DICE gave us a look at two upcoming maps in the beta – Metro and Caspian Border – but plan to familiarize us with all of them before release through Battleblog posts. For this first installment, we get a break down of four very different maps with unique features from one of the level designers who worked to create them, Niklas Åstrand.
All the following maps are playable across all game modes in multiplayer, some with vehicles and some without. Åstrand indicates that the remaining five maps will be outlined in a later post.
Hit the jump to get the lowdown.
Operation Firestorm lives up to its namesake with massive plumes of black smoke choking the skies. Åstrand points out the juxtaposition of clear blue skies on the opposing side, which provide an intriguing contrast. Sounds to me like I’ll be using that as visual guidance when I get lost when navigating the infantry-friendly construction sites to dodge incoming vehicles.
What’s most impressive here is scale, as it seems to be one of the largest in the entire game. “Size-wise, and with some puzzle skills, you could actually place three Atacama Deserts – one of the largest maps from Battlefield: Bad Company 2 – within the playable area of Operation Firestorm.” As the second largest map in Bad Company 2, that’s an impressive boast.
Most players will not need to be familiarized with Operation Métro, which was the only map available for most beta players. For the uninitiated, this scenery-shifting map took players from outdoors, to tightly compacted subway tunnels, and back outside to the Paris stock exchange. You can’t get much more urban than this.
Some players complained about this map, likely because they experience a team that had expertly defended one of the many tunnels. Admittedly, a staircase or two can be upsettingly good choke-point, but attacking in those cramped spaces really showcases when and where communication and teamwork can prevail.
Looking to change the dynamic, Tehran Highway is makes the biggest change by being entirely a night battle. Åstrand indicates that rockets will light up the night sky. In fact, he describes it best:
It plays length-wise and starts semi-open with plenty of room for vehicles, but ends on a much more urban and tight note with less focus on vehicles and more on infantry.
Did I say dynamic before? Scratch that. Damavand Peak is the definition of dynamic, as it asks the attackers to seriously base-jump off a 500 meter cliff to start the battle. This map works in a sequence that should be familiar to Rush veterans, as the vehicle combat increases as the map continues. This either means the space widens out or simply more vehicles are spawning. Or both.
It goes without saying that Battlefield 3 is just simply gorgeous. Its existence alone has undoubtedly caused a massive surge in the PC building market.
Battlefield 3 will be in stores October 25th for the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360.