Battlefield 4 Goes Hollywood in its Official Gameplay Debut

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Battlefield 4 Goes Hollywood in its Official Gameplay Debut

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With more set pieces than you can throw a flaming helicopter at, EA's top shooter franchise declares itself eligible for another round.

At a closed door event in San Francisco tonight, EA and Dice showed off Battlefield 4 for the first time. A live gameplay demo was preceded by the bold declaration that the presenters would provide "no setup, no explanation" and would instead "let the gameplay speak for itself."

And true to their word, the 15(ish) minute gameplay segment that was shown was full of Battlefield flavor. The characters moved with noticeable weight, the guns were rendered in gorgeous detail, and huge set piece moments were lurking around every corner.

For example, during the relatively brief demonstration, all of the following sequences were shown in explosive, gritty, and (sometimes) slow-mo detail:

  • A car being crushed from pressure as it sunk deep into a body of water, with the inhabitants - the player included - trapped inside.
  • A soldier's leg being amputated, resulting in a shower of blood.
  • A car chase in which the player is presumably the driver, yet seems to have little control over the actual path.
  • A scene where you hang out of the vehicle and launch grenades at a chopper that is in hot pursuit.
  • A mad dash for a rescue chopper, only to have the building you are standing on collapse as a second, hostile chopper attacks.
  • A soldier fighting off hostile canines and dispatching them in a very un-PETA-friendly manner.

If this high-octane action sounds amazing to you, that makes perfect sense: Everything I've listed above is amazing to watch and looks absolutely fantastic in Dice's new Frostbite 3 graphics engine. Truth be told, what was shown to the crowd in San Francisco tonight was a treat for the eyes, ears, and whatever other senses you use to enjoy things.

Unfortunately, while these epic, scripted moments are a pleasure to watch, they're not usually all that fun to play in rapid succession. When the demo moved into an open, outdoor area for some actual real-time gunfights, it looked like a solid first-person shooter experience, and in this respect the Battlefield titles of recent years have typically done well.

But while the core gameplay appears to be well and truly intact, the Hollywood-style action scenes seem to have been ramped up considerably. If that's something you enjoy, you'll probably be mighty pleased to hear this, but in general, scripted moments are usually best received when sprinkled with care, rather than served as a main course.

As far as new features go, the game does have a trick or two up its sleeve. For the first time in a Battlefield game, your player has the ability to command squadmates to direct covering fire at specific targets and take out enemies as you point them out. This should add a bit more strategy to the otherwise straightforward gunfights, but we'll need to see a bit more of it in action before we declare it anything to be excited about.

Another interesting new feature being introduced in Battlefield 4 are persistent social leaderboards that can keep track of your scores as you progress through the campaign and then rank you among your friends.

The game was being demoed on a PC - as was obvious by the "Press [E] To Open" prompts on doors - but while the game looked fantastic in its demoed form, it's hard to imagine how big of a graphical hit it will take when wedged onto the aging PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. There were some details, like dozens of waving tarps hanging from skyscrapers and hundreds of birds circling above, that just don't seem like they'll survive the transition to current generation home consoles. Of course, anything is possible.

All in all, Battlefield 4 doesn't appear to be reinventing the wheel quite yet, but there is still a lot of the game that remains shrouded in mystery. Most notably of these no-shows is the multiplayer component, which is surely what all diehard Battlefield fans are eagerly anticipating. Another day, my frag-loving friends, another day...

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I wonder how heavily butchered this game will have to be to run on 6 year old hardware.

Maybe they will have a multi platform launch, not just with just PS3, Xbox, and PC, but the next gen too. Not that I damn, I haven't played any of the battle field games in the past, nor do I plan to begin any time soon. I just find it that spaghetti sauce people return again for Battle Field 4's promotional artwork. Except this time it's like he's running away from a restaurant and he's being chased by the police.

The whole thing looks heavily scripted and fabricated. I also like the fact that up until he starts shooting from the window, his gun literally has no bullets in it, then suddenly they magically appear.

Jeez, "fucking annihilated" is underselling the destruction caused to that building. Was that building the Earth's punching bag for that day or something?

RIP building. No one's demise should be as gruesome as yours.

EDIT: I guess I should comment on the video now that I've watched it.

It looks like they are going the "Micheal Bay cranked up to 11" route in the hopes to show off what the Frostbite 3 can do. I guess that's fine.

Does anyone remember when Battlefield was a fun variation on the World War 2 shooter genre? I kinda miss those days, riding on bomber wings and engaging in huge tank battles.

We've got enough modern shooters that I can't believe I'm getting nostalgic for World War 2 again. But fancier visuals showing the same thing we've seen a hundred times in the last five years, plus three times the setpieces and spectacle moments does little to encourage or excite me anymore.

Wow this is all totally new, and unlike any other shooter.

Said no one ever.

OK, my thoughts as I watch the trailer.

First 5 minutes: Overly desaturated colours, obnoxious colour-grading, overtly scripted segments, linear set pieces, always fucking Russians!

Next 5 minutes: I have not really seen anything really that interesting.

14 minutes in-Initiating Rant: Quote-Fucking Civilians-End Quote: Why do soldiers in seemingly all (its a fucking hyperbole you dunce) U.S. media react negatively towards civilians (the ones they are supposed to protect and fight for), even the ones not of their native nationality? Personally it gives me the feeling that the soldiers are implying that unless you are a soldier you inferior to them.

It really may not be the intention but I have seen it in several games, novels, and movies and that is the only thing that I can infer from such reactions and statements. Instead why didn't he say something witty like "Why do Civillians always run the wrong direction when they hear gunfire and explosions?'

End Rant

After Watching The Rest: Total meh.

Another generic, ultra-linear modern shooter set in a country with foreign people, with tons of scripted events and (unlike CoD) barely distinguishable characters. Nothing else to see here other than slightly shinier graphics, the addition of squad command and I NEED YOU NOW TONIIIGHT. AND I NEED YOU MORE THAN EVER... o/

God damn the gun is bloody enormous. Yay for fail hardware ruining display real estate.

dragongit:

The whole thing looks heavily scripted and fabricated. I also like the fact that up until he starts shooting from the window, his gun literally has no bullets in it, then suddenly they magically appear.

I was also quite amused by this, why would a soldier be going around without any bullets in the first place?

Damn, this looks pretty.

Big bombastic shooters have become my guilty pleasure, will definitely be picking this one up.

Saulkar:
OK, my thoughts as I watch the trailer.

First 5 minutes: Overly desaturated colours, obnoxious colour-grading, overtly scripted segments, linear set pieces, always fucking Russians!

Next 5 minutes: I have not really seen anything really that interesting.

14 minutes in-Initiating Rant: Quote-Fucking Civilians-End Quote: Why do soldiers in seemingly all (its a fucking hyperbole you dunce) U.S. media react negatively towards civilians (the ones they are supposed to protect and fight for), even the ones not of their native nationality? Personally it gives me the feeling that the soldiers are implying that unless you are a soldier you inferior to them.

It really may not be the intention but I have seen it in several games, novels, and movies and that is the only thing that I can infer from such reactions and statements. Instead why didn't he say something witty like "Why do Civillians always run the wrong direction when they hear gunfire and explosions?'

End Rant

After Watching The Rest: Total meh.

Because they aren't there to protect the civilians, special forces don't deal with that stuff. They're just getting in the way in a very high pressure environment.

sammysoso:

Because they aren't there to protect the civilians, special forces don't deal with that stuff. They're just getting in the way in a very high pressure environment.

Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuh... Semantics, they are protecting civilians indirectly by doing their job (assuming there are not ulterior motives behind the decisions of their superiors). Besides... how should I word this... not specifically being there to protect civilians in the region does not sound like a very relevant counterpoint towards my gripe. However on the point of a high pressure environment I was pointing out that the soldier's reaction is consistent in many depictions of soldiers across all forms of media, not just this game in particular.

Saulkar:

sammysoso:

Because they aren't there to protect the civilians, special forces don't deal with that stuff. They're just getting in the way in a very high pressure environment.

Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuh... Semantics, they are protecting civilians indirectly by doing their job (assuming there are not ulterior motives behind the decisions of their superiors). Besides... how should I word this... not specifically being there to protect civilians in the region does not sound like a very relevant counterpoint towards my gripe. However on the point of a high pressure environment I was pointing out that the soldier's reaction is consistent in many depictions of soldiers across all forms of media, not just this game in particular.

Oh yea, I was just addressing the specific instance in this game.

As far as overall, I'd think that unless your mission was to specifically protect civilians, you wouldn't want them in the combat zone. Having to account for their presence as well as do your job would be pretty stressful.

sammysoso:

As far as overall, I'd think that unless your mission was to specifically protect civilians, you wouldn't want them in the combat zone. Having to account for their presence as well as do your job would be pretty stressful.

I really cannot argue with that.

It's a lot easier to make flashy graphics and animations than it is to make a game with interesting characters and a gripping, original story line. I hope to be pleasantly surprised about this game, because i can't see why you can't excel in those departments in a game like Battlefield. I'll probably still get it when the game comes out though, for the multiplayer if nothing else.

I must say, I did grin at the 13:37 on the clock :D Hopefully they make a decent share between time spent on the singleplayer and multiplayer.

I wish they wouldn't waste resources on such non-core Battlefield frippery as a single-player campaign. I wait to see some actual news about the real Battlefield 4. Will squad chat return? Will server side hit detection make a return? Will the vanilla maps be as good as the recent BF3 maps, or will they be console heavy rubbish like the BF3 vanilla maps?

I love BF3 despite the faults, but I haven't touched the campaign...or the rubbish co-op.

Looks pretty much what I expected - something, that can be summed up as "Battlefield 3 Stand-Alone-Addon for 60$". And that what it looks like, including the same dull graphics, decent sounds, ect...

Will the multiplayer be getting a Karkand pack?

Even if I might just stick with the numerous Battlefield games I already have, most of which still have an active community. I hope I'm wrong but BF4 looks like the only new thing it has to offer is more high res graphics so you can get blinded by the sun and flashlights even more often.

So they decided to keep at annoying dubstep music at title screen... Lovely.

Anyways... pretty graphics, even though it doesn't make me want to buy it.

Looks like the last one....ordinary military shooter. Not bad, but nothing really interesting.
I gotta say, after playing Bioshock:Infinite this looks soooo bland and boring to me!

Quick question: If they first showed the singleplayer, gave zero informations about the multiplayer and talked in big detail about the new singleplayer-feature....does that mean the a Battlefiled game has now a singleplayer-focus with a mostly unchanged multiplayer? Cause that would be doomsday!

Can we please move on from Americans and Russians? It's like Cold War paranoia is starting up again, like the gaming industry hasn't realized that the Cold War ended over twenty years ago.

For the first time in a Battlefield game, your player has the ability to command squadmates to direct covering fire at specific targets and take out enemies as you point them out.

Wait a second... Spec Ops: The Line, is that you in there?

Anyway, this looks fantastic, as is to be expected I suppose, but it seems that the scripting from BF3 hasn't changed at all, or even gotten worse, if possible. And why on earth would you release a gameplay trailer for a mostly multiplayer game WITHOUT footage from the multiplayer? This does seem fairly polished, so claiming it's not done yet is not good enough. Especially if they, as I suspect they will, start taking preorders in short order now.

I might get this for the multiplayer, but I'm very on the fence still. It's been too little time since BF3, and I'm not interested in getting it if this is gonna turn out like a CoD-type one release every year. Even if Battlefield's multiplayer is a lot more fun (in the large maps with vehicles, the smaller ones have gotten identical to CoD).

Also as a sidenote, this is really not doing anything to convince me that EA isn't just following everyone else's business model that seems to work.

sammysoso:

Saulkar:

sammysoso:

Because they aren't there to protect the civilians, special forces don't deal with that stuff. They're just getting in the way in a very high pressure environment.

Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuh... Semantics, they are protecting civilians indirectly by doing their job (assuming there are not ulterior motives behind the decisions of their superiors). Besides... how should I word this... not specifically being there to protect civilians in the region does not sound like a very relevant counterpoint towards my gripe. However on the point of a high pressure environment I was pointing out that the soldier's reaction is consistent in many depictions of soldiers across all forms of media, not just this game in particular.

Oh yea, I was just addressing the specific instance in this game.

As far as overall, I'd think that unless your mission was to specifically protect civilians, you wouldn't want them in the combat zone. Having to account for their presence as well as do your job would be pretty stressful.

Then you just factor their presence in as another variable and do your best to avoid unnecessary casualties. No reason to get all jock-ish and insult them simply for being there. Why not say "Sir, I appreciate your desire to help but this area is not safe. Please leave, immediately. Thank you for your co-operation." Or words to that effect.

Soviet Heavy:
Can we please move on from Americans and Russians? It's like Cold War paranoia is starting up again, like the gaming industry hasn't realized that the Cold War ended over twenty years ago.

I agree, let's pull out another ridiculous scenario that, while still fueled with irrational paranoia, would at least be refreshing.
here goes:

China attacks europe. BAM!
new opposing factions, more varied environments, you can basicly pick any kind of location you want and you'll probably find it somewhere within europe or china, it's brilliant.

Looks like an exciting, good looking Quick-Time-Event shooter to me. I hope these people know what they're doing, pumping resources in to a single player experience of a game that is considered to be a multiplayer experience entirely, which in turn is also completely different from that of the COD series. It has been reported that most COD players can't handle the necessary effort required to play Battlefield, or as some call it, the lack of instant gratification.

The multiplayer had better evolved a whole lot more than this single-player stuff appears to have.

The Russian adversaries are another easy bad-guy. A nation with the resources to have disposable special ops/warfighters(huhawhaw)/stooges just like the USA in what is probably going to turn out to be a laughable attempt at creating emotional involvement with your team mates.

Here's a question for the film buffs amongst us.

Have you ever felt a emotional connection to a character who is mute, only interacts with other characters during combat and gets to make no crucial decisions beyond shooting someone ?

Do you want know what I call a player-controlled character to whom this laughable attempt at creating an 'emotional' connection is to be made to ?

Retarded Rambo.

The game may just very well be pure "to be, or what" spectacle(that's a Robin Williams quote btw). The technology to create interesting characters for an interesting game .....

Screw this. I'll wait for the multiplayer information, if there is something worthwhile that's not pushed ahead in to the community-fragmenting season pass bullshit.

Well it certainly looks nice and shiny but the video is also really boring to watch (this is coming from someone who generally liked BF3 overall) it looks very heavily scripted, bland same old same old America Vs. Brown people of undisclosed country/Russians.

People give Call of duty shit for yearly releases but at least its visuals and story changes in a major way specifically the treyarch Cods (I still don't play them but the point still stands).

Pretty graphics, but a boring game. I won't trouble myself with this one. And yes, I know it's about the multiplayer, but I can't stand modern military shooters. Until one of them does something new and exciting I'm out.

This is shit and I don't know what else to say. Oh, wait. I got something. The player is opening doors now. This is revolutionary technology.

Combustion Kevin:

Soviet Heavy:
Can we please move on from Americans and Russians? It's like Cold War paranoia is starting up again, like the gaming industry hasn't realized that the Cold War ended over twenty years ago.

I agree, let's pull out another ridiculous scenario that, while still fueled with irrational paranoia, would at least be refreshing.
here goes:

China attacks europe. BAM!
new opposing factions, more varied environments, you can basicly pick any kind of location you want and you'll probably find it somewhere within europe or china, it's brilliant.

Well come on, the big factions in Europe, the brits would be crying and scared of their own guns, the french would surrender to the first asian looking folk they came across, and the germans would start trying to take over the world again! It would be a disaster! :P

as for the OT: Just...why? This seems like it should be an expansion pack for Battlefield 3

-sighs-

Andh ere I was hoping with how awesome CoD Blops 2 sold that EA would try to jump on the near future bandwagon and resurrect Battlefield 2142 instead of yet ANOTHER modern warfare knockoff... Battlefield 3 was enough thanks, wont be buying this one.

We just want Bad Company 3 :(

Desert Punk:

Combustion Kevin:

Soviet Heavy:
Can we please move on from Americans and Russians? It's like Cold War paranoia is starting up again, like the gaming industry hasn't realized that the Cold War ended over twenty years ago.

I agree, let's pull out another ridiculous scenario that, while still fueled with irrational paranoia, would at least be refreshing.
here goes:

China attacks europe. BAM!
new opposing factions, more varied environments, you can basicly pick any kind of location you want and you'll probably find it somewhere within europe or china, it's brilliant.

Well come on, the big factions in Europe, the brits would be crying and scared of their own guns, the french would surrender to the first asian looking folk they came across, and the germans would start trying to take over the world again! It would be a disaster! :P

This would still be better than most of those Cold War fantasies from American story-writers. :P

Desert Punk:

Well come on, the big factions in Europe, the brits would be crying and scared of their own guns, the french would surrender to the first asian looking folk they came across, and the germans would start trying to take over the world again! It would be a disaster! :P

oh you and your WW2, us europeans are actually quite fond of a good fight every once in a while if you study history.
especially with eachother, though, I don't know if that'll help. >.>

The french have always been one of the big major powerhouses in any war bar the last world war, I think that getting overrun by the FRACKING GERMANS should not harm that reputation.
They are german, they've been reknown as proper warriors ever since the roman era.

the english, yeah, they're usually pretty good at fighting BACK, as are us dutchmen, the only reason we ever owned large tracks of land outside our borders is because of clever business strategy.

Combustion Kevin:

Desert Punk:

Well come on, the big factions in Europe, the brits would be crying and scared of their own guns, the french would surrender to the first asian looking folk they came across, and the germans would start trying to take over the world again! It would be a disaster! :P

oh you and your WW2, us europeans are actually quite fond of a good fight every once in a while if you study history.
especially with eachother, though, I don't know if that'll help. >.>

The french have always been one of the big major powerhouses in any war bar the last world war, I think that getting overrun by the FRACKING GERMANS should not harm that reputation.
They are german, they've been reknown as proper warriors ever since the roman era.

the english, yeah, they're usually pretty good at fighting BACK, as are us dutchmen, the only reason we ever owned large tracks of land outside our borders is because of clever business strategy.

Way to butcher the joke! :P

And the joke about the brits was more of a modern tease

ksn0va:
We just want Bad Company 3 :(

No we don't...we want Titan Mode! BF2143. Make it happen.

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