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on October 27, 2011
Let me start this off that I am not a fanboy of any specific shooter, just good games. I have both xbox 360 and PS3 and am unbiased in my reviews as I enjoy both for different reasons. On to the review...

First, I have no idea what all the negative reviews are for. The game isn't without a few flaws, but in no way warrants a 1 star review. This is EA's blockbuster shooter that's set to compete with Infinity Wards MW3 for the calendar year of 2011. A lot of time an energy went into the game (and they even released multiple betas on all platforms to ensure they were meeting their customer's demands). Here is what you need to know:

Game Specifications:
- The game ships on multiple discs.
- Disc 1: CO-OP/Multiplayer/High Resolution Textures (requires 1.5GB for the installation of the high resolution textures if you want them (THEY ARE OPTIONAL))
- Disc 2: Campaign

- Thoughts: The game is enormous and can't be fit onto one disc. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. You're trying to run a game on hardware that's 5-6 years old. Due to the restriction of DVD sizes, compromises had to be made. I'm OK with this and you should be too. If you have a 4GB console, you may have to opt out of using the high resolution textures. However, the game can still be played without them; it's just not as pretty.

Multiplayer Review:
Good:
- The main reason many people buy this game is for the multiplayer, which I can say as a Battlefield Veteran that this doesn't fall shy of expectations. It plays similar to Battlefield Bad Company 2, which is a good thing. The settings were tweaked from the initial beta release. It isn't call of duty, so don't expect it to play that way. It's slightly slower, meaning that decision have a greater impact to the game.
- There are 4 classes to play as, with each offering their own unique contribution to the battlefield (suited to fit multiple play styles). You don't have to be the best killer on the battlefield to contribute to the team and get towards the top of the leaderboards. I've seen people go 6-9 and get top rank by performing supportive actions and taking objectives.
- The maps are big and require thinking and tactics. They can easily accommodate the 12vs12 team sizes.
- The graphics are fantastic if you've installed the High Resolution Textures.
- EA utilizes dedicated servers and has a fantastic system in place that lest you choose the best server for you.
- The "Server Filter" is fantastic and robust. It permits you to filter by Game Type (TDM vs Conquest vs Rush etc..), Region (US vs Europe etc..), Desired Map, Number of People in game (VERY IMPORTANT, SEE BELOW) Etc... In addition, you can see your ping to the server, which will let you choose the best server for you.
- The vehicles are great and a nice addition to the big maps.
- Destructible environments make for some interesting gameplay. It's nice to be able to take out sniper cover, or collapse a building a troublesome sniper keeps using....
- Cannot collapse the M-Com buildings anymore, which will make for a better game.
- Can go prone, which is a nice welcomed back addition to the Battlefield series.
- The customization and ranking up is fantastic. Customization and unlocks work like this:
- Overall rank unlocks items available to all classes. This happens with each game regardless of class.
- Each class has its own unlocks, which comes with kills and objective taking, so you could easily have all the unlocks for one class and none for another. Experience only accumulates for the class type used in the game.
- Each weapon has its own individual unlocks. For example, ulocking the grip for the AK47 will only be available for the AK47. The grip for the M16 will require you to use the M16 and get kills with it.
Bad:
- The one major downside to the game is that the party system can be frustrating at times.
- You can have a max party of 4 to search for games.
- If you quick search, your party may be split up and put on different teams with the server being close to max capacity.
- Utilize the "Server Filter" to join a low number game (maybe 10 at most). This will decrease the chance of your party splitting up. If you are split up, watch when other parties join and just change teams to end up on the side with friends. Choose an open squad and all agree to join it. Problem solved.
- Once on the same team, the game will keep you together, so overcoming that initial obstacle is the hardest part. Not really that hard, but slightly frustrating.
- Although the environments are destructible, they aren't nearly as destructible as Battlefield Bad Company 2.

A Few Quick Multiplayer Tips:
- Having a few friends to chat and play with will have a large impact on the game, especially when utilizing the vehicles and one of your buddies is an engineer. If you don't have friends to play with, just make sure you join a squad so you can spawn on multiple team members. This is a tactical game and communicating can have a large impact.
- Use spotting by pressing the back button (once your crosshairs are on the target to mark) to mark enemies on the map. This will bring attention to enemies on the map in case you can't kill them or want help (think tanks, which will get your engineers to shoot at them with their rockets if your a medic).
- Don't run into the enemies base alone. This isn't call of duty and you'll die quickly.
- If you're the last man in your squad alive, STAY ALIVE. You'll get additional points for teammates spawning on you, plus if you die you teammates will be close to the action and you can respawn on them. Spend your time in the action, not running across the map.
- This game rewards objective players, not KDR fiends. Going negative is no big deal. It's a team game.
- Utilize your team. Stay with them for easily taking objectives and taking out enemies.
- When utilizing the vehicles, wait for other team members. Having someone on the gunner of your vehicle offers a lot of protection.
- If you're using the vehicles a lot, use the engineer class for repair points. If you have a teammate with you, they can cover while you fix.

Campaign:
- While this is a nice feature, this clearly isn't the main focus of the Battlefield 3 (BF3). From what I've played so far, it seems a bit more linear than Battlefield Bad Company 2 (BFBC2). In BFBC2, you could blow a hole through any building and make your own path. In BF3, there are less destructible buildings. In addition, the enemy AI doesn't move much from their initial spawn location. The single player isn't bad, but not fantastic either. I'm still working through this and will update later once I finish.

CO-OP:
- I have not had the privilege to try the co-op yet, but I will review once I do.

Closing Thoughts: This is a good game and I give it a 93/100. It's fun and enjoyable, in particular with a squad. I deducted points for the too linear environments within the single player and the frustrating party system in multiplayer. If you're one of those people that buy 1-2 games a year and like FPS, this is a must buy.
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on October 28, 2011
Not all of us are "gamers" (i'm an attorney in my late-20's). Those of us who play video games as light recreation and not "online careers" (e.g. rank, etc.) look at all the hype and wonder which games are critical/fan darlings and which are actually just fun. Well, Battlefield 3 for Xbox360 IS for us. It's like pick-up ball that's just competitive enough without being too serious for itself.

As a consumer of average video game consumption, i've shopped through the most oft-recommended/advertised multiplayer shooter series on Xbox360: Gears of War, Halo, and Call of Duty. All were fun, but with major drawbacks. Gears had mech-like sluggish characters. Halo was like one long frenetic ninja duel. And Call of Duty had poor graphics and an unbearable amount of eerily over-committed...students of the game. Battlefield 3 hits the sweet spot: just realistic enough that your actions actually have an impact despite lacking some gaming trick, yet maintaining a good pace throughout.

Most importantly, Battlefield 3's multiplayer makes, well, playing with multiple players fun. There's always someone to work in teams with. Your actions make a meaningful contribution to the team even if you're not individually a skilled killer. Other players are encouraging and, if you feel disheartened from dying many times, there is always someone on your team to deploy next to and follow their lead. There are fewer trash-talking cowards hiding behind their screen names here because--i'm guessing--they generally don't have the patience for a team effort.

And besides, it's a good game, pure and simple. Who cares about small glitches or whether it's better than other video games; no game is perfect. It's like complaining about receiving cash because it isn't stacked neatly. What matters is whether this game is fun as a video game, not some work of art. And it is fun, immensely. Personally, i believe you will enjoy this game: actually "enjoy", not just "appreciate". That is the best praise i have for a video game.

NOTE: I have not yet completed the single-player campaign, so i can only speak in regards to the multiplayer.
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on October 25, 2011
First off, I have no idea what all of the bad reviews for this game are all about. I've had much background with game developing and playing games for fun and competitively. Here's my defense for all of those bad review and if you just skim through them, you'll understand what's going on and not just whine and complain.

1) It was CONFIRMED that for Xbox 360 and PS3 that there would be a High Res Pack (1.5 and 2GB respectively) because the bandwidth for DVDs and BluRays are not fast enough to load all of the content in HD. (yes there are loading screens but that only loads the "basics" you then have to have real time loading for bullets and objects that the player walks to) And for crying out loud, its just 1.5GB, if you don't have HDD space, you can simply go to WalMart, Target, or heck if you knew about it, Amazon and buy a 2GB Flash Drive. You can definitely get them for less than $10 and if you check Fry's you can even get them for $0 after rebate.
2) BF3 and CoD: Black Ops were in development AT THE SAME TIME. If Dice was to copy Black Ops, they would have had to basically build the entire game in one year. They obviously did not because then BF3 would have come out next year or would have been impossibly rushed. And, they could not have just waited for Black Ops to release and then make the campaign. Multiplayer maps are based off of the campaign maps and the campaign would have taken more than just a year to build.
3) Bugs and glitches, BF3 is an ENORMOUS game. (I mean its on 2 discs for crying out loud) The maps are probably 10 times bigger than those of CoD and on top of that, you have to add in FrostBite 2, so you gotta code in every single piece of the game to fall apart when its shot at. This is VERY difficult to do. The game also pushes the hardware of the Xbox 360 (~6 years old now) to its max. So, if you've got a huge map, older hardware, and destruction going about everywhere, they're bound to be bugs. No game can be 100% bug free at launch, there simply isn't enough time and not enough man-power. This is why Dice has a team dedicated to fixing BF3 and adding DLC and enhancing the game along the road.

Now, on to the good.
BF3 offers gameplay that follows Dice's trend. Huge, realistic, "Battlefield" sized maps. Online, the game puts you in as a soldier on a real sized battlefield fighting alongside your squadmates and team. For Rush and Conquest modes, there's no one man army or lone wolf as many other First Person Shooters have built. You NEED teamwork in order to win and you're rewarded for helping your team, doing the objective, as well as getting kills. Also, the destruction of the Frostbite 1/2 engine is not seen in any other title. Battlefield is the only game where a rocket will actually BLOW UP A WALL! No more "explosion marks" but the wall actually comes down. Bundle this awesome soldier action with some vehicular action, and there's nothing else out there that comes even close. Tanks, Light Tanks, Humvees, Boats, and Jets all add another dimension to the game. Players have to work to take down enemy tanks and jets, which happens in a real battlefield. Sure, there are still some kinks to work out but Dice was only given a few weeks to fix up the game from the results of the Open Beta. That's not a lot of time to fix these huge maps. 1 Battlefield map is probably equivalent to 5 or 6 maps of other FPS's.

The verdict: sure, the campaign seems a bit like Black Ops, but when you get into the action, you can obviously tell that its a total different story. And yeah, they're are a few minor bugs in the game, but it is definitely NOT anything major. And yes, there does need to be a 1.5GB add on for HD textures, but that's simply because the game is pushing 6 year old hardware to match up with current day hardware. Try playing BF3 on your 6 year old PC and see what happens. Once you understand all of these minor issues and bugs, you'll understand why its there and know that it will obviously be fixed in a short period of time, I mean there was already a patch on day one telling us that Dice knows about the problems and is working on it. As a video game aficionado, Dice has supported and are proud of their games. If something's wrong, a fix will be out shortly.

Don't let these minor issues make you miss out on one of the most intense, realistic shooters ever developed.
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on October 27, 2011
First off, Battlefield 3 and the Call of Duty series are different types of games. To put it succinctly, BF games are about squad/team effort to win games and battles on a large scale. Call of Duty is about individual performance. Previously, I tried out the Battlefield Bad Company games (1 and 2) and they weren't really my jam. I wanted to like them, but just couldn't get into it. I picked up Battlefield 3 at the midnight release on Monday night, and have been loving the game since then. BF3 gets a lot closer in gameplay style to CoD than the previous Battlefield games, and for the most part this is a good thing. Controls are snappier, vaulting over cover and moving around the maps is responsive and enjoyable, and the spawning has been improved so it doesn't constantly feel like you have to run across the entire map just to get back to the action after you die.

One important thing to note is that the retail version is completely different from the Beta. The beta was janky and full of bugs, and the retail game is cleaner. You also seem to have significantly more health and it takes more bullets to kill you, which I really enjoy.

Mainly, though, BF games really enforce teamwork. There is a Team Deathmatch mode, but I found out early on that you miss out of the most fun elements of the game if TDM is all you play. Rush is where it's at. Those intense moments of frantically trying to stay alive so squadmates can spawn on you and help you protect an objective are just priceless, and it's something you really cannot get in Call of Duty.

So in short, CoD and Battlefield 3 are different games. Battlefield 3 is more about the big picture teamwork aspect and it has 12v12 games (on Xbox 360). CoD is about individual performance and killstreaks. In my opinion, both franchises are very enjoyable now that Battlefield 3 is in the mix. If you're willing to step outside CoD and attempt to break in to a different take on the shooter genre, definitely buy or rent Battlefield 3.
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on October 27, 2011
I am absolutly amazed at the ammount of bad reviews this game is getting. Don't get me wrong I love the call of duty series but I personaly believe this game takes it to the next level.

I am a US Army veteran that has seen combat in Iraq & Afganistan and I can tell you that this so far is as close to a real firefight that you will find on a console. The game is intense, and very realistic.

I have played through part of the single player so far and I love it. On par with what you have been getting with COD or MOH over the past few years. Graphics blow the past iterations out of the water (if you install high def textures).

As most of us know the focus on these games is multiplayer, and all I can say is INTENSE!! There is a bit of a learing period and you do need to level up quite a bit before you will really get this game but it is sweet once you do. Hands down I would have purchased this day one if it was only multiplayer.

If your a fanboy and your stuck on the COD formula of killstreaks and unrealistic (However fun it may be) gameplay this may not be for you. If your into realistic combat simulations, I can tell you from experience this is as close as it gets so far...
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on November 10, 2011
I have been playing COD games since the PS2 and most recently Modern Warfare and COD Black Ops. Battlefield 3 is in a league of its own. I dont think you can compare COD and the Battlefield franchises. The gameplay is way different from one another and honestly i am enjoying Battlefield 3 more. Online co-op is fun and allow players to unlock new weapons and attachments. I have played about 3 missions in campaign mode and they are very enjoyable. Online multiplayer is very fun. Many people are saying Battlefield 3 has a lot of campers but i have to disagree. This game you must play very strategic and thinking before rushing into the Battlefield. The online multiplayer is different everytime even when playing the same map. The destructive environment allows the same map to feel different every time playing online. There is about 8 or 9 maps i believe and the limited edition includes the first expansion pack when it releases in december. Battlefield 3 has become its own game and can not be compared to COD. Both franchises bring two different experiences. Since playing this game, i have now become a Battlefield fan.
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on November 2, 2011
I remember the day my dad brought home Pong. We played it for more hours that first week than I've ever logged into a game to date. So the following review is from a gamer who's been playing for a LONG time and just loves to "game."

What about BF3? Does it live up to the hype? Absolutely. As has been noted, you really must evaluate the game's single player (SP) and multiplayer (MP) components seperately.

Multiplayer:

5/5 Stars hands down!

In my years of gaming (and have been a huge fan of the BF family since day one on the PC) nothing comes remotely close to the realism and intensity of battle like this game. The visuals are spectacular, the characters movements are fluid and realistic (within gaming reason of course), and the gun handling characteristics are phenomenal. Sounds and lighting make this the greatest military simulator to date. Note that I call this a military simulator. I'm also a HUGE fan of the COD family of games but their MP fall more under the "arcade" style of play where it's just run and gun. Loads of fun, but hardly a simulatory experience. This constant comparison, while understandable, really has no place to true gamers. I think virtually all BF3 fans will buy MW3 but not all MW3 fans will buy BF3. You have to actually like a level of realism and strategy to enjoy BF3 and the young kids I hear playing COD (MW2/Black Ops) are hardly the patient, strategic thinkers requried for a game like BF3 to be enjoyable. It's funny how the only guys I hear griping about BF3 and saying that MW2 or Black Ops is way better are usually the ones getting pwned. Yes, that's an observation of one, but it seems to repeat itself. And that's all I say about COD as it relates to BF3.

My only advice for MP players: stop, look, listen. Do that and your gaming experience with BF3 will be so much improved.

Single Player:

3/5 Stars

Keep in mind that I haven't finished the SP campaign as of this writing. The SP is visually and intensly amazing. But I don't find myself anticipating getting home and loading that game to play the campaign. Batman: Arkham City and Assassins Creed were games that made me rush to finish whatever I was doing to get back to the story. What BF3 lacks in story, however, it MORE than makes up for in shear battle intensity. Again, it's a battle simulator and on that note it succeeds. Yes, it's lost the destructability and flexibility of BC2, but it's still an amazing game to experience. But honestly, for the intensity and then throw in the social aspect, I find myself calling my buddy and saying "game on."

Conclusion:

This is a game with the highest level of MP replayability because every experience will be completely different and you can mix up your contribution to your squad. Enjoy the experience. If you're going to play, however, please work WITH you squad. Chat! Perhaps I should say the secret to success is "stop, look, listen, chat." Work with your squad and you will be the one pwning. I promise you. Look me up when you're on: Boogerwood. I love helping folks new to the experience and we usually end up being the top squad AND having a fun time. You're sure to laugh as well. It's truly a great gaming and entertainment experience.

Take care!

Boogerwood
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on November 5, 2011
Overall this game is a masterpiece and a blast to play. The amount of unlockables is one factor that keeps one playing; besides the entertainment and fun it will provide you with. There's a variety of maps to play on (some dark and some sunny; some close combat and some open and free), and the vehicles that help you traverse them are realistic, yet easy and fun to use; especially with a teammate along your side. I have not played the single player, however, as I have been having too much fun playing the multiplayer; therefore, I can not provide a ranking on that (I've heard it was a short but ok campaign). Although, in the end, the main purpose for a battlefield game was the multiplayer; the campaign is just something extra. I'd recommend this to any semi-casual to hardcore gamer who wants to have a blast doing everything involved in the military.

Also, I do realize there exists a few bugs in the launched game, but I don't feel they detract from the overall experience of it and DICE will most likely be producing a patch for the problems anyways.
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on November 2, 2011
First, let me say that I have not played previous versions of BFor MW online, so I am new to this style of gameplay. I have been an avid Halo and Gears player for years, but became tired of the lack of team play. I bought this game specifically for online play and have not tried the campaign, my review focuses on online only.
At first, I hated the game. I did not like dying after a few hits and was ready to return it. However, I went online read reviews and learned this game is about teamwork, not running and gunning. It is also critical to use cover to your advantage. I tried it again with this in mind and I must say after six hours of gameplay logged, I love it. The game is based around strategy and team work. The experience is even better when you get a squad of friends together. I enjoy the different classes and earning new equipment. The game is also ment to be played with surround sound, the audio is incredible.
What I do not like are the glitches with online play. Even though I make a squad, half the games end up with my squad mates being placed on the opposing team, which is very annoying. They need add something you can select that will keep your squad together or not register you in that game. There has also been issues with dropped games from the server, which then penalizes you for quitting. I marked a star off for these things, but I am hoping this is something EA will address very soon, many complaints about it in the forums.
This game is not for everyone and very difficult if you are new to dying with only a couple of shots, it is not Halo. However, if you have a good group of friends for a squad and like strategy and objectives-you will probably enjoy this game. My K/D is pathetic at best, but I have been rewarded greatly for completing objectives, which I like very much.
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on October 31, 2011
I'm a COD and BF vet. This game is super fun. A good balance of arcade FPS with a bit of team play and strategy. You can just pick it up and play casually or you can really get deep into squad play. I buy games for multiplayer. I almost never do the single players campaigns in games, only maybe a little bit if I need to learn the controls. BF3 is focused on the multiplayer and crushes COD on this front. You will love it, stop debating and get it.
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