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Beta BF4: our impressions


Before we start, and for those interested, here's a quick rundown of my FPS experience. I am very far from being in the best position to talk about it because I am a casual player. I will try to remain the most objective for this return on this beta but my point of view can be very criticized (I would not blame you at all if you skip this passage).



Multiplayer FPS experience

My multiplayer experience from a multiplayer FPS perspective is quite limited. It starts with a big Counter Strike period from beta until 1.6 where I had a very good level followed by a small CS source period. Then a much more casual period where I went through just about every game: Half Life (and old-fashioned Wanted, Vampire Slayer, Ricochet mods), Team Fortress, Unreal Tournament, Quake, Halo and a few other than J must have forgotten. For the newer ones, Tribes Ascend and a little bit of CS GO. Battelfield side, I played a little on 1942, Battelfield 2 and 2142. I arrived very late on BF3 (a little before the DLC End Game to give you an idea… so at the beginning of the year). With my little 300 hours of play and Colonel 17 (I'll pass you the details of my Victim / Death ratio). This should help you to understand me better.

All this to tell you that I am far from being an expert in the field! Yes that's a block but I prefer to take the lead, I do not want to frustrate players with 5000 hours of play. There are surely things that I will forget, I do not have the science infused on Battlefield (yes I know I should but I'm working on it, I promise).



 

This article was written with the help of the A-Team, a team that I play with very often, I want to thank Driky and Horizon for their help. After spending quite a bit of time on this beta, here is our opinion. That being said, let's go for the hot comeback on this beta!

The classes

The assault: it is still fun to play and there is not much to say except that we have the impression of returning to our assault from Battlefield 3. The interesting point is the fact of having to choose between the kit of care or the defibrillator is a great idea! (Unlike BF3 where it was possible to have both). Please note that the very first care kit only heals one person, the large kit is to be unlocked.

The engineer : he knows how to face both infantry and armored vehicles. It's quite versatile, a bit too much for my taste actually. No noticeable change otherwise, it remains easy to learn and you will not be disturbed compared to BF3.

Support : always there to spray enemies with a heavy machine gun and provide cover fire. He is now the only one to do a lot of suppression effects (sight which is more or less cloudy when receiving shots or being nearby). The base ammo crate will only supply one person and only your first two weapons. It will be necessary to unlock the big box of ammunition to be able to supply explosives (grenades, missiles, rockets, C4, etc.). The support remains the most difficult class to take in hand in my opinion, it is even more true now that it does not have any more C4.



The scout: it was not my favorite class but it is getting fun to play thanks to the C4. Good on the other hand when you shoot with the sniper the bullets now leave a big trail (trail that leaves almost as much trace as a bazooka rocket…). It's a bit like "Hello I'm here, kill me!" »… I think the snipers are already visible enough like that with the reflection of the sun in their precision glasses! After, it is surely an improvement to unlock and to fix at the end of the barrel style silencer or muzzle brake, I did not look well on that side.

It may turn out that he was a bit too boosted compared to the others because he has some really good gadgets. The developers undoubtedly wanted to give more interest to this class. I might say a big nonsense but in BF3, I found it interesting only for placing respawn tags. Anyway, now it's a pleasure to play it and it was felt during this beta because there were a lot of them.

Yet another change to the scout when it comes to target marking (SOFLAM): this is no longer drop-down gear but instead is binoculars that will now lock enemy vehicles you look at. This lock helps guide the engineers' RPGs. It creates a good synergy between these classes. Perhaps too much according to some who have cried out heresy for two reasons. One because Battlefield is meant to be a semi-simulation and bazookas aren't meant to be homing (it's kind of like telling you that you can aim the projectile of a slingshot with a pointer. laser). On the other hand, when you are in a vehicle, there is no warning beep (just the continuous sound of the locking). Nothing therefore tells you that a projectile hits you, unlike a conventional missile. What I think is that it calms the supremacy of attack helicopters a bit. Well done and with a good co-pilot, it was a big killing machine in Battlefield 3. And that goes for airplanes as well. Which is pretty good in the end because anything that is aerial becomes much more vulnerable. I find it well done because as soon as you are locked, you have to be extra vigilant and you feel really threatened (feeling that you did not have on board a helicopter or a jet in Battlefield 3) . But the developers ultimately found it necessary to remove the lockdown on the RPG for the game's release.



Map

Big disappointment for the Siege of Shanghai map which is not (or very little) destructible. The windows of buildings, the walls, the wooden signs are not breakable and it is very frustrating. The skyscraper and the destructible road, although bringing a real change (Levolution), above all look like dust in the eyes supposed to make forget all the indestructible facades. As a reminder, in a map like Sharqi in BF3 (one example among many others), it was possible to destroy most of the buildings. It all seems very rigid then. It is further reinforced by the fact that the outside of the card is not coded… You cannot even land there in a helicopter.

After that, I'll pass you the details where you can't skip the 2cm high air conditioning pipes and other bugs of all kinds which will obviously be corrected. We are not going to remake the world because these bugs have been reported repeatedly on the forums.

We hope that the version of the map is a very old version (personally, I have the impression that it has not been touched or very little since the alpha during E3). Obviously the map is not complete because it lacks scenery and textures (and this is even intended because it is a beta).

What we also liked is the anti “base rape”. Now, to keep air vehicles out of the opponent's spawn area, there's an anti-aircraft gun that shoots at you and that results in damage over time.

Another topic that has been fairly recurrent on the forums: the skyscraper that we drop too easily. On that side, I don't worry too much, I think it's everyone's trip to want to bring down the tower at least once. Once everyone has had fun and we have 10 cards available when the game comes out, I think the phenomenon will quickly go out of fashion and there will be something else to do.

We also like the interaction with the decor (on / off switch of objects), the studs that block the road, the iron curtains in the shops, the possibility of going underwater, to shoot with your second weapon. under water...

The vehicles

The vehicles are very dangerous (more than in the 3 in our opinion) but at the same time they have weak points which make it possible to balance the whole.

Reviews that temporarily immobilize vehicles are very well thought out. We come out of classic tank fights: I shoot you, you shoot me where the first to fire actually won. It forces you to target weak points. Once the opponent is immobilized, it allows you to better position yourself to go and shoot at a weak point. For helicopters, criticism results in rotor failure that can embarrass more than one.

Another significant novelty: ammunition stores that take a long time to reload. It avoids pulling too much as was the case in BF3 and to think a little more before shooting.

The reduction in the efficiency of the helicopters means that it is no longer possible to spam countermeasures, the delay has been greatly extended which is rather welcome. In Battlefield 3, a person with an anti-air missile launcher could hardly destroy a helicopter by being alone so no one would take it. You really had to wait for the right moment, a window of a few seconds to shoot. And as long as the target had improved countermeasures, then it was even harder. Three-quarters of the time, we ignored the weapons that lock javelin and igla type unless you are well organized with your squad.

  • The boat : a mini fortress which has a very large firepower, it only appears on point C which is the central point. This is a point that both camps must seek to conquer because there is only one. It's a great idea to have to fight it out! It guarantees a definite advantage.
  • The VCI : no complaints, it behaves as in BF3.
  • The truck : intended for transport, its armor seems a little light to me. It explodes easily with a rocket. It's pretty fast so maybe it will be useful on a more open map to bypass and deploy behind enemy lines in record time. On this map, in any case, it is of little interest.
  • The transport helicoptert always fulfilled its role. On the other hand, the miniguns on both sides are sorely lacking in power!
  • Tanks always have pride of place but they are very vulnerable behind and above which requires to be more vigilant. A few shots of the grenade launcher in the back and you're done.
  • The anti-air vehicle : it was available in obliteration mode and it is far too powerful. It only takes a few seconds to fire the helicopters like flies. We hope that its firepower will be reduced.

Generally speaking, helicopters have become easy to operate, but that is because they are equipped with the gyro-stabilizer as standard. It may be interesting to remove this option for very good pilots to replace another gadget.

Multiplayer

The first idea that comes to me would be to set up a matchmaking system. The players being very numerous and the number of servers consequent for Battlefield, my first remark would be to propose servers which make it possible to play with people of its level. Perhaps not according to the rank because it is not at all representative of the level of the person, but rather according to his ratio Death / Victim or score / minute. But again it all depends on the class and the game mode you are playing. On paper it's beautiful but to set it up it must be complicated, it has so many parameters to take into account.

I recommend all newcomers to stay in normal mode for a while. Extreme mode represents a whole new dimension and it can be extremely frustrating with its high difficulty.

The conquest mode : First point that I would like to emphasize is that we greatly appreciate the reappearances of vehicles with a normal delay, ie 3 minutes by default. I think three quarters of BF3 servers (and again I think I'm way below the truth) are in fast or instant respawn for vehicles. It kills the game! People who die with their vehicles in most cases take the same one and monopolize it for a whole game. On the other hand, we could play the suicide bomber because there are always vehicles available. I guarantee you that when you blow up an attack helicopter or the boat and you know that you are going to have 3 min of peace, it is a big advantage to move forward and collect points. My advice would be to switch the servers to unclassified (understand by that: where you can't get XP) for all the servers that do not respect this parameter (yes I know it may be a bit radical) . It certainly makes the game less nervous, but it's a lot more tactical.

The cancellation mode was really fun to play as long as you were in a team, otherwise it can quickly end in anything.

Domination mode on this map turned out pretty good even if it boiled down to camping on the roof 90% of the time as it gives the advantage on two of the three points.

 

Arms

The recoil on weapons has significantly decreased which makes the game a little casual. On the other hand, we are overwhelmed by sights, wrists and accessories of all kinds. The dual aiming system is well thought out which allows to have a fast sight and another with a larger zoom but slower.

As a reminder, you can counter a stab that comes from the front. This counter seems too "absolute" in the sense that if the guy passes it, it's over and we can't do anything. It would have taken some sort of touch or qte combo game to avoid that. The basic idea is very good, but it is far too easy to counter! You have to be an asthmatic turtle to fail to put it on ... I think that in the end the stab in the front will be quickly abandoned.

 

Conclusion

At the risk of repeating myself this was a beta and not early access as some people think. So it is obvious that the card was provided voluntarily in a light version (even very light, we hope). The developers are now working to correct all the errors that have been reported. And I remind you that we must report all the bugs encountered and share your comments. There are excellent moderators on the Battelog (true, flattery is not my thing) who are there to convey the information. And the developers of DICE are not closed to suggestions, they pass on the forums, on reddit so know that you are read! It is still possible that minimal or radical changes, even deletions, will be decided. There is still time to modify, delete or add things!

Thank you to the bravest who took the time and the trouble to read me.



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