Is Apex Legends holding Titanfall 3 back?

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Humanity

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#1  Edited By Humanity
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Titanfall Legends

Titanfall 2 was a great multiplayer game. It was sent out to die in a busy release window and failed to gain a whole lot of traction despite it's great mobility and generally refreshing new ideas in a crowded market of point and click shooters. With Apex Legends it seems like Respawn have finally found that commercial-success gold. People know about their game, people are playing their game and people are very positive about it. This is great news for Respawn and a much needed win after they splintered off from Call of Duty and struck out on their own in search of something new.

With the success of Apex comes the question whether the necessity to continuously update their new Battle Royale shooter is standing in the way of developing Titanfall 3 that at least some fans are waiting for? Is there even a large enough audience to support the notion of continuing the franchise in that direction? Personally I'm not a big battle royale type of person. There is too much downtime and I not only enjoyed the classic Team Deathmatch format of Titanfall 2, but also it's many mobility options that are absent from Apex, making it largely another left-trigger-right-trigger affair with a sprinkling of hero-class abilities. There are people like myself that would love to see another Titanfall game with a great multiplayer component, but, how commercially viable is that? Is it actually the Titanfall name that is holding Apex back from fully being a thing of it's own? The connection between the two properties is surface level at best, although they do share the same weapons. Is Apex actually saddled with unnecessary baggage?

As much as I would love to see another Titanfall, I can't deny that from a purely business perspective it doesn't make much sense. One can dream though.

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inevpatoria

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#2  Edited By inevpatoria

As someone who knows absolutely nothing about how the industry works, I'll give my conjecture:

Apex saved Respawn. And Titanfall. And it's the only reason we're likely to see anything from Titanfall ever again.

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doombot13

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@inevpatoria: Have to agree, without Apex I would assume that entire franchise would be tossed aside Mass Effect style.

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Jaalmo

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#4  Edited By Jaalmo  Online

I think Apex has increased the chance of a Titanfall 3 but it won't be the Titanfall we have known up to this point? It will lean more towards Apex's tone and direction. Expanding on that part of the world and characters with a campaign, traditional PvP etc. Not as much emphasis on Titans, more infantry based combat. So the answer is maybe?

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csl316

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I think they'll make another campaign, but it'll probably be called Apex: Titanfall or something.

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FinalDasa

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#6 FinalDasa  Moderator

Apex is probably helping to fund Titanfall 3 in part.

Apex also probably doesn't require the full team to maintain it anymore (who knows actually, not sure how big of a team is needed to keep one of those games going) and Respawn has stated they have more than one development team I believe.

Titanfall 2 was a 2016 game and a good AAA release probably needs 3-4 years before it's done. Considering the new set of consoles coming at the end of next year, wouldn't be shocked if a sequel was released in 2021.

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Efesell

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Yeah I prefer to take the optimistic route of assuming that having a big hit now means they could afford to take a risk on a Titanfall 3, instead of making that game knowing it could be the final nail.

Of course there's always the chance they just rest on their success until Apex dies out so it may be a while.. but I still would say this is ultimately nothing but a good outcome for future Titanfall.

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@jaalmo said:

I think Apex has increased the chance of a Titanfall 3 but it won't be the Titanfall we have known up to this point? It will lean more towards Apex's tone and direction. Expanding on that part of the world and characters with a campaign, traditional PvP etc. Not as much emphasis on Titans, more infantry based combat. So the answer is maybe?

I agree, sadly.

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#9  Edited By nateandrews

Didn’’t Vince Zampella say earlier this year that something Titanfall related was in the works, or did I dream that? Not expecting Titanfall 3 obviously but this just reminded me of that.

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Humanity

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Didn’’t Vince Zampella say earlier this year that something Titanfall related was in the works, or did I dream that? Not expecting Titanfall 3 obviously but this just reminded me of that.

Yah he said something along those lines which is even more worrying because if you have a new Titanfall game in the works then you either say nothing at all or you say there is another game being worked on. Saying something this vague usually leads to the announcement of a mobile game or worse.

I agree with everyone that Apex is a good thing for Respawn. Definitely didn't want to see that talented team sink because Titanfall wasn't selling as well as it should. I'm not entirely convinced that the success of Apex ensures or strengthens the likelyhood of another Titanfall - from EAs perspective it's a weird pitch to take. You made two games that didn't sell amazing (by EA standards anyway) and now you are doing awesome and you want to funnel those proceeds, momentum and development time into a project that has failed to launch twice in a row? I just don't see it, or as was said above, I don't see it being released in the form you would expect. While Apex was an offshoot from Titanfall, I can very much imagine the roles getting switched and now Titanfall becoming a smaller scale offshoot from Apex which takes lead as the popular property.

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#11  Edited By ThePanzini

If Star Wars becomes a hit and with the new film releasing this years theirs a good chance, Respawn will likely be Apex / Star Wars for a good while.

EA don't tend to stick with franchises that don't perform. If TF3 was to happen I think it would more likely be a reboot, the public backlash against sci-fi FPS and wall running etc plus TF2 not just selling poor but spectacularly so, any new Titanfall would be a very different beast.

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FrodoBaggins

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I doubt it's holding Titanfall back. Like many have said it's probably a good thing for the franchise. Hopefully we get TF3 at some point.

Also Apex is the best.

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inevpatoria

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#13  Edited By inevpatoria

@humanity said:

I agree with everyone that Apex is a good thing for Respawn. Definitely didn't want to see that talented team sink because Titanfall wasn't selling as well as it should. I'm not entirely convinced that the success of Apex ensures or strengthens the likelyhood of another Titanfall - from EAs perspective it's a weird pitch to take. You made two games that didn't sell amazing (by EA standards anyway) and now you are doing awesome and you want to funnel those proceeds, momentum and development time into a project that has failed to launch twice in a row? I just don't see it, or as was said above, I don't see it being released in the form you would expect. While Apex was an offshoot from Titanfall, I can very much imagine the roles getting switched and now Titanfall becoming a smaller scale offshoot from Apex which takes lead as the popular property.

The original question was "Is Apex Holding Titanfall 3 Back?" It seems what the discussion has borne out is that the success of Apex and the future of Titanfall might have very little ongoing correlation. If there is a correlation, I can't imagine it's anything but a positive one.

For instance: if it's a "weird pitch," as it were, to develop another Titanfall game in the wake of Apex Legends's dominance, the same pitch would be far less enticing were we to never see Apex at all. In the latter scenario, a no-Apex Respawn would've been cast in the lingering shadow of Titanfall 2's financial underperformance. Fallen Order, then, would've been a sort of Hail Mary-throw for the studio. But with that considered, there is little chance Fallen Order is such a success that it grants Respawn control over their destiny. It feels like a situation reminiscent of the Activision/Bizarre Creations mess in 2011. Without clout, Respawn would've been at the mercy of EA. It's a road that ends with packed boxes and shuttered doors.

Again, I have no clue how this industry works, really. By that I mean to say I don't really know how much power EA as a spooky, intangible corporate entity has over Respawn at a given time. I'm sure it's a lot.

But now Respawn is the company responsible for Apex Legends - both a critical darling and, for EA, a financial success that rivals even FIFA. That's leverage. That's name recognition. That's the ability to walk into a meeting and say, "The next game we make, we can slap 'FROM THE MAKERS OF APEX LEGENDS' on the box art and drive extra eyeballs to our product we never had before."

Whether Respawn wants to make Titanfall 3 proper, none of us know. But if you're trying to say Titanfall was better off without Apex, more likely to come back in a meaningful way--

--I think that argument is really straining.

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In the short term Apex is holding back Titanfall 3. When Apex came out, they announced they were working on something Titanfall. Later, after the struggles and difficulties of Season 1 Apex, it seems like they pulled everyone off that mysterious Titanfall project to work on Apex, and it really shows. Then, when you factor in some of the data mining that's been done about future modes and content, I think it's likely that anyone that would be working on Titanfall is on Apex instead. Apex was a cheap project with a small team that blew up, and they've had to drastically expand development on Apex to keep up.

Long term, it will help, they get money, they get some breathing room and freedom under EA, and they'll have some space to maybe make Titanfall 3 somewhere down the road. Short term, going off what they've said, what can be inferred, and what can be datamined, Apex probably made them shelve any Titanfall 3 stuff they had planned. Maybe somewhere mid next gen we see some more Titanfall.

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#15  Edited By ThePanzini

EA studios tend to have alot of creative freedom, Dice made Mirrors Edge 2 despite the first game being a flop and used the WWI setting in Battlefield even though EA weren't sold on the idea.

Zampella has said they wanted to make TF3 before it got turned into Apex, the only question is what would TF3 look like because the budget and backing you'll get from EA depends on how much faith they have in the project and clearly they didn't believe in TF2.

I don't see TF3 coming back in the same form as a AAA game, either F2P or more of a hero shooter using the Apex characters.

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OurSin_360

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I really enjoyed titanfall 1, the second one just didn't feel the same though. (may have been that I played it on ps4 and not pc).

I could see them doing a Titanfall related battle royale game, maybe they tie it in with apex legends (i haven't played it but I think I heard it's in the same universe?)

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EA studios tend to have alot of creative freedom, Dice made Mirrors Edge 2 despite the first game being a flop and used the WWI setting in Battlefield even though EA weren't sold on the idea.

While I have no idea what it's like to be a studio owned by EA i've heard multiple stories of studios being forced to implement features into their games against their will (Visceral and Dead Space 3 come to mind) and a lot of studios have spoken about how hard it is to develope anything but shooters on Frostbite but they've been made to use it since it's cheaper. (because EA own Dice) Granted Respawn used Source for Titanfall and Apex and will use UE4 for Fallen Order but thats a rare exception.

I hope you're wrong about the form Titanfall 3 will take if it ever comes out but as i've said earlier it's the most likely scenario given how popular Apex is compared to Titanfall.

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Corvak

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I feel the same way about Apex as I do about Overwatch and League of Legends, which is i'd love to play a single player game in that setting. The competition never keeps my interest for more than a match or two - and these three games all offer just enough of a story beyond just fighting each other in an arena that I would love to see it fleshed out, even if it wasn't as a shooter.

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#19  Edited By pewpewphil

As a big fan of the 2 Titanfalls (loved the 2nd a lot), I believe that Apex is great for the studio, and in the long term Titanfall.

For the titanfall brand, Apex is pretty important in keeping the public aware of it. Fun fact when Apex Legends launch, Titanfall 2's player base had a huge resurgence. Remembering Titanfall 2, especially on PC, was a game with a huge ceiling and very intimidating for new players get into it. Though Apex Legends removes most the mechanics, it makes the game a lot more accessible for a large crowd. If someone says they like the game but want a more mechanically intense shooter, they can go point to Titanfall 2.

For Respawn its necessary to remind EA what this studio can do, since EA bought Respawn in December of 2017. In August of 2017 Vince Zampella, head of Respawn, said to an EA comment on the future of Titanfall , "what ever the f that means". They seem to have creative independence in creating their products and give how much Apex boosted EA's stock, EA's repsect too. My only concern is how much control they have over in-game monetization, perfect example is the Iron Crown fiasco. In the end given the fact Respawn has 2 major projects coming out and Apex on the go, and I hope they keep making more great games for a long time.

PS I've been really enjoying Apex season 3 thus far, but I do hope one day they can start putting some more Titanfall related things ( references, Titans, mechanics) in, maybe for an event.

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The question is, does Respawn want to make another Titanfall? They left Activision, in part, because they were tired of making the Call of Duty games, wanted to try something different.

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This whole situation is weird. While it's not really for me, I'm glad Apex was successful, because Respawn deserved a sales darling. Respawn is obviously a talented team and I want them to continue to exist. They're not in a "write their own ticket" situation now from Apex, but they likely won't be on the the EA chopping block anytime soon, either. I think it's probably more likely that we eventually get a Titanfall 3 due to Apex, as it was entirely possible that the series could have been axed over low sales numbers of Titanfall 1 due to the general "fuck xbox" gaming sentiment when it launched and similar sales issues with Titanfall 2 due to the dumbest launch window possible where EA had it competing against one of its own fucking games.

I think we'll get a Titanfall 3 now, though. However, there's a very good chance that it will come with the caveat directive of "make Titanfall more like Apex" from corporate EA who looks at pure sales numbers. There's also the possibility of them being shoveled a bunch more Fallen Order-type stuff from the higher-ups to where they can't put forth the proper development time on a Titanfall 3. I certainly remember when EA acquired Criterion and was like, "hey, we love your Burnout games; now you're going to make NFS games", and I could see Respawn becoming EA's "well, those guys are pretty good; let's see what they can do with x game" studio. If you're gathering that I don't trust EA not to ruin/fuck over Respawn, you're correct.