Burn, Baby, Burn: Inside Titanfall’s Burn Card System

Although “Titanfall” launches in less than a month, there’s still a lot we don’t know about the game. A lot of the content (maps, weapons, etc.) in the upcoming beta has been seen before in official trailers and the Titan reveals developer Respawn Entertainment has been releasing. Still, there are some pleasant surprises in the upcoming beta, including the addition of a new game mode called “Last Titan Standing” that is essentially a giant Titan-on-Titan battle royal. New game types are great and all, but one of the coolest new features is one we didn’t see coming: Burn Cards.

But what exactly are Burn Cards, you ask? Basically, Burn Cards are consumables that can be used during a match any time before you spawn (that is, any time after you die) to give you an advantage on the battlefield. Want to get your Titan faster? Use the Decisive Action or Pull Rank cards, which knock 40 or 80 seconds off of your Titan’s build time, respectively. Regular old R-101C Carbine just not packing enough punch for you? Simply burn the Amped R-101C card to spawn with a more lethal version in primary weapon slot. There are dozens of cards to choose from in the beta, so it pays to experiment to find what works best for your needs.

Getting the Burn Cards isn’t particularly challenging, as it mostly requires some patience. You’ll unlock the ability to earn and use them when you hit level 7 in the beta. You’ll be limited to a single Burn Card slot until you level up some more, when you’ll earn your second and third slots. It’s all pretty straightforward… outside of one pretty big wrinkle.

You see, once you enable a Burn Card, you’ll only feel its effects for a single life. For those players that only die once or twice a match, that’s a good thing. You’ll be reaping rewards or using more powerful weapons for a while, allowing you to really leverage them to your advantage. However, if you’re more reckless (or just not very good), you’ll need to be cautious about wasting them. On more than one occasion, we fired up a Burn Card that we were sure would tip the scales in our favor, only to die moments later without even getting the chance to enjoy its benefit.

We look forward to spending more time with the innovative Burn Card system when “Titanfall” released on March 11.