There’s little doubt that a good portion of the new shooters flooding into the gun stores and ranges started their interest in firearms thanks to playing video games. First person shooter games especially have had a huge influence, as evidenced by the Call of Duty tie-ins and Zombie-themed firearms and accessories. One of the most popular franchises in first person shooter games has been the Battlefield series, and the latest incarnation coming to systems near you is Battlefield Hardline. I’ve been playing the Beta version for a few days now, and in my opinion . . .
. . .skip it.
For the last couple revisions, the Battlefield series has been closing in on perfection. Starting with the Bad Company titles, almost everything about the gameplay has been polished and refined. Classes have been balanced, new gameplay modes have been added, and the graphics have gotten to a point where the game looks damn pretty. It’s still not perfect — especially with BF4 there were some major bugs and netcode issues — but the game is slowly being perfected.
The problem with Hardline isn’t that it does something wrong, it’s that it doesn’t do anything truly new. From the graphics engine to the gameplay mechanics, nothing really changed between BF4 and Hardline. In fact, you could argue that what we have here is an expansion pack for BF4 and not a brand new game.
While the gameplay isn’t radically different from what we have now, EA is still going to charge an arm and a leg for it. If they follow the same phased release that we’ve seen in other games, the final product will cost the average player well over $100 — $60 for the initial game, then another $50+ for premium. Unless something drastic changes between the beta that we’re playing now and the final release, I just don’t see $100 worth of gameplay improvements.