Battlefield Hardline: Preview

This was published in print in The Boar, Volume 37, Issue 6, 14th January 2015.

EA’s mantra: ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. In this generation balls will be kicked in FIFA, chests will open in Dragon Age, and ovens will catch fire in the Sims. In the realm of shooting people in the face though, war has supposedly changed.

As Call of Duty tries to win over audiences with near-future Kevin Spacey approved exo-suit antics, Battlefield has reinvented itself as Need For Speed with guns. Due to release in March, Hardline will depart from the dreary of driving tanks and shooting men in war-torn cities, in favour of driving police cars and shooting men in crime-ridden cities.

It’s not all a glorified reskin though. A multiplayer public beta released last year resulted in tangible improvements on user feedback. The game’s release was delayed, and explosive weapons were toned down to better fit the civilian theme. West Midlands Police should take note.

If you live in Bluebell and have no friends, the game is also to ship with a fully-fledged singleplayer campaign, set to the style of a crime thriller TV show. It promises twists and turns, and should be in safe hands as the game is being developed by Visceral Games, the studio behind the chilling Dead Space franchise.

The glitchy 2013 release of Battlefield 4, dubbed by many ‘Betafield 4’, was broken. It might be worth waiting after pre-orders to see if new developers and a fresh setting will give the series a much needed revive.

 

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