When it comes to shooters, there is no shortage of iconic franchises out there. It’s never a dull year for fans of the genre. That usually means that players have to pick and choose when it comes to what they’ll play next. As such, some great shooters tend to fall through the cracks.
That was exactly what happened in 2016. Over just a few weeks, three massive games dropped one after another: Battlefield V launched at the end of October, and Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare was released at the top of November. Quietly sandwiched right in between them was perhaps the best first-person shooter of the decade: Titanfall 2.
Many passed it over at the time due to the busy release schedule, but the game is seeing a bit of a rebirth nearly five years later. It’s a reminder that it’s never too late to uncover a gem.
The recent surge of interest came hot off the heels of Apex Legends’ latest season reveal. Developer Respawn Entertainment is responsible for the Titanfall series, and it added a few nods to the broader franchise within the battle royale game (which technically takes place in the same universe, by the way). Chief among them is the new playable character Valkyrie, who has direct ties to Titanfall 2.
Shortly after the Apex Legends Season 9 reveal, Titanfall 2’s player base skyrocketed.
The game’s concurrent player count on Steam jumped up to 650 percent out of nowhere breaking its previous records. For a game that’s been lying dormant for half a decade, that’s a shocking turn of fortune. It helped that the game was heavily discounted on Steam at the time as well.
It’s the level of attention the game deserved from the jump. Titanfall 2 is a fantastic shooter that showcases all of Respawn’s strengths. It’s a lightning-fast-paced game with a focus on mobility. Players can run on walls or grapple onto buildings, making the very act of moving pleasurable.
The core shooting is great enough on its own, but the Titans really bring the game its unique flair. Players can summon a gigantic mech during matches that allows them to gain a huge advantage over enemies. What’s impressive is how well balanced those two modes are. Despite the Titans being so much more powerful than puny humans, they’re slow and can’t get into tight spaces. That gives players who have mastered the movement a chance to outsmart their towering opponents.
It’s a bit ironic because that’s the opposite of what happened with the game’s launch. Titanfall 2 was the little guy squeezed between two mega-franchises. Despite being the most creative of the three, it couldn’t make a name for itself with something like Call of Duty towering above it. Respawn was able to recover with the highly successful Apex Legends battle royale, but it seemed like the Titanfall series had hit a dead end.
With the renewed fan interest, there might be hope yet. The sudden player surge is nothing short of staggering. The fact that Titanfall 2 was a top trend on Twitter nearly five years after its release is a sign that fans are hungry for more. Development on Apex Legends isn’t slowing down anytime soon, but that’s hopefully the sign EA needs to greenlight a sequel.
Until that day comes, the water is still fine in Titanfall 2. With a refreshed player base, it’s the best time to jump in. Grab a copy and find out what you’ve been missing all this time.