King of the Hill.
Battlefield 3 is a game that should be looked at in a slightly different light than most others. The bread and butter of this title is in its multi-player and the bread and butter is mighty tasty. The single player campaign in a Battlefield title should be looked at as a secondary feature like most game’s multi-player portion is. That said the single player campaign itself is surprisingly well done and should not be overlooked.
The multi-player in BF3 is essentially everything you like in Battlefield games put together and tweaked. The modes have been tweaked to offer more information to the player by offering cues via sound and sight so we can pick up on even more things that you would in a real world situations. Snipers are now prone to having reflective scopes as to limit recon abuse and vehicles are more easily recognized as being heavily damaged rather than the guessing game we were use to. Classes have also been overhauled to offer more rewarding play across the board and even the point system is more rewarding for team play in offering points for things like suppressive fire to hold enemies back. The list goes on but bottom line BF3 is the best multi-player the Battlefield series has seen to date.
The single player campaign in BF3 is much better than I’d anticipated. I figured it’d be a hacked together piece of shit that I’d get through in about 4-5 hours. The reality is quite different; I probably had to put in around 8-9 hours to get through the campaign. The story is nearly as competent as many other shooters that focus heavily on just the single player experience. We get some well done “Top Gun” fighter action, tanks, trucks, a range of scenery, airborne assaults, lots of guns and plenty of baddies to kill all wrapped up in a passable story.
The tech behind the Frostbite II engine is superb, hands down one of the prettiest engines this gen. The lighting, explosions, sound and character/vehicle animations even down to the detail on soldiers hands is top notch. Even more so when you have a jet crashing overhead and a tank exploding next to you. The lighting is immersive, walking through broken buildings and seeing rays of light littered with specs of dust is beautiful.
Based simply on how many hours of fun this game will offer someone who finds this type of play entertaining easily makes this worthy of 5 stars. Even an average online player could get 35 hours out of this title with the single player and a month of casual multi-player without breaking a sweat. With the multi-player being this good and the single player being good enough to play on its own merits BF3 will reign supreme unless the competition has done a lot of ground up work… and they haven’t… yet…