BF Heroes’ Minimum Spec Requirements Preventing Larger Battles
There are a number of things DICE has to do with the free-to-play Battlefield Heroes in order for it to become the mainstream, anyone-can-play shooter that they and EA are hoping for. Not requiring a high-end machine PC is among their parameters, but the drawback of that is the impact on what they’re capable of DICE can do in the game.
Ben Cousins, DICE’s executive producer of the Battlefield series, revealed in an interview with GamesIndustry.biz that Heroes’ low set of specs has forced them to scale back the number of players you can have in a game. He explained, “We have really good 16-player matches [but] the engine supports up to 64 players and we reduced that because we want to have a sensible minimum spectrum of player and also for the servers – the servers are slightly less costly to run than previous Battlefield games.”
Thankfully there’s still hope that they could be later implemented. “Really we’d like to have huge 64-player crazy Battlefield Heroes matches but that’s not possible at the moment – that’s something that we’d look at maybe in the future, maybe we would have special access to 64-player games potentially,” he added.
There are already more than 10,000 players in the closed beta at this point, with plans to continue expanding it “to the point where every hardcore gamer in the world will probably be able to get a key if they want to.” The game won’t have a grand opening like your average retail game does — as far as Cousins and the team at DICE is concerned, the game is “already out,” despite EA’s announcement that the game has been delayed.
It’s very much a new style of releasing something in the games space. Cousins drew comparisons to the way Wikipedia and Facebook have grown over time without a huge initial release, claiming the “network effect” would be what they relied on to see the game’s community grow.
Many will be watching, as the success or failure of Heroes will be setting a major precedent going forward. This Korean MMO-style game has yet to really catch on in the West, so it’ll be interesting to see how the public reacts as the closed beta continues to expand.