is a 2014 Competitive Multiplayer First-Person Shooter Mecha Game
published by Electronic Arts
for the Xbox 360
, Xbox One
and PC, developed using Valve Software's Source Engine
. It is the first game developed by Respawn Entertainment, a studio comprised of former Infinity Ward employees, and appears to be a Spiritual Successor
to the Modern Warfare
series of games they had worked on previously. It was announced as a Microsoft exclusive, though Respawn have not ruled out bringing other titles in the franchise to other platforms in the future.
Combat in Titanfall
takes places on two levels: initially focusing on ground-based infantry combat similar to Modern Warfare
, players (as "Pilots") are able to call-in and control the titular "Titans
" as the match progresses, adding an extra dimension to the conflict. Titans act as a huge force multiplier for players and shift combat into a new perspective, as players are now 20ft tall and have shields but lose the ability to jump (replaced by a dash) and now have to deal with fighting enemy Titans. Pilots still on the ground aren't powerless, either, being more nimble than Titans and are easily able to Attack Its Weak Point
with Anti-Titan weaponry and the ability to "rodeo" on enemy Titan's backs and bypass their shields by firing directly into sensitive components.Titanfall
is a multiplayer-only experience, and seeks to "combine fast-paced multiplayer action with heroic moments from traditional campaign mode". Rather than splitting development between a Single-Player story campaign and a Multiplayer component, Respawn decided to roll the story campaign into Multiplayer via a special "Campaign" multiplayer mode that takes players through maps in a specific order and with extra cutscenes and expository dialog added to give context to the match.
Titanfall contains examples of:
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- Absent Aliens: There are no sentient species seen, but dangerous alien fauna play a major role in Mission 6 "Here Be Dragons" and Mission 7 "The Three Towers".
- Ace Pilot:
- Action Girl: Militia specialist Sarah in Mission 7 participates in the battle with a small covert ops team that successfully destroys two of the three Resonance Towers at the Sierra Airbase, which causes the base to be overrun with hostile wildlife.
- A Father to His Men: Although James MacAllan doesn't want to be part of the IMC/Milita war, he quickly joins the Militia when they save the colony he was exiled to, and encourages his men to fight for the ideal of the Frontier's independence. When he joins the Battle of Demeter, he even says "I wouldn't put you into the fire I myself would not go in", and backs these words up by not just piloting a Titan for the first time since his retirement, but also pulling a Heroic Sacrifice to destroy Demeter, his last words assuring the Militia men left that It Has Been an Honor serving alongside them.
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: At the end of campaign Mission 8 "Battle of Demeter", Militia leader James MacAllan irreversibly sabotages the reactor at Demeter so that it will blow no matter what. As the IMC awaits for evacuation, IMC combat coodinator "Spyglass" suddenly and unexpectedly aborts the retrieval, leaving all IMC ground forces to die on the surface in favor of moving the larger capital ships away from the planet. Subverted when considering the size of the explosion, and MacAllan ordering the Militia leaders to do exactly the same thing, Spyglass makes a justified decision.
- Airborne Aircraft Carrier: The IMS Sentinel is stated by the Militia to be a "super-carrier".
- The Alcoholic: Barker; in his debut scene for Mission 4 "Get Barker", when playing as the Militia, he's so tanked that he's slurring his words.
- Amoral Afrikaner: Sgt. Blisk. He's a high-ranking IMC mercenary and a very bad dude— at one point, he orders his men to shoot down fleeing civilian ships. This is the first thing we see him do.
- Arc Words: "Take the ship". Fifteen years ago, IMC Vice-Admiral Marcus Graves let MacAllan go, following The Mutiny aboard the IMS Odyssey, which began a long chain of events leading to MacAllan abandoning the IMC. Following the end of Mission 8, Graves defects, joins and leads the Militia, after MacAllan's example.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: One of the animals seen in Titanfall is a massive, four-legged creature that looks like a dinosaur. In Mission 7, the trio of Resonance Towers keep local animals from overrunning an IMC base. When all three are taken down, one of them begins rampaging through the base, shrugging off missile strikes from attacking fighters as it crushes everything beneath it.
- Back from the Brink: Despite its losses at Demeter, the various descriptions for the DLC packs show that the IMC is not only nowhere near finished, but is actually counterattacking, focusing on lightly defended settlements and mining worlds in order to keep their war machine going.
- Batman Gambit: When the IMS Sentinel appears in Mission 4, MacAllan orders Militia fighters to head on a suicide run to damage the super-carrier. Militia leaders are aghast about this order; at the end of the mission, MacAllan states the Militia can now directly attack it, as it's left in dry dock for refueling and repairs at a loosely-guarded IMC facility. This leads to Mission 5 "Assault on the Sentinel''.
- Battle in the Rain: Mission 2 "The Colony" and Mission 3 "The Odyssey" for both sides takes place on Troy, a jungle planet that, at the moment, is overcast and raining constantly.
- Big Damn Heroes/The Cavalry: At the end of "Get Barker", if the Militia wins, the Third Merchant Fleet warp in over Angel City and beginning pummeling the IMS Sentinel with missiles, forcing it to retreat.
- Bigger Bad: The audio briefing for the IMC before Mission 8 includes a speech by Doctor Hammond, President of Hammond Robotics. While he is not heard in the Militia campaign, he is certainly the closest the series has to a primary villain.
- Black and White Morality: It's not exactly hard to figure out who's truly the antagonists. In the first mission alone, the IMC opens fire on civilian vessels while fighting the Militia. Blisk justifies it by insisting that "today's civilian could be tomorrow's Militia". In the second mission, the IMC tests their new Spectre combat robots on helpless settlers. When MacAllan tells Graves he's fighting for the wrong side, it's not hard to believe him. Meanwhile, the Militia only attacks legitimate military targets, and never does anything morally questionable. By the end of the game, they win quite a few defectors from the IMC to their cause.
- Cross Over: For April Fools' Day 2014, IGN made a fake trailer for an upcoming DLC allowing one to replace Titans with Optimus Prime.
One shall stand. Titans shall fall.
- Cutscene Power to the Max: At the beginning of the IMC campaign in "Made Men", a group of Spectres bring down a Militia Titan by dog-piling it. Spectres are nowhere nearly that effective in actual gameplay. Zig-zagged when a decent player pops the "Spectre Camo" burn card, in which case there is a highly competent Spectre running around the map, and it may very well rodeo a Titan. The Frontier Defense Co-op wave defense game mode gives Spectres the ability to rodeo Titans.
- Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Hammond Robotics would like to assure you that this is not the case.
Spectre Camo Burn Card flavor text: "Don't think of it as throwing away your humanity. You are merely discarding your human frailty."
- The fact that the Burn Card is quoting Doctor Hammond (founder of Hammond Industries), probably sets off a lot of WMGs, especially since Spectres are way more aggresive than the cannonfodder you usually see.
- Cyber Punk: Besides the Titans, personal Deflector Shields and gravity-defying technology, corrupt Mega Corps, "frontier" worlds and the like are also present.
- Dead Man Writing: The closing narration of the Militia campaign is an audio recording MacAllan made shortly before the Battle of Demeter.
- Defector from Decadence: MacAllan used to be one of the best officers for the IMC, but a news report in the game's intro indicates he has defected to the Militia. Subverted as he simply disappears off radar for fifteen years, until the current conflict brings him out in the open. Although he initially refuses to assist the Militia, after they rescue the civilians under his leadership, he plays this straight by assuming command of the faction. Following the destruction of the Demeter base, Graves pulls a Heel-Face Turn, leading the Militia on a raid against a Hammond Robotics facility to steal an army of Spectre combat drones to aid them. The ending of the Militia campaign also indicates a lot of IMC soldiers have defected to them.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: Besides the literal possibility of dropping a Titan on someone, this can happen to you and anyone on Demeter in the end of the 8th mission. You don't get a grand explosion to show the effect of it; Your screen turns white as the game slowly ends, signifying everyone's death and sacrifice on Demeter as it explodes.
- Dying Moment of Awesome/Heroic Sacrifice: MacAllan's sabotage ensures the base's reactor at Demeter goes critical, and he dies with it. The destruction of the base completely changes the course of the war and cripples the IMC's ability to fight effectively in the Frontier.
- Elites Are More Glamorous: A Titan pilot who has achieved "Full Combat Certification" (i.e. the player) is a warrior who has underwent extreme mental and physical challenges in infantry combat, Le Parkour movement, and Titan combat. They're basically a futuristic version of modern-day special forces. Invoked Trope: Grunt chatter often reflects how awesome they think pilots are.
Grunt: "Are you seeing this?! The pilot is on the fucking Titan!"
- The Empire/One Nation Under Copyright: The Earth-based "Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation" (IMC) fills this role, seeking to end the independence of the outlying colonies defended by the Militia. The IMC, however, are only a small subsidiary of a much bigger entity, Hammond Robotics.
- Enemy Chatter: Grunts, both IMC and Militia, engage in lively conversation while they're in combat. Their topics of discussion range from the purely practical (e.g. warning their squad members about hostile pilots) to the hilarious.
- Evil Brit: IMC forces seem to be composed of Australians and British troops, judging from their accents. Sergeant Blisk of the IMC is a notable aversion: he's South African, according to supplemental information.
- Excuse Plot: The little plot that's there is in service to getting the player into a giant robot for the purposes of fighting other giant robots. To elaborate, in The Future, humanity has developed Faster-Than-Light Travel and colonized a sector of space known as the Frontier. Eventually, Hammond Robotics begins become increasingly predatory towards the resource-rich Frontier, and decades-long tensions ignite in the form of a Militia fighting for independence from the Core Systems. Hammond Robotics deploys its private army, the Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation, to put down the uprising.
- Faster-Than-Light Travel: Referred to as "jump", this allowed humanity to become an interstellar civilization.
- Fighting for a Homeland: The Militia fighting to throw the IMC out of the Frontier.
- Genius Bruiser: Spyglass, the IMC's tactical AI, is mentally superhuman in all aspects. Spectres, the IMC's Killer Robots, are physically superhuman in all aspects. Spyglass likes to use modified Spectres as disposable avatars to directly participate on the battlefield. Do the maths.
- Godzilla Threshold: The IMC are really in dire straits if they promote a robot to the rank of Vice-Admiral after the events at Demeter.
- Good Colors, Evil Colors: The Militia's attire consist of naturalistic brown and green colors in contrast to the more industrial gray motif of the IMC.
- Great Offscreen War: MacAllan makes mention of "The Titan Wars" in "Get Barker"
- Heads I Win, Tails You Lose:
- In Mission 8, the IMC is attempting to shut down the reactor core at the Demeter base to prevent the Militia from self-destructing it. Halfway through the mission, MacAllan sabotages the reactor so that even if the IMC succeeds in shutting down the core, it will send out a shockwave that will self-destruct the base anyway. Demeter is destroyed no matter what.
- Also, Mission 1 involves the First Militia Fleet attempting to refuel. Regardless of who wins, the Militia successfully refuel with the loss of a dozens ships and escape. The only real difference is whether the Redeye, a Militia ship that's trying to refuel over the combat area, is shot down.
- A better example is in the ninth and final mission "The Made Men": the Militia are attempting to steal an army of Spectres, but no matter what happens, the robots all self-destruct at the end. Even if the Militia didn't get them, it's still a big blow to the IMC war effort.
- Frankly, as stated in Invincible Hero, the Militia fulfill their objectives in every campaign mission, regardless of which team wins the actual match: they succeed in recovering the data from the IMS Odyssey, they extract Barker out from under the IMC's nose, the IMS Sentinel is destroyed, etc.
- Invincible Hero: Regardless of whether the IMC or Militia win in any campaign mission, the latter will achieve their objectives no matter what.
- Instant Awesome, Just Add Dragons: The hostile wildlife the IMC is concerned about in Missions 6 and 7 are large, flying animals that resemble dragons. Mission 6 is even called "Here Be Dragons".
- It Has Been an Honor: In Mission 8, MacAllan's last words are this to the Militia troops on the ground, right before the reactor core of Demeter blows.
- It's Personal: In the final mission, after Graves tells Blisk the Militia will win because they fight for a cause, in contrast to Blisk who simply fights for a paycheck, Blisk counters with "Oh, I'd fight you for free."
- Keystone Army: The IMC is heavily dependent on the refueling facilities at Demeter because it's the only settled planet within reach of the Core Systems. In order for them to receive reinforcements, the ships arriving from the Core Systems expend all their fuel to reach Demeter, at which point they refuel and head onto the Frontier. Losing Demeter will cripple the IMC irrevocably as their reinforcements would take years to reach the Frontier instead of days. The Militia successfully destroy the base at the end of Mission 8.
- Kick the Dog: Mission 2 has the IMC "field testing" its new Spectres by attacking innocent colonists.
- La Résistance: Half of the pilots in a match will be part of the IMC, fighting against the other half in the Militia.
- Mass "Oh, Crap!":
- The Militia get this when the IMS Sentinel jumps in on top of Angel City in Mission 4. However, they regain control of the situation
- The IMC after the IMS Sentinel blows up, and again when the IMC base on Demeter is destroyed.
- Mecha-Mooks: "Spectres", cybernetic infantry used by both sides. With the destruction of the Demeter base, the IMC becomes increasingly dependent on Spectres, to the point they begin to vastly outnumber actual humans that comprise the IMC.
- Mega Corp.: Hammond Robotics. Their military branch, the IMC, serve as one of the game's two playable factions, and is able to field a private army with enough firepower to rival the Frontier's military strength.
- Mêlée à Trois: Mission 6 has dragon-like animals that will attack both IMC and Militia forces.
- Might Makes Right: Blisk's philosophy
Graves: "No person is better than another, Blisk."
Blisk: "I disagree. You kill me, you're better. I kill you, I'm better."
- Mission Control: Three characters fulfill the role for each side - for the Militia, MacAllan, Cheng "Bish"note Lorck, and Sarah; on the IMC side, Blisk, Graves, and Spyglass.
- The Mutiny: Fifteen years ago, MacAllan led a mutiny against Graves aboard the IMS Odyssey due to being fed up with the IMC's immoral targeting of civilians and escaped with the ship. At the review board afterward, Graves maintained MacAllan and his men managed to take over the ship. However, we find out at the end of Mission 8 that Graves let him have the Odyssey with his blessing. It shouldn't be surprising that Graves defects to the Militia after the Battle of Demeter.
- Obligatory War Crime Scene: Blisk gets one of these as his Establishing Character Moment, when he orders fleeing civilians escape ships to be shot down.
- The players participate in these each time they destroy the enemy evacuation ship, though it doesn't receive the same focus as above.
- Obviously Evil: Let's see, a Mega Corp. with callous disregard for human life and rather sterile-looking white uniforms and decor vs. homesteaders on the Frontier that— we've already lost you, haven't we?
- Only One Name: Sarah and Blisk are only ever addressed by one name.
- Psycho for Hire: Blisk, who could care less about whether the ships the IMC destroys are civilian or Militia.
- Railroading: One of the weaknesses of the multiplayer-based campaign is that, even if you Curb Stomp the enemy team, your side will still lose when the plot says you need to.
- Rank Up: Spyglass becomes Vice-Admiral after Graves defects following the destruction of Demeter.
- The Revolution Will Not Be Vilified: The Militia are squeaky-clean heroes, in contrast to the IMC who cannot seem to resist kicking puppies at every chance they get.
- Robot War: The conflict between the IMC and the Militia is gradually becoming this after the destruction of Demeter. Since the IMC will not receive human reinforcements from the Core Systems for years (and also because many IMC soldiers are defecting), they must make up their losses by manufacturing more Spectres. It's likely this is the reason Spyglass is promoted to Vice-Admiral. In the last mission, Graves attempts to persuade Blisk to join the Militia and turn the war into solely a humans vs. machines conflict, but Blisk won't have any of it, and firmly chooses to remain an IMC faithful and fight with the machines. That said, while Most of the IMC's combatants in the frontier are machines, the people calling the shots back home for the IMC are still human.
- Scenery Porn: Lots of it
- Sequel Hook/No Ending: Mission 9 ends with the Militia having the upper-hand in the war, but the IMC are far from finished. Indeed, the closing narration for the Militia campaign delivered by an audio recording of MacAllan is a Rousing Speech of confidence that victory will come soon. On the other hand, the IMC campaign closes with a message delivered by Vice-Admiral Spyglass stating they remain an effective fighting force despite being cut off from the Core Systems, and they will adapt and prevail.
- Settling the Frontier: The Frontier Colonies, with the more "rural" settlements and homesteads resembling futuristic Wild West towns.
- A mech with the ability to magnetically catch and return bullets? A lightning gun that reduces enemy infantry to goo? This sounds familiar.
- Continuing with the District 9 references, the Stryder-class Titan has been likened to that very same Mini-Mecha from the movie. Blisk is speculated to be a reference to Kubus in the film or Kruger from Elysium.
- The Hemlok BF-R is a Shout-Out to James Cameron movies. It has the magazine of an M41A1 Pulse Rifle◊ and a barrel shroud similar to the one on the M60 from◊ Avatar.
- The "Nuclear Explosion" Titan kit, which causes a Titan to blow up in a small nuclear explosion, is similar to Battlemechs going critical. In fact, upon being ejected from a Titan just as it explodes, the view appears to be a Homage Shot to the intro of Mechwarrior 3, as well as one to the teaser of the ill-fated Mechwarrior 5 (which later became Mechwarrior Online).
- Also referencing Mechwarrior, the Jack of All Stats Atlas-class Titan shares its name with a well-known Assault Battlemech.
- A British Bald Black Leader Guy is in charge of the IMC's pilot and Titan platoons, much like a certain other black British guy in charge of an army of mecha.
- The Empire has a high-ranking official abandon it and has him offer his services to the ineffective La Résistance, and upon receiving his help, turns them into a Badass Army that scores victory after victory against their enemy. This official also has a good friend who is an officer in The Empire who prefers to effect change from within. For the good of the resistance, the official performs a Heroic Sacrifice. Are we talking about MacAllan and Graves or Lelouch Lamperouge and Suzaku Kururugi?
- A ruthless Mega Corp. makes use of a Psycho for Hire South African mercenary who ends up fighting against his former employer. Hey, wait a minute: the Spectres in Titanfall even look similar to the droids from that movie!
- The enormous beasts called the "Leviathans" overruning the Sierra Airbase in Mission 7 look oddly similar to the creatures from The Mist.
- Slobs Versus Snobs: Professional soldiers fight for the extremely wealthy IMC; the Militia is composed of a rag-tag army of bandits, homesteaders, mercenaries and pirates.
- Spiritual Successor: Many of the developers previously worked on the first two Call of Duty games and the first two Modern Warfare games. Indirectly, it could also be considered this to Brink, which also featured Le Parkour and attempted to meld campaign and multiplayer gameplay.
- Take Up My Sword: Just before he dies on Demeter, MacAllan asks Graves to lead the Militia and continue where he left off; Graves does.
- That's What I Would Do: Throughout the campaign, the Militia are proactive while the IMC is forced to be reactive to their actions. However, the latter manages to always be hot on the trail of the Militia. How? Fifteen years ago, Graves and MacAllan ran war games where they simulated a way to destroy the IMC using a ragtag guerrilla group, and Graves recognizes MacAllan is using the exact same tactics they developed back then.
- The War of Earthly Aggression: The primary conflict of Titanfall involves a militia consisting of citizen-soldiers from the Frontier Colonies fighting to maintain their independence from the Earth-based IMC.
- Time Skip: The final mission occurs three months after the end of Mission 8.
- Title Drop: In more ways than one - "Standby for Titanfall."
- Villain Protagonist: Playing the IMC campaign really comes across as this.
- Wham Episode/Game Changer: The end of Mission 8 - for the first time in the entire conflict's history, the Militia have the upper hand, and the IMC are forced into a defensive position as they are no longer able to receive reinforcements and supplies from the Core Systems.
- Wham Shot: At the end of the Tutorial Level, the scenery hologram outside of the room shuts itself down, revealing a window to a planet outside. The player is on a spaceship.
- Where It All Began: A map Wargame in Expedition DLC takes place in simulator, similar to the training mission.
- Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters: Played with; the Militia are seen as terrorists by the IMC, but serve as protecting the Frontier. At the same time, not everyone in the Frontier sees the Militia as heroes. MacAllan specifically founded the colony the Militia find him in to get away from the war.