Written By - Andy Mc Vittie
Pages - 200
ISBN - 9781783291946
The Art Of Titanfall Review
Over the last few months Titanfall has been on the lips of every Xbox gamer, mainly due to the hype surrounding the game, and I have to say that judging by the Beta which we covered here, the hype so far is justified. Few of us actually stand back and think about how much work actually goes into a game such as this one, we are far to eager to dive head first into the action. Recently we got the chance to see some of this hard work first hand in, The Art Of Titanfall which was published by Titan Books, no relation by the way. The Art Of Titanfall has been penned by Andy McVittie, with some words from Joel Emslie (Lead Artist), Steve Fukuda (Game Director) and CEO of Respawn, Vince Zampella.
I have been dabbling in the 3D modelling world for a while now and am certified on Autodesk’s 3DS MAX, so this book is probably right up my street, but this book is one that not only industry buffs will find interesting but, it gives fans an insight into how much work and dedication has gone into what they are now controlling on the TV screen. The book starts out showing us the different Titan classes and their pilots, from the beautiful 3D renders right down to the hand drawn concept art. There are only three different classes of Titan available to players and the one that stood out for me in the book, was the Stryder Class, mainly due to the other two being much bulkier. The Stryder looks like a Titan on slim-fast, in saying that it also looks much more maneuverable, that might just give it an edge in battle. The pilots also went through changes from the concept, to the finished article, but the level of detail in each of the characters is simply astounding. While I was going through this section of the book, I was surprised to come across creatures, which the book informs us are added to populate certain areas to make the world come alive and feel realistic. All very strange and wonderful, for me they look like a cross breed between creatures from Avatar and Riddick, and according to The Art Of Titanfall some of them have been created to attack you for just staring at them.
The next section covers vehicles, weapons and tech, yes into the man toys, Titans are big boy toys too but you can’t do without a good old fashioned, 200 bullet per second gun. Nothing, would be the word to describe the amount of information released about Titanfall’s campaign mode throughout the development phase, and the only vehicles we seen during the beta, apart from the Titan’s, were the drop ships that came to collect us at the end of the round. This section is just full of ships from carriers to bombers, in all I counted 13 ships, all different sizes and designs, and they are just the one’s that fly. There is also a whole range of ground vehicles, like assault cars, construction titan’s, walkers, drones and gorilla tanks. If you have any imagination, you may see an alien world at war, full of vehicles and strange animals, and you probably would not be far off the truth. In fact put all of those elements together and paint some of them blue, and you have Avatar. The weapons come next, each one displayed in a stunning and detailed render, showing each one in a couple of different views. Without giving too much away the two that stood out for me is the gatling gun called Avenger, and the very useful Data Knife that not only kills silently but has what everything seems to have these days, USB storage!!!, a knife with USB, Rambo eat your heart out, your needle and thread seems a bit last century now eh!.
The biggest section in The Art Of Titanfall is the locations, taking up about a third of the entire book. This section goes from the training ground which we seen in the Beta, right through each location in great detail, giving us some great insights into what the developers were trying to achieve, and the atmosphere they were trying to bring to each map. We did see two of these in the Beta of course, Fracture and Angel City, but the one that stands out for me is Boneyard. This is a map set inside the giant ribcage of an alien beast. To give you a sense of just how big, they have set an entire settlement within it’s gaping bones, and when you see the artists impression of the beast roaming the land, you truely get the true scale of this leviathan. Each location and map throughout this section has many pages dedicated to showing you as much of the development process as possible, with artists drawings, renders and information. Some of these drawings and renders are true art, and I would not be surprised if Respawn won an award, for the Titanfall’s art alone. Finally coming to the end of this mammoth book, we are shown some of the in-game graphics, in the form of street signs and shop signs. These signs are amusing to say the least, and are easily missed when you are running about dodging bullets. For instance, 8 Arms Massage (We,ve got your back), Mimi’s Exotic Pets (Not For Eating), and my favourite Harms Way (A friendly pub). On a more serious note The Art Of Titanfall ends with some raw models of the titans and some characters, it’s in this raw state that you can truly appreciate the detail, and hours of hard work that has gone into bringing us, Titanfall.
To cut a long story short, The Art Of Titanfall is just a tremendous book, filled with great insights into the working of a AAA title, accompanied by eye popping renders and art, that would not look out of place in a gallery of their own. Throughout this article I have given credit to the talented people that brought us Titanfall, and they are talented, but this book has also taken some talent to put together and the author and publishers deserve some recognition. I don’t care if Titanfall is not your type of game, or you own a PlayStation and will never play it, if you play games or have an interest in games then you should buy this book, it is just a masterpiece. You can purchase this directly from Titan Books here.