Editorial: Can Titanfall Save The Xbox One?

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Hi, my name is Eric Chrisman and I’m a new writer here at Gamesided, hoping to bring you some great editorial content along with the latest news.

So, Titanfall. Arguably the first “real” next-gen” title (it’s also coming out for 360, but no one is talking about that one). It’s certainly the title Microsoft has been pushing as their premiere title. The game that will show what $500 will get you in terms of a true next-generation console experience. The buzz so far is ridiculously positive, nearly every journalist that has gotten hands on time with Titanfall has been singing it’s praises.

But there’s also no doubt that the Xbox One desperately needs something if they hope to catch up to the breakneck pace being set by the PS4. The PS4 has sold over 6 million world-wide and you can’t even find it on store shelves. In the meantime, while the Xbox One is selling well ahead of it’s predecessor, it’s very easy to find, and worldwide it’s barely beating out the much maligned Wii U. Add the fact that there is a contingent within Microsoft that basically wants to dump the Xbox division, and the Xbox One is in a very precarious position. It needs SOMETHING to really help move units. Clearly it’s pinning a lot on Titanfall being that something. The hype is clearly there and it seems like Titanfall will be as awesome as it looks.

But it will it really help close that gap? The PS4 doesn’t move units because it has great games. It has some solid ones, certainly. But in terms of next-gen offerings, the library is pretty damn limited. I’ve had one since launch and honestly have not played it a ton since I got it. It moves thanks to a huge amount of good press from practically day one and the much more attractive price. Will any one game, no matter how good change that?

This past holiday Nintendo not only dropped the price of the Wii U, but also offered several bundles with free games along with retailer incentives to move units. There was even a new 3D Mario game and it was fantastic, ending up on many top ten lists. It barely moved the needle. It might be that the audience at large doesn’t have much of an appetite for 3D platformers anymore, but I think it speaks more to the fact that there may just not be such a thing as a “system seller” anymore. There wasn’t one game that made the 360 or the PS3 a success. Nintendo’s 3DS was the best selling console of the last year and it was bolstered by a variety of great software, not one game.

Titanfall might move the needle a little, but my guess is that people who want Titanfall have already bought an Xbox One and the gap between the PS4 and the Xbox One will continue just continue to widen as long as that price difference is there. Bottom line, the PS4 is next gen at a price more people are willing to swallow and no one game, not even as a pack-in, is going to change that.

The views expressed in this article explicitly belong to the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of, nor should be attributed to, GameSided as an organization.