The biggest question: when and where will it be set? We hear it’s going to be modern-day, in a fictional war between NATO and the Middle Eastern coalition [MEC]. Consider the last game – a future of floating artillery and anti-grav platforms – a diversion. Most of the eight maps will focus on urban sites. We’d love to see a return of Strike at Karkand – a frenzied battle across an empty city.
Since Battlefield 2, the team at DICE have picked up influence from MMO game. Persistent stat tracking and new weapons for experienced players will be present, but we’re hoping for more. Expect to customize your soldier’s appearance, armour, and weaponry beyond unlocks. Choosing a face, voice, tattoos, and badges would be an obvious start.
In console land, they’re already being treated to a new Battlefield game, Subtitled Bad Company, it’s debut of the next-gen “Frostbite” engine. Aside from producing staggering draw distance that lets you pick off targets miles away, it’s imbued with some serious deformation technology. Buildings can be blown apart, bridges burst and craters carved. Battlefield 3 will evolve that technology further.
Why mess with a near perfect set of abilities? Battlefield 3 won’t alter the standard Sniper, Assault, Medic, Engineer, and Support class balance. Want a quick rev? Call for a Medic. Need a tank busted? Grab the Assault trooper and pray he’s packed an RPG launcher.
Guns, And More Guns
Every soldier needs a weapon, and Battlefield 3 will be chock full of firearms, 34 in fact, split evenly between the MEC and NATO. You’ll have to work for the privilege of sporting the most powerful rifles. As well as weapons, you’ll unlock armour, ammo, helmets and accessories.
The best feature of Battlefield 2. Sharing objectives and voice chat with friends as five-man squads. That’s being extended, with squads able to join up to form a battalion – the perfect partner for improved clan support and ranked servers. Commanders can still order grunts to the front and supply them with ammo drops, radar pings, UAV reconnaissance and the occasional artillery strike.