Any fans of the Battlefield series out there? Recently, EA announced a rather interesting offering in the crowded realm of online gaming: Battlefield Play4Free. A trailer was released recently (or last year to be more precise), and if you've played BF 2 - you'll immediately see that it's almost similar to BF 2, but now it features Americans vs. Russians. It differs from Battlefield Heroes, EA's earlier free-2-play multiplayer entry, with the use of more realistic (yet basic) graphics and modern military setting.
The closed beta is going on now and you can sign up at battlefield.play4free.com. It seems to be easy to get a beta key as I just got one by submitting my email address. So if you're into some free modern military multiplayer, report quickly for duty soldier!
IGN did a preview of the game earlier and it seems that there is one good incentive for players to pick up Battlefieldplay4free: unlock content in BF 3. It features a tweaked engine from BF2 and classes/upgrade structure from BF:BC2, so it could represent an early taste of BF 3. Plus, beta keys for BF 3 are being released along with copies of MoH, which seems to be a really neat perk.
Just a minor military geek note, the trailer contained the Mil-28 helicopter towards the end and it is a helicopter with a mixed military history...
The Mil-28 Havoc helicopter seen in the trailer.
It is interesting to find out that Russia is deploying the Mil-28 "Havoc" helicopter in the end, as the Russian Army originally picked the Ka-50 "Hokum" as its new helicopter...only to change their minds in 2003 and select the Mil-28N version (after continued Mil development) that was cheaper and more versatile, which was better suited Russia's post-Cold War military situation that did not call for the need of a dedicated tank hunter (the Ka-50). This was probably due to experiences in Chechnya and other foreign wars (US Apaches in Iraq, Afghanistan?), where helicopters faced a wider variety of foes such as SAMs and infantry. Meanwhile, the Ka-50 remains the special forces's choice of helicopter and is also currently in service. Interestingly, the Mil-28 actually has a small 3-person compartment to rescue downed pilots and I am not sure it that's implemented in the game...
2011: Golden Year of Gaming
Seeing the maturity of the gaming industry of today, it makes me feel kinda old - having played games that were the spiritual successors of today's hits. Counterstrike, Icewind Dale/Baldur's Gate, Fallout 1&2, Battlefield 1942...and there are games even older than that, such as Super Nintendo/Sega Saturn classics and even the really ancient games such as Pong, Tron and Pac-Man.
Gaming has indeed come a long way and I am convinced that 2011 will be a "golden year" for gaming. It looks to be really really crowded with a lot of potential hits such as Little Big Planet 2 (already released to acclaim), Killzone 3, Dead Space 2, Dragon Age 2, Crysis 2, Portal 2, Deus Ex: Armageddon, Rage, Arkham City, Diablo III, Mass Effect 3 etc....and the list goes on as I might even have missed out some games you guys were looking forward to! Man, same as JQ, I am not endowed with masses of money and I am already having a backlog of games that I would like to play...and this year looks to build on that backlog of games I already have.
Sometimes I wonder if 2012 will be derelict of great gaming titles after the industry has poured out so much in 2011. I hope that won't be the case and it's great to see games and gaming technology mature over the years. At least for me, gaming is innately attractive to me as it is an industry run by creativity and innovation, where programmers and artists combine together to produce games that continue to not only amaze and entertain us...but also reach deeper into us, especially for games with ethical dilemmas and moral stories.
Well, to all the gamers among us, may you have a memorable 2011 and continue to game on!
PS: We have already played WFB with my Dark Elves against WT's High Elves using 8th Ed rules, and I will not be a spoiler and spill out the results. JQ will be doing up a battle report and I have to say it does take sometime to get used to the new rules of WFB.