Bringing out the big guns.
It’s that time again solider! Let’s take a look at the Armoured Kill DLC pack for Battlefield 3. Whereas the last pack focused on small, close quarters combat on tower builds and palaces, this one is all about BIG maps and vehicles. So grab your gear and join us as we review it and see if it’s a tank killer? Or burnt out shell?
Armoured kill is again a truly beefy piece of DLC as you again get four maps, a new game mode, five unique dog tags, five new vehicles ranging from tanks to quad bikes, and 20+ unlocks for vehicles all for 1200msp/£11.99. Premium members get them free and two weeks before everyone else (four weeks if you’re on PSN due to an exclusivity deal)
The maps you get in the pack are all set on the Iranian border and are built for 12v12 combat with that being the maximum players allowed on the console, though this increases on the PC, and this pack features the largest map ever in any Battlefield game.
The first map in the pack is Alborz Mountains and this map is set on a snowy mountain side which is a first for Battlefield 3 as most maps are set in the desert or in a urban backdrop. The map has a large forest line which gives attackers a good defence before hitting the mountain. The map is littered with small outposts and choke points where fire fights will break out. It also features clouds which give the fly boys cover from anti air tanks and the dread of the sky, the new AC-130, adding a new layer of strategy for the would be pilots.
The next map is Armoured Shield and is set on rural farmland with little settlements dotted about and over shadowed by several huge windmills. This map may seem reminiscent to Battlefield vets as it feels a lot like the classic map Heavy Metal from BF:BC2. This is a great map for the new game mode, Tank Superiority, due to it being very open, though beware of tanks hiding in the hedge rows.
Then there is Death Valley which is set at night and sees the fighting focus on a large under-construction tower block on the left of the map. The ground is very uneven throughout this map which allows ground forces on foot or in tanks to pass by flag points undetected, so be sure to have your sniper place his TUGS in a good spot.
The final map is Bandar Desert and this is the largest map ever in the history of Battlefield and is located near Bandar Abbas, a seaport in southern Iran surrounded by a desert. So other than sand there is very little to be found on this map – a few bases and a housing development, oddly with working sprinkler system. There are lots of rocky outcroppings so engineers can be well hidden with their javelins.
On the whole the maps are great to play, though some are too big and you’ll be running around trying to find enemies or you’ll be left waiting for tanks to re-spawn, which is a problem on Tank Superiority. But on the whole it’s a small complaint on what are four really well built maps which fans will soon love.
Other than the maps, the pack also has five new vehicles. These are the M1128 Mobile Gun System for the US, which is really just the LAV with a tank turret, and the 2S25 Sprut for RU which is a tiny tank. These are classed as tank destroyers – faster than the normal heavy tank but with less armour. Then there is the new artillery vehicles, the M142 HIMARS and BM-21. These are trucks with huge rocket launchers on the back. They are very deadly but are for long range only because they have no short range defence, so would do best to stay next to a tank for an escort. Last but not least is the quad bike which is the work horse of the new maps and will ferry you and your men around, just don’t cross paths with a tank. So that is the five new core vehicles. But DICE have added a little something special to all the maps. There is a point on every map that unlocks an AC-130 for your team. It has two gunner seats, but is also a mobile spawn point for airdropping your squad on a point in a hurry, and because of this it makes it a real game changer and will see most teams fight to hold the point and activate it.
The final thing in the DLC is two new game modes. Tank Superiority is the same as the standard Conquest mode only this mode sees the teams fighting to capture one flag, but both teams are all in tanks. So it’s a very fast moving mode like Air Superiority which was last seen in Battlefield 1943. This new mode is great fun for a change of the normal run and gun action, but the only drawback is the spawn time on the tanks is a little too long and see teammates fighting over the newly spawned tanks.
Armoured Kill is a really heavy weight piece of DLC from DICE and is a must for fans as it adds so much to the game, plus there are the new maps. As always when it comes to DLC, DICE have played a blinder and added something new to an already great game, and with plans for two more DLC packs this coming year. It’s safe to say Battlefield 3 has more in store and we can’t wait.
Up your arsenal !