The lights are on
The Battlefield franchise takes a huge step forward in multiplayer, like they have proven to do in earlier installments, and a huge step back in what mediocre single-player they had established with BF3. In fact, if you are a person who only plays the campaign of games, you may want to leave BF4 off your list of games to buy. If its the other way around, however, BF4 delivers an amazing multiplayer experience with many improvements over its predecessor.
Where to start with this campaign? The plot took confusing turns often, and portions of the story or characters that should have been important turned out to be worthless, and ultimately held no impact on the outcome of the story.
There are many portions of the campaign that are very, very predictable, almost laughably so. From the start you know that Hannah will betray you at some point, and sure enough, she does. They kill the squad leader at the very beginning, and since they introduced squad command controls before you were squad leader, it was quite obvious that he would less than 10 minutes into playing the game.
DICE also fails at integrating important characters from the series from having any real impact on the player or the story - take Dima for example. Yes, he helps you escape from prison - but he dies in a badly executed set piece of a cable car falling down a mountain (something that shouldve killed every single one of them.) He ends up having no real significance and you could've put any random russian guy in his position and it would've held the same weight.
Ultimately the singleplayer leaves quite a bit to be desired, filled with confusing plot holes, oddly executed set pieces, and a rather abrupt ending that gives no sense of closure whatsoever.
The level of depth in the multiplayer is, simply put, absolutely incredible. It is a strategist's dream game, with a plethora of possibilities for those who love to utilize teamwork to win rounds of any kind.
The maps are beautiful, and not to mention well crafted for hundreds of strategies and game styles. New vehicles (and MORE vehicles) intensify the 64-player battles, and the level of depth in customizing your loadout is immense.
Commander mode is also added, which was something left out in Battlefield 3. Having tried it only once, I can say that it does take some getting used to, but a good commander can make a boring every-man-for-himself conquest round into a fantastic experience filled with strategy and communication.
The addition of VOIP to the PC version really nails home the need for communication, and within 10 minutes of playing me and my team were discussing plans of attack and defense of key positions.
Another new addition, the world division rankings, adds a competitive piece even for those who like going it alone. Heck - just playing for an insane amount of hours will get you a place on world leaderboards.
Origin, the bane of any BF3 player's existence, is far less of a hassle in BF4. The experience in BF4 is far more streamlined and easy to use than BF3, and I actually enjoy having every aspect of the game right in front of me before I play. It's obviously no substitute for steam, but if they absolutely have to keep Origin, they have definitely made it a far better experience.
All in all, Battlefield 4 is an experience best spent online, and with a singleplayer experience far more disastrous than Battefield 3, one may wonder why DICE even bothers with it.
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