Gear up, soldiers! It’s time to enter the digital battlefield once again, as EA and DICE’s latest entry in to its war glorifying franchise nears release. In just two days you’ll get to commandeer tanks, helicopters and fighter jets – and for the first time in a long time, take the fight to the sea as well. Battlefield 4 is easily one of the most anticipated games of the year for shooter fans. Is it any good?
Here’s what critics – who attended a special Battlefield 4 review event – have to say:
- CVG: 9/10 – “A triumph on a multitude of levels, Battlefield 4 is the series’ most compelling package to date, a delightfully slick introduction to the next-generation of consoles and more than a good enough reason on its lonesome to pick up a PS4 or Xbox One.”
- Eurogamer: 8/10 – “Battlefield 4 is, of course, pretty much exactly the game you expect. A rather thin single-player campaign hangs on the tail of a much more interesting and robust multiplayer offering … It’s Battlefield, and the fundamentals are no more likely to change than Manchester United is likely to field an ostrich in goal, just to be different.”
- Gamespot: 8/10 – “Regardless of platform, Battlefield 4 multiplayer is a blast and definitely the best reason to return to this hallowed franchise or dive in for the first time. Though the campaign makes strides in the right direction, it remains a sideshow to the main event. Expansive and exciting, challenging and empowering, Battlefield 4 multiplayer is a thrilling endeavor in this generation or the next.”
- Gamesradar: 4.5/5 - As a package, this is the best Battlefield ever created. While the single-player is far from perfect, it bottles enough multiplayer lightning to garner my rather faint praise of ‘worth a quick play through’. As ever, though, it’s online where BF4 shines brightest. You may not appreciate just how brilliantly designed the maps, modes, and classes are until you experience those trademark moments. Like when you’re charging around an abandoned factory on Golmund Railway, trying to fend off three tanks at once, mortar fire raining down on you from above, shaking your screen and creating unbelievable mayhem. Then–and only then–will you truly fall in love with this game like I have.
- Joystiq: 4.5/5 – “The main draw for the Battlefield series has always been the chaotic camaraderie of its multiplayer, and that’s no different here. But the sum of Battlefield 4′s parts shows that DICE is capable of more. Not only has the developer iterated on and progressed its marquee multiplayer, it’s provided a tight and cohesive campaign that is everything a military shooter needs to be.”
- Polygon: 7.5/10 – “DICE has failed once again to make Battlefield 4 a serious singleplayer contender. But its emphasis on ambitious, team-based multiplayer does wonders to wash the taste of that failure away. Battlefield 4 takes the elements that have made each installment work and glues them together successfully – even if some rough edges show here or there.”
- Shacknews: 7/10 – “Battlefield 4 doesn’t break any molds, but whether you’re making your way through the glossed-up campaign or burning scores of hours battling online, there’s always a strong underlying sense of anxiety and uncertainty. You simply never feel safe. All the great things you remember about the series like realistic ballistics, balanced vehicles, and solid gunplay are here. If you can’t get enough of this stuff and new maps are all you need, you know what to do.”
- Videogamer: 9/10 – “It’s eye-gogglingly beautiful, laced with breathtaking lighting and particle effects, and offers a significant visual and mechanical step up over the current-gen version. The campaign isn’t without its share of faults, but it’s a near technically flawless launch title that finally brings Battlefield to consoles the way it should be. If you’re looking to pick up a multiplayer shooter alongside your new console, Battlefield 4 is essential.”
It is, then, exactly what you’d expect from Battlefield – so if you loved 3, you’ll probably end up loving 4 as well. Many of the reviews do say that the next-gen (and PC!) versions are far, far superior – so you might want to wait out.
The single-play campaign seems to be better, but still pretty thin. Sure, some might say that if you’re playing it for the single-player, you’re doing it wrong, but I’m one of those people who does play games – even the likes of Call of duty – for the single player experience, so that’s pretty disappointing news.
Battlefield 4 is out this Friday on PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Next gen versions will be available for those systems when they’re available, and you’ll be able to upgrade to them for a nominal fee.
Battlefield’s competition, Call of Duty: Ghosts is out a week later. Which are you more keen on getting?