Battlefield 3 hit E3 with a rumble that left Modern Warfare shaking on the other side of the showroom floor. Admittedly, we’re slightly disappointed to only be given a look at the multiplayer side of the action, but after playing it, it’s looking increasingly likely that this could be the must-have multiplayer shooter this year.
Operation Metro is the map we’re about the tear through. Some gamers have felt alienated by the magnitude of Battlefield’s maps in the past but the vast detail packed into this sprawling arena makes for an astonishing backdrop for the action.
With four different customisable classes to choose from, I opt for the Recon class to snipe from a distance. We can mark enemy targets from a afar, following them across the map to easily pick-off players in sneaky fashion. It’s a bit slow-paced, so we switch to Support which arms us with a rifle and supplies the necessary firepower to pound our opposition relentlessly.
The visuals are astonishing, with lighting details, debris raining from destructible environments and bullets whizzing past our vision. We’re playing on the PC, so it’s no surprise that the visuals hold up, but we’re told that the console version is near indistinguishable to what I’ve seen.
Entering the metro and we’re running through a train, blasting enemies and avoiding incoming RPG fire. The scale of the multiplayer maps is incredible, as we fight over the tracks, into the ticket offices and finally up into the streets of Paris. It’s furious fast-paced action that doesn’t just deliver startling visuals with the Frostbite 2 engine but gameplay that is incredibly addictive and advanced enough to host vehicles, troops and a range of weapons that can level an entire city.
Our team wins after kinetic match where we obliterate our foes with ease (we were playing another group of journos in another room). The frenzied action is scintillating, with dizzying visuals and tight, responsive action. What it lacks in perks and options it makes up for in streamlined and addictive gameplay. With this and Modern Warfare 3 released mere weeks apart later in the year, it looks like the FPS war is just beginning. Battlefield 3 is released October 25th.