Battlefield Bad Company 2 Beta (PC) Impressions

Nelson Bay - Night Map

I bit the bullet and dove in head first into the Battlefield Bad Company 2 scene by pre-ordering the limited edition ($49.99) on Steam.  I’ve been playing, and loving, the Battlefield series since 1942 where I exhausted the game and all of its expansions.  From there it was BF:Vietnam (which was AWESOME), BF2+xpacs, and 2142.   I skipped Bad Company because it was console only, which didn’t sit well with me. Having to pre-order to try the game never sits well with me, but since my history with the BF series has been amazing it only took a few days of thinking about it before I realized I couldn’t miss out on the next installment.

Quick Impressions of Features

  • Dedicated Servers – BOOYA!
  • Destructible Environments – Great for the atmosphere/immersion and strategy, but eventually everything is destroyed.
  • Gun play feels looser than MW2 but that’s the BF feel.
  • Leveling and unlocking gives something to work towards.
  • Maps are going to be great.

The PC Beta for Bad Company 2 is limited to one map and one mode.  The map is called Port Valdez and, like the name alludes to, it takes place on the edge of a harbor.  It’s snowy with buildings and slight terrain barriers.  The mode is called Rush and the goal is for one team to attack and the other to defend.  The attackerss have to destroy points A and B of three different sections of the map in what feels like a “push” mechanic.  The defenders have unlimited lives but the attacking side only has 100.  If the defenders can stop the attackers (by killing them 100 times) before their last 2 points are destroyed then they win.  The mode is fun and the attack/defend style lends itself nicely to the BF series.  I’m aching for some good old fashion BF though.

Laguna Presa - Jungle Map

After playing Modern Warfare 2 for so long it has become really obvious that BF and CoD feel very different.  Battlefield has almost a looser and less realistic feel to it, whereas Call of Duty is tighter and more responsive or realistic.  At first I thought that I liked CoD’s style more but the more I play BF the more I can’t decide if I really like CoD’s more of if they’re just completely different to the point of both being great in their own right.  Where MW2 feels more like staged skirmishes, Battlefield feels like a real war is going on all around me.  The destructible environments are fantastic because it all adds to the strategy and dare I say even the immersion.  The problem with the destructible environments though is that eventually the map you’re playing on is just one pile of smoldering rubble.

BFBC2 has done away with going prone.  Damn you dolphin divers!  Not being able to lay down sucks when you have a tank trying to shell you out of hiding or snipers looking for any sign of movement.   I don’t know if this was in other BF games, but ‘Hardcore’ mode is a mode that we can play in the beta where there is no minimap and several of the HUD elements are gone such as the notification medics get to revive teammates.  It takes less bullets to kill people and you need to use your iron sights/scopes.  It feels like it is somewhere between MW2’s Hardcore mode and BF’s normal mode which is actually very comfortable.

Squad play is probably one of the best BF features.  There is definitely a benefit of working with your squad and spawning on them.  Working towards to advance with ammo kits, health kits, and team tactics yields real results.  One game in particular during this beta I was working closely with my squad and we infiltrated the enemy base and took out both points.  The key was that we cleared corners, used voice chat with the whole “Clear!” “Go go go!”  “Tango 2nd story left window!” and all that cool stuff I wish happened all the time.

Overall, I really like the beta.  I can’t wait for more modes (not that Rush is bad) and more maps.  I do not regret my decision to pre-order at all.  I’ll let you know how I like the full version of the game when it comes out on March 2nd.  If any other details arise worth mentioning I’ll be sure to let you know.

  • “Call of Duty is tighter and more responsive or REALISTIC”

    Except when you see people running at 100 miles per hour, dodging bullets and stabbing people from 10 feet away…or when you aim at a person, they drop flat to the ground and shoot you in the head without missing a beat. What really killed the game for me was seeing aimbots in practically every match in the PC version.

    I believe the removal of prone in Battlefield was mainly due to people getting stuck in the deformable terrain and buildings.

    I first played the PS3 beta which had great Dolby sound. I’m upgrading the sound card in my PC so I can hopefully get the same sound. I hate playing FPS’s on a console.

  • Been hearing alot of great things and look forward to playing it. Loved Bad Compnay even though it was console and have been eagerly anticipating the next one. Loved the multiplayer and the way the battles progressed. Destructible environments is a big plus and overall looks great! Thanks for the write up.

  • What name are you using in game? I love BFBC2 so far and I like the fact the map is leveled after each round… makes you feel like something actually happened. Plus there is nothing like snagging a 4x kill by collapsing a building on a camping squad.

  • Seriously? You felt like CoD feels more realistic? The hitscan pin point accuracy while you are running around like nuts holding a gun that would weigh 15 pounds is not “realistic.”

    I mean, maybe it feels more responsive, has tigher controls, etc, but realistic? I think that would’ve been the very last word I would use to describe combat in CoD.

  • How do the weapons sound? Sounds are a big selling point for me with FPSs, and is exactly why MW2 rocks, Global Agenda (pew pew!) fails.

  • @PeZzy: Yeah, something about MW2 feels more real time and realistic to me as though the actions of firing the gun and seeing my target hit at more 1:1. I’m speaking purely about the guns here.

    @heartlessgamer: You can add “dougyb” to your friends list. That’s been my BF name since Vietnam. Sticking with it!

    @Mahlah: Perhaps realistic was the wrong word. Real time or 1:1 is what it felt like whereas something is like a hair off with BF. I’ve fired several weapons in RL and it feels more like I’m there holding the guns in CoD than it does in BF.

    @coppertopper: Heh, compared to Global Agenda sounds it might blow you away. They’re good quality sounds. 🙂

  • Thanks a lot for this early preview!
    I too enjoyed the Battlefield Series (although only played BF 1942 and Vietnam)
    I loved playing MW2, but it ended up getting really annoying seeing people running at blazing speeds 1-hit-1-kill-knifing people all over the place.
    Plus I HATE some of the maps and with no dedicated servers means that I have to play whatever map loads next and that just was the final nail in the coffin.

    Your post has convinced me to to get this game 🙂

  • Thanks for the review ! I’m definitely looking forward to this game and if I can scrounge up enough $$$ I’ll be picking it up soon 🙂

  • I’m loving the beta as well, I’m looking forward to future maps and content too. I HATE CoD and look forward to any new BF releases.

  • Oh, and I can snipe again!!!! Playing that console-restricted piece of shit CoD online as a sniper sucked. Thank you DICE.

  • Some servers were Hardcore but today they seem to have reverted to normal mode. You may come across some labeled hardcore that are not.

  • Looks like the beta of BFC2 has finally run out. My comments: Not bad but lots of glitches. Couldn’t quite work out wether some were glitches or cheats! Shot a guy in the back at point blank range 4 times, he turns round an knifes me. Whats that about. Could have done without the mist rolling in of the see as it obscured the view quite a lot. Would suggest they “key down and key up” for the kneeling position. Having to hold down the key all the time is a pain. Still managed to get stuck in some places amongst the rocks. Not having a prone position lessens the realism lets face it, it happens in real life. Blowing up the scenery was a great developement.
    I think there are still a few places where things can be improved but we’ll have to wait and see. I will be buying it.