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Battlefield initial thoughts.

By SeanmcR6 - Posted on 26 October 2011

So, since EB Games would NOT cancel my pre-order, I picked it up yesterday at lunchtime.

Ok, I have to confess, I was a little confused about what was going on with the "online pass" bullshit. Now that I got the game, I understand and I HATE it.

So basically, you buy a game that does NOT let you play multiplayer without registering an account online. They give you a passcode to redeem in the box, but once that used, the game no longer has multiplayer; if you were to sell it....or wanted to rent'd only get single player. (unless you paid 800 MS points for a new code)

Now I understand that 80% or more of BF3 gamers are buying the game strictly for multiplayer. But you are essentially handicapping the exposure of your game. DICE and EA (look for EA to do this with more games, which they've already said they'd do) are really getting greedy. They cry foul to reviewers giving them a hard time about this, stating that they are offering an improved user experience with all the cool shit you get online. I don't buy it. You know why?

MW3 is why.

MW3 has the same type of "additional user experience" with ELITE, but they went about it a completely different way. If you buy get multiplayer. You CAN play it. You can rent it. You can sell it. Now, if you want the ADDED functionality of ELITE, you pay for it. To me, that's completely fair because it's totally optional. It's not part of the regular game. Thank you MW3. You are definitely turning me into a franchise player.

I think this is false advertising. I think BF3 should have to write on the box that multiplayer is NOT included without registering an account on an external website.

I am crazy pissed off because EA owns and produces Mass Effect. My all time favourite game and franchise. In the BF3 box was an invite to early beta for ME3...and I fear they will do something similar with my beloved game. Which will force the issue with me. Right now, I'm on the verge of banning EA games over this.

Back to BF3....I played 3 hours of single player last night...and surprise, I wasn't impressed. First off, you need to install 1.5 GB of "high rez" graphics to the HD....if you don't, you don't get standard rez (like DICE says), you get NO rez. Basically, 80% of the textures are gone from the game. Walls and fabrics look like plastic, cheap graphics from 10 years ago. There is no detail in anything except your gun. Cause it's right in front of your face. The graphics are so bad it's distracting from the game play. So I had to back out and install them to continue. Once I did that however, the game didn't quite perform the same. Not horrible, but there were some "sticky points" or small hiccups. Especially when running long distances.

As for the gameplay. I was not drawn into the game at all. In fact, I found myself feeling bored after some time. I played on Normal. The story was good. The voice acting is good. But the missions...the stage advancement....just seemed....old. It was like playing the first Ghost Recon all over again. It's also very restrictive. You are set in this HUGE are under fire...the car/crates/cement blocks you are taking cover behind are getting shot up (which is nice scene destruction, but YOU can't destroy anything) so you move around looking for new cover and get messages that you are leaving the playing area. WTF? There just is nothing NEW in this game. When MW added the AC130 gunship, it was cool and fun because we had never experienced that before. In BF3, you are doing the same thing (in an F18 btw) and it just doesn't have any excitement to it. It was boring.

While talking about the was my biggest disappointment. I grew up on an airbase and I've love F18's since they first were put into service. I was looking forward to this part. Truthfully, it was a selling point of the game for me. Well, you are the gunner in a 2 person crew, so you don't do ANY flying. The gameplay SUCKS DONKEY BALLS. It is so pattern driven, so monotonous, I was gutted by the experience. Enemy behind us...wait for missile launch, release counter measure. Repeat 2 times. We put on brake, they are in front....get missile lock...WAIT for them to release counter measure, THEN launch missile. DEAD. Do that 6 times, you're done. It was the most pathetic dog fight I've ever witnessed.

What did I like? Well, while some of the game dynamics suck, some are brilliant. I like the gun action. A head shot with any weapon drops the enemy immediately....whereas in MW you need to empty almost a whole clip sometimes if you're not using a sniper rifle. Likewise, you die....a this game. Maybe I just suck, but I got sniped a lot more than I was expecting. This is frustrating when you've been playing other shooters like Gears or Black Ops where you can take a lot of damage before you die....but it IS more realistic and it gives the game a bit more authentic feel. (until, you know, you try walking across a road and the game stops you cause that's not the playing area)

I don't like the way the game notifies you that you are taking damage. Basically, when you get hit the screen shakes a little or shimmies, but it does the same thing when there is a lot of gunfire happening anyway. So am I getting hit or is that round hitting the wall next to me? Then the edges of your screen go red...when this happens, the next hit will kill you. Period. So if you see red, dive for cover. Again, this is in stark contrast to other games that have a more progressive notification for damage. Allowing you to strategically decide on one-on-one confrontations based on the damage you know you can take. With this game, you can't. In some scenes where I've been up against an enemy shooter they've killed me twice with 1 or 3 shots...and another time, then seemingly missed me entirely with their shot and I killed then while taking no damage. It's random. I'll admit this is more realistic and CAN be a positive, but I just found it frustrating.

So that brings us to the AI. I think AI makes or break these kind of games (in single player). I was in two firefights where my platoon was opening fire....from 10-15 feet away from one "adu-baddie" (I'm trademarking that btw) and the guy wouldn't drop. After 10 seconds of gunfire! In fact, the fucker killed me with a single shot while I was reloading. WTF? Other times, my platoon is picking off the enemy at 200 yards. Everything seems like it was designed to FEEL dynamic, but to anyone who has ANY experience playing these games, it so obviously ISN'T. These inconsistencies in the gameplay really, really hurt the single player experience. Again, it feels like a game that was designed 10 years ago.

I don't care how "pretty" it is (again, only if you install the extra 1.5GB of textures locally) if the gameplay is that fractured, it's not FUN.

We play games to have FUN.

If I were to rate the single player "experience" I would give it 2.5 out of 5....middle of the road. Not horrible and not great. Since this is such a storied franchise and you are essentially paying $60 for a single player game (if like me, you are against their whole online pass BS) the game had better rock, and this one doesn't.

Tonight, I will begrudgingly redeem my multiplayer code (and render my copy worthless) and play some multiplayer. Tomorrow I'll post my thoughts on that experience. Since the guys at DICE are SO good at multiplayer, I have high hopes that it should be much, much better. (although I wasn't impressed with the beta). need to redeem the code and register online to play co-op as well.

MauriceRevek's picture

To see how they are going to screw up ME3. You know they are adding the multiplayer component just so they can do this activation thing.

SeanmcR6's picture

shut they aren't....I'm not listening...

nah nah nah nah nah nah nah nah

I can't hear you

The real thing I'm curious about is wether or not they are actually going to pull off what they said they were doing from the beginning. That your decisions and choices would effect the outcome of the game. ME3 is supposed to bring it all together.

Stormblade's picture

Sounds like the perfect game for Swag! Maybe if they ever release it on Steam ...

Mind you, my copy is sitting beside me and I am buzzing with anticipation to play it tonight. :)

Of course, Purolator broke the case, so odds are the disks are f***ed.

Swag's picture

And for your information, it won't be released on Steam anytime soon because EA wants to whore it all to themselves for their own game platform, Origin.

And after Modern Warfare 2, I don't think I'll ever buy a AAA military shooter again. God that game was terrible. Gives me a headache just thinking about it.

SeanmcR6's picture


well, we'll play MP tonight then!

Coxxorz's picture

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