrigin

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  • ubercake
    I can't wait for this one. Titanfall is my favorite console shooter ever. It's also great on PC, but BF4 is too good to call any shooter better on PC.
  • Tron_knows
    I love Titanfall and can't wait for Titanfall 2! My favorite FPS on PC!
  • poochiepiano
    Did they take out the auto-aim pistol? I know, I know, it doesn't do everything for you and did take skill to use, but man, it was annoying.