Over the past few weeks the trailers for Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and Battlefield 1 have emerged as popular topics of discussion. The main feedback for these trailers was that the Infinite Warfare trailer was pretty much universally detested, leading to a massive backlash and (probably idle) threats of a boycott, and that the Battlefield 1 trailer was so brilliant it made people forget about the terrible name of the game. Now being someone who is very wary about presuming a game will be good or bad based on its announcement trailer, I figured I would crush a few hopes and dreams and point out a few reasons why you shouldn’t be so excited for this new Battlefield game. Given EA/DICE’s recent track record, anything more than cautious optimism for this title is ill advised. Let’s have a look at their past three releases.
The last game that that the DICE/EA combo released was Star Wars Battlefront, which had so little content I’d get more value for money from buying a map pack for Black Ops III than buying Battlefront. I for one hated this game as I don’t like paying up to $100 to receive five maps and then be told to purchase an overpriced season pass on top of that. But I guess the graphics and the fact that it has the Star Wars name in it makes it great. The game didn’t even come with a campaign, which means even vanilla Destiny had a better campaign than it did. That’s not right. Personally, Battlefront has to be in one of the top 5 games that left a sour taste in my mouth.
While not developed exclusively by DICE (Visceral stepped in for this one), Battlefield Hardline was the last Battlefield game that was released, and was received fairly poorly. Turns out a reskinned Battlefield with cops and robbers was not what the punters wanted, and not too long after release its servers were more or less a barren wasteland, with most Battlefield fans jumping ship and going back to BF4 (which is the next game for me to rip on). Though the game shared the Battlefield name, it lacked much of what people liked about the franchise, and frankly nothing about the game really gripped me. Along with the typical season pass/premium membership which has always aggravated me, the game was quickly shelved back at my local EB Games for a full refund.
Now I will be the first to say that the multiplayer for this game was decent, and the free content support that has been done recently is more than admirable. But for me, it was too little too late. The game shipped with a short, boring, generic campaign with (yes, you guessed it) good graphics. The game felt more or less the same as any other shooter. It was a game that had guns that went pew, pew pew and people took 400 bullets to die while crying: “Aaah I’ve got blood on my jorts!” Honestly, Battlefield does what a lot of people give Call of Duty flak for, which is doing the same thing over and over again. The only difference here is that they aren’t annualised. By far the game’s most egregious crime was that at launch it had a litany of serious issues with the online servers, rendering it an unplayable mess for many. For the first year or so of its life these problems persisted, and it defies all reason that these issues weren’t known about prior to release. The game was undeniably rushed to release, something EA are known for if delaying means messing with their bottom line too much. Typically, the game had the standard season pass/premium membership, which was a slap in the face considering all the issues it had. Once again, this game quickly found its way back to the shelves of my local EB Games.
Now what do all these games have in common? They all had awesome looking trailers, but a lackluster game in the end. Now EA are trying to do something different with Battlefield 1 – why does that seem familiar? Oh right, Hardline was like that too. The game’s setting has everyone frothing at the mouth and tight in the jorts, what other game did that? Oh right, Battlefront. Also prepare to bend over because there is no doubt whatsoever that this is going to come with a dumb, overpriced season pass/premium membership that contains material cut from launch content. Ok, bear with me for this one, you’re doing really well. What game offered a small campaign, making it focused on multiplayer but the multiplayer was next to unplayable due to server issues? Oh right, Battlefield 4. What should be noted is DICE aren’t really known for their great campaigns, and so the reported six mission campaign that Battlefield 1 has is likely to be as fun as a bout of food poisoning, but likely far more forgettable.
What I’m saying is, be wary of Battlefield 1; the last few games had awesome trailers and the product was nowhere near as good as the trailer made them out to be. I, for one, am not a fan of most games published by EA (I live in fear that they’ll somehow mess up Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst with their greedy shenanigans) and Battlefield 1 will likely be nothing different to their usual fare. Releasing in what is already an over-saturated market of first-person shooters, where a new one seems to be appear every five minutes or so, don’t be surprised if Battlefield 1 misses the mark. Games like these, which more or less boast upgraded graphics with the same gameplay over and over again, just bore me profusely. But you know, what would I know?