It’s been a few weeks already since the Battlefield Hardline Multiplayer Beta session ended on the PlayStation 4, but I am already suffering from withdrawals. While the Beta version of the game certainly had some flaws I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the game. Sure, only two play modes (Blood Money & Heist) on one map (High Tension) were made available, but it did give a decent look as to how the game would look and feel in multiplayer mode. There is still a huge dedication to teamwork in Hardline, but there is also very little punishment for those who decide to “lone wolf” it through a session and play in a style more akin to that you would find in a Call of Duty game. If this style of gameplay makes it through to the final release of Battlefield Hardline, I do believe that EA Digital Illusions CE (DICE) and Visceral Games have found a good balance between what hardcore Battlefield veterans are looking for in a Battlefield game and what casual or other hardcore FPS gamers enjoy from the CoD series. Because of the familiarity of the game type, I chose to concentrate more on the Blood Money, High Tension map rather than on the Heist version.
I will admit that the slight change in gameplay did take me out of my element for a bit. I am used to playing as the Recon member of a team – the sniper/infiltrator who picks off enemies from a distance and move in slowly behind enemy lines to use other explosive weapons to disable enemy vehicles and artillery. That style of play has suited me well since Battlefield 2142 when the Sniper and Special Forces classes were combined into one and I have generally stuck with it ever since. I will play other classes from time to time, especially when the Medic of my online group of friends isn’t available, but I have stuck with the Recon class for quite a while. Of course, with the slight change in play in Hardline, I found myself unaccustomed to the “run and gun” tactics other players were using, so I had to change from trying to use the Professional (Sniper/Recon) class to a more aggressive class to keep up with the game’s pace – the Mechanic (Engineer) class. I found that the use of carbine weapons and small artillery weapons made for a perfect fit for my play style.
I changed it a bit from previous games where I would sneak in behind enemy lines on a constant basis to a more defensive approach where I would move in and strike than fall back to my vault to defend it when it needed to be done. With the RPG and Stinger weapons that I carried, I could easily take out most vehicles approaching the vault. This also allowed for some sweet multi-kill moments as full armored cars and helicopters would explode or come crashing down with a majority or all the occupants still inside. I have to admit, when I go from killing maybe 1 or 2 other players at a time in other Battlefield games to 4 or 5 in Hardline that’s a pretty good feeling. Defending your vault also has other perks as well. If you are lucky enough to pick off two or three attackers who have raided your vault and pick up the money to take back you get major experience points for that. Honestly, I made more points returning cash to my vault than I did killing enemy attackers. But I didn’t gain all experience points just by returning dropped loot.
For the first time in any Battlefield game, I actively took part in assaulting the enemy stronghold. Attacking units from afar with a sniper rifle or explosive ordinance is one thing; but going in guns blazing to steal from your opponent is quite another – and I did so a lot in Hardline. I always could in other Battlefield games; I just preferred to stick to my tried and true methods. But with the change in class I figured I may as well act more like an attacker as well. When I saw that several of my teammates were making a run for the enemy vault, I always tried to keep up with them. As a Mechanic class player I made sure I stuck close to the vehicles that were attacking the enemy vault so I could repair them as needed for more experience points. I also made sure I had an accurate weapon as possible for attacking. I didn’t mind a slight lack in power over accuracy (still thinking like a Recon player) but as long as I knew I could keep my sights on the target the better it was for me. I don’t know how other maps will eventually play out in Blood Money for Hardline, but the firefights in High Tension were often quick and up-close and provided lots of exciting shooting action. All in all, from defending and attacking to playing a class out of my comfort zone, I had a great time playing Battlefield Hardline.
Multiplayer Beta for Battlefield Hardline ended on June 26th, but I simply cannot wait any longer for the full release of the game on October 21st. I know some Beta testers had some complaints about the game: “there are too many explosives”, “the in-game HUD sucks”, “the matches are too short”, “the customize screen needs tweaking” and so on and so on… (prissy little babies)… but I actually never found any of the complaints that others laid out to detract from the fun I had in Hardline – not even the amount and frequency of explosives in the game; as far as I was concerned that was just another part of battling on the streets. But still, if some improvements can be made to the game to appease a wider audience, I am for it so long as it doesn’t change my fundamental view of the game. I liked what was presented in the Beta for Hardline and I am anxiously awaiting what will come when the game finally releases in late October… it’s just that it’s killing having to wait so long for my next Battlefield Hardline fix.
Suffering Battlefield Hardline Withdrawals
It’s been a few weeks already since the Battlefield Hardline Multiplayer Beta session ended on the PlayStation 4, but I am already suffering from withdrawals.