'Titanfall' developer didn't know game would be Xbox One exclusive forever

Respawn Games, the developer of "Titanfall" comprised of former "Call of Duty" staffers, says it didn't know the Xbox One game would forever be an exclusive to the Microsoft console, also implying future games in the series will be multiplatform.

Vince Zampella, a co-founder of the developer, took to his Twitter account to reveal that the studio initially thought the game was merely going to be a timed exclusive. Instead, he said, the game's publisher made a deal with Microsoft without Respawn's knowledge.

When asked by a fan if future games from the studio would come to Sony's PlayStation 4 console, Zampella seemed to imply that future installments of the game would likely be released on multiple platforms. Currently, "Titanfall" is scheduled for release on Xbox One, Xbox 360 and PC.

The exact nature of exclusivity for the game had been the subject of much debate until recently, when EA announced it would only come to Microsoft's consoles and PCs. Microsoft is well known for agreeing to exclusivity arrangements for third-party games, with some – such as the Gears of War franchise – remaining exclusive, while others – such as the Mass Effect franchise – later being released on multiple platforms.

So far, many of the announced Xbox One exclusives – including "Titanfall," "Dead Rising 3," "Ryse: Son of Rome," "Quantum Break" and "Sunset Overdrive" – come from third-party developers. Microsoft has several well-known titles in development itself – such as the next Halo game, "Fable Legends," "Kinect Sports Rivals," "Killer Instinct" and "Forza Motorsports 5" – though many may not be released until well after the Xbox One launches.

Source: Vince Zampella (Twitter) via Kotaku | Image via EA

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Well to be honest the developer should have known this, as they are the developers and they have the right to know which console's to develop for. This is what happens when you jump in bed with EA.

Don't talk logic or even common sense to me! I'm against everyone and everything that isn't of pure blood like me! People dare to like something else, people dare to think differently, not in my country, and soon we will take the whole world....

Fine by me.. I am buying PS4 for Killzone, Drive Club, The Crew, and other amazing looking games. Titanfall just didn't do anything for me.

Titanfall looks OK, i don't think its amazing. There's too many shooting games.
Halo was great, now its boring.. and they will do the same to Titalfall, there will be Titanfall 8 if MS get their way.

Games will be multi-platform for sure. Titanfall, is the result of Respawm giving too juice to EA (next time Zampella may want to get a lawyer, who actually read the fine print, on EA's contract)

It will be subtle things that will favor Microsoft. Not only is FIFA free for Europe, but if anyone around the globe, limes doing the ultimate team thing (which a TON of people love doing) the only way to do so is a Xbox One.

And Kinect support will probably baked into games, where Kinect shouldn't be present at all.

Just throwing it out there.

If MS are really smart, they'll sign a deal to make the entire series X1 exclusive. The next-gen systems are too close to each other (in terms of specs), we need more exclusive titles to break them apart. That is my thinking anyway...

Geezy said,
There's just too much money to be made from a cross-platform release for EA to ignore.

until you look at the cost of re-jiggering the cloud.
This will set the next generation of gaming apart.

What does the cloud have to do with it? Are you referring to the servers that are hosting the game? How is that difficult, online isn't new.

I honestly believe that, because Microsoft was willing to be the sacrifice for DRM, they will continue to get perks from the big publishers. EA is even blatant with it, not even trying to hide it. all these developers got to dump the Online pass and Microsoft was willing to take all the bad publicity for them.
I may sound like a conspiracy theorists, but the signs are showing. especially with EA.

Microsoft isn't innocent by any means, but the DRM feature benefitted publishers as much as it did Microsoft. And I believe they will all return the favor back to Redmond WA, in their own subtle ways...

What are you talking about?

"We cancelled Online Pass. I was at the meeting. It just wasn't resonating with the consumer. It just wasn't consumer friendly."

"I have been present at all of them, with all of the manufacturers, saying you must put a system in place that allows us to take a piece of the action or even stop it. Absolutely incorrect.”

Both statements from EA. Anyway, how is the DRM conversation relevant here? What perk is there to releasing on only one console? You're missing out on half the money.

And you trust EA of all companies? and the DRM attempt will always be relevant. Not for us the consumer, but it will be for the publisher.

I believe Respawn, when they said they didn't know EA had done this behind their backs.

I just don't see the benefit to EA for having an exclusive. And no, you should never trust anything any company says unless it's "I want money"

There is no benefit for EA. they are repaying Microsoft for the DRM attempt. As the X1 life rolls on, you will see other perks that Microsoft will receive, that just dont make sense.

Why is FIFA Ultimate team exclusive to the One?.. especially in Europe, where Playstation is just as popular as Xbox.

EA is just blatant about it. That's all.

Even if he was under the belief that Titanfall was only a timed exclusive, wouldn't development for the PS4 version have usually begun around the same time when it comes to both consoles? I find what this guy is tweeting that he only recently found out, very hard to believe, especially so close to the launch of the game.

Lately I get the impression anyone can make any kind of negative or flameworthy claim these days regarding MS products with little or no info to back them up.

this is why im buying an xbox one, yall can complain that this is an evil act but in the end its business and Microsoft has the money to pull this over time over time again. For its loyal users of course.

Exclusivity sucks. Xbox users get shafted (e.g. The Last of Us), PS users get shafted (e.g. Halo, Gears etc).

Timed exclusives? Okay I can live with that… but lifetimes exclusives are a stupid idea.

Consoles are more than just games. Plenty of ways to differentiate
PS with their free games for PS Plus users and Eye Toy, Xbox with their big media content and Kinect and Live.

ZipZapRap said,
Consoles are more than just games. Plenty of ways to differentiate
PS with their free games for PS Plus users and Eye Toy, Xbox with their big media content and Kinect and Live.

I agree. I have never liked exclusives, but they always seem more common at launch, with it waning a bit through the generation... Which is good. I'm assuming it is a necessary evil at the beginning to recoup development costs when there is a smaller base...

ZipZapRap said,
Exclusivity sucks. Xbox users get shafted (e.g. The Last of Us), PS users get shafted (e.g. Halo, Gears etc).

Timed exclusives? Okay I can live with that… but lifetimes exclusives are a stupid idea.


On the flip side, without exclusives there would be little competition, which means less developers would attempt to push boundaries (in terms of graphics, gameplay, etc).

Spicoli said,
I don't see what the big deal is. There's far more games than any normal person has time to play, so why worry about a couple not being available on your hardware?

Fair enough, but it all depends if it is a game that you really like, or a franchise that you've followed closely in the past that was multi-platform...

It wasn't so much a problem last generation, but in the past, some franchise releases would be exclusive to one console or another, locking gamers out of that game...

That is clearly not done for the gamers benefit. lol

MS should just buy their studio and call it a day the way they did for Halo. Having both Halo an the Titanfall IPs would help, but they also need to expand the exclusives for other genres as well. They need a new JRPG series that is awesome, a great platformer, and some fantastic partnership with several of the cable/satellite companies that would subsidize the Xbox One for $99 - $199 down on a 2 year contract.

Drewidian said,
MS should just buy their studio and call it a day the way they did for Halo. Having both Halo an the Titanfall IPs would help, but they also need to expand the exclusives for other genres as well. They need a new JRPG series that is awesome, a great platformer, and some fantastic partnership with several of the cable/satellite companies that would subsidize the Xbox One for $99 - $199 down on a 2 year contract.

I don't know that they'd want to sell after the Infinity Ward debacle. They're in a good position where they are, given what they've been through.

You'd think if Microsoft bought any developer it'd be a company such as Epic, which has a long history with Microsoft and is known for quality games, though it hasn't released anything in a while. Microsoft was also rumored to be interested in Crytek a while back, but they've grown substantially in recent years.

I highly disagree. Microsoft doesn't cater to the PC anymore. If they bought the studio, it'd be goodbye PC versions. As a gamer, that just sucks.

dead.cell said,
I highly disagree. Microsoft doesn't cater to the PC anymore. If they bought the studio, it'd be goodbye PC versions. As a gamer, that just sucks.

I don't know. Publishing games through their Windows 8.1 Store would seem to be a likely target. They need some heavy hitters to publish there otherwise it will only be seen as a casual game market. It would compete with Steam and draw some needed attention to Windows 8.1 gaming. Don't get me wrong, I'm a Steam gamer, but for MS it might make sense as a strategy.

Drewidian said,
I don't know. Publishing games through their Windows 8.1 Store would seem to be a likely target. They need some heavy hitters to publish there otherwise it will only be seen as a casual game market. It would compete with Steam and draw some needed attention to Windows 8.1 gaming. Don't get me wrong, I'm a Steam gamer, but for MS it might make sense as a strategy.

If only.

dead.cell said,
I highly disagree. Microsoft doesn't cater to the PC anymore. If they bought the studio, it'd be goodbye PC versions. As a gamer, that just sucks.

I disagree. They've shown signs that they want the PC to be good at gaming again. They hired that Steam guy, apparently they're bringing mantle-like API's to Windows, and they're bringing more middleware to PC. Steambox is enough of a threat too them that they would want both Xbox and Windows running at full speed to counter any moves by valve.

They'll still have some XB1-only titles (Forza, Halo 5), but I wouldn't be surprised to see more games like Titanfall Spartan Assault and Project Spark where they are released on multiple platforms.

Randomevent said,

I might mention they've recently released quite a few games to Steam. http://store.steampowered.com/..._4_4__12&term=microsoft largely consists of MS published items (not all, but enough.)

Looks like a lot until you sort it by actual games, not just everything there.

That brings us to 19 games from the search.
14 of which they've actually published I believe.
4 of which are actually developed by them under the names Ensemble Studios and Lionhead Studios. Of course, that's without knowing what other studios may be under their name. Still, it's not really a whole lot here.

Fable, Fable 3, AoE2 and AoE3. Two IPs there basically, which Age of Empires hasn't really gone anywhere, except maybe AoE Online which isn't accepting new registrations as far as I can tell, and has a death date for July, along with the death of GFWL. I don't mean to sound pessimistic here, but there's still a lot to be desired. I'm hoping Drewidian is right in that we'll see maybe more stuff via the Windows Store (despite my issues with it).

PC gaming will get along just fine regardless, but I'd like for Microsoft to stay competitive within the market. Competition helps drive us forward after all.

dead.cell said,

Looks like a lot until you sort it by actual games, not just everything there.

It's a lot they've published to XBL or Windows Store recently. A hell of an improvement over what they used to publish to PC, which is nothing.

Oh please, they didn't wonder to themselves as to why they weren't developing this for the PS4 this close to release?

They have someone talking to them about the numbers and contracts. If they honestly didn't pay attention, then they are idiots. More likely that they are trying to keep the PS4 folks in their pockets and make themselves seem like the innocent ones here.

Money Money Money Money... and trying to keep a public image. I suddenly dislike them.

Skin said,

Money Money Money Money... and trying to keep a public image. I suddenly dislike them.

I bet you are getting a PS4 and got hyped up for this game and now you're disappointed ?

No idea what they were expecting here, going from one crappy publisher to the next.

I think they're just brushing off blame to stay "cool" with gamers, but what do I know...

It's just trying to look ignorant so they look innocent and keep cool with the hypocritical NeoGAF and N4G PS crowd. But you're right, they knew alright.

(Spork) said,
right sure they didn't

exactly, if microsoft had an exclusive for a few months they would have found out a long time ago as it takes a long time to port a game as complex as titanfall to a new console.

torrentthief said,

exactly, if microsoft had an exclusive for a few months they would have found out a long time ago as it takes a long time to port a game as complex as titanfall to a new console.


Absolutely. And I also find it VERY hard to believe that a publisher would be able to make such a deal without the developer's input...

Exactly. As much as I think these guys are excellent, COD 4 for example, if you pick EA as a publisher to pump funds into you to make a blockbuster game. Then what do you expect? It's EA's job to organise deals like this, not the developer.

The publisher doesn't have to inform the developer about deals like this, but they were probably lightly involved in the discussions. Considering EA would have to pump a huge amount of money or re-engineer the game around its cloud possibilities on the PS4, it honestly doesn't surprise me that they would take more money for lifetime exclusivity.

(Spork) said,
right sure they didn't

haha, not only do EA like to F their customers, but it seems they also like to F their developers. At least they've not closed their studio.. yet... maybe that's something EA forgot to tell them as well.... I guess it depends on how much money they can milk from Xbox one owners with DLC.

torrentthief said,

exactly, if microsoft had an exclusive for a few months they would have found out a long time ago as it takes a long time to port a game as complex as titanfall to a new console.


Not that much given that it's the same architecture down below (and even sporting more raw power). Design decisions are the same (no need to adjust for a lesser or fundamentally different platform), and if the game engine already supports both the One and PS4 then more than half of the porting job is already done.

JonnyLH said,
Exactly. As much as I think these guys are excellent, COD 4 for example, if you pick EA as a publisher to pump funds into you to make a blockbuster game. Then what do you expect? It's EA's job to organise deals like this, not the developer.

The publisher doesn't have to inform the developer about deals like this, but they were probably lightly involved in the discussions. Considering EA would have to pump a huge amount of money or re-engineer the game around its cloud possibilities on the PS4, it honestly doesn't surprise me that they would take more money for lifetime exclusivity.

True, very good point. They would have had to replace the entire server backend... I'm sure that had more to do with it than anything...

M_Lyons10 said,

True, very good point. They would have had to replace the entire server backend... I'm sure that had more to do with it than anything...

I'm sure the developers had a hand in creating the backend too.
Interestingly, if you think about it from the developers point of view, they were under the impression the game they were creating WAS going to be multiplatform from the outset, so it'd have been in their own interests to make it as easy as possible for multiplatform support/porting.
Everything should have been in place by the developers to make the transition as easy as possible, including the backend server stuff... even more so with the backend servers to be honest as they're on a different platform that doesn't need to be re-written to account for a new OS and hardware specs.

To me, it sounds more like the developers made the game for both the xbox one and ps4 in mind, but Microsoft cashed EA's eyes and they (EA) decided it was enough money for an exclusive game.

M_Lyons10 said,
...

We ARE talking about EA here.
Their reputation as being an unscrupulous capitalist company is well known.
This doesn't surprise me at all.

(Spork) said,


please stop being so naive

The reason I referred it to as trolling is not because I believe them 100%. I think we should give them the benefit of the doubt. That is being good humans. Otherwise, it sounds like trolling because it is immediately rejecting what someone is saying without any proof.

Nazmus Shakib Khandaker said,

Please stop trolling

Nothing trolling about it. I'm sure they had to sign some sort of contract that they or their lawyers didn't see the part about "being exclusive." So either they are lying or they have crappy lawyers. You can't miss something like this especially when you are looking to make a big profit on a game you're developing.