Can XDefiant Become the Next FPS Juggernaut?

Call of Duty's Tactical Shooting Meets Overwatch's Character Abilities in This Free-to-Play FPS.

XDefiant The New FPS Game
XDefiant - New FPS Game

The FPS competitive scene is livelier than ever. You have the likes of Valorant, Counter-Strike, Rainbow Six, and even COD co-existing in the current scene.

However, what makes it even more exciting is the constant growth of this genre. Recent releases like the Rivals and XDefiant have both exploded on the scene and brought their unique twist to the genre.

Key Takeaways
  • XDefiant is a new free-to-play FPS game that combines elements of Call of Duty and Overwatch.
  • Microtransactions in XDefiant are cosmetic only, and most items can be unlocked through gameplay.
  • XDefiant needs to keep adding new content and features to maintain player interest.
  • The game’s future success depends on fostering a positive and engaged community.

XDefiant, developed by Ubisoft, recently received its full release and was able to get to around 700,000 players a few days later. This unique game is a mixture of Call of Duty and Overwatch, to create something fun.

The game focuses on fast-paced action, unique character abilities, and a free-to-play model. XDefiant has its sights set on dethroning the undisputed kings of FPS.

But does XDefiant have what it takes to become the next FPS juggernaut?

More Than COD With Abilities

I have been playing XDefiant ever since its official release. As I could not try the game during its Beta, I am unsure how much the developers listened to the player’s feedback.

However, from my experience, the gameplay has been nothing but fast-paced fun. I could see why similarities are being drawn between COD and XDefiant.

Character Roaster
Character Roaster

The character and loadout design are all borrowed from COD, while the character abilities and gameplay modes are adopted from Overwatch. Shooting feels tactical and responsive like COD, so you should be shooting with ADS most of the time. The abilities add this extra level to the game, where abilities need to work in perfect harmony to complete checkpoints.

Ubisoft also cleverly uses their previous titles by adding characters from them. So your characters can be part of Dead Sec from Watch Dog, Far Cry, or even games like Ghost Recon. A character from the Ghost Recon universe might excel at stealth and recon, while a Far Cry character would be great at healing and support. 

M416 Gameplay
M416 Gameplay

All these characters feature an Ultimate Ability on top of their main abilities. Currently, the game only has three main gameplay modes. You have your Occupy mode, where you must hold a zone for a certain time to win the game or hold multiple zones simultaneously. Then you have your basic Escort mode, where you must escort a package faster or further than your opponents.

I do have a few issues with the core gameplay that I hope developers fix soon. First of all, there is a noticeable gun shake whenever a grenade explodes nearby players. It completely throws off the aim and puts in a sort of stun lock. Then secondly, some Ultimate Abilities are way too overpowered and need to be balanced out in the coming months.

The Free-To-Play Model

Playing Modes
Playing Modes

One of XDefiant’s biggest strengths is its free-to-play model. This opens the door to a massive player base, potentially giving it an edge over Call of Duty, which often requires a premium purchase price. I was able to instantly download the game through Ubisoft’s very own launcher Connect and logged right into the game.

Free-to-play games often mean microtransactions, and I thought Ubisoft might not handle them well. This is where XDefiant needs a system that’s fair to players and keeps the game fun. To my surprise, not much is locked behind a paywall. You can pretty much experience the game in its entirety for free.

Certain characters and guns are locked when you first start playing. However, all you need to do is do in-game challenges and gain XP to simply unlock other things. The in-game challenges will be fairly simple like getting a certain amount of melee kills or not using the scope in certain guns.

Three Zone Occupy
Three Zone Domination

Plus, every gun in the game comes with its fair share of attachments. Again, I was simply able to unlock all of these attachments by simply playing. The game also comes with a few unique maps, all pulled from Ubisoft’s previous titles.

XDefiant keeps microtransactions simple, by offering battle passes and cosmetic upgrades to skins and characters. So if you do want to spend in-game money, you can buy colorful skins for your guns and even for your characters.

The Future Of XDefiant

Mars Set Location
Mars Set Location

The FPS genre is a crowded space. XDefiant needs to carve out its niche to truly succeed. While the character system is a promising start, the developers need to keep adding fresh content and features to maintain player interest.

This could involve introducing new Defiants with innovative abilities, creating unique game modes, or even expanding the lore behind the XDefiant universe.

Furthermore, fostering a positive and engaged community is crucial. Ubisoft should be receptive to player feedback and make adjustments to improve the game’s balance, matchmaking, and overall experience. A thriving community can become XDefiant’s biggest advocate, spreading the word and keeping the game alive.

Showtime Map
Showtime Map

XDefiant has the potential to become a major player in the FPS genre. Its free-to-play model, unique character system, and focus on fast-paced action provide a strong foundation. Ultimately, time will tell if XDefiant can overcome the dominance of Call of Duty and become the next FPS juggernaut.

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