Bad Company 2: A Lament

Posted by Nadafinga (958 posts) -

Let me start off by saying that Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is a great game. I love it, it's a glorious shooter that has sunk it's hooks deep in me. I bought it on launch day, and have logged over 190 hours into it. This might not seems like a lot to some of you, but I can honestly say I've never played a video game as much as this one. I have earned every pin, every insignia (except for one, grr!), every trophy, and gold starred 37 of the 46 primary weapons. Now, I'm by no means great at the game, I manage a measly 0.92 k/d ratio, but I try not to put too much stock in those stats since repairing, reviving, and spotting are just as crucial to winning as getting kills is. With a SPM of 195, I consider myself...decent. It's also worth noting that this is only my 2nd foray into the Battlefield franchise, with last year's 1943 being the first. So I'm pretty new to all this, and while I might not have the experience of someone who's been with the franchise since it began, I also can offer a unique perspective of someone coming to it without very many preconceived notions.
But the game has some problems, and after putting this much time into the game, I think I'm qualified to present some criticism. Many of these points have been brought up elsewhere, but I wanted to get my thoughts on them down. This is not a bug list, that would be a whole other blog entry (and a long one at that), these are major design issues that I feel would help make this great game even better.
 

1. A Compass

The lack of a compass on the minimap is the most inexplicable omission I can imagine. For a game strives for realism and relies on constant communication between squadmates, I am constantly frustrated by my inability to relay relative positions of enemies. Instead, I always find myself trying to describe the surroundings.
Instead of "Hey you've got 2 guys moving in on your position from the North,"  it's "You've got 2 guys coming at you from the direction of that house....no the 2 story house, the one on the other side...no, the one with the red roof-" dead. The real kick in the nuts is that there is a compass in DICE's previous game, Battlefield 1943, a $15 downloadable game!
 

2. MCOMs blow up too easily

This has been a bit of a contentious point among the fans of the game. What players have figured out is that instead of arming the MCOM, you can just throw a pile of C4 on it and take out half it's life bar in one shot (the game actually rewards this by throwing a bunch of XP at you for it). One side says that "If you're good, guys will never get close enough to do that." This is the wrong philosophy though, and goes against what the Rush Mode was built for. 
As defenders, you need to hold back the enemy. If one guy is able to sneak through and arm the MCOM, the alarm goes off and you get a chance to fall back, find them, and disarm the MCOM. If you suck at defending, whole squads will get through, arm the MCOM, and hold you off long enough for it to blow up. This is the way Rush is supposed to be played. The way it is now basically requires you to be perfect at defending, because if even one guy gets through, he can blow up the MCOM in 3 seconds. It kinda ruins it, and requires you to basically camp to MCOM. I'm not against being able to damage the MCOMs, I think it makes the game more dynamic, but the C4 is just too strong. Here's my tweaks; I think there should be a set amount of damage C4 can do per trigger pull. One C4 does the same amount of damage as six C4. The other tweak is that you allow engineers to repair the MCOMs, at least partially, help offset the damage done.
In the end, the numbers don't lie: When attacking, my win/loss ratio is 3.82. When defending, it's 0.33. I'm at the point where I rarely play Rush at all anymore, it's not nearly as fun as it used to be when players use this exploit.
 

3. Atacama Desert Choppers

There are two helicopters in Conquest mode for Atacama desert, one at each base. It has become common practice for one team to race over and pick up the enemy's chopper, so that they have both at the same time. They then proceed to rape the other team.
This is easily fixed. Make the spawn base of the enemy out of bounds (like it is on some other maps). There, done.  
 

4. White Pass Rush

The recently unlocked Rush mode for White Pass is an absolute joke. The first set of MCOMs are in a concrete structure, and makes for some very fun and challenging battles. But if the attackers manage to take out those two, the game is over. All the following MCOMs are located n collapsible buildings. All 4 of them! It's ridiculous, you just need to spam a few mortar strikes on them and you win. It's a facepalm "what were they thinking" thing for me. This map is simply a travesty.
 
That's the big stuff. There's always going to be little tweaks that you wish the designers would have made, but these are major issues that I feel could and should be addressed...not that I'm holding my breath. :)
#1 Posted by Nadafinga (958 posts) -

Let me start off by saying that Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is a great game. I love it, it's a glorious shooter that has sunk it's hooks deep in me. I bought it on launch day, and have logged over 190 hours into it. This might not seems like a lot to some of you, but I can honestly say I've never played a video game as much as this one. I have earned every pin, every insignia (except for one, grr!), every trophy, and gold starred 37 of the 46 primary weapons. Now, I'm by no means great at the game, I manage a measly 0.92 k/d ratio, but I try not to put too much stock in those stats since repairing, reviving, and spotting are just as crucial to winning as getting kills is. With a SPM of 195, I consider myself...decent. It's also worth noting that this is only my 2nd foray into the Battlefield franchise, with last year's 1943 being the first. So I'm pretty new to all this, and while I might not have the experience of someone who's been with the franchise since it began, I also can offer a unique perspective of someone coming to it without very many preconceived notions.
But the game has some problems, and after putting this much time into the game, I think I'm qualified to present some criticism. Many of these points have been brought up elsewhere, but I wanted to get my thoughts on them down. This is not a bug list, that would be a whole other blog entry (and a long one at that), these are major design issues that I feel would help make this great game even better.
 

1. A Compass

The lack of a compass on the minimap is the most inexplicable omission I can imagine. For a game strives for realism and relies on constant communication between squadmates, I am constantly frustrated by my inability to relay relative positions of enemies. Instead, I always find myself trying to describe the surroundings.
Instead of "Hey you've got 2 guys moving in on your position from the North,"  it's "You've got 2 guys coming at you from the direction of that house....no the 2 story house, the one on the other side...no, the one with the red roof-" dead. The real kick in the nuts is that there is a compass in DICE's previous game, Battlefield 1943, a $15 downloadable game!
 

2. MCOMs blow up too easily

This has been a bit of a contentious point among the fans of the game. What players have figured out is that instead of arming the MCOM, you can just throw a pile of C4 on it and take out half it's life bar in one shot (the game actually rewards this by throwing a bunch of XP at you for it). One side says that "If you're good, guys will never get close enough to do that." This is the wrong philosophy though, and goes against what the Rush Mode was built for. 
As defenders, you need to hold back the enemy. If one guy is able to sneak through and arm the MCOM, the alarm goes off and you get a chance to fall back, find them, and disarm the MCOM. If you suck at defending, whole squads will get through, arm the MCOM, and hold you off long enough for it to blow up. This is the way Rush is supposed to be played. The way it is now basically requires you to be perfect at defending, because if even one guy gets through, he can blow up the MCOM in 3 seconds. It kinda ruins it, and requires you to basically camp to MCOM. I'm not against being able to damage the MCOMs, I think it makes the game more dynamic, but the C4 is just too strong. Here's my tweaks; I think there should be a set amount of damage C4 can do per trigger pull. One C4 does the same amount of damage as six C4. The other tweak is that you allow engineers to repair the MCOMs, at least partially, help offset the damage done.
In the end, the numbers don't lie: When attacking, my win/loss ratio is 3.82. When defending, it's 0.33. I'm at the point where I rarely play Rush at all anymore, it's not nearly as fun as it used to be when players use this exploit.
 

3. Atacama Desert Choppers

There are two helicopters in Conquest mode for Atacama desert, one at each base. It has become common practice for one team to race over and pick up the enemy's chopper, so that they have both at the same time. They then proceed to rape the other team.
This is easily fixed. Make the spawn base of the enemy out of bounds (like it is on some other maps). There, done.  
 

4. White Pass Rush

The recently unlocked Rush mode for White Pass is an absolute joke. The first set of MCOMs are in a concrete structure, and makes for some very fun and challenging battles. But if the attackers manage to take out those two, the game is over. All the following MCOMs are located n collapsible buildings. All 4 of them! It's ridiculous, you just need to spam a few mortar strikes on them and you win. It's a facepalm "what were they thinking" thing for me. This map is simply a travesty.
 
That's the big stuff. There's always going to be little tweaks that you wish the designers would have made, but these are major issues that I feel could and should be addressed...not that I'm holding my breath. :)
#2 Posted by PufferFiz (1379 posts) -

Yeah I really don't like that people can run over a plant land mines on the mcom and then run away. if those blow up that takes at least half the health of it off.

#3 Posted by natetodamax (19207 posts) -

I kinda hate Rush. Attacking usually means running a long distance to the targets only to get killed and do it again, and defending for me usually means sitting there for 5 minutes waiting for an enemy to show up or getting frustrated because my teammates don't understand that we need to defuse charges. 
 
Oh, and Atacama Desert is complete garbage.

#4 Edited by Donos (1195 posts) -

I'm in lazy mode today, so here's my numberical responses:
 
1 - I've never wanted a compass, though I've never bothered using voice chat either
 2- I think they're fine, defending really isn't that hard.
3 - Yup.
4 - Yup.

#5 Posted by lilbigsupermario (842 posts) -

1. Yeah, a compass could actually help squads describe positions to fellow squad mates especially in hardcore mode.  But the maps aren't really that big anyway compared to the old Battlefield games like 1942 so you can either just make an imaginary compass and assume the map having a North, South, East, West directions.  I have some squad mates who are actually really good at describing enemy locations, but yeah, it is pretty difficult to describe everything coz by the time you finish describing, the enemy has moved to another location lol! 
 
2. I kind of agree with the MCOMs that are easy to destroy with C4 or landmines.  Although I disagree that there should be a way on how rush "should be played".  The tactics of using C4 and land mines add variety to the tactics, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.  Sometimes people would arm the MCOM, bait the people to disarm it and blow it up while people are disarming it (and you get the bonus for the damage).  Defensively, squads become creative as well, people tend to look for more spots to look at the MCOM from afar and shoot down potential C4 planting.  I guess my solution to this is, increase the MCOM "life bar" and decrease points received for MCOM damage. 
 
3. I completely AGREE with this.  I hate that conquest map.  Teams should not be able to go to the opposing team's deployment area, it's stupid. 
 
4. Yeah, I kind of agree with this.  It's okay that they placed MCOMs in some of the buildings, but they should have placed some of the MCOMs on non-destructible buildings or outside of the destructible buildings.  Although there was a time that my team (Attackers) was obliterated completely on the last are by the defenders.  We were actually trying to bring the buildings down, but the defensive team was tough.  The walls facing the area entry are all destroyed, but our problem was the back side, we couldn't even pass through or sneak behind to destroy the other side of the buildings.  In the end, we lost.  So I guess with really good defending, it's not that bad.  The White Pass map is really more of a challenge for the defending team.

#6 Posted by Jayross (2365 posts) -
@Nadafinga: I agree! 
 
Compass: It was in previous builds of BC2, you can see it in some of the squad stories / BF moments videos. The UI was changed quite a bit, and the compass was removed. Who knows why... /sigh. 
 
The map was also made much fuzzier. Again, I have no idea why. 
 
MCOMS: Yeah.. I guess I agree. I think it is fairly balanced now, but the exp that you get by C4 rushing does seem kind of outrageous. 
 
Choppers are just... well... yeah.. Atacama Desert is terrible. I Have a post about it that I will dig up... one sec.  
http://www.giantbomb.com/battlefield-bad-company-2/61-25246/atacama-desert-the-epitome-of-poor-design/35-406539/  
 
I haven't played BC2 in a while, and I haven't tried any of the new maps. Looking forward to getting back from vacation to play some Battlefield. 
#7 Posted by iFail (236 posts) -

It kind of bothers me how effective the land mines are against MCOMs as opposed to c4 or arming it. You don't trigger any alarms, you don't have the c4's deploy beep, the loudest noise is the clack of land mine on mcom. Then you arm it and toss a nade in when defenders show up, and take out more than half the MCOM's life bar.

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