Published on November 15th, 2013 | by Tony2
Review: Battlefield 4
There comes a time in all our lives when you have to ignore what your brain has been telling you what is wrong for so long and be willing to try new things out.
I won’t lie here, for the last few years I have been a huge Call of Duty fanboy, so even the mention of “Battlefield is a better game” to me would have my gag reflex going into overdrive and make me want to scream “NEVERRRRRRRRRR!” in your face.
Gladly I have since matured from acting like I am a five year old when being asked who my favourite Power Ranger was, so I was really looking forward to getting my hands on Battlefield 4.
I’ve even got to the point now that when people even compare the two it really annoys me a lot.
Sure they both have guns in them, sure you kill faceless people second after second, but both this and the other game I won’t mention (until their review soon) are really worlds apart when you actually take the time to play them.
You see boys and girls, I’ve always had Battlefield down as the game that required nothing but good sniper skills and the ghillie suit of a bush to make you good at the game, but this review time has made me a changed man.
While I’ve had some fears confirmed, others have been quashed the more time I’ve spent with the game, and I truly believe that even uttering the “fish” game word in a Battlefield review is a disrespect to the developers of both games.
So let it be known this is a so called “fanboy” of the other game giving this a review, and even that should mean something with the words that I type.
The last time I sat down and enjoyed a good Battlefield storyline was way back in the day when it had the Bad Company motto tag alongside it.
Back then Battlefield had a ton of humour in the game and I seem to remember a campaign dumping you in the middle of nowhere and telling you to reach a far away distance.
Around that time it was a new thing that you could blow up stuff with rockets and that was my first real attraction to Battlefield, as at that time no other game had environments that could be broken down.
Fast forward to present day and Battlefield 4 has took that a step further with Levolution, which is a snazzed up word for “hey we let you blow shit up in a cool way even in multiplayer now!”.
Of course this is cool and awesome to see as a whole skyscraper comes crashing down as you battle it out, but that is talked about a bit later on (see the MP section.)
Battlefield 4 sees the game kick off with Bonnie Tyler in the background as you sit in a car underwater having to shoot a window out to survive. You’ve all seen the gameplay trailer right?
You play the game as silent yet deadly Daniel Recker, or simply “Reck” to campaign compadres, Kimble “Irish” Graves, team medic Sgt. Clayton “Pac” Pakowski, and the dark horse that is eye candy and bad-ass, Huang “Hannah” Shuyi.
The game kicks off with the above and you’re soon sent out to pick up Chinese presidential candidate, Jin Jié and escort him out of Shanghai.
The story carries on into so much more after this, but I will leave you to enjoy that for yourselves. But be warned, have toilet tissue at the ready as the amount of explosions and gunfire porn shooting in your face may make you need a new set of underpants.
To be honest with you, while the story is all fine and dandy and gives the constant whiff of death around you a meaning, the basic premise of any shooter has always been the same since time began.
You get dropped off to what looks like a quiet nice village or glorious town full of bright lights and big buildings, but before long you will be blowing shit up with AI that loves nothing more than either being in constant cover or running around in circles playing bulldog with the bullets in your gun.
Battlefield 4’s campaign gave me as a shooter fan what I wanted from it, by that I mean I got to shoot people with an array of guns at my disposal all in a world that is beautiful to look at in places, but there are faults.
On numerous occasions I’ve found myself having to reset a checkpoint due to the game having a glitch in the system; One that stands out is when opening a door on a boat only to find nothing but darkness to step into which when I did had me falling down for five seconds into the sea and dying.
Other ones have been the on rails AI clan that follow you about all of a sudden not wanting to move onto the next stage of the level, which again forced me to reset the checkpoint.
Luckily though this has only happened a handful of times, and I also hear that a patch is on the way for such a thing.
Another thing that I touched on at the start of the review that annoyed me about the campaign was the lack of any kind of voice for the lead man Recker.
Now I know some will say “but they do it so you can feel more like a part of the story, as giving him a voice would take the ‘you’ away from the game”. To me though it took something away from playing through the campaign.
When your team mates are chatting away and end what they are saying with a question to Recker, you hearing nothing but silence in return, to which they then reply back to this silence like we have spoke to them through the power of mime or telepathy.
It just feels silly to me, and for the cinematic piece that the story is, it needs a voice for me personally as without it you are taken out of the mind set of being in the game for those 5 seconds or so.
Overall though the campaign was a joy to play through. With tons of action filled moments on offer, you can’t help but love it if your a fan of shooters.
The game also offers collectibles in the form of dog tags and guns to look out for, so even once the 7 hour long campaign is done with you have a reason to keep on coming back for a while.
Multiplayer is where we all go to play right from the start on any shooter, and for my first play with the multiplayer, well my first play for a long time anyway, this was always going to be an eye opener for me.
Would I enjoy it? Would I have to force myself to play through boredom? Let’s find out shall we?
The game offers up seven gametypes for you to play with:
400 tickets/lives per team and three places on the map to hold down to make the opponents’ lives go down faster.
Fast and frantic is the easy way to sum this mode up in a few words and is one of the better modes in the game. This is also the mode to play if you love the big maps with vehicles at your disposal.
I enjoyed this mode very much and it is one I would regularly revisit.
Your bog standard Team Deathmatch affair from any other shooter, so not much to say really.
First to 100 kills wins the game, it’s that simple.
I believe this is a new game type to Battlefield, as it is not one I’ve seen or heard of before.
The rules are simple, there is a bomb placed in the middle of the map which either team has to grab and then detonate at one of three objectives on the other team’s side of the map. When all three objectives are destroyed, it is game over.
Depending on your team this can be a long winded gametype or it can be over before you even get going, as it takes a team working together to get the job done.
Overall though a good gametype if you have buddies online with you.
This is not you shooting people to the classic Paula Abdul song sadly; take note for next year Dice, the world wants it! 😉
Once again two teams battle it out as either the attacking or the defending team, with the tickets running out the faster the objectives are either attacked or defended.
The attacking team must blow up the objectives to move on, while the defending team must stop this from going down.
Once an objective is blown the ticket count resets for the attacking team and you start all over again.
Really enjoyed this mode and was easily my favourite gametype. There was just something about the fast play that kept me coming back for more.
Same as TDM but in this there are 4 teams of 4 players to contend with. The rules are still simple though, score the most kills to win the game.
This mode was just OK for me, but it can feel a bit too mad sometimes with the 4 teams going at it.
Another tried and tested mode that has been around for years.
Nothing is different in this mode for BF4, simply try your best to hold down the 3 capture points and kill all enemies.
The more you hold, the faster the kills/tickets will go down for the other team.
Defuse is a simple one life, plant the bomb or stop them from being planted gametype. You will either be chucked on the attacking team which sees you trying to plant the bomb at the two objectives on offer, or you will see yourself on the defending team where you can just sit back and wait for the attackers to make a move and kill them.
I hated this mode with a passion in all honesty, as while the defending part is fun if you have to be an attacker the fun is sucked out of it by campers.
I found myself picking up a bomb sneaking to an objective only to be took out by a guy lying on a roof or hill with a sniper from 40 foot away.
You do also tend to find that most of the time it is better to simply kill the other team as it is an easier way to victory rather than having to plant the bomb.
But as I said, not much fun for me on this one, and it just seemed to be a gametype to make up the numbers.
Before I end this review it’s worth talking about Levolution, and today I saw the guys over at IGN had captured a decent video showing it all off.
If you do happen to pull it off in a match you will feel like a badass for a few seconds, and it is something new to the world of Battlefield that is a plus point in my eyes.
One more play mode you can do other than being a soldier is the fancy Commander Mode that unlocks when you reach rank ten, which I am a few more kills off as I sit on 8 and a half.
So while I have not played the mode just yet, I’m sure you will agree the below video makes it look a ton of fun, and who doesn’t like bossing people around, right?
And finally I’m just going to touch on a few bad points that are going on early in the games release for a second, but I’m not going to make it in to a big thing.
A few crashes seem to happen on MP at the moment, but I believe I read a patch is in the works for this, so one would hope it comes to an end soon as it can be a bit annoying.
I also found that in some games people just would not die. By that I mean I would shoot a rocket at the foot of a guy only for him to live and shoot me with a pistol and kill me in two shots.
I never went to gun school, but something is telling me something is not right there.
Overall the MP sucked me in with an all round decent bunch of modes to play with that work really well with the maps on offer.
Sure there are a few teething problems, but if you ask me if I had fun, the answer would be a big fat yes!
Next-gen: Having played BF4 on the One now I thought I would talk about it a bit in this review rather than making a whole new review.
BF4 offers all the above, but it does have a few added extras like 64 players online and looking even better.
This does make the game even more epic but not without faults.
Since I’ve had this game I have had issues jumping into servers outside of the quick match option where I can find myself being placed into a queue for upto 5 minutes.
I know that doesn’t seem long, but when you join that queue as the number one entry and you add it up over a nights play, you’re looking at close to 30 to 40 minutes of your gaming session wasted.
On top of this it has to be said that BF4 is not as buddy friendly as other shooters on the market are when you just want to play with a team of buddies.
You can’t just invite a friend and take on the masses with an invite, but rather join the same session and pray you get put on the same team.
Until this gets sorted it kind of takes out some of the fun for me, as I’m a must have buddies online with to play a shooter kind of player.
If you can look past those issues, and enjoyed BF4 on the 360 but now own a Xbox one I would urge you to make the upgrade, as the game looks even more gorgeous.
Summary: As a Battlefield novice, it has been good to sit down with a game I had many a time looked over for the other big shooter, but that has all changed now. I'm actually looking forward to playing this on the Xbox One now as with a next-gen engine behind it, I feel Battlefield can only get better if that is even possible. For the guys sticking with the 360 though, this is still worth picking up.