Oh Battlefield 3! You came to me at the best possible time and you arrived with FLARE BABY! Anyways, on the serious side of things; Dice teased us with endless amounts of teaser vids and the Alpha & Beta builds. But now that Battlefield 3 has been out for a few weeks, does the game live up to the enormous amount of hype that Dice pumped into it or was all the hype just......hype?
The Battlefield franchise was (and still is) all about crafting BIG ASS MAPS (it probably would take about 3-4 of the biggest Call of Duty maps), adding a ridiculous amount of players in a single server (64 players is max in a server) and give them access to just about every kind of weaponry out there today. Battlefield 3 is no exception and it truly shows. The mayhem in a 64 player server is constant; there isn't a single moment when you don't hear explosions going off or a sniper picking off your teammates with his/her rifle. Rockets burst, jets soar, choppers hover above, tanks rumble across the map, APCs and Humvees zip past you, and I could go on but I don't want to bore you with all this. Instead I want to give you guys what I love and didn't love about Battlefield 3.
As stated above, the BF franchise is known for big maps, huge player counts, and vehicular combat. But what really makes it shine, in my opinion, is that it takes a BIG amount of teamwork to win games. Unlike the Call of Duty series, one member can't carry the entire team. The ENTIRE team must be in sync with each other to become the victor and this is a great new feature for someone like me (yes, I'm a call of duty player but have retired after spending some time with how BF3 works.) With Call of Duty, you spent most of your time worrying about your kill/death ratio in game but with Battlefield 3, I don't have time to worry about that. I worry more about what action to take to best help my team out. Kill/death ratios are NOTHING in BF3 and worrying about it will just have a negative impact on your team. Instead, help your team out by giving out med kits, giving out ammo supplies, pummeling your opponents with mortars, spotting (tagging) enemies so that your team can be on the look out for them, destroy oncoming enemy vehicles or aircraft. Do something that'll be beneficial to the team but don't forget to defend yourself while you're at it.
Dice has given their Frostbite engine a huge tuneup for BF3 (Frostbite 2.0) and if I could jizz through my eyes, I would after seeing just how beautiful this game is. The beauty, however, has it share of problems. Biggest problem that I've noticed are the clipping issues. They are the most common problem but it is also minor and hopefully a patch will stomp them out. Another graphical problem that is starting to become problematic is the flashing green screen. I don't know what the cause is but ever so often, the screen will flash green. A bit of a nuisance but didn't hurt my overall Battlefield experience.
Another problem that people have complained about a lot is the "rubber banding" issue (lag basically.) In my case, I did get some rubber-band issues but that only happened when I was playing in servers that were located far away (Los Angeles distance.) I rarely ran into the problem during my sessions in Dallas placed servers. And another culprit for the rubber-band issue could be the high number of people on a server. Finally, people complained about errors in hit detection. My guess for this is that the majority of THESE people are Call of Duty players and have never experienced a game that had taken gravity into account (bullet drop.) This is common sense because, the further away the target it is, the more you have to compensate your aim to hit them directly.
Battlefield 3 is NOT available from Steam and can be either bought from EA's Origin website (their competition to Steam) or from a retail store. At first, I hated how Origin was implemented. It uses your web browser as a server browser and that can make a Call of Duty player feel distraught at first but the more I played Battlefield 3, the more I got used to it and appreciated it. While not as user friendly as Steam, it does its job and does it in a non-intrusive manner.
Battlefield 3 offers a single-player campaign as well as a co-op mode and while the game's online multiplayer is a blast to play, the campaign did fall kind of short. It's not that it was a bad story but it was a very short story. You play as a U.S. Marine named Henry Blackburn. Your team is sent to the Iran-Iraq border to investigate a situation that involves missing fellow Marines. What becomes a routine mission grows to be a bigger and more disastrous mission. While the story is short, the A.I can put up quite a fight and will probably add some time to the overall story time. Co-op extends the campaign's story a little bit more but I didn't pay too much attention because Demara and I were up to our necks in fighting terrorists from all corners. So don't feel down if the story is short because the A.I can put up a good challenge.
Overall, Battlefield 3 is a FANTASTIC military shooter that sets the bar up high and does it in style. If you can get past the few gripes that I've listed, then this game is a great addition to your FPS collection. Don't expect it to be like Call of Duty because it is the complete opposite. This game requires you to coordinate true teamwork tactics to win your matches. With that said, BF3 will throw everything at you but the kitchen sink.
- Outstanding graphics due to Frostbite 2.0
- Fluid movement
- Needs a lot of teamwork to win matches
- Lots of unlockables and awards
- Each class has its unique purpose
- Vehicular and aerial combat
- Big ass maps!
- DESTRUCTION TO THE MAX!
- Graphical issues
- Lag issues
- Short story
- Heavy hardware requirement