Titanfall 2 Tech Demo Impressions

Titanfall 2 LogoThis past weekend Respawn had the first of two multiplayer Tech Demo tests for October’s Titanfall 2. I was and still am a huge fan of the first game – it was the first game on the current-gen consoles that actually felt “next-gen” to me. It also managed to beat the other FPS games to the punch with regards to the focus on increased mobility, which we’ve since seen in heavy hitters like Destiny, Call of Duty and even in Halo. So I went in to this weekend pretty excited to see what Respawn has been up to with the sequel – I thought the E3 footage was definitely exciting after all. Unfortunately, I came out of the first weekend with a lot more unsure about the direction the game is headed.Yes, I know it was a build from June, but that doesn’t excuse some of the issues I have with it. Let’s talk through this little mess.

We have to start with my biggest complaint, by a pretty large margin, which is the UI. The first game didn’t have a particularly easy UI to use to begin with, but this time around it’s even worse. The multiplayer lobby is cluttered, thanks to the new Network system taking up the lower third of the screen. Your whole screen feels like it’s being used and it’s hard to tell what’s important – you’ll be bombarded with Network invites dead center in the screen, but if you’re just trying to play a game or two, that’s not at all important. I also had a hell of a time trying to get my friend into my party/lobby to play with. We played one game of Bounty Hunt last night – then after the game finished, it put us into different lobbies and we couldn’t get back together. After about 15 minutes or so, we just called it quits because it’s just wasn’t worth the frustration. Some of the menus are fine – the game selection is nice and clear, explaining the objective, whether or not it has Titans or AI involved and player count. Others are a little clunky – I wasn’t a huge fan of the loadout customization system, not necessarily because it was bad, but I think it was better in the first game.

Once you get past all the UI clunkiness and into an actual game, that’s where I think your opinion of the game really is dependent on what you’re expecting. Coming in as a big fan of the first game, I had some expectations – AI combatants on big maps, Pilots zipping all around and Titans being called down and becoming pretty important targets. And to be fair, those elements are there – sort of. AI only is present in Bounty Hunt, at least for now; and it’s in a much more limited role than it used to be. Pilots still have a great degree of mobility – in fact I think that may be the best improvement from the first game to this one; your movements have more weight to them, they feel like you actually have momentum and mass. The new grappling hook Pilot ability really helps with that feeling, as well as being a really fun way to move around the maps. Titans still play a pretty big role in the game too, but it’s a very different feeling, this time in a way that I think takes a lot more getting used to. Depending on the game mode, you can get a Titan pretty quickly, or at least until they hot fixed it, maybe only once in a Hardpoint game. The biggest change to the Titans though is that they’ve decided to make them all individual classes. Gone are the old chassis that you could customize however you want – take a heavy Ogre chassis and give it the heavy weapon, or give the heavy hitter to the light chassis. Now you have different profiles for the Titan – Ion or Scorch in the tech demo – and they have a couple options to mess with, but their weapons or abilities aren’t those options. Each frame has its own weapon and abilities, and you have to learn how they work. The Titans do feel a little less powerful overall, but that might just be because the maps both felt a little small. One of the real strengths of the first game was that the maps actually felt like big battlefields. Whether you were a Pilot or a Titan, you never felt out of place – the scale worked both ways. This weekend’s maps felt a lot more built around the Pilot to me – playing as a Titan, even on Homestead, felt a little cramped.

Titanfall

All of that may sound like I really disliked my time playing, there’s a lot of nitpicking and criticism in there for sure. But that’s only because I really loved the first game and I really do think that this can become a franchise along the lines of Call of Duty/Battlefield/Halo. What worries me is that it feels like Titanfall has lost its identity a little bit. When I play it, I can’t help but feel the echoes of Call of Duty becoming louder – I don’t get that with Destiny and its lineage with Halo as Destiny has evolved. I worry that the pressure to deliver on this sequel is maybe a little overwhelming – there’s a lot different this time around, especially on the single-player front. I’m not quite as down on it as some of the posts I saw on the Titanfall subreddit were – nor am I as naive as to think that a six month delay would be enough time to completely retool the multiplayer, which was an actual post I saw. I actually had a good number of moments while playing that put me right back in that Titanfall frame of mind – goosing ejecting Pilots, Titan punching Pilots trying to rodeo me, parkouring all over a map without touching the ground, all while fighting the whole time. There’s still enough character in there where when it works, there’s nothing like it right now; even at its fastest, Black Ops III doesn’t quite do parkour as well.

What I would love to see is Respawn take these two weekends feedback seriously, and make this game as good as it can be. I don’t think it needs a big delay, but I do think that pushing it back to Christmas would be a huge help. Two months to use that feedback, polish up the UI and networking; and maybe most importantly, get it out of the crowded launch season – especially with FPS games. The first game didn’t really have a lot of competition to worry about – Call of Duty: Ghosts and Battlefield 4 were really it, and both had been out for months by then. Titanfall 2 doesn’t have that luxury – Destiny: Rise of Iron, Battlefield 1, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and Modern Warfare Remastered all hit within a month either way of TF2‘s launch. Add in some other heavy hitters and I don’t think it’s too tough to see how a short delay might really help. Maybe after this second weekend coming up we’ll have a better idea of what’s happening moving forward.

Call of Duty: Black Ops III and Multiplayer Achievements

Black Ops 3

I hit level 55 in Call of Duty: Black Ops III last night, which is the level cap before entering Prestige Mode. When you reach that level, you get one of the four multiplayer achievements in the game – one is unlocked at level 10, the other two deal with the new Specialist mechanic in Black Ops. That, combined with my ongoing grind for weapon camos, calling cards and Specialist attire got me thinking about those sort of multiplayer achievements – whether they’re actual Xbox Achievements/PlayStation Trophies or in-game items. My stance on multiplayer achievements has always been more or less that they really shouldn’t be on the achievement list. But that idea was basically formed from the achievements that were in Gears of War, Halo 3, and Halo: Reach. Over the last couple years, I’ve softened my stance a little.

With the games that I play the most online right now – Destiny, Halo 5, and Call of Duty: Black Ops III – each has competitive multiplayer achievements. A few years ago, I would have been pissed about that – mainly because I see those achievements always drawing the most attention for boosters and the such. I played the hell out of Halo 3 and I’m still missing a whole slew of the multiplayer achievements because they could only be unlocked in Free for All – which to me just further encouraged boosting. With Halo 5 though, the multiplayer achievements are much more easily unlocked. Win five games of the different game modes, and do the same for each of the original three Warzone maps. In theory that’s really not that many games, should you play well and get your wins quickly. Then you are free to just focus on the in-game commendations and REQ points. With the Warzone achievement, I do think that since you’re at the mercy of the map selector, it can be a bit more frustrating – I had the same issue with Titanfall asking you to win a game of each mode on each map. But those are achievements that, again in theory, are simply unlocked by playing the game over time. That’s kinda the point with shooters these days – the campaign is good for a few play sessions, then it’s the multiplayer that keeps the game installed on your hard drive.

Destiny Crucible

With the two Activision games – Destiny and Call of Duty – the lists are a little different. Destiny does have a couple PvP achievements, and really only one is dependent on player skill and might be tricky (Kill a Warlock, Hunter and Titan in one life). The rest are pretty much just keep playing kind of achievements – which works with Destiny‘s notion of you playing a bunch of different activities every time you log on. And since the bulk of the content is PvE in nature, that’s where the bulk of the achievements are. That one odd achievement is a good example of one that I definitely take issue with. At launch, it was a lot easier to get that one – everyone was still playing around with each class, including alts. I got that achievement when I was leveling my Warlock before my fireteam had actually finished the story – mainly thanks to Nova Bomb being good at covering a wide area. After the meta stabilized though and Titans all but vanished from PvP through most of Year One, that achievement became a hell of a lot harder to unlock. Now it’s probably back to being relatively straightforward with Sunbreakers making Titans relevant again.

Which brings me to Call of Duty. It’s been a series that has always done different things with multiplayer. The first multiplayer specific achievements didn’t appear until the first Black Ops, of which there were two – one to reach level 10 in Combat Training, and one to win five Wager Matches. And for the most part, that’s been pretty much how each game has approached the multiplayer achievements – with ones that are easily unlocked just from playing a whole bunch of games. Where they’ve put a lot of the kind of things that could have been achievements are in the meta-challenges. Stuff like Misery Loves Company, The Loner, and Collateral all would have made fine achievements, but putting them in-game helps reduce the boosting, in theory. For Call of Duty, I think that balance is definitely the best way to go. It lets the developers put in a couple multiplayer achievements to round out the list, but put the real challenges in-game and reward the players with in-game items. With Black Ops III though, that line has been blurred just a little bit. Those two Specialist related achievements aren’t just earned by playing with them a lot – maybe the triple kill one depending on the weapon – but the five medals in one game one definitely seems designed to push players toward a specific playstyle with specific Specialists. I’ve spent this whole Prestige playing as Prophet – mainly because I think Tempest is a great objective defense weapon – and I don’t think I’ve played a single game (even with Overdrive) that I’ve felt like I could have earned five medals based on Glitch. Truth be told, I think Glitch is one of the two weakest abilities in game along with Rejack, mainly because of the challenge associated with Glitch has you getting kills after it. To me, it’s way more attuned to a defensive use – before I was trying to get those last cosmetic items for Prophet, that’s how I used it – to survive fights I was dead in.

Black Ops II

Tie that together with the “secret” Dark Matter camo and Gold Hero attire for Specialists, and it’s really not that hard to see why Treyarch is cracking down on boosters pretty early in the game’s life. Instead of Dark Matter being like Diamond was in Black Ops II as a status symbol, my first thought is now trying to figure out if the player is a booster. Now, of course, Diamond had boosters too – they’re part of the system, and that’s why there’s always going to be the need to crack down on them. Putting things that almost encourage boosting into the achievement list is never a good thing, and I think Treyarch toed the line a little this time around. Hopefully Ghosts 2 or whatever we get this year will have a more straightforward list.

Call of Duty: Black Ops III – Wallrunning Thoughts

I’ve been a big Call of Duty fan for a long time – going back to the Classic games on the PC. Now that I’ve been playing a good chunk of Black Ops III multiplayer I think that Treyarch has pretty much completely changed the formula for their games. The biggest change to me that we’ve seen in the overall franchise over the last three games has been increasing the mobility. Ghosts added in sliding, Advanced Warfare added in boost jumps and dodging, as well as sliding, and now we’re at Black Ops III with wall running, thruster jumps and sliding. So with that in mind, I thought I’d talk a little about those new mobility options in Black Ops III.

It’s hard to look at wallrunning in an FPS these days without comparing it to TitanfallTitanfall had such a seamless integration with the wallrunning and clamber mechanics that it has kinda set the standard in the modern set of FPS games. So going in to Black Ops III I was curious to see how Treyarch would approach it. I can definitely see some influence in how easy it is to transition into a wall run or clamber. Shooters are definitely moving to a more mobile mind-set. Cover use will always be an important part of any FPS game, but mobility is really starting to be a huge part of how encounters are playing out. What I think Black Ops III does well with the wall running is that you can still aim-down-sights while running. In Titanfall, if you aim, you stick to the wall, killing your momentum and making you an easy target. With being able to aim and move on the walls, it opens up a whole bunch of different options to get into firefights and engage the enemy from a whole bunch of different angles. Since Treyarch has a bunch of challenges that are based around wallrunning, and the maps are set-up for it as well, you’re bound to see lots of people running all over the place.Black Ops 3

Battlefield: Hardline Launch Wrap Up – Multiplayer

Battlefield HardlineRounding out my coverage of the launch period for Battlefield: Hardline, today I’ll look at the multiplayer side of things on a whole. Yesterday I offered up my thoughts on the campaign, last week I went over each of the four playable classes, and before that we talked about Heist, Hotwire and Blood Money. Today I’m taking a bit more holistic look at that side of things.

COPS AND ROBBERS – DIGITAL STYLE
The biggest question to me going in was just how much Hardline could differentiate itself from the previous games in the series with the setting change. There was absolutely the possibility that it would still feel like we were in the military, just in smaller cityscapes. In the end, I think DICE and Visceral did a pretty good job of getting the setting straight. There’s still a bit of that vibe in there, but reinforcing the cops and crooks at every chance helps fight it. That extends to the vehicles choices – cop cars with blaring sirens, or appropriated cars for the crooks; some of the weapons come straight out of pop culture for this kind of world – the Menz in the Hood achievement really sells that; but the best is through the player dialogue – every tag comes with some kind of comment, each side has comments that fit with their role.

Setting aside, the gameplay had to be as good as Battlefield 4‘s was at the end of its lifespan. I’ve always thought that the Battlefield formula made for the strongest online play – Battlefield 4 just had the troubled launch that hurt it. Fortunately, as of this point, Hardline has only had one hiccup – the DDoS during the launch – which helps keep the player base invested. The other really great thing going for Hardline is that there really isn’t another fresh FPS that’s drawing players away – Destiny and Call of Duty both already have established player bases; and Evolve really isn’t in the same boat. Finally, the fact that the game is actually a lot of fun thanks to the new game modes makes it all worthwhile. It’s pretty uncommon to have a game finish without one or two moments that make you go “Damn, that was cool.”

I went over three of the new gamemodes – Heist, Hotwire, and Blood Money – the three modes that I’ve been playing pretty exclusively. Each offer up just enough of a twist on the Battlefield formula to make it feel fresh, and each mode comes with a different set of ways to play within a team. Hotwire is a great way to get a high score, Blood Money and Heist both are good for frantic action. The four classes all feel distinct enough to make it easy to fill a role, and are all useful in just about any game mode. There really isn’t one weapon that feels truly overpowered – each class has plenty of options that all work.

Battlefield Hardline Bank Job

It’s not a perfect game, but that’s because no such thing exists. It’s really a super fun game to play – the campaign is alright enough, but the meat of the game is the multiplayer, which is pretty deep. The progression keeps you invested thanks to the money mechanic. The Premium subscription is a little expensive, but if it’s on the same level as Battlefield 4‘s it will be worth it in the long run. Special events, Gold Battlepacks, and early access to the DLC is always a nice thing. All things considered, Battlefield: Hardline is a fantastic entry into the series. It’s got a surprisingly engaging campaign, really deep multiplayer and a pretty solid looking future. It’s definitely worth looking into – I fully recommend it.

Battlefield: Hardline Tips and Tricks – Professional

Battlefield HardlineRounding out the four playable classes in Battlefield: Hardline, today we’ll tackle the Professional. The Professional is Hardline’s sniper class – long range rifles and spotting are the name of the game. There’s always the risk in any online shooter to look down on sniper classes as “tryhards” or campers – but played properly, the Professional is a potential team all star.

Weaponry-wise, you’re looking at sniper rifles exclusively. You have a pick between bolt action rifles, or semi-auto rifles. The differences boil down to the obvious rate of fire, but also range and control. The semi-auto rifles have a bit less range, and potential control loss, but have a much higher rate of fire – they’re really built for closer to mid range sniping, like on some of the smaller maps. The bolt action rifles are all about long range power – powerful scopes, super accurate, with small clips. Pick your shots – or have an Enforcer give you ammo. Sniping in Battlefield always takes a little getting used to – unlike other games, like Call of Duty, there’s bullet drop and bullet speed to factor in. You need to lead your shots on moving targets, and also account for bullet drop. Now, the maps aren’t quite large enough to worry about a ton of drop – like in Battlefield 4 – but it’s definitely still present. You have plenty of rifles to look at too – there’s only one cross-team rifle aside from the Syndicate reward. So if you aren’t a fan of the Scout Elite (the default rifle) you’ve got a good amount of options. I personally like the R700 bolt action for the police – it’s a bit stronger per shot than the Scout Elite, but you do have to unlock all the attachments. In general, I have on Professional loadout with a bolt action rifle for longer range sniping, and a semi-auto for more mid range combat on maps like Bank Job.

In terms of gadgets, you’ve got a couple different nice options. You start off with the laser tripmine – a good way to defend your back while your focused on sniping. You’ve also got the placeable camera – which marks enemies that walk into it’s line of sight, a good team option. Beyond those two, you’ve also got the decoy gadget, which makes gunfire sounds, and creates false enemy icons on the other team’s minimap. The final choice is to take stealth training – which reduces your footstep noise, and also reduces the noises that actions make. Now the class assignment does require you to use the laser tripmines for the first one, and camera coins for the second; so you’ll probably want to get used to using them early. But beyond that, I think your gadget picks really depend on your playstyle – if you tend to hang back more, tripmines and decoys are probably a good pick. If you’re more of a close action sniper, the camera is really nice. Regardless, your most important role is to play as a spotter – you should, in theory, have a great view on lots of the battlefield. So make sure you spot any target you see – regardless of whether or not you get the kill. You’re probably not going to see a huge score if you focus solely on kills – you need to support your team in other ways.

Like the other three classes, as you help your team, you gain reputation to use for upgrades. The Professional is certainly the most focused on personal upgrades – there’s really only one upgrade that benefits the team. First though, your picks are either Fast Climb or Reduced Fall – useful for getting you into sniping nests. Second tier is either Advanced Spot or Fast Unspot – this is your team pick, with longer spots netting more potential kills. Third up is longer Hold Breath or Low Profile for explosives – both personal boosts, but focused on different aspects of the game. Finally, you get to pick either Fast Reload or Delayed Trigger.

Of the four classes, the Professional is a lot like the Operator – their roles are both pretty clearly defined. Operators play the medic role, and Professionals are your snipers and spotters. Both are extremely vulnerable to vehicles – most heavy vehicles have bullet proof glass – so even sniping the pilot is out. Just be smart – set up defenses for sniping, limit your flanking potentials and make sure you keep your eyes peeled, and I think you can seriously do some damage with the Professional.

Battlefield: Hardline Tips and Tricks – Enforcer

Battlefield HardlineWe’ve got two more classes to go over here with Battlefield: Hardline – we’ve already hit the Operator and Mechanic. Today let’s look at the class that I’ve played by far the most – the Enforcer. It’s a class built for power and speed – but still has a couple counters to keep it balanced.

The Enforcer is the class that you might not think you really need, but after spending a few hours with him, you realize he may be just as important as the Operator to a full squad. From a pure offense standpoint, the Enforcer might be the best all around pick thanks to his weapon choices. His default weapon, the 870P Magnum pump action shotgun, means that he’s purely a close quarters class. But Enforcers also have access to heavy battle rifles – weapons like the SCAR-H and SA-58 OSW – that give you a mid-long range option. They definitely cost a good chunk of change, but they really open up a whole second aspect to the class. Normally on maps like Downtown or Everglades, you would need to find a small area – preferably a building to lock down – but with the battle rifles, you can add in the lanes, and even better defend points. There are still some weaknesses here though – snipers still out range you, and even at close range, missing your shots with the shotguns can get you killed. Rate of fire in general with the Enforcer is pretty low – and recoil with the battle rifles is definitely an issue. Normally I recommend stubby grip for automatic fire recoil control; but with the battle rifles – especially the SCAR-H – I like the angled grip, to help a lot with the first shot recoil. Sights are always nice too – again, I like the green dot or micro RDS – and I like having the heavy barrel for a bit more control. Accessories are a little bit more based around the gun – on the SCAR-H, I recommend the stock; on the SA-58, I like the laser sight. The shotguns though are a whole different story. They have a pretty different set of priorities for their attachments. Sights, really are totally unnecessary – even when ADSing, I find the iron sights the best choice. You really will want the laser sight on, just for extra control when hip-firing, which will happen a lot. You could go with the 12G Slug, but I think the buckshot is ultimately the better choice – the range on all the shotguns is a bit more than you might think. Your barrel choices are a little limited too – either a modified choke or a full choke. Either one is a good choice – it tightens your spread a bit, and does make hip-firing a little less certain, but in the long run, both are worth taking. If you primarily find yourself hip-firing, I would go with the modified choke, just for the lesser penalty. One last weapon to mention is the Bald Eagle – the heavy pistol you get for finishing the second Enforcer assignment. It’s a beast of a handgun – small clip, huge recoil, but is a two shot kill at a pretty surprising range. I fully recommend using it as soon as possible.

Moving on from the weapons, we get to the meat of why the Enforcer is such an important class – the gadgets. The main gadget, and the one that I really think should be a part of every loadout you have, is the Ammo Box. You play the role of ammo man – keeping your other classes in the game full on their ammo. You should be dropping Ammo Boxes as much as possible around teammates. Within your squad, you should be aware of which players need ammo, and get them all squared up. Not only do you help your teammates out, but you also get points for it. Their other gadgets open up a couple different options. Of the two, I prefer the breaching charges by a large margin over the ballistic shield. The problem is that the ballistic shield is tied into the Enforcer Syndicate assignment – which you need to complete for the Menz in the Hood achievement. The ballistic shield functions just like you would think – it blocks bullets, and sometimes explosions. The problem is that it’s slow, one directional and really weak with its melee attack. You almost need a friend to help boost coins with it – incendiary grenades really make using the shield hard. On the other hand breaching charges are perfect for setting traps and taking down vehicles. The breaching charges are essentially this game’s answer to C4 – plantable, remote detonated explosives that do a ton of damage. I like using them in Blood Money to defend my vault – put one or two in sneaky places near the vault, and when you see it get raided, pull the trigger. They’re also great against the heavy vehicles – it takes a few to destroy the big ones, but they’re just as effective as any other anti-vehicle weapon. Plus you can set them down first to create a trap – really useful in Hotwire – setting down some on the outskirt road that drivers use.

As for the reputation boosts for the Enforcer, you have the usual pick between personal effectiveness and team play. Your first pick is between either Fast Throw or Reduced Fall; second is Fast Ready or an Upgraded Ammo Box; third is Fast Aim or an Extra Charge and finally between either Increased or Reduced Suppression. I almost always start with Fast Throw and Upgraded Ammo Box – but Fast Ready is just as useful in certain games. Fast Aim is pretty damn great, it does require some work to get to that level though and that final tier is actually a little underpowered I think. Suppression is great, but putting those boosts at the final tier of reputation is a weird decision.

Ultimately, I really love playing the Enforcer. It’s a class that essentially acts as a shock trooper – fast, powerful, and loud. There are definitely some weaknesses – ranged combat can be tricky depending on your loadout – but I really do think that the Enforcer can be a super important part of your team. Just try to finish up the ballistic shield stuff quickly so you can move on – it’s really not fun.

Battlefield: Hardline Tips and Tricks – Mechanic

Battlefield HardlineContinuing our run through of the four classes in Battlefield: Hardline, today we’re looking at the class that I’ve admittedly played the least: the Mechanic. While I haven’t put quite as much time into the Mechanic as the other classes, I still think I can provide a pretty solid base for some advice.

We’ll start with the primary weapons – which I’ll admit is probably the reason that I haven’t played a lot of Mechanic. Even though I’m a fan of close quarters, the SMGs that Mechanics have don’t really appeal to me – I have no real definite reason why, they just don’t. That said, I get killed by them all the damn time, so I know very well that they work quite well. The default weapon – the MP5K – comes with a pretty good set of attachments. You get a sight – the SRS 02 that I like a lot – as well as extended magazines equipped by default. Add in that it also has a suppressor and you have a really good choice for some flanking kills. It’s a set-up that can do some serious damage at close range – and it’s not even the best SMG available. In my opinion that either goes to the P90 or the MPX – both guns that I see way more frequently out there. The problem here is that all the weapons available all have limited range; there are some maps where playing as a Mechanic is a real slow grind.

With the range as limited as it is, it might seem easy to dismiss the class entirely. But the gadgets available to the Mechanic make up for it all. There’s actually a lot more flexibility here than we saw in the Operator. Putting it into Battlefield 4 terms, the Mechanic is blending together elements from the Engineer, Scout and Assault classes. They have the M79 grenade launcher unlocked by default – giving them some offense against vehicles. And with the presence of the repair tool, it’s easy to just say that the Mechanic is your vehicle fixer class only. That’s selling it a bit short. The vehicle options are there for sure – especially adding in the sabotage item, letting you booby trap cars; but there’s more here. The satellite phone gadget will let you place a mobile spawn point – letting your squad have an extra option to keep them in fight quicker, or set up some tactical moves. There’s still one more gadget even – the armored insert – which gives the Mechanic a little bit more toughness, helping them get close while taking fire. It’s not too hard to see that the Mechanic is a really flexible class – it’s not just focused on vehicles.

That flexibility is also present in the Reputation upgrades you unlock by playing the class. Your first Rep slot is either an Extra Grenade or Flak Jacket; the second is between Extra 40mm grenades or Fast Repair; the third slot is either Fast Aim or Delayed Explosive Trigger and the final slot is either Fast Reload or Fast Swap. With the first two slots, you can further increase your effectiveness against vehicles if you’re playing that role – otherwise you can help get your survivablility up a bit more. In general I think taking the Flak Jacket is the more important of the two upgrades at tier one – surviving explosives can be a really nice addition.

Even with the flexibility that the Mechanic does have, it’s still got a pretty serious downside to it. That of course being the range – it’s out performed at mid range by every class, and potentially even at close range by the Enforcer. The Mechanic definitely fills an important role on the team – especially on Hotwire. But where I think the Operator is the easiest to pick up and play, the Mechanic is on the opposite side of that coin. There’s a bit of a learning curve, but that makes playing it well that much more satisfying.