Without Call of Duty Influences, Battlefield 3 Might Have Been Better

Say what you will about Battlefield 3, but the game cribbed a lot of its feel from the Call of Duty franchise. DICE studio head Patrick Soderlund agrees, and states that Battlefield 3 might have been a better game had its developers not been so conscious of their arch-rival.

“One can advocate that even though Battlefield 3 was a gigantic success for us, I would say we may have looked a little bit too much at our competitor,” Soderlund told GamesIndustry.biz.

“And we’ve been criticized for that, especially on the single-player side. But when we started doing Battlefield 4, we said we were going to make the game we think is the right game for us and the consumers. Again, you can’t be arrogant about it. You have to be a little paranoid about what others are doing, but staying true to what you’re doing is the key.”

Soderlund added that gamers and the press alike are demanding more from developers in the upcoming generation of games. With the previous generation, the transition from PS2 to PS3 was only about high-def gaming. Now that high-def gaming has become a reality, developers are being urged to do more than simply improve the graphics.

“People choose one or maybe two games and they stick with those, and they want to be in that experience for a long time. So we as game creators need to make sure we fulfill their needs, to keep ahead of the curve,” he said.

Battlefield 4 is scheduled for release on the PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 this October. It will also be a launch title for next-gen consoles.

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4 Comments on Without Call of Duty Influences, Battlefield 3 Might Have Been Better


On June 12, 2013 at 6:55 am

First off: Well Duh!

With that out of the way, here’s my thoughts: Although Battlefield 3 was fun, it to me felt too confined to Call of Duty’s shadow. They overemphasised the weapon upgrading and customisation while underemphasising the tactical team-play…at least in my experiences with the game


On June 12, 2013 at 6:59 am

I’m still not convinced they understand what made BF2/2142 so good. They bumped the squad limit to 5, claiming they don’t even recall why they reduced it to 4. What about the 6 man squad limit in BF2 & 2142? What ever happened to spawning ONLY on the squad leader to incentivize people to stick together and follow the squad leader’s orders? And what happened to the in-game VOIP channels, one within the squad, and one for the squad leaders to speak to the commander? What ever happened to the ability for squad leaders to give orders anywhere on the map, instead of just on specific points? What ever happened to Battlefield?

And how about the stat tracking that everyone has fallen in love with, but has done more harm to teamplay than anything else? Why is the attacking team suddenly unwilling to push forward? Oh, you’re worried about your K/D ratios? Why isn’t anyone taking out the helos with AA? Oh, you’re trying to get another star on your RPG? Why is your personal score more important than the team?

I’m sorry DICE, I think you don’t even know WHY the old Battlefields were so good. And it looks like most players these days are more interested in self-serving gameplay than a solidly built teamplay experience. I am done with the Battlefield franchise.

Ron Whitaker

On June 12, 2013 at 7:50 am

@SXO: You nailed this. Battlefield was a great game because it emphasized teamwork. It was all about taking that point, holding that other point, beating the enemy back despite crushing losses, and overall just working together to win matches. Ever since the Bad Company games, there’s been a shift to make the game more like Call of Duty. Stat tracking, unlocks, and the like have served no purpose except to incentivize players to worry more about their personal numbers than whether the team wins or loses.

DICE needs to realize that the way they can beat Call of Duty is by making a game that’s better than theirs, not by copying CoD down to the last detail.


On June 12, 2013 at 6:14 pm

Let’s see if the lesson actually takes when it comes to future games. Now if someone would let Capcom know they don’t have to do this either it’d be great.