The key pillar of gameplay in the original Titanfall resided in its solid multiplayer experience. That same experience will still be a pillar of gameplay in the sequel, but Respawn is making some tweaks to the formula, and explained how the multiplayer will be different in Titanfall 2 by changing up the stage designs and the speed of the gameplay.
Shacknews managed to get in a few questions in an interview with Respawn's game director, Steve Fukuda, who explained exactly what they're doing different, and it mostly boils down to the multiplayer being just a touch slower for more tactical and deliberate gameplay, with Fukuda saying...
We started by addressing the fact that you move so fast. You can't shoot out of the air so easily. So we slowed things down just a touch. Then also thinking more in terms of having players more proactive decisions, so instead of reacting to everything, they're thinking more like, "This match and this mode, this map, etc." They go, what things in the loadout menu will best help me fulfill that purpose. There's a much greater sense of purpose for players, so now they are thinking in terms of planning ahead, in terms of "I want to do this. This is my goal, this is my identity of how I am as a player." There's a huge difference, because all the different modes now kind of necessitate the player proactively thinking about what they want to do.
I love that design approach. I usually steer completely clear of Call of Duty and the newer Battlefield games because they're the exact opposite of the philosophy that Fukuda discussed above.
The usual methodology centers around running and gunning as fast as possible, never thinking twice about tactical elements or strategic gameplay. It's all about who has the fastest twitch skills and who can rack up the kills within the blink of an eye. It seems exhilarating at first just until you find the right weapon and map position combo, and then it gets boring once you master how to kill-spam and realize there's nothing else left to the game.
Having players think about their equipment, think about their surroundings and think about how to work best with teammates in Titanfall 2 could open it up to a lot of huge possibilities.
Now some gamers aren't always keen on developers changing up the formula. They feel as if things worked fine before they should stay that way. The only problem is that Call of Duty has taken that approach largely in how its multiplayer is presented, and a decade later and its still the same stale thing over and over again with minor tweaks here and there.
It's nice to know that Respawn is looking to grow the box instead of simply thinking outside the box. They want to splash around in a pool of ideas that could push Titanfall 2 a little further than where the last game went, and I can't knock them for trying.
That philosophy has also carried over into how they've redesigned the maps, making them more open while at the same time offering players more "lanes", so to speak in where they can go and how they can get there. The Titan AI has also been improved when in Guard mode, enabling them to expend their entire arsenal against opponents while the pilot is away.
Titanfall 2 sounds like it's shaping up to be a real proper upgrade over the last game, and it's due to drop on the Xbox One, PS4 and PC on October 28th.