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Titanfall’s free beta was a stroke of PR genius

Titanfall_screenshot

Titanfall is a fun game. OK, that’s out of the way.

Titanfall is unfinished. It has a “campaign” which is just multiplayer with someone talking over the game. What are they saying? Who knows? Who cares? There is usually too much happening on the screen to care about whatever obviously isn’t happening in the story. This, and several other shortcomings is why the free beta was such a brilliant move.

Titanfall was incredibly hyped. As the 2nd coming of Respawn, the team that made the amazing COD4, everyone thought this was the next evolution is shooters: a masterwork.

Respawn knew what was happening and they knew that without a real campaign, without a lot of the customization and options, and a general feeling of a lack of finish people would be disappointed. So what do they do? They do a free beta. How can you be disappointed with a free beta? You expect bugs, incomplete story, equipment whatever. You’re just thrilled to play the game early without spending.

As a result TF got lots of great press. People speculated at “all the great stuff” not included in the demo. When the real game dropped, it wasn’t really different at all. But at this point everyone already liked it because they had a soft intro with the beta. Respawn got to meter expectations AND keep the hype.

Well played Respawn, well played.

Posted Friday, March 21, 2014