A feature dearly missed in recent first-person shooters has been multiplayer co-op. Being able to log on or sit down with a friend and conquer a story campaign together is an increasingly rare pleasure. Fortunately, it looks like Battlefield 3 will rectify this absence–though not quite in the way you might think. In an interview with Gaming Lives, one of DICE’s producers has shared what we can expect from the beautiful-looking war game’s multiplayer missions.

During the madness surrounding DICE’s Gamescom 2011 press conference, Battlefield 3 producer Karl Magnus Troedsson discussed the game’s co-op missions. He revealed that these will be separate from the single-player campaign of Battlefield 3 and will actually have little if anything to do with the single-player narrative. They will share a few basic environments, but the co-op maps will all be unique to that particular mode.

Battlefield 3 will ship with six of these singular co-op maps. These will vary widely in length, running everywhere from twenty to forty-five minutes (depending on players’ skill, of course). Troedsson let slip that the co-op missions will feature a certain level of randomization and context-sensitive gameplay. Somewhat like the conditional spawns of Left 4 Dead, Battlefield 3’s co-op maps will have varying levels of difficulty and different events depending on players’ actions. Neat!

As far as trophies/achievements and leader-boards go, Troedsson emphasized that the co-op missions would score players based not on clear times, but the fulfillment of individual objectives. “We don’t want to turn this into a speed run mode,” he commented.

Unfortunately, Battlefield 3’s co-op mode is purely online. Local, split-screen play on these maps is not an option. In order to smooth the process, matchmaking for co-op will be purely peer-to-peer–no lobbies or dedicated servers will be necessary.

Battlefield 3 Co-Op Details

On the one hand, I’m definitely looking forward to running around with a friend in Battlefield 3’s lush narrative environments. On the other, I’m a little worried that this co-op mode will be little more than a reheated version of Call of Duty’s Spec Ops modes. Those short missions were fun enough, but never had any heft as narrative, and were limited to two players. The projected length of the missions is heartening–as are the hints at procedurally generated content–but I remain cautious as to whether this mode will actually stand on its own outside the main campaign and competitive multiplayer.

In any event, I encourage everyone interested in learning more about Battlefield 3 in general to give a listen to Gaming Lives’ interview. It’s an interesting look into the design philosophies both behind this game and of DICE in general.

Are you all but apoplectic waiting to play Battlefield 3 with a friend? Irritated that the game’s co-op won’t have a split-screen option? Are you looking to show up everyone in the world on the co-op leader-boards? Sound off in the comments!

Battlefield 3 will be released for PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on October 25.

Source: Gaming Lives