Squad 51 vs. the Flying Saucers

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Battlefield Report: October 21, 2014
Editorial by

Battlefield Report: October 21, 2014

Beta Testing Battlefield 3 and Ghost Recon Online

Do I really need to introduce Battlefield 3? The highly popular first-person shooter lands in U.S. retail outlets next week in all its glory, promising to blow away the competition and bring PC and console gamers together under one roof. So what’s new? A lot more than you’d think.

First off: the pacing of Battlefield 3 - as compared to Bad Company 2 - is much faster. Bullets fly with impunity, especially in close quarters. Explosive ordnance carries more personnel damage, and fully automatic rifles and machine guns have the capability to chew squads to pieces. Movement speed has increased slightly. Gameplay as a whole has a much more “twitchy” feel to it, which I was not a fan of at first. Luckily the Kings of Balance, DICE, have made some additions that help to keep the flow quick but with ways to break up the craziness.

One example is flashlights. Left 4 Dead made great use of tactical light attachments on weapons, to the point that just simply turning them on or off might change the outcome of an encounter. Battlefield 3 takes this concept further by causing a very realistic blinding effect when the light is passed over another player’s face. Seeing a trio of flashlight beams coming down a hallway can be a tip-off, but charging face-first into them is a mistake. As someone who has assisted in close-quarters room-clearing (including with off-duty Houston S.W.A.T.) more than once, it makes a lot of sense for a military-themed shooter to finally include this primary tactical tool.