The lights are on
Many consider the Battlefield series to be the more civilized of first-person shooters. Mere twitch skills may fuel your success in the barbaric team deathmatches of other games, but your well-developed muscle memory must be buttressed with a healthy sense of camaraderie and a keen understanding of tactics to emerge victorious in this thinking man's shooter. To speed your education and give you a proper footing in Battlefield 4, we've
formulated this gentleman's list of advice.
Do: Join A Squad And
Stick With ItBattlefield games are best experienced when cooperating with your fellow teammates. You earn more points helping out your comrades, and
joining a squad allows you to respawn directly on a squad member instead of starting way back at the base every time. Even if you don't always play by the
rules, it's better to exist within the squad structure than outside of its jurisdiction. If you prefer lone wolfing it, several other games cater better
to that play style.
Don't: Be ShyCommunication is one of the keys to victory in Battlefield, so don't be afraid to speak up when you need something from a teammate. If you're not using a headset, you can use the commo rose (a PC mainstay that has migrated to consoles for Battlefield 4) to request ammo, health, and repairs. Teammates are rewarded handsomely for supporting their fellow soldiers, so most are more than willing to lend a helping hand.
Do: Choose Your Class
ContextuallySo you've picked a squad. Now, it's time to survey what your
fellow soldiers are doing before making your class decision. Are they rushing
M-com stations or capturing flags in conquest? If so, go with the assault or
support class so you can heal/revive fallen comrades or resupply those short on
ammunition. Are they piloting choppers, lobbing shells from a tank, or taking
fire from one of the aforementioned vehicles? If that's the case, you should
rock the engineer class to repair damage or fire rockets at incoming threats.
The recon is more of a jack-of-all-trades class that provides value in many
different circumstances. If vehicles are circling the position, you can use the
portable laser designator or SOFLAM to allow teammates with lock-on missile
launchers to take them out. If you're on the frontlines, recon soldiers can deploy
motion sensors to detect enemy movement or use the radio beacon to provide a
spawn point deep in enemy territory.
Commander RequestsAfter a long hiatus, the commander role returns in Battlefield 4 thanks to popular demand. A good commander can sway the tide of
battle by issuing orders to squads, deploying UAVs to track enemy positions,
and even dropping heavy ordinance from time to time on hotly contested areas.
The commander has a bird's eye view of the action, so he or she is in a much
better position to understand where troops are needed. If your squad receives
an order, it's in your team's best interest that you follow it. Chances are,
the commander made that demand for a reason. If you disagree with the
assignment, the squad leader should at least deny the request so the commander can find someone more agreeable to the task.
Do: Play The F-ing
ObjectiveFew things are as aggravating as being on the offensive in a
rush map, only to see half your team positioned on a ridge taking potshots at
defenders to boost their kill/death ratios. Leave this deathmatch mindset
behind. Battlefield is about winning, and racking up those kills isn't
necessarily helping. If you want to emerge victorious, you need to arm those
M-com stations and capture those flags. This is best done by moving in swiftly with your squad (and
hopefully the other squads on your team), carving out a forward position, and
continually throwing bodies at the objectives. If more than a couple guys are
hanging back to snipe, chances are your team is done for.
Don't: Take A Vehicle
You Can't OperateJets, helicopters, tanks, and LAVs are your team's most
valuable military assets in any given Battlefield match. Having a noob jump
into a jet only to crash it a couple miles away can give the air superiority to
the opposing team. Please resist the urge to take control of vehicles you have
little to no familiarity with. In Battlefield 4, DICE thankfully included a
test range so you can practice without costing your team. Learn the basics
there before venturing into live fire, and in the meantime help out in other
Do: Defend In Front
Of Your M-ComsHave you ever seen an NFL defense set up in the end zone when the ball wasn't placed mere yards away? Of course not
– they play the line of scrimmage to stop the opposing teams' advancement
before it even gets going. The same thinking should apply to playing defense in
rush mode. I can't tell you how many times I've seen defenders set up shop well
behind their own M-com stations. This is not helping. Instead, move ahead into
the hills or buildings in front of your base. Pick these enemies off before
they have a chance to infiltrate, because if you miss them when they are
already in the base, it's game over.
Don't: Abandon Your
VehicleToo often I've seen solders drive a tank into an enemy base,
panic when their armor level drops, jump out of the vehicle to
save their own skin, and thereby leaving it for a nearby enemy to commandeer and
repair. I've also seen teammates use helicopters as personal transportation
devices, flying to a sniping position only to jump out and leave a perfectly
good vehicle ripe for the taking. Don't be that guy. When you assume control of
a high-value asset, it's your job to make sure it doesn't fall into enemy
hands. Think of it like being the captain of a naval vessel – go down with
the ship unless the vehicle redlines and you know it's going to blow right
after you jump out.
Do: Spot EnemiesThis goes hand in hand with playing sound defense. Tracking
enemy advancement is a vital part of protecting your M-com stations and flags.
Whenever you see an enemy, quickly tap the right bumper (or Q button on PC) to
mark his or her position on the minimap. In the off-chance your enemy gets the
best of you, at least your teammates know what direction the threat is coming
Don't: Go On Suicide
Runs With TanksTanks are precious, wonderful weapons. They are best used at
a distance from their target. You could go an entire round lobbing volleys from
the other side of a ridge, harassing defenders gathered around an M-com station
or capture point while well out of the range of enemy rockets. When you drive
right into an enemy base, you are asking for a quick, painful death. Instead of
having to worry about one flank in the open, most bases allow rivals to attack from any side. Many also feature stationary rockets available for blowing
up fools dumb enough to charge right into the base, and engineers have plenty
of cover to dance between as they launch rockets in your direction. While
you're foolishly shooting at anything that moves in front of you, someone can
casually sneak up from behind and blow up the tank with C4, as well. You're
better off roving the perimeter and supporting the soldiers rushing the base.
If you have other do's and don'ts, please share them in the
comments section below.
Email the author Matt Bertz, or follow on Twitter, Google+, Facebook, and Game Informer.