Titanfall may only have 12 human players but its closer to 50 characters with the AI

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Titanfall has landed; here’s our Titanfall review.

There was a little upset earlier this week when it was announced that Titanfall would only support six players on each team. Those numbers were to be bolstered by AI compadres, we knew that, but the videos of Titanfall in action suggested something larger.

Well, we hadn’t pegged quite how many AI were on the field till now.

So, each team has six players. Supporting them are 12 AI footsolders. On top of that are another six AI troops, the titan mechs themselves. Players can call in their titans and set them to follow or guard mode. So each team is really made up of 24 entities – six human and 18 AI. A lot of them won’t be on the map at any one time but that’s Respawn’s way of telling everyone to calm down.

Besides, “The higher the player count, the more uncomfortable the game gets,” Justin Hendry, the game’s lead designer, told Polygon. “Unlike in most games where you can sit there and guard the two ways in, inTitanfall the guy can come in through the window right behind you, he can come from the window to your left, he can come from straight ahead, he can come in from the stairway and he can come in from the doorway, or whatever. Essentially there are five directions you can get killed from and the higher that player count, the more likely you are to get killed from behind and the more difficult it is to kind of manage your surroundings.”

For those who criticise Titanfall, Hendry says “I’ve watched people come in and play the game that just don’t have the twitch reflexes,” Hendry said. “They’ll get in the Titan and have fun.””It just comes back to what makes the game fun,” Hendry said. “If you’re making a game and you’re making decisions that’s not based on fun because you’re trying to please someone or trying to match numbers, you’re not doing the right thing.

“Why not make Call of Duty 256 players, or Battlefield 256 or 512? Maybe that would be awesome. Maybe that would be awesome for that type of game built around that, but you can’t just jam players into a game and say this is what is ordained.”

Having played the game, I was exceptionally happy with it exactly as it was. There was a huge amount going on in the game that I didn’t need more players to make it more exciting. Also, there’s something fascinating about the AI squads (who, as far as I could tell, work independently from you) trying to clear a street, moving in formation, and signalling to one another. It embedded the game in its fiction in a manner that other shooters with only human players don’t do.