Beginning a week ago, developer DICE had members of its Battlefield 4 team taking to the “The Road to Battlefield 4” blog to detail multiplayer features – first with Field Upgrades system and and then to changes to the classes and progression. This was in an effort to inform fans before launching a livestream and new announcements at Germany’s Gamescom event, the European equivalent to LA’s E3 expo.
And new announcements is exactly what DICE and publisher Electronic Arts had, detailing Battlefield 4 Premium and listing the five DLC packs; announcing BF4 beta details and unveiling a new multiplayer map.
The Battlefield 4 multiplayer beta will launch in early October (no specific date yet) and begins for three days exclusive to pre-orderers, Premium subscribers and gamers who purchased Medal of Honor: Warfighter Limited Edition. It’ll launch for everyone with a public beta right after and will include Conquest mode on the much publicized Siege of Shanghai map (the one with the crashing skyscraper).
DICE also unveiled a brand new map called ‘Paracel Storm’. Trailer, beautiful screenshots and official description below:
Set in the south of the China Sea, Paracel Storm focuses heavily on naval warfare with DICE delivering the all-out war experience players expect from Battlefield. Gamers will not only battle their enemies, they’re also up against mother nature as the environment becomes more hostile transitioning from a calm sunny day to a heavy rainstorm with high winds and rough waters.
As for the new gameplay mode announcement promised as part of DICE’s BF4 Gamescom 2013 showcase, it’s called ‘Obliteration’:
In Obliteration, players need to destroy their enemies’ targets with bombs. But the catch is that the bombs are placed in a central zone on the map and then each team needs to race to pick it up on foot or in vehicles and transport it to the enemy targets without getting killed.
For the dedicated fans, Battlefield 4 Premium is the more affordable way to pre-purchase all of the game’s DLC and comes with:
- Five digital expansion packs** featuring new multiplayer maps and in-game content:
- Battlefield 4 Second Assault — Includes four fan-favorite Battlefield 3â„¢ maps now re-imagined with the power of Frostbiteâ„¢ 3. Available first on Xbox One.
- Battlefield 4 China Rising — Players fight for dominance across the vast and majestic Chinese mainland. Available December 2013.
- Battlefield 4 Naval Strike — Experience dynamic ocean combat as the Chinese armada takes the fight to the sea. Available Spring 2014.
- Battlefield 4 Dragon’s Teeth — The US strikes back engaging in all-out urban warfare. Available Summer 2014.
- Battlefield 4 Final Stand — Bring the war to its epic conclusion. Available Summer 2014.
- Two-weeks early access to all expansion packs for that competitive edge
- Unique personalization options including camos, paints, emblems, dogtags and more
- Priority position in server queues
- New content every week
- 12 bonus Battlefield 4 Battlepacks
- Transfer Battlefield 4 Premium membership from Xbox 360 to Xbox One and PlayStation 3 to PlayStation 4
Note the lack of dinosaurs. DICE Executive Producer Patrick Bach speaks on the success on the introduction of BF3:
“Fan reaction to Battlefield 3 Premium has been nothing short of amazing. We are humbled to see more than 4 million people join in. With Battlefield 4 Premium we continue to roll out the red carpet, treating our fans like VIPs with a massive amount of new gameplay, exclusive new content and even more benefits at an incredible value.”
DLC, Premium, stat transfers to next-gen systems, etc. were all surefire inclusions. One of the most interesting new additions with Battlefield 4 is something EA tested out with BioWare’s Mass Effect 3: multiplayer battlepacks. Using in-game credits to unlock packs of randomized in-game goods is a genius idea that encourages increased gameplay and adds an extra layer of excitement and fun. In ME3 the Battlepacks gave players weapons, weapon mods, consumable bonuses and weapon classes. In BF4, they will reward players with camos, dog tags, knives, XP boosts and gun attachments. Premium players get an extra dozen of these packs and we expect that there will be organized events and multiplayer weekends (just like Mass Effect) where player can early unique and bonus Battlepacks. We also expect them to be a form of ever-controversial microtransactions….
Battlefield 4 releases October 29, 2013 for the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC. PS4 and Xbox One release dates have not been announced.
Find Rob on the Battlefield at @rob_keyes.