GGUK enlist on the Battlefield 3: Operations Outpost Tour
With the release of the Battlefield 3 multiplayer beta this week, GGUK headed down to sunny Bournemouth for some pre-release co-op action. Forget buckets and spades, we joined the Battlefield 3: Operations Outpost tour bus to have a play and find out what people thought of it.
Inside the tour bus we were treated to a battle briefing from one of the EA soldiers explaining what was required of us new troops; “Listen up you privileged lot, no photos. If you die whilst playing it’s game over so work together and take time to look at the graphics that are as pretty as me. Anyone who disobeys gets booted out. Understood?” SIR YES SIR!!
We first got chance to watch the cinematic trailer (featured on GGUK last week) and were given an in-depth guide to the new Frostbite 2 engine which Dice are clearly very proud of. They have every reason to be as on a big screen, Battlefield 3 is glorious. Built from scratch, Frostbite 2 aims to take the animation, destruction, rendering, scale and audio to new levers. The result is powerful and the real innovation lies in the subtle yet brilliant attention to detail which makes for a very engaging experience. Using ANT technology (previously seen in FIFA games) means that the effects of gravity, velocity and kinetic energy as you move though the levels are shown and felt on the character’s body, informing their movement and actions. Whilst jumping over a wall, your leading hand will push you off with force whilst your shoulder will shudder with the kickback of using your weapon. Talking of weapons, the sound of gun fire is brutal. Dice went out to a big field and recorded the sounds of every weapon used in the game from different angles both at close range and far away. Blast this through surround speakers and it’s disorienting and tense “Just like it would be out on the front line!!” barks the EA soldier bus man. Suppressing fire pings past your ears whilst the roar of buildings crashing to the ground or the crack of concrete chips pinging off the stubby corner post you were cowling behind get added to the mix.
Picking our way through a dark warehouse in the middle of the night to rescue a hostage before escorting a Humvee convoy, our co-op mission was over rather before it had begun as we were cooing over how striking the scene was, sneaking out into the shadowy street only to have a pillar explode next to us before we got shot in the head. If you work closely (CLOSELY Tambo…) together, you can revive each other but it does look amazing! The co-op isn’t done split screen to allow you to become fully immersed and we heard there are tanks later on…
Nearly 600 people tried out the co-op over 3 days in Bournemouth with roughly 20% of visitors being female (who weren’t just there for the guys in uniform, although hey, we’re not saying this wasn’t a bonus). The vast majority of people left feeling positive and impressed by what they’d seen, with comments mainly focusing on the great graphics. You also get to have your photo taken – that’s the GGUK mum’s Xmas cards sorted for this year!
If you want to have a little pre-release fun, the bus is next heading to Swansea (where the single player campaign will be on offer), then Glasgow, Brighton and more. Check out tour details on the Electronic Arts (EA) UK Facebook page for details or just wait like the rest of us for Battlefield 3’s release on 28th October.