Review: Battlefield 3 + Premium Service (PS3)
Written By Matt Sainsbury on Monday, June 18, 2012 | 12:03
Introduced to Battlefield 3 recently was its Premium service. The service provides to those who purchase it all DLC packs that will be released, which judging by the calendar will give players a good year of Battlefield action. Additionally, all who become Premium members will gain two weeks early access to the DLC packs. Periodically, there will also be events that allow for players to gain double experience, as well as videos and guides provided. If you haven’t bought any of the DLC that has been released yet, for the five packs alone it is well worth your money. Of course, Digitally Downloaded will be providing reviews of future DLC packs when they get released.
The campaign is set within 2014. Interrogated by American officials, the story is told in retrospect. I want to say I was interested, but really I wasn’t. It’s all the same. Run for a little bit. Explosion. Shoot all the enemies. Rinse and repeat. Luckily, the amazing Frostbite engine somewhat makes the environment experience a different and unexpected one every time. The destructible cover breaks down with every shot. What may be safe one second may be a death trap another.
There are four classes within Battlefield 3. The Assault class fights with assault rifles, whilst also being the medic for the team. Not only can they provide med-packs, but they can also revive members who have been shot and haven’t respawned yet. One of the issues that have been fixed from prior games is that now, once revived, you can choose to re-spawn rather than being forced to accept it. The support class focuses on light weaponry, as well as providing ammunition. Additionally, he has an arsenal that is capable of destroying enemy ground and air units. The Engineer is best suited to vehicles, capable of repairing yours as well as damaging the enemies. The Recon class is best suited to snipers. They can also be used to spot the enemy as well as placing spawn beacons.
When combined with the squad system, you can have one squad that specializes in sniping the enemy, using voice-chat to point out possible blind spots for one another. Whilst you can have one squad that focuses on assaulting the enemy, providing health on the front line in tough times.
A problem that arises with the squad system, at least on PS3, is that not a lot of users utilize the voice-chat. It won’t ruin your game, but the experience may be easier, and a lot more enjoyable if your whole squad used it (given the bile most kids blurt out on these services, this is quite possibly a good thing… - ed).
The conquest mode has been enhanced through the two latest DLC installments, Back To Karkand and the latest Close Quarters with Conquest Assault and Conquest Domination respectively. Assault sees one team placed as attackers and one as defenders. At the start of the match the defenders have all flags captured, and the attackers (with an increased amount of tickets) has to try and capture the points. Domination matches occur in maps with narrow passageways, reminiscent of old first person shooters such as GoldenEye on the Nintendo 64. Flags capture very quickly (only takes a few seconds with one player opposed to about twenty), however the flags are closely placed together so if you do happen to capture all three on the map it won’t be for long.
Deathmatch makes an appearance in three forms, regular deathmatch, team and squad. Your regular deathmatch is a free-for-all. Team deathmatch has two teams with squads, whilst squad deathmatch pits four squads against one another.
The Frostbite engine, as mentioned earlier, really shines in multiplayer. Your environment is constantly changing, and for most of the times it’s not for the better. Holes emerge in walls so if you’re not careful your entire squad can be flanked.
With it you’re given the newest mode Gun Master. All players start of with a pistol, and through killing others they are able to upgrade their weapon, until they get to the knife. A kill with that and you win the game. It’s not an original concept, inspired from Counterstrike and Call of Duty, but it’s still fun. It only takes place on the Close Quarter maps, which tight corners leads to a lot of getting shot in the back.
Battlefield 3 also offers a co-op campaign, separate to the single-player campaign, however I was unable to check it out for this review.
Battlefield 3 is just a great game. Its single player could be improved, but a lot of people wouldn’t haven even played through the entire campaign. With its squad-based multiplayer, and its fun game modes it’s hard to find genuine, serious, gameplay flaws. Any shooter fan should pick this up. Additionally, the Premium service is a great purchase, for players new and old. It will provide months worth of new content at a great price.
- Sam M
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