When Titanfall launched back in March, it seemed anything but a competitive shooter for eSports professionals. It lacked ranked leaderboards and private matches, and Respawn even went as far to say it wasn’t focusing specifically on making the game accessible for the eSports circuit.
That could change, however, as the developer focuses on adding new content and working with professional gamers.
“Since we announced the game there’s been a lot of interest it,” Respawn community manager Abbie Heppe told MMGN. “The goal for the team first and foremost was to build a foundation and make a game that people wanted to play at all.”
That goal appears to have paid off: Titanfall was the first Xbox One game to reach one million units sold, while also managing almost 900,000 on Xbox 360, and a modest 294,000 on PC.
One of the most promising signs of the game’s potential shift to the eSports circuit was the addition of private matches, and Heppe admits Respawn is looking at what else it can do to evolve the experience beyond DLC and other modes.
“We’ve spoken to a lot of eSports partners about what we can do going forward,” she said. ”It’s not an easy thing: you need to figure out what the ruleset is for the game, because 5v5 is obviously the official way the game is played, but for us, it’s a very specific game style. It’s meant to be played like that. There are so many different elements -- obviously the titans add an entirely new element -- in order to make the game work competitively for eSports.”
Respawn will “start testing the waters and see where it goes from there”, according to Heppe.
“There are certainly a lot of players that are incredibly good. We’ll see. We actually did a tournament at E3 and we had some pro players, and that was so cool to watch. It’s amazing what the best players are able to do, because it’s a great game to watch other people playing.”
She’s not wrong: Titanfall is a rare game that is genuinely enjoyable to watch without having to pick up the controller.
eSports fans: What do you think? Do you think Titanfall can have a place within the eSports circuit?