Titanfall Without The Titans: A New Humans-only Mode

Get out of here, you crummy robot.

Titans are fairly central to Titanfall. They’re right there in the name–that’s what the game calls it when your honking great mechs plummet from orbit to the battlefield. I actually preferred the plain old manshooting though, darting about, double-jumping, and wall-running as a regular supersoldier with a jetpack. Well gosh golly, the next Titanfall update will introduce a new mode with simple 8v8 manfights, no Titans and no AI battlefield buddies.

Which makes me wonder: if we can remove the Titans from Titanfall, what titular elements can we remove from other games and still have something interesting?

Cut SimCity’s Sim to make City, an urban counterpart to Mountain. Remove the Craft from Minecraft and we’ll go exploring procedural tunnels and caverns in Mine. It’s possible that, at the end of a long week, I am longing for quiet and peaceful and relaxing games.

Anyway, that Titanfall update. The ‘Pilot Skirmish’ mode will be the new Featured Game Mode, developers Respawn explain in the patch notes, a temporary fixture that’ll get rotated out for something new after a while. Or maybe not. Respawn have turned their first featured mode, Marked For Death, into a permanent fixture as folks liked it so much.

The update, which hasn’t been dated yet, will also bring improved matchmaking, with faster search and better team balancing. That’s certainly needed. It also optimises performance, adds colorblindness options, and brings other good things. It’s all in the notes.


Top comments

  1. Velko says:

    XCOM: Unknown - alien craft are flying around Earth and you are in charge of the Earth's defences. However, their cultural habits are so alien you have no way of knowing whether they are friendly or not, or indeed if they even could understand the concepts of "friendly" or "enemy".
  1. basilisk says:

    Tomb Raider could become just Tomb. Quite relaxing, but poor replay value.

    • Babymech says:

      Doesn’t that happen every time Lara dies?

      If you take the Creed out of the Assassin’s Creed 4 I think it would still pretty much be a pirate simulator.

      • Baboonanza says:

        Take the Assassin’s out of Assassins Creed and you have an awesome 80’s boxing game.

    • Velko says:

      Field: 64 players run around a large map capturing locations. The only way they can interact with each other is with tiny hooting sounds, a bit like in Journey.

      The newest game in the series, Field: Line, is the same, but now the map is just a 1-dimensional line segment.

      • Syra says:

        The guns, out of every FPS ever. Instant fascination.

      • Flesh Dumblegore says:

        You, Sir, gave me a splendid idea for a small BF2 Mod.
        As i write, i´m firing up the bloody BF Ed.

    • Velko says:

      XCOM: Unknown – alien craft are flying around Earth and you are in charge of the Earth’s defences. However, their cultural habits are so alien you have no way of knowing whether they are friendly or not, or indeed if they even could understand the concepts of “friendly” or “enemy”.

      • Harlander says:

        This isn’t what the question in the article suggested, but it is a lot funnier.

        How about the upcoming space games?

        Dangerous – as a space station HSE officer, you must do something about craft constantly slamming into the wall on trying to dock

        Citizen – Trade, pirate, and explore in your quest to build a newspaper empire

        No Mans – sci-fi exploration set centuries after the total failure of the human Y chromosome

        Theory – probably a game?

        • Syra says:

          Splinter – QWOP style removing a piece of wood from your finger, in the middle of a high concept espionage drama.

        • Gap Gen says:

          Dangerous could also be an all-out WWII action shooter after the mod Hidden absconded with the other half of Hidden & Dangerous.

          Also if Theory is half of Chaos Theory, I’m pretty sure I managed to play Chaos without the Theory, dropping bodies off balconies in front of their friends, pressing the wrong button and shanking enemies rather than putting them to sleep.

        • Tei says:

          I love this post, all around great comments, haha.

    • Dunbine says:

      Floor: A janitor must clean up after a “Killing” rampage of various zombie-types versus increasingly eccentric people with British accents.

      Floor 2: The eagerly anticipated upcoming sequel, in which The Janitor must now clean up Paris..

      • Post-Internet Syndrome says:

        That’s Viscera Cleanup Detail, isn’t it?

        link to runestorm.com

        • Dunbine says:

          There are no more original ideas.

          But Floor and Floor 2 features “Cleaning Time”, slow-mo action to get out those particularly troublesome stains.

    • RARARA says:

      Call of Duty without Duty. You are an Indian working for an American call centre, but you don’t have much obligation to do your job properly.

      Homefront without the front – you just stay home and never have to go outside, thus never have to affront anybody.

      Battlefield without the conjunction. Battle field. You battle a field.

  2. Baboonanza says:

    ‘Football Manager’. Cut the Football (who’s cares about that anyway) and enjoy the power of being a mid-level manager in a medium sized business.

    Exert your authority by making everyone complete pointless paperwork! Attempt to gain advancement by completing ass-kissing mini-games when the higher-ups come to visit!

  3. ran93r says:

    Japes aside, I’m happy to see how this works out.
    As an infantry shooter, the game runs really nicely. For the travel speed alone it ranks right up there with some of my favourite manshoots.

  4. Babymech says:

    While others are playing Titan, the leaves are changing color here and I’m sitting by myself playing Fall.

  5. Blackcompany says:

    Can we have the Sky without the rim?

    • Gap Gen says:

      OK, I’ll have the rim executed by firing squad.


  6. Wulfram says:

    Baldur’s Gate did OK without Baldur’s Gate

  7. Cinek says:

    I’d pay for Space Program game without Kerbal.

  8. The Dark One says:

    The new Torment without any Planescape.

  9. KingFunk says:

    Age: Origins. No dragons, just old people reminiscing about their early years. Presumably a slow-walking simulator

  10. Anthile says:

    The Walking. Literally a hiking simulator.

  11. Drake Sigar says:

    ‘Serious’ – The player must find their smile in this huge roller coaster adventure with four hundred sizzling chapters, and some hot gypsies thrown in.

  12. Velko says:

    Duke Forever – A point-and-click adventure where the protagonist is an aspiring pianist, trying to make a living in the cut-throat world of jazz, while having weirdly detailed dreams about Duke Ellington’s life. Spoiler: it turns out the player is Duke himself, reborn and unaware of his past persona.

  13. Vacuity729 says:

    Papers: A game about organising and delivering the right newspapers to the right customers.
    And on the other hand
    Please: a game about the intricacies of social graces and etiquette.

    Space: a game about the slow expansion of galaxies and the formation of stars.
    Paired with
    Hulk: a game about a large, green man who’s a little grumpy after an incident involving gamma rays.

    • KingFunk says:

      Your first game sounds suspiciously like Paperboy. Except you don’t have to organise them first…

  14. Anthile says:

    Sir, You Are. An ontological beat ’em up featuring Descartes. Cogito ergo slam.

  15. Rao Dao Zao says:

    Warface would probably be fine without the face, but have much less SEO value.

  16. int says:

    Tournament — It’s real this time!
    Resident — Be a regular taxpaying resident or a musical eyeball man.

  17. Janichsan says:

    World of Craft. Only woodworking, smithing, glassing, crocheting, etc.

  18. Cross says:

    Sid Meier’s Uncivilization V: Instead of playing a civilization, everybody plays a nomadic tribe, never really ascending in technology, and moving around looking for good places to survive. Sort of Civ meets Don’t Starve.

    • Velko says:

      Sid Meier’s V?

      • Harlander says:

        A board-game-like tale of a surreptitious invasion by lizard people?

    • Gap Gen says:

      I know someone who actually played Civ like this. They had no idea you could build cities, and thought it was a game where you roamed the map with your settler, picking up powerups from barbarian villages. Their minds were blown when I pressed the B key and started building granaries and triremes.

    • Geebs says:

      Centauri: centaur farming sim. Features Tactical Horse P**ping

      (why on earth is p**ping on the automatic block list?)

      • Kaeoschassis says:

        I know right? None of its synonyms are, it’s really baffling.

        • Gap Gen says:

          Especially given that I can shit out as much bollocks as I fucking like.

  19. geerad says:

    “Sir, You Are Being”: A game in which you have to remain on the boat and avoid landing at the English countryside. After all, you can’t not-be on a boat.

    Remove the “DO” from “DOOM” to get “OM”, the game that finally answers the question, “What if you could meditate with the monsters?”

    • schlusenbach says:

      Other id titles:
      QUAK: dream of the ornithologist
      RA: egyptian godgame

    • Spacewalk says:

      Remove the “D” and you get “OOM”, the Satanic dairy farm management and demon husbandry simulator (although I think that that last one has been done already).

  20. skyturnedred says:

    Fallout minus the out: You just fall. The entire game.

    • Vandelay says:

      Fall: The Longest Journey – Now with even big buildings.

  21. Gap Gen says:

    Titanfall with *literally* only humans, and the only way to defeat your opponents is to wrestle them naked in an airless void before you asphyxiate.

    Command: Control vast armies in peacetime, and have no way to convince the politicians to allow you to conquer neighbouring states.

    Transport: Your tycoon status stripped after corruption allegations ruin your business, you travel on buses and trains to your dead-end job where you barely make ends meet and are constantly reminded of your former transit empire.

    Hold: Lacking funds to build a Stronghold, you build a normal Hold. Lovingly craft your hold, then watch as an invading army destroys the flimsy construction immediately.

    Annihilation: Despite the missing “Total” prefix, it turns out that annihilation still means destroying everything completely so nothing much really changes and your robot armies turn entire planets into barren husks like normal.

    Mass: Prior to the discovery of the Effect, you play a space commander who grows old and dies en route to their first mission, hoping that their great grandchildren might one day get to complete the task assigned to their ancestors by the Galactic Council a thousand years ago.

    Will Be Watching: After an injunction by Richard Dawkins, a new game in which you must survive weeks of torture while a guy called Will stares at you from the corner of the room.

    Sniper: After the Elites are reassigned to the Eastern Front, take up the high-powered rifle and miss every shot before you die when the church tower you’re firing from is destroyed by artillery.

    Dogs: Watching is no longer possible after the cell phone company stops your contract for breach of terms & conditions, but on the other hand, puppies!

    The Walking: Dead people walking? Preposterous! Nonetheless it is up to you to make the right choices on a hike through the countryside. Do you set up the trangia or eat those beans raw and press on? Leave that badly blistered comrade behind or use valuable sticky plasters to treat the wound?

    Hearts: It is 1917 and all the Valiant soldiers are dead or stripped of their will to fight. A cute side-scroller in which you play a French soldier who refuses to take part in the fighting or follow orders. Can you avoid being court-martialled and executed by firing squad?

    Esther: You wonder what happened to that stranger pulled out of that car crash you were in as you wander around an island. Not that it matters, particularly. It wasn’t like you knew them or anything. Ooh, an abandoned cabin!

    Ma: Your mother comes in and tells you to stop playing those silly military simulators. You go outside and kick a ball around for a bit.

    Broken: Tim Schafer’s crowdfunded point & click adventure is abandoned half-way completed after programmers fail to get the code to compile. Backers are refunded and an apologetic Schafer works on a flight sim instead.

    Octo: An octopus flails around an aquarium, performing tasks like finding crabs under rocks or squirting ink at predators.

    The Parable: A narrator follows you around, making comments about the nature of linear videogames whilst conspicuously not using your name over and over and over.

    Knock: Ice Pick Lodge return with a crowdfunded side-scrolling game in which you wander round a house that is a bit scary but not really.

    Honored: You are a very good bodyguard to the Empress and she lives a long and full life, managing to keep a plague at bay thanks to your assiduous protection. You have many medals. Well done.

    Home: You arrive from a year abroad to a new house. Everything seems strange, but the warm embraces of your family as they greet you at the door makes everything OK. Later, when they’re alseep, you rummage through all their shit.

    • DanMan says:

      You need to get laid, dude. ;)

      • Tei says:

        He is so awesome, I bet he is already in a poligonal relation, if he want to.

      • Gap Gen says:

        I don’t know for sure, but my work probably frowns on that kind of thing during office hours.

    • gwathdring says:

      “Hearts: It is 1917 and all the Valiant soldiers are dead or stripped of their will to fight. A cute side-scroller in which you play a French soldier who refuses to take part in the fighting or follow orders. Can you avoid being court-martialled and executed by firing squad?”

      Hey, it’s A Very Long Engagement!

  22. Post-Internet Syndrome says:

    “Gambling is for Winners – Roll the Dice is a new ultra-rare Burn Card that gives you the ability to tap into your entire deck from inside a match. It’s the Fabergé Egg of burn cards if you will.”

    Sounds fun, but I don’t think they know what a Fabergé egg is…

  23. MonkeyPunch says:

    When I first started playing Titanfall this is something I dearly wanted. I came to appreciate the nuances of Titan combat after a while, but I am looking forward to Pilot vs Pilot battles.

    Also, they should hopefully create levels explicitly for this mode which should allow them to make them a fair bit more compact and focused seeing as they won’t have to add parts which are made for the Titans (larger open areas which in the normal game mode are not great for Pilots).

  24. Tom Walker says:

    My Buddy’s Mom Makes Every Hour On The Internet.

    Educational game in which you learn to manipulate SOAP to continually extend the fabric of time via XML.

    • Tom Walker says:

      Sigh. This was a reply to a spambot whose post got deleted while I was typing it.

      Honestly I don’t know *why* I bother, etc.

      • Rublore says:

        For a second there, I thought the spambots had gone really weird.

  25. RaveTurned says:

    For the love of all things, somebody make this a game jam theme!

  26. Gypsy23 says:

    Bioshock Finite. An adventure game of story and exploration without the combat.

    • KevinLew says:

      What you just described is exactly how the game Gone Home got created. It was developed by former Bioshock devs that wanted to know what would happen if you made a game like Bioshock, but you removed everything but the story elements (i.e., the audio logs). I’m being 100% serious.

      • Gypsy23 says:

        I kinda was serious too. I played Gone Home and loved it. So many times while playing Bioshock Infinite I found myself thinking how much better the game would have been without the combat.

  27. grimdanfango says:

    I think the gag has been slightly misinterpreted here. Going by the predominant logic in these comments, Titanfall without Titans would be a game about falling, but the point is – Titanfall without Titanfall, becomes a game about running around shooting each other, and not being able to requisition Titans from orbit.

    Shadow of the Colossus without the Shadow of the Colossus would become a game about hunting monolithic creatures who were transparent to the sun’s rays.

    Grid without the Grid would become a game where nobody was quite sure where to park their cars at the start of a race. (On a similar note, Dirt would become the cleanest rally game ever made)

    The Sims would, rather appealingly, become a very user-friendly architectural CAD package.

    Black & White would become deeply morally ambiguous.

    Civilization would just be anarchy :-)

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      All my civ games end up as anarchy anyway…

    • Harlander says:

      Half-life without radioactive decay? Either exactly the same or completely different because all physical laws have collapsed

    • Velko says:

      I don’t care, this is the best comments section in ages.

      • grimdanfango says:

        It’s all good fun. I just liked the idea of taking any existing game and working out what it would be if you removed specifically what was named in the title, but otherwise left it unchanged… as opposed to just removing an arbitrary word from the title and coming up with a new game to fit what was left.

        Uncharted without being uncharted would supply you with maps and a GPS.

        Torchlight would be considerably harder to play when you ventured underground.

        • Harlander says:

          FTL would take a lot longer to play.

          Space Engineers without the Engineers is Asteroids. Without the space it’s probably a modded Minecraft.

          Crusader Kings becomes the harrowing tale of peasant life in the middle ages.

          • DellyWelly says:

            If you took the Nidhogg out, you would be fighting for the relentless adoration of a stadium full of people.

            And if you took the Hexagon out of Super, you could never unlock any of the levels :/

  28. Mutak says:

    Half Life becomes Life: It’s your first day as young technician in an experimental physics lab. You have to learn a bunch of new skills, and at the end of the day you leave. Choose whether you want to go home and crash or try to go out and make a personal connection with someone. The next day is basically the same. It’s basically “The Sims” in first-person.
    The sequel is the same, but instead of a tech, you’re a blue-collar worker in a repressive soviet-style society.

    • Gap Gen says:

      Or Half, where on your first day you’re severed in two by a beam of energy and must choose whether to control your legs or torso as you escape the doomed facility.

  29. Bobtree says:

    I’m very happy to see Marked For Death mode as a permanent addition.

  30. BathroomCitizen says:

    I’m still regretting of not having bought Titanfall during the discounts a week ago. I got scared by the 52gb installation.

    • DanMan says:

      TBH, that has been troubling me as well.

      Anyway, BF did it first: Infantry Only mode, so what’s the big deal?

  31. Jimbo says:

    Black & White would certainly be improved.

    Vote UKIP.

  32. Scandalon says:

    Oh my goodness folks, you have made me laugh* like I have not in a long time. Much needed, and yes, someone start a themed game jam!

    * Or somehow pierced a hole in the Serious Business shield around me at work and allowed the laughs hidden inside to escape.