Call of Duty, love or hate it, is king of sales in the FPS market. Every year, fans lineup outside of GameStops and Walmarts across the country to get hold of the latest installment of the series. While the campaigns remain fairly engrossing from title to title, the real draw of CoD is its immersive online multiplayer. In the wake of CoD’s juggernaut momentum, many developers and publishers have done their best to enter the fray with a game to counter Activision’s darling. There have been a handful of games that can claim to compare, most notably EA’s Battlefield series, but overall CoD is in a league of its own. At least, it was, until Titanfall came out.
Another EA property, Titanfall is, for all intents and purposes, CoD with mechs. It’s a crude analogy, and recent converts are quick to point out the myriad of differences that separate the two games, but it’s the simplest way of summing up what makes Titanfall unique. Reaction to the game has been overwhelmingly positive, and there’s already quite a bit of rumbling about a sequel. I have no problem with seeing another Titanfall game make its way to the world, but if the title is truly primed to be a CoD contender, I don’t think it needs to follow the same sales model.
This is the first year that I haven’t gotten into the latest installment of a CoD game. Ghosts felt like a genuine step backwards compared to Black Ops II, so I’ve been sticking with the older game, instead. If Activision were still releasing map packs for the title, I’d be downloading them, but under CoD’s current structuring, each installment only gets a year’s worth of support, then it’s on to the next. I think Titanfall might benefit from adopting a sales plan different from CoD. People are having a lot of fun with this first installment of the series, and it also doesn’t have a single-player component, so I say put the next sequel out two years from now and in the interim support the current game with DLC.
I honestly think that fans would have no problem with CoD not being annual and just paying for new maps. I’m certainly tired of paying a minimum of $60 for the game followed by another $60 for map packs over a year. The value just isn’t there, at that price. Titanfall, though, is already luring people with its epic gameplay, so it would seem smart to ensnare them a little further with the proposition of not having to invest $120 a year just to play. Frankly, it would be refreshing to know that the $60 buy-in for the game will allow a player to stay current without as much expense over a two year period. It’s not like it doesn’t cost money to create a yearly installment of any game, either; this model would allow the devs to stretch their resources further.
It’s unlikely EA can resist the temptation of going toe-to-toe with CoD on a yearly basis, but it would be nice to see something different come from the industry. Titanfall is bringing something new to the FPS genre with its gameplay, so I don’t see why the same can’t be said for how its sold. I think there’s a great deal of discontent amongst CoD fans over having to adapt to a new multiplayer experience every single year at $60 a pop; Titanfall can be the change we’ve all been looking for.