new battlefield 3 details

Productivity in late 2011 is looking less and less likely. The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim is coming out in November, and now confirmation of this… 3 is slated for a Fall 2011 release. The early tidbits revealed about the game are promising: “the return of jets, prone, and 64-player multiplayer.” That plunges us straight into our first point: having just tried out the Crysis 2 demo on Xbox 360, my disdain for console shooters has been reinforced. Even if it’s ported, BF3 will be better on PC than PS3 or 360. And that’s not to say it will be a straight console port, because the prone functionality and larger multiplayer limit for PC, in conjunction with previous remarks from BF3 developers, suggest that DICE haven’t completely forgotten their roots. BF:1943 was recently cancelled for the PC, which upset some, but it was supposedly to ensure that BF3 would be the best game ever – and 1943 wasn’t very much fun anyway.

The teaser trailer doesn’t reveal much, but we know the environments will be highly destructible, and graphics should be amazing (the Frostbite 2 engine is in use here). We will have to wait to get the big questions answered. Is there regenerating health? Are there ridiculous “perks” and upgrades that make the playing field uneven? Will there be a commander, and how will squads function? What about mod tools? How have they compromised the game in response to consoles and the sickening success of the inferior Call of Duty series? And the rest of the issues I mentioned earlier

I haven’t been able to get into Bad Company 2 – it has a learning curve. BF2 probably had a similar curve, and it took a plethora of patches to make it playable, but it ended up all right. That said, BF3 is heralded as being the “true successor to BF2,” so hopefully some of my gripes with BC2 will be irrelevant. I think it may have to do with modern combat in general, however. As new technology is added to these shooters, making the games faster-paced and making most gunfights last less than a second, a part of me longs to go back to the drawn-out battles of 1942, with single-fire bolt-action rifles and a hint of strategy involved. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a 1942 “expansion” for this game in the future, since the team had success with the reinventing of Vietnam on the BC2 engine. But that’s further down the road.

For now, we await the return of the true first-person shooter, and hope that it’s pure, with minimal screw-ups from its developer and cash-hungry publisher.

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