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Future Imperfect: New Titanfall Game Modes Will Be Free

When the (Titan)fall DLC is all that's left, it matters a great deal.

Despite appearances, Titanfall is rare: a multiplayer shooter you can pop in and instantly have fun with, even if it’s been a while since you last played a multiplayer game. The DLC remains a concern, however. Often the launch of paid-for modes and map packs for multiplayer shooters serves mainly to divide a community, as the majority rush towards what’s new, leaving those late-comers and dabblers with an emptier experience and a feeling of being left-out.

So it’s good news that Respawn Entertainment’s founder Vince Zampella announced via Twitter that Titanfall’s future game modes would be free for all, even if maps would remain the purview of DLC.

Writing on the largest remaining social network not to own a brand of futuristic virtual reality goggles, Zampella wrote that, “Modes we release will be free to all, not part of DLC.”

Which is a brief comment, but I’m able to use it as a springboard to explain that I much prefer a service model funded by microtransactional cosmetic items than I do paying for the actual meat of updates. I know there’s often a lot of cynicism around Team Fortress 2’s hats, for example, but charging for inessential items – even weapons – is less damaging to community coherency than putting paywalls between levels or features.

I can also use this to segue swiftly towards my recurring complaint about FIFA and other EA games. I don’t have a problem with the yearly release schedule because it charges for marginal improvements, but because it feels like it slows down progress. I like the service model because multiplayer games can be quickly tweaked, re-balanced and expanded. With FIFA, Battlefield, Titanfall, I’ll need to wait for either the slight content of a DLC release, or the marketing-fuelled feature list of a new yearly or bi-yearly iteration.

There’s still no release date or concrete details for what the DLC for Titanfall will contain, but there’s a $20 season pass on offer, and each pack will cost $10 individually.

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Graham Smith

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