War Stories: Battlefield 3

Battlefield 3 logo

Battlefield 3 is one of the finest multiplayer shooters the PC has seen in recent years. It’s that rarest, most desirable type of game – the one that generates stories almost every single time. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be writing up some of our best war stories for you. Today, General Semseye is here to tell you a little bit about what makes BF3 so special. I’ll be in my ready room, sipping tea.

Battlefield 3 is one of the most atmospheric and intense games I have had the privilege to play. My first go at a 64 player Conquest map was for lack of a better word, “Epic”.  The game is out for PC, Xbox and Playstation 3. As a PC gamer, you can guess what platform I got it on, also the fact that the first game I played was on 64 player map, witch you can only ever get on a PC is a bit of a give away.

Let me start with the atmosphere in this game. From the word go there is gun fire, tanks and the sound of explosions. Even if you are laying down in some tall grass a mile away with your M39 Enhanced Marksman Rifle equipped with a Ballistic 12x scope waiting to pick off a lone soldier who has lost his way between some control points, It still feels like you’re in the middle of it. At some point you will have a jet or some kind of helicopter dog fighting with another jet/helicopter. You will have a tank fire a round off in the distance destroying a once perfectly fine house! A soldier panics, firing off his entire magazine at another soldier.

You get to play as 1 of 4 classes. “Assault Class” being your standard line infantryman. Equipped with an Assault Rifle, you are the guys who go in first. Running around with a M416 with an attached Red Dot Sight you will find picking the enemy in close quarters the way to go. As crazy as it sounds (Maybe?) this class is also the “Healer” with the ability to drop a medical bag for your other team mates who have been shot in the midst of battle. Healing a team mate will give you team points to help you rise up in the score board. Play this class long enough and you will also unlock the Defibrillator! This will allow you to bring a dead player back to life if you can get to them quick enough! This class is by far the most played class on the game.

Next comes the Engineer! The job of the Engineer is to destroy armor! They can make short work of a Tank or Aircraft. Equipped with an SMG or carbine and a selection of guided or unguided missiles, they can be a deadly force on the battlefield. Hunting for a tank they strike with deadly force – 2 direct missiles to a Tank and the occupant will have no choice but to ditch the tank and try and stop you from killing them! This is where your rifle comes into play: Switch to this weapon to easily dispose of the tank driver! Play the Engineer long enough and you get the chance to play with some fun toys! From a Anti Tank mine, all the way to a EPD BOT (Explosive Ordinance Disposal Robot).

Welcome to the world of “Support”. This class allows you to carry around with you such weapons as the M249 SAW or the M240B (great bloody machine guns) to take out squads of men. Support troops excel at suppressing enemy forces by filling the air with bullets, but this is not to say you can’t get kills on your own. If you find yourself face to face with the enemy, just point your weapon roughly in their direction and open up. You will then unleash 100 bullets towards him leaving him with holes throughout his now dead body! I haven’t played this class as much as I should as it looks really fun to play, and like the engineer class also has some really fun unlocks. One of the first things you unlock is C4 explosives! Put some down run away and wait for some unsuspecting tank to roll over them. If you’re feeling brave, run up to a tank and stick the C4 to them! A little bit higher up the unlock list is the Claymore. Very handy for you. Very annoying for the enemy! This class also can put down ammo crates for yourself or your team mates to reload and continue with the fight, which results in lovely extra points for your score.

Last on the list is the “Recon”. These are your high caliber snipers. This is the class I’m trying to play now, and having some fun with it as well! I play with my trusted M39 EMR with a 8x Scope, and for close range I use my MP443. Taking out enemy from very long range is hard! Its not just a point the cross at their head and fire – you have to take into account that they will probably move (if they’re not already) and bullet drop. I am pleased to say that my longest shot so far on the game is 242m! Might not sound like a lot in real life but in that game its far. Again like the Engineer and the Support, the Recon has some fun unlocks! The first one you get is a T-UGS or Tactical Unattended Ground Sensor. You place this down at the entrance to a building and it will show the enemy who are very close to you, giving you enough time to switch to your MP443 and taking them out! A bit more time playing will unlock the MAV (Micro Air Vehicle). This little baby is used to fly over head and find the enemy.

I don't think that helicopter likes me!

Each one of these classes has their own advantages and disadvantages, and its down to you to pick the right one for the job. Don’t think that one map is suited for one class. Every class works on every map! Its just knowing what one to use at what time. At the start of any map everyone will try to jump into every tank, jeep and air-craft that’s available at the start. So with you knowing that, the Engineer is a good bet at the start with the ability to destroy said tanks, jeeps and air-craft. Some maps may have high hills that is perfect for a sniper to set up camp and pick off people one by one, but the chance of being counter-sniped is increased. there are just endless tactics you can use with this game. You also have the ability to join a squad with the people on your side. When you join the group (4 players max), Your squad is marked on the radar as green icons and you will get more points for doing things together. Also when you finally get shot, you are able to spawn back on one of your team mates instead of back at a control point, and then running 500 meters back to where the action is! If a group isn’t your thing then you can still solo, at the cost of some bonus points. All your team still shows up on radar as blue icons so you know when your back is covered.

Vehicles play a big part in this game, and there are plentiful to chose from. The M1 Abrams or T90A are the main battle tanks of the game and you will see a lot of these. 2 people can pile into these machines. One to control the main cannon and the other one the machine gun to take out those pesky infantry or choppers. Next on the list is the AA tanks that come in the shape of the LAV-AD or the 9K22 Tunguska, each having a huge rapid fire weapon mounted on them. These are only single manned vehicles but still pack a punch. Like the infantry classes, you can level up with some types of vehicles too, unlocking things like smoke grenades for the MBTs or AA missiles for the AA vehicles.

Next comes the light vehicles. The main 2 you will see in the multiplayer game are the VDV Buggy and the Growler ITV (Not the TV channel!). Each comes with a machine gun and a spare seat for someone to shoot out of. These can fly across maps in no time with their quick speed and maneuverability but with no armor around the vehicle it can be destroyed by almost anything. If an explosion doesn’t kill you, a machine gunner probably will. These are used to get between control points in as short of time as possible.

Aircraft… Oh god! Do not get into these if you don’t have a pilot’s license! I have yet to kill anything as the pilot of one of these. They are not the easiest of things to play in the game but in the right hands are amongst the most deadly things you will encounter. You get the AH-1Z Viper and the MI-28 Havoc as the helicopters and the SU-35BM Flanker and F/A-18E Super Hornet as the planes. It takes a lot of practice (and exploding) to learn how to fly these things well.

This game is awesome, right down to the last detail! If you don’t yet own this game, go get it! If you’re thinking about getting it but not sure, GET IT! If you…. GET IT!!!! I promise you, you will have so much fun with this game. We will be posting some vids of myself and Durkonkell playing and you can see for yourself all of the action I’m talking about.

In the next few weeks, we’ll be writing up some of our BF3 war stories – you should probably expect an Internet Video Broadcast too, as soon as we can get our audio problems sorted…

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