Ask any fan what the most underrated shooter of recent memory is, and chances are they’ll tell you about Titanfall 2. Unfortunately, the game didn’t quite make enormous waves on launch thanks in part to its comparatively small marketing campaign and the launch date’s proximity to the debut of shooter giants like Battlefield 1.

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The game endures, however, thanks to the stellar gameplay housed in this underdog FPS. Interest in it has never quite died out thanks to the game’s community, as well as frequent sales and the success of Apex Legends, a battle royale set in Titanfall‘s universe. Overall, it goes without saying that Titanfall 2 is still worth checking out in 2021 for those who haven’t yet given the game a shot and newcomers will certainly have questions about it.

10 What’s Up With The Setting?

The battle of Demeter, as seen from space.

In the far future, humanity has colonized the expanse of outer space, the most remote of which is a region known as the Frontier. All is not well in the colonies, however. The Frontier Interstellar Manufacturing Company, or IMC, operates as a sort of futuristic British East India Company bent on exploiting the Frontier for profit, employing dubiously legal military force when they deem it necessary.

To combat the abuses of the IMC, a ragtag militia rose up in defense of the colonies. Their objective may be noble, but critics point out that the militia oftentimes seems to be little more than a loosely associated band of mercenaries and privateers claiming to represent a higher cause. Either way, the conflict between these two parties constitutes the core of Titanfall‘s story.

9 There’s An Excellent Single Player Campaign

Key art from Titanfall 2's loading screen.

Competitive multiplayer isn’t everyone’s thing, and that’s fine because Titanfall 2 is worth the price of admission for the campaign alone. It sounds like an exaggeration, but many Titanfall fans insist that the game’s campaign is among the best single-player shooter experiences of this console generation, and there’s a lot of merit to that claim.

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The campaign does an excellent job of easing a player into the game’s mechanics; starting them out on footing familiar to those who have played a Call of Duty game, but steadily increasing the demands on the player’s mobility and aim. There’s also no shortage of impressive set pieces, thrilling boss fights, and novel mechanics introduced between levels to keep things feeling fresh.

8 It’s Not Just Call Of Duty In Space

The actual Call of Duty in space game.

Developer Respawn Entertainment was formed when a number of Call of Duty veterans left Infinity Ward to form their own studio. That, coupled with Titanfall‘s first-person gameplay and low time-to-kill in multiplayer, has led some gamers to erroneously claim that Titanfall is a mere clone of Call of Duty, and a title that fails to establish its own identity.

Titanfall fans know that this couldn’t be further from the truth. From the titular Titans to a diverse range of weapons and abilities that demand different playstyles, to some extremely nuanced and advanced movement mechanics, Titanfall 2 is far from being a simple imitation of Call of Duty.

7 It Has The Appropriate Amount Of Giant Robots

BT weilds a sword in an agressive stance.

The first Titanfall game clearly wanted to put a more realistic spin on the huge war machines that stomp around the battlefields of the future. Their gunmetal exteriors and rigid builds evoked real-world military hardware, trying to sell a plausible impression that these could be real weapons in the years ahead.

Titanfall 2, on the other hand, veers into the other direction and doubles down on the inherent awesome camp factor of giant robots. These new Titans fight with swords, teleport across the battlefield and fly. Another great touch is that the boss battles in the campaign deploy the classic mecha anime trope where the bad guy consistently taunts the player over the radio during a fight.

6 It’s Always On Sale

The Steam store page for Titanfall 2.

One of the more attractive elements of Titanfall 2 is the fact that online storefronts are often practically giving the game away, doing so literally on occasion in Sony’s case. The game is so frequently discounted on popular digital distribution platforms like Steam that there’s rarely ever an excuse not to buy it.

The typically low price tag has also helped keep player populations relatively high throughout the game’s lifespan, frequently drawing in newcomers through free weekends and discounts. This often allows players to simply try out Titanfall on a whim, where they often become engrossed by the gameplay and story.

5 There Are Some Important Movement Mechanics To Learn

An enemy pilot grapples away from danger.

One of the most frequent mistakes made by newcomers is playing Titanfall like they would any other shooter: running around on the ground and aiming down the sights at whatever target crosses their path. That might be a familiar playstyle, but those who fall into this trap will frequently find themselves blasted apart from the sky by players leveraging the game’s movement mechanics to their full potential.

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Indeed, Titanfall 2 is a game that prioritizes speed and mobility in many firefights. A player who understands how to zip through the air at high speeds will, quite literally, run circles around a grounded opponent while they line up the perfect shot. Newcomers would do well to play the campaign before jumping into multiplayer, as it does a great job of teaching players the very basics of how Titanfall is to be played.

4 There’s Great Story & Lore

BT gives the thumbs up before chucking the player into the air.

The original Titanfall was sparse on story content, notably deciding against including a single-player campaign in favor of a multiplayer-only experience. The game’s setting and characters deliberately took a back seat to the action, serving only to provide context to multiplayer battles at the beginning of a round.

Titanfall 2 corrects this by opting to tell a surprisingly well-constructed and affecting story across its single-player campaign. At the core of the narrative is the relationship between the player character and his titan, BT, but there are also great villains and supporting characters that keep the action moving along at a brisk pace.

3 The Learning Curve Is Steep, But Manageable

An example of wallrunning in Titanfall 2.

It’s easy to feel a little bit overwhelmed when jumping into Titanfall 2 as a new player. Veterans of the game zoom around the map at breakneck speeds, leveraging advanced movement mechanics to rain death from above on those who haven’t yet discovered the secret to true speed, which is to say nothing of the similarly complicated cooldown management and tactics of the Titan gameplay.

Although it can be daunting at first, the learning curve is not unmanageable. First, the campaign does a great job of showing the very basics of how the game ought to be played. Second, the core community has put together a wide range of tutorials on platforms like YouTube to help new players familiarize themselves with the game’s mechanics.

2 The Multiplayer Isn’t Dead

Titanfall 2's multiplayer menu.

Thanks to an exceptionally dedicated hardcore community and a small but steady stream of newcomers, reports of Titanfall‘s death have been greatly exaggerated. While it’s true that the game doesn’t maintain quite the same numbers that AAA titles like Battlefield and Call of Duty do, there are almost always enough players online to easily find a game to play.

Furthermore, interest in Titanfall has never really gone away. Any time Titanfall shows up in the news, the game’s fans are sure to descend on the article’s comment section to explain how criminally underrated the title is, and to implore newcomers to give the game a try, meaning that beginners shouldn’t mistake Titanfall‘s small community for a dead one.

1 How Long Does The Campaign Take?

Titanfall 2‘s single-player campaign clocks in at an average of approximately 6 hours to complete, giving it about the length of a typical Call of Duty campaign. The brevity of the campaign helps boost its replayability, however, and veteran players will often come back to it to tackle its challenges with the advanced skills they’ve developed in multiplayer.

That replayability, combined with Titanfall‘s movement mechanics, makes the game attractive for speedrunners as well. The game’s training course, in particular, has become a barometer of movement aptitude in the community, with players vying to get the most outrageously quick speed through it and claim the title of the fastest.

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