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Xbox 360 Review – Battlefield: Bad Company 2

Bad Company 2. A sequel to the multi player FPS I played the most on the xbox. Well okay, maybe a close second to Halo 3 and Left 4 Dead. I loved this game, probably more than the later two actually. Even though it didn’t have any split screen, I invited people over and we played the crap out of the first one. You can check my stats on BF:BC’s website. (Gamertag MnM333 on Xbox360) But again, Bad Company did something the other Battlefields didn’t do. Kind of the reverse to what most FPS do actually. Most single player FPS needlessly add a multi player option. Well, Bad Company added single player to this multi player behemoth, not a huge undertaking. But they managed to keep those multi player elements in the single player. More after the jump!

Here’s the run down!

Developer: DICE
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Date of Release: 02/03/2010
Platform: Xbox 360
Genre: First Person Shooter
Players: 1 for campaign, Up to 24 for Multi player

So what’s my verdict? I love it. Sure I was reticent to change and I was also scared at the very small amount of publication the single player had over the multi player up until release but once I popped this game into my console I felt right at home. Three noticeable differences with the previous version.

1- Controls got changed. Even if you set it to BF:BC1 mode. It still doesn’t feel quite right. But that doesn’t matter, you’ll get used to it in no time. In fact it’s a little easier to access your tools.
2- You have to rank into your med packs and repair tools. I find this odd. It’s been forever since I was a newbie in BF:BC1 but I do not believe it was the case in that game.
3-  They haven’t enabled the web stats. I’m not even sure if there will be any! Also, the screenshot function is gone.

The Graphics:
It’s gotten a bit better than the first one. I think they’ve done a better job with the faces and the animations. Explosions and dust still look pretty damned awesome. The Frostbyte Engine is DICE’s very own engine. It’s not limited only to graphics however, sounds and destruction also. Everything’s got a grainy feel to it and it looks very pretty. You get to travel in all kinds of climates in this game: Desert, Jungle and Arctic. The lighting makes it look pretty amazing. The character models don’t look too lifelike but I rather enjoy it how it is.

The Game:
Well EA marketing threw a few fast ones aimed at Activision and namely their Call of Duty franchise. The games however, aren’t exactly of the same scope. CoD having smaller maps, fewer players and different game types for one. Recently, they put a video up mocking the one Infinity ward had to pull.

EA, however is doing that annoying buy in thing with this VIP code you enter when you have a new copy. (Otherwise you need to purchase this key) If you haven’t noticed this trend well, it’s been in pretty much every EA release for the last 3 or so months. Apparently, it will allow us to obtain DLC, some of it free. For the previous Bad Company, I believe they had offered a few free updates. The VIP marketplace does show a release timeline with a decent outline of what’s to come over the next few months too!

So Frostbyte 2.0 features something called Bullet Drop. It’s pretty much as the name states. When you’re shots become rather long, you need to compensate for a slight bullet curve in order to get that shot you’re skillfully attempting to pull off. As a sniper in normal mode, you need to be a bit more precise than just hitting somewhere on the upper chest. It’s head shot or bust… bust as in failed!

So what’s Destruction 2.0? Well in BF:BC1 you would be able to destroy buildings, but the frame would often be left standing and it may look kind of odd at some point. In this game, you can actually flatten a building. If you remove enough walls, the thing collapses. Everything inside gets destroyed or killed. This includes Rush objectives!

Single Player
So what’s this single player all about? Isn’t Battlefield a objective base multi player FPS? That it is. The single player follows our protagonist Marlowe through an adventure that revolves around saving America (really DICE?) rather than lining their pockets for an early retirement like in the first one. Your squad basically includes a Sarge which will issue orders but basically follow your lead for the most part, a geek that seems to know a little about everything and a red neck who is surprisingly smarter than you’d expect. These are still the same comedians you’ve grown to love in the first one however. They’ll blurt out certain things at times of pause where you just stop and listen to the conversation. The setup starts off in Japan during WWII. A special weapon gets created and activated, it has some sort of EMP effect. I think this may also be the reason they went ahead and released Battlefield 1943 a few months ago. They were able to use the same type of resources for both. Once the intro is done you now play in present time and are set off to find this weapon and prevent an attack on America. Once again they make fun of CoD:MW2 stating that quads are better than snowmobiles. Overall, the single player has evolved somewhat and will have you switching it up through the campaign. Not necessarily just doing the same run and gun. Well… an FPS without a gun wouldn’t exactly be an FPS would it? But you get my point. You’ll sometimes have to fend off a point of interest. Capture certain objectives. Drive away or fly away. I think I put somewhere between 6 to 8 hours in the single player.

Multi Player
So here is where the meat and potatoes are. What Battlefield is known for. There are four game types to play.

Rush
This was my personal favorite in BF:BC1. You have to destroy a few pair of crates in order to push the defenders back. For every section of this assault, the attackers have 75 lives. Once these are depleted, the defenders have won. Last night, as I was playing this with my friends we managed to have a near perfect defense and widdled down their lives before they could destroy the first set. Had they succeeded we would have been relocated and they would be back to 75 lives. This mode is rather linear but as you’ll see, conquest is a different beast.

Conquest
This mode has an open map, no progress to unlock. However, you need to claim objectives as the title would imply. People are almost constantly on the move and you might find yourself losing objectives left and right or claiming them with ease. If the team doesn’t balance itself out over the whole map and doesn’t defend their captured areas, you’ll see yourself in a losing team. It can get aggravating! That said, I like this mode. I’m not too sure what they changed with BF:BC1 to make me enjoy this because I really didn’t previously.

Squad Death match
I don’t like this mode.  You join a squad, hopefully consisting of 4 people (including yourself) and play death match in a portion of a map. You tend to almost always be exposed and without a good team, you will get rolled over. There’s also less people in this mode, four squads of four.

Squad Rush
I’m not sure if this mode is available on Xbox360 yet, I don’t recall seeing it. You basically play Rush mode in a 4v4 scenario. Making this the smallest amount of players you can play BF:BC2 with. There’s only one crate at a time.

Dedicated Server
You must have read that whole hub bub? DICE stated that BF:BC2 was going to have Dedicated servers on all platforms. They stated this back when some other game was getting press about not having any for theirs. This was an issue with the first BF:BC. Not because they didn’t have any, but because their lagged like crazy and weren’t very stable for a few days or weeks post launch. This was fixed rather quickly though. As for BF:BC2, there was and probably still is some amount of instability with the game but I think it’s client side however. I remember reading that you’d have to shutdown and reboot the xbox if you had any connectivity issues. I believe it was the same for PS3. I’d imagine PC would simply need to close the game.

How Squad plays
If you’re kind of intimidated playing online, hearing a bunch of clowns saying the most inane things. You will most likely… NOT have that issue in this game. You will only hear the voice chat for people in your squad. You can also leave a squad and play without one if this is a problem. Of course, you’ll want to play the game in a squad. You’ll get extra points for reviving them, giving them ammo, healing them and you get the additional bonus of having an alternate spawn point. So at any point you want to join one, it’s rather simple to do.

UAV
They replaced the air strikes from BF:BC1 with an assault UAV. You can easily spot it in the sky and take it down with a few shots, this is rather simple to do with a sniper but not as much with any other weapon. It’s purpose it essentially to have a laser paint on a target and a rocket will shoot from the sky onto that location. There is also alternate fire if you manage to unlock that. It’s kind of lame when you can’t do anything about the UAV and nobody on your team takes care of it. You’ll have death from above and it will just keep frustrating you. Now the problem with the gun for the air strike in BF:BC1 is that you’d get team killed over it constantly. Some people seem to not be able to enjoy the game otherwise. In BF:BC2, they sort of penalize everyone over fighting to use the UAV. If you team kill the UAV pilot, the UAV itself is destroyed. Nobody gets to use it for a period of time. Hopefully, this will cause people to not fight over it in the long run when they wise up. Idiots.

Upgrades
Much like BF:BC1, you unlock weapons as you progress through the ranks and use a specific class. It’s nice, keeps you wanting to get to the next level. It’s nothing innovative anymore. Adds an RPG element to the game. Ah, Progress bars… what would I do without you. It has changed a bit from BF:BC1, but I’m sure you’ll get the hang of it.

Hardcore mode
I rather like this mode, less HUD and typically makes for a less frustrating time. That is, if you’re not facing Sniper Vasili Lone Wolf team. You shoot first, you usually win. The pace is different too, but that’s rather typical for this type of mode. I tend to turn Hardcore on for Rush. One of my beefs is that you tend to get less point playing in hardcore than you do to normal since spotting just doesn’t really work. For good reasons though.

The Sound:
The sound effects are still quite impressive. When you get shelled or have some sort of explosion nearby you have a hard time hearing and that really adds to the whole experience. The surround sound and such really adds some depth to the game too. You may hear in game profanity getting shout out from far off. Of course the game’s rating is M for Mature. So you should not be too surprised to hear the f-bomb get thrown around in game. There’s a lot of audio queues from other players that trigger depending on your actions too. Sometimes you’ll hear “nice shot” coming from the guy standing right next to you as you pop a head shot. The music however, isn’t as exciting as BF:BC1. I really miss that. BF1943 also had good menu music while waiting around in the multi player mode. At least the single player has some interesting music from time to time. You can see that they did put a lot of attention to the audio through out the game however.

The Bottom Line:
Excellent title! I’m really enjoying it. My friends playing on the PC also, I think I heard that one of them wish the server navigation was better. If you enjoy Battlefield, there’s no reason you should pass this title up. Of course, like any other FPS of this kind, it’s best to play with friends. You’ll enjoy it a whole lot more that way!

Pros:
– More Battlefield!
– Progress bars!
– Objective based FPS.
– You CAN play with more than 16 people on most game modes.

Cons:
– Menu music, what happened!?
– People still aren’t used to this game. Give it another month.
– Removed the whole stats thing and the screenshot uploads!
– Classes were switched around, gets some getting used to. 

The Save Factor:
The game goes for $59.99 USD retail on consoles and $49.99 on PC. I’d say it’s worth the full price. But guess what, you can find it for $10 less on all platforms currently on Amazon. Heck I wouldn’t be surprised if the price stays like this for a while too. Word of caution, when buying used, in order to get certain DLC for free you may need to purchase the VIP pass. I’m not too sure as to how one would acquire this.

Gallery:

Categories: PC, ps3, Review, xbox 360
  1. Chris Shaw
    March 29th, 2010 at 08:21 | #1

    FYI the screenshot function IS there, just not really working with the website.

    Says in the manual it’s (hold) back + start. game says it’s taking/uploading a screenshottttt, but the site is down.

  2. Victor
    March 30th, 2010 at 08:26 | #2

    Excellent! Thanks for the comment. I’ll start snapping away. 🙂

  3. microsoft points generator
    August 10th, 2011 at 15:57 | #3

    Hopefully Battlefield 3 will take enough of Call of Duty’s fanbase. Activision is beginning to get cocky, and I think that is destroying the quality of the Call of Duty franchise.