Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Impressions: Battlefield Play4Free open beta

3:00 PM on 04.07.2011 // Jordan Devore
  @DtoidJordan

Easy Studios' Battlefield Play4Free has been available to everyone willing to give it a download as of this week. The free-to-play, pay-if-you-want PC game is currently in open beta. I figured I'd give it a spin, and spout off my general thoughts along the way.

If you've ever touched a Battlefield before, you'll know what to expect. Teammates hogging the cooler (see: useful) vehicles, some dumb person who won't stop honking his horn (and another guy who spends the whole match complaining about said honking), the standard classes, and lots of spotting enemy troops.

Play4Free comes off as a mix between Battlefield 2, the Bad Company titles, and the other free-to-play game, Battlefield Heroes -- basically, a combination of everything to come before it.

I want to quickly point out that if you've played Heroes and didn't care for it, this might be more your speed. That was certainly the case for me.

No free lunches

So, to start, you pick a soldier. As expected, you get to choose from Assault, Medic, Engineer, and Recon. Standard Battlefield. What's interesting (not in a good way) is that once you have your class, you're kind of stuck with it -- unless you want to pull out the ol' wallet.

Unfortunately, this has an ill effect in that it severely limits the flexibility of either team. Presumably, the average player will only have one class to work with, whereas ideally, everyone should be able to switch to the class most appropriate for the occasion while in a match. Y'know, strategy and all of that jazz?

For example, as a Medic, I'm pretty much boned when a tank rolls up. I can throw grenades at it (more on this in a second), or I can run away. Most likely, though, I'll just die.

Here's the thing about grenades, and even certain vehicles: you can't use them right away. Yeah. New to Play4Free is a Training skill tree. By leveling up your character, you'll get access to points which can be applied to things like jet pilot training, throwing frag grenades, and a directional damage indicator on your HUD. I can see why such a system would be implemented -- they want our time and money -- but that doesn't mean it's a good decision from a user-experience point of view.

Microtransactions, eh?

That leads to the obligatory section about microtransactions. Expect lots of pitches for unnecessary things to be thrown in front of your face with no shame whatsoever. To give you an idea of how the dollars-to-points scale is set up, $4.99 gets you 700 Battlefunds. An M1911 for 30 days of use costs 140 BF, and permanent use of that same pistol demands 280 BF.

Now, most items can be "bought" with credits instead, if you'd like. (You would.) Credits are earned through regular play and don't require any real-world commitment, other than the time it takes to earn them by playing Battlefield Play4Free. Additionally, you can purchase boosters to increase the amount of experience points and credits awarded.

This stuff is a necessary evil of the free-to-play model, it would seem. Thankfully, the kit you start with is sufficient enough, and for the most part, swapping out for better gear doesn't require any financial commitment. Balance naturally takes a hit -- especially when it comes to the aforementioned restrictions on class switching and Training -- but not to the point where you'd want to punch old ladies.

So ... shooting dudes in the face. How's that feel?

Pretty good, mostly. Play4Free may be less balanced and polished than its non-free counterparts, but it's still Battlefield, and there's still some level of fun to be had.

It's not ideal, though. Spawn points could be improved, there could be more content (maps and modes), and throwing in a little personality would go a terrifically long way. Also, not being tossed into a random match -- one that could be seconds away from being finished -- would be nice. Granted, this is a free videogame, and it's in beta. I can't be too much of a dick here. (That said, I'd be surprised if any of these complaints, other than more maps being introduced, ever get addressed.)

As far as games of this nature go, Play4Free could be a hell of a lot worse. As it stands, you can boot it up and fairly quickly recognize the game as an "alright" Battlefield experience. Some people are going to be perfectly content with this, and more power to 'em.

TL;DR

Basically, Battlefield Play4Free isn't worth playing if you have access to any one of the recent Battlefield titles. And you totally should. About all it's truly got going for it is the lack of a required price tag, and you could argue that the lower (but not completely dated) visuals are ideal for those with lower-end PCs.

If I were still twelve years old, and I couldn't afford to purchase a proper Battlefield game -- meaning I wouldn't have much context to work with -- I'd think that Play4Free was awesome.



Jordan Devore, Managing Editor, Co-EIC
 Follow Blog + disclosure DtoidJordan Tips
Jordan is a founding member of Destructoid and poster of seemingly random pictures. They are anything but random. Disclosure: I backed Double Fine Adventure and Awesomenauts: Starstorm on Kickst... more   |   staff directory



 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
I'm glad that the Amiibo stock situation got much better. Because Hasbro sure as hell didn't get the memo with their Marvel Legends figures. These two seem more elusive than a western Lucina Amiibo!
taterchimp avatartaterchimp
Yay, finally beat the Necrodancer!
Jinx 01 avatarJinx 01
The next time you're getting riled up about game news, politics, drama, etc. just step back and be like The Dude.
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
So #TeamCap or #TeamIronMan ?
Gundy avatarGundy
*Neps Internally*
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Seeing as how SMT is nowhere near as massively popular as Pokemon, this probably won't become a thing. Still, I'm curious about whoever's favorite demon/persona. Mine's probably Trumpeter! Without 'em, I would've never aced P4G on Very Hard.
CoilWhine avatarCoilWhine
Playing Tearaway Unfolded without glasses on makes it looks even prettier, gives it a glossy papercraft or almost dreamlike feel to it.
Parismio avatarParismio
eating cold pizza RN. i would warm it up but eeeeeeeeeehhhhh.
Kieronpowell14 avatarKieronpowell14
Just some Marvel stuff
EAPidgeon avatarEAPidgeon
Have a good one everyone. May you enjoy bountiful carbs and fats this Super Bowl Day.
Heat avatarHeat
someone asked me what i am going to do on my vacations... "playing like 6 hours of XCOM 2 daily, then some Diablo 3. Later, Darkest Dungeon and some beers, and to end the night, i'll watch some anime and eat instant noodles" "Perfect"
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
I've beaten the Gaping Dragon and finally got the key to Blight town, whats the first thing I immediately did when I got there? Fall right into a endless pit and died.
Bardley avatarBardley
I scanned some pages from issues of Nintendo Power from the early 90's and saw this back cover ad. I thought it would be appropriate to post today. Who's everyone rooting for tonight?
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Came home pissed off for some reason, hopped on Rocket League and played the best games of my life. New tactic!
ScionVyse avatarScionVyse
10 hours into the Witness, I've solved 350 puzzles, and activated 8 lasers. So, that's about 35 puzzles an hour, I think that's a pretty good pace. I have no idea how many more puzzles there are, but I think I'll be getting towards the first ending soon.
Dreamweaver avatarDreamweaver
Shoot, I have made the awful mistake of watching 50 First Dates while doing Comments of the Week. The comedy in the beginning gave me energy, but all of the sad drama is making me cry and it's hard to see through all the tears. WHY YOU DO THIS TO ME!? 8^8
Zatsune avatarZatsune
I'm eating EDO's rn. Leftovers. Yum. 🍱🍣🍜🍲
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Kotobukiya's making a Xenoblade Chronicles X Formula skell model that looks great but I'd rather have a Lailah model. And I would name it Tharja just like my Lailah in the game.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Damn you, TV Tropes. As if I wasn't already dead set against doing an Undertale genocide run, this has killed the possibility for me.
TheDefenestrator avatarTheDefenestrator
About to start streaming some This War Of Mine: The Little Ones on Twitch. Say hi! http://www.twitch.tv/thedefenestrator
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -