Xbox One cloud servers "absolutely essential" to Titanfall

Microsoft's Azure cloud servers responsible for Titanfall's in-game AI, freeing up processing power for "more detailed graphics".

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Respawn Entertainment has shed light on how critical cloud servers are to the recently-launched Titanfall, and explained why it chose to power significant elements of the game using Microsoft's Azure cloud infrastructure.

Speaking in an interview with Engadget, Respawn Entertainment engineer Jon Shiring discussed the necessity of cloud servers in running Titanfall.

Microsoft's Azure cloud server is not only responsible for hosting dedicated matches, but controls the behaviour of Artificial Intelligence in-game, including that of un-piloted Titans. According to Shiring, a lot of publishers were initially "terrified" at the prospect of using cloud servers to power the game.

All of Titanfall's AI is reportedly handled by the Azure servers, freeing up processing power of the Xbox 360, Xbox One or PC to "achieve more detailed graphics and the game's silky-smooth frame rate."

However, Titanfall's dependency on dedicated servers allegedly account for why the game will not be launching in regions where Microsoft's Azure data centres do not exist, such as South Africa.

But how will the servers handle Titanfall's initial launch wave?

"We're trying to figure out how many people will be playing and trying to make sure the servers will be there for that," Shiring said.

"We just say [to Microsoft], here are our estimates, aim for more than that, plan for problems and make sure there are more than enough servers available--they'll know the whole time that they need to bring more servers online."

Titanfall launches for the Xbox One and PC on March 11 in North America, with worldwide launches to follow in over the next few days. An Xbox 360 version--developed externally at Bluepoint Games--will arrive on March 25. Check out GameSpot's full review for more on the game.

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