Battlefield 4 Review: Multiplayer At Its Finest

Single-player Review, Continuted

Unlike previous efforts on the single-player side, BF4’s campaign uses most of what you’ll find in the multplayer. The vehicles, weapons, and user interface are all 1:1, while previous campaigns felt a bit segregated from the MP experience. Most of the weapon unlocks are earned in each mission via Bronze, Silver and Gold point markers. Some rare weapons are hidden in the missions (two to three per level), while others are simply enemy guns picked up after firefights. You can switch guns and gear via weapon and gear stashes, which pop up a little too frequently for my liking. No one likes an ammo hunt, but having weapon crates in every other room or alleyway is Easy Mode in an FPS.

While ammo shows up in spades, AI is running on empty. The enemy AI on Normal Mode is your usual duck-and-cover variety, but thankfully there are no wave-after-wave enemy moments. And speaking of AI, your squadmates have a penchant for stealing your corner cover, automatically pushing you out into a firefight. Those are three or four deaths I would love to have back, you elbow-throwing ingrates!

“The complexity behind Irish is deflated by weak character writing and an at-odds relationship with Hannah that is cringe-worthy at times.”

The settings, character foundations, and improved graphics (the latter of which we’ll cover more in the multiplyer section), are all let down by most everything else in the campaign. The complexity behind Irish is deflated by weak character writing and an at-odds relationship with Hannah that is cringe-worthy at times. The fates of certain characters are almost inconsequential, despite whatever interesting story leads to their survival, or lack thereof. The squad is supposed to be a band of brothers, but Battlefield 4 makes some of those characters into red-headed stepchildren towards the end.

What truly vexes me about the campaign is the complete lack of a tangible anatagonist. General Chang, the Chinese military mind behind the war, is a complete and total phantom. Even SPECTRE’s Blofeld showed up in the Bond movies once in a while, but Chang is a name, and only a name. You don’t even get a radio transmission or video clip. I wasn’t expecting (nor am I asking for) some Call of Duty moment where you go all slo-mo while putting a slug between Chang’s eyes, but if that moment is a 10, Chang’s presence in BF4 is truly a zero. You can’t mention a character like Chang as much as Battlefield 4 does, and not have him show up meaningfully in the flesh.

Ultimately, any promise seen at the beginning of Battlefield 4’s campaign quickly evaporates. Weak character development, even weaker writing, and an unfulfilled plot simply amount to a mediocre product. Even the ending — no spoilers, don’t worry — feels inconsequential. My takedown of the campaign is indeed harsh … but that’s not why most of you are here. It’s certainly not why I’m here, and I’ve been Battlefield-ing for over a decade.

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3 Comments on Battlefield 4 Review: Multiplayer At Its Finest

SupremeAllah

On October 28, 2013 at 10:28 pm

Nice review. It would be nice if we could choose to just install the multiplayer component, rather than waste HD space on a portion that most of us will never use. I have never played a single Battlefield single player campaign, and I never plan to. That’s not why I play the game.

Also, while making boats and water combat actually viable again is nice, but I really miss the days of 1942, controlling the guns on massive destroyers, or the entire ship all together. Or moving an aircraft carrier around. That kind of thing would be nice to have come back, rather than the smaller scale boats.

I eventually will purchase this, but I’m too busy with a pile of other games I haven’t touched yet, and won’t touch if I have access to BF4 right now (such as Wonderful101, Batman Arkham Origins, Pokemon X, and the ever time consuming DayZ Origins)

Tonkinese

On October 30, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Yeah i t is a disappointment!
My reasoning .
Single player
So scripted and generic it’s kind of not fumy any more, It feels like a chore to complete it is full of just rubbish ideas that are recycled over and over and over again but it does it so badly it make Waarfighter feel good.

Multilayer
well its battlefield 3.5 BC2 is so much better than this game could ever be.
No rush. they will probably try to sell it to us later on . most likely as a request fan feature or back by popular demand.
it’s just tired game play that has been well a lacklustre BF3 experience.
It really feels like call of duty now but a rather bad version that tries to be something bigger than style of game it tries to portray.
The Maps are bad real bad with little or no depth on originality just re used or probably re named maps.
The destructibility is better but worse as it’s mostly scripted points that can be destroyed and doesn’t quite feel like destructibility (again aka BC2)
The scope of the game feels better than battlefield 3 but it’s quickly ruined by the misinterpretation that it is a new game when really it isn’t.

Tonkinese

On October 30, 2013 at 1:02 pm

As for battlelog being intuitive tell him he’s dreaming.