The Good: Multi-player is the first of Battlefield 3's two discs for a reason: this is the way the game was meant to be played. I'm fortunate in that I have three close friends who enjoy playing online as three different classes. As our squad's Recon, I hugely enjoy spotting enemy troops and vehicles before rushing into the fray myself. Seventeen hours of service have elevated me to Rank 17 thus far, and I can easily picture myself re-enlisting for seventeen hours more!
The Bad: BF3's campaign, when played on Hard, is brutally difficult; it's not so much challenging as it is downright frustrating. I can't count the number of times I died simply because I'd dared to poke my head out of cover for two whole seconds to shoot someone. On Hard, it took me about 90 minutes and 50 continues to complete the game's penultimate mission, "Kaffarov"; replaying that same mission on Normal took me less than half the time, and I died just once!
Is there really no setting between a Hard mode that feels like Insane and a Normal mode that feels like Easy? On the one hand, the frequent deaths that I faced on Hard nearly ruined the plot's pacing for me; on the other hand, I'm guessing that if I'd played through BF3's entire campaign on Normal, I would've been itching for a more substantial challenge. Yet this is a minor complaint, considering that - as I mentioned before - BF3 is designed for online play!
The Stand-out Moment: Scoring my first Roadkill with the MAV!
The Verdict: 9.5 (out of 10)