With Titanfall being out for a couple of weeks and a lot more people playing it, a few issues keep cropping up as harsh criticisms of an otherwise great game. These misguided complaints, however, are not the objective truths they insist they are. Today, I’m going to go through some of the more common outcries and explain why they’re wrong, wrong, wrong. There are certainly legitimate issues with Titanfall, but these common sources of whining aren’t among them.
It’s unacceptable that Respawn are charging for map packs
Easy one to start with. As with most DLC, these maps are completely optional. If you don’t want them, no one is forcing you to buy them. This issue is often brought up as part of a slippery slope fallacy to try and reason that Respawn will charge for all additional but that would be a terrifically terrible business move on their part as they’ve already stated that they’ll be releasing a series of free content patches for things that didn’t ship with the game. This kind of criticism is by no means exclusive to Titanfall but do we really have to address it every time a game has DLC? Yes, I miss the days where you got the map packs for free if you were on PC. Yes, it’s important to be able to tell the difference between Bad DLC and Good DLC. Yes, voting with your wallet is still the best way to go about changing things. No, having these new maps isn’t a necessity.
Shotguns are overpowered and desperately need a nerf
Shotguns are close range weapons. If you get close to someone and they have a shotgun, you’re dead if they fire. This is true in Titanfall and every other game that has shotguns. At medium and long range, shotguns can’t do shit. Use this to your advantage. If there’s someone camping an area with a shotgun, you also have a number of options to deal with it. I won’t detail every strategy for dealing with that kind of situation but I will say that small, enclosed spaces plus grenades = instant death zone. Again, not something specific to Titanfall, but it’s coming up to ten years of me having to explain to people that shotguns are close range weapons.
The Smart Pistol is little more than a glorified aimbot
Some people got their wish of a slight damage nerf to the Smart Pistol but that’s still not enough for the most persistent of whiners. The fact that the Smart Pistol can lock on to targets and kill them with one pull of the trigger makes the weapon broken, in their eyes.
The Smart Pistol is primarily a farming weapon that is best put to use in Attrition but can be utilised in most modes to help with decreasing Titan build time. You can see this by looking at the time it takes to lock on to different enemies; almost instant on AI minions but substantially longer on Pilots. Ask yourself this: If you were running around, not being fully aware of your surroundings and constantly in the sights of an enemy Pilot for three to four seconds, do you really think you’re going to make it out of that situation alive? Keep in mind that if you’re getting killed by the lock-on of the Smart Pistol, they had clear line of sight the entire time.
Maybe that’s a problem with your way of getting around rather than the weapon. It’s just like melee executions. It’s not the fault of the player that they were able to sneak up behind you and kill you with one shot, it’s your fault for not noticing you were getting sneaked up on.
Dodge, Duck, Dip, Dive and Dodge, people.
Without a built-in Ranked mode I can’t enjoy the game
Are you fucking kidding?
You’re incapable of enjoying a game if it doesn’t have an integrated Ranked mode? Do you not think that if the game was intended to be played competitively, it would have shipped with a Ranked mode? That would certainly be the case if it was seen to be as important by the developer, right? Also, do you have any idea how much work it would take to implement such a mode? You’d need to figure out balancing issues for the weapons, find out if there’s a difference between Ranked/Normal in terms of gameplay, figure out if it’s possible or worthwhile to have separate Ranked modes for people in full parties and by themselves, likely implement a form of Team Registry so you can keep track of who’s in what team in order to track skill level, address if it’s possible to have people as part of more than one team, leaderboards, ranking tables, do you keep everything specific to the regional servers or do it worldwide, whether or not burn cards are allowed… It’s a massive headache to implement something like that into a game.
What baffles me is that every time I’ve suggested that the players themselves run the ranked side of things, they tell me that it’s too complicated and is almost impossible for anyone to run any kind of ranked system for a game that isn’t implemented directly into the game itself. What. Utter. Nonsense. A few years ago? Maybe. In a world where so many games are played competitively and websites like Challonge exist, it’s easier than ever for players to host their own leaderboard, rankings and tournaments.
Hell, if the community is really desperate for it, I’ll create the Titanfall ranking and tournament system as soon as Private Lobbies are introduced.
Speaking as someone who doesn’t require a ranked mode to enjoy a game (that notion still baffles me), I really hope Respawn doesn’t implement a ranked system straight into the game. In every other game I’ve played with an implemented ranking system, I’ve always seen the rank-obsessed dipshits spilling out into not-ranked games with their soul objective being to bitch and moan about how everyone is a ‘noob’ who needs to ‘get on their level’ or they have another account who is rank Super Grandmaster Fly 5000 or some shit.
Respawn, if you’re reading this, please don’t implement a ranked system into Titanfall. Let the players run it themselves outside of the game with their own rules, their own set up, their own community. It’ll save you a lot of time and a lot of headaches this way. There will also be absolutely no contesting that the player-run ranked system is entirely separate to normal play and that unranked is in no way intended to be a training ground for eventual ranked play. Some people dig playing something with a ranking system and I get that, I really do, but some people just want to shoot some folk and have fun that way. We don’t want to hear what rank you are. We don’t care how high up on the table you are. We don’t want to hear if we’re not playing the game ‘properly’. Keep it to yourselves.
The weapons are fine, the upcoming extra content is fine, if you don’t want to buy the DLC then don’t buy the DLC, and set up the ranking system yourselves if you want it that badly (yes, I was serious when I said I would run a ranked tournament/leaderboard system when private lobbies come out before). Oh yeah, and keep an eye on the sky. You wouldn’t want to get squashed by an incoming robot.