Titanfall 2's tech test went live for the first time over the weekend, and the feedback hasn't been great. "Pilots... This isn't looking good," goes one post on the game's Reddit page, dramatically titled 'Titanfall 2 Feels Like a Game Designed by People Who Hated the Original. "I think it's pretty certain that Titanfall just "shit the bed" as a franchise."
Fans haven't been happy with the new direction that developer Respawn wanted to take the sequel. Movement had been slowed to make firefights less chaotic, while Titans are now granted to those who play the objective rather than being doled out to players on a timer. Elsewhere, a new health system has been introduced that sees Pilots able to steal a battery from an enemy Titan, lowering its energy, before giving to an allied Titan to lend it access to more shields.
After the outcry that's met the open beta Respawn has been quick to address feedback in a frank post on Titanfall's official site. Movement is being tweaked, with wall-running and air speed amped up while the ability to accumulate speed while wall-running - something that was in earlier versions of Titanfall 2 played by the press - is being restored. Meanwhile, the Titan meter that leads to the acquisition of a Titan will now be topped up over time - although playing the objective is still the fastest way to get hold of a mech.
I played Titanfall 2's multiplayer a short while back, and I think I was more impressed by it than most players over the past weekend. One thing I will agree with, though, is that the Homestead map that's one of the two initially available in the tech test is a bit of a stinker, with too few opportunities to engage in the free-running that's Titanfall's strong suit and too many opportunities for lone snipers to dominate the map.
A new map, Forwardbase Kodai, that's more self-contained and closer to the designs seen in the original Titanfall, may help the perception of the sequel a little when it's introduced into the beta's rotation this coming weekend.
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