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November 11, 2011 12:59 PM   Subscribe

Zero Punctuation reviews Battlefield 3 (video), possibly the most reviled game ever to earn itself 93% on Metacritic. Remember to press X to not die (TV tropes).
posted by Artw (85 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
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posted by fuq at 1:07 PM on November 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


He only reviewed the single player game? Really? That's like reviewing a Japanese restaurant without eating rice or anything made from soybeans.
posted by Nelson at 1:07 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


For those interested, BF:3 currently has 89 on PC, 84 on Xbox 360 and 86 on PS3. The post-embargo review drop as been a well established phenomenon for a while, BF:3 is certainly not the worst case though. I'd say it's fairly emblematic of the major holiday releases.
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:08 PM on November 11, 2011


This is the first I've heard about Battlefield 3 being "reviled."
posted by absalom at 1:09 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


Saw the ZP review yesterday and realized how much I come to dislike the format.

As for the game itself, it seems to be a bigger, louder and better version of the previous games in the series, so there's really no reason why fans shouldn't buy it.

Speaking of Battlefield 3, I've enjoyed seeing The Flashlight of Death in action.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:12 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


He only reviewed the single player game? Really? That's like reviewing a Japanese restaurant without eating rice or anything made from soybeans.

Yahtzee is a self-branded misanthrope who rarely touches on the multiplayer aspects of a game he reviews. It makes his reviews of those games incomplete, but at the same time, as a deathmatch-impaired FPS fan, it's nice to have somebody reviewing the games who plays them the same way I do.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:16 PM on November 11, 2011 [19 favorites]


He only reviewed the single player game? Really? That's like reviewing a Japanese restaurant without eating rice or anything made from soybeans.

Multiplayer reviews are easy:

Does this game have better multiplayer tham Team Fortress 2?

[ ] Yes
[ ] No

See?
posted by mightygodking at 1:18 PM on November 11, 2011 [12 favorites]


And yet Battlefield 3 is an immensely better multiplayer game than Modern Warfare 3. I wish I could get my money back for the latter. What a giant step backwards.
posted by Justinian at 1:19 PM on November 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


That Gamepro article was critical of Metacritic and PR companies rather than Battlefield 3. I'm not playing it, but none of my friends seem to think it is bad. "Reviled" is what got me in here so congrats, but that was pretty disingenuous.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 1:20 PM on November 11, 2011


Gotta agree with OnTheLastCastle. BF3 is hardly universally reviled. It's a pretty decent game.
posted by Justinian at 1:21 PM on November 11, 2011


Yeah, I think it's more accurate to say that the single-player campaign is what's been universally reviled. The multiplayer, which is what Battlefield is known for, seems to be meeting everyone's high expectations. (Or so I gather. Like Yahtzee and Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish, I'm a shooter fan with no friends, so I've never played mulitplayer anything.)
posted by Rangeboy at 1:22 PM on November 11, 2011


I love BF3 except how I keep dying all the time. And the squad system is f*cked. And it suffers from too-many-gun-add-ons. And I keeping dying. Mainly the dying.
posted by papercake at 1:23 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


This sort of thing is why at 7:00 am this morning I was talking to Hargrimm on steam and getting his opinion on Skyrim (and am downloading it now).

The nice thing about zero punctuation is he doesn't just gush about every damn thing to come down the pike, and by looking at what he's chosen to harsh on, you get a really good feel for whether or not the game is going to be worth playing.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 1:30 PM on November 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


I get that multiplayer is most of the point with these things, but I do see where he's coming from. I like big immersive RPGs and RPG shooters. I'm a Mass Effect kind of guy. I would like to play a contemporary military action game in a big sandbox-type environment, or at least not entirely on rails. I would also not mind if it were written by someone with a slightly better level geopolitical understanding than Herman Cain.

oh screw it, I'll probably just get Skyrim anyway
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:31 PM on November 11, 2011


I wonder if my Cray XT5 will manage to get good frame rates on BF3.
posted by crapmatic at 1:36 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Reviled? My two game-designer friends I played poker with last Saturday think its fantastic and both suggested it over MW3. Granted, they are both sound designers.
posted by MarvinTheCat at 1:46 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is the first I've heard about Battlefield 3 being "reviled."

Certainly all the comments I have read online have been negative, especially regarding the single player experience (though Origin gets a kicking too) - though as Foci for Analysis points out it;'s basically the exact same thing as all the preceding military man-shoots. For a moment I thought maybe I'd seen a peak and collapse of public support for follow-the-NPC-down-the-inivisble-glass-corridor-between-QTEs-and-cutscenes style of gaming - though this thing and the other indistinguishable one that just came out are selling like hot cakes, so maybe not.
posted by Artw at 1:48 PM on November 11, 2011


I'm enjoying the hell out of the Tribes: Ascend beta. The game has some major issues and the physics are being patched back and forth every few days but at least it's something different for once.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 1:53 PM on November 11, 2011


oh screw it, I'll probably just get Skyrim anyway

Seriously. Right now, as I sit here at work planning to pick up Skyrim on my trip home, the only question in my mind is 360 or Bootcamp?
posted by The Bellman at 1:57 PM on November 11, 2011


Is this something you would have to not be playing Skyrim to know about?
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 1:58 PM on November 11, 2011 [10 favorites]


EA justifies Battlefield 3 single player
posted by Artw at 2:00 PM on November 11, 2011


That's rather insensitive of you given my copy of Skyrim won't arrive for several more hours.
posted by Justinian at 2:01 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


Er, I should have just said like Yahtzee I'm a shooter fan with no friends. I'm sure HZSF has lots of friends, he just chooses not to play Battlefield with them.
posted by Rangeboy at 2:02 PM on November 11, 2011


I think the "reviled" largely refers to Origin and the hell some people have had with game authentication, getting their Origin accounts suspended or canceled due to being rude to Origin helpdesk employees, etc.

I'll be playing Skyrim though.
posted by sotonohito at 2:05 PM on November 11, 2011


The console commands from oblivion to get extra gold work in steam skyrim.

I say this so everyone else can get ponies with no tedious grinding as I did.
posted by winna at 2:08 PM on November 11, 2011


Just had my first crash out of Skyrim after about 4 hours. That's shooting about par, maybe one under for these games. Made it to level 4, I'm a little iffy on the system as you might expect so early. I have no real character plan except surviving whatever it takes.
posted by Edogy at 2:09 PM on November 11, 2011


I don't play online because online gaming tends to turn people into complete and utter ASSHOLES. I don't like being called a fag and I don't like being called a nigger even though I sound like the whitest dork you'll come across. I also don't kids constantly chatting about pointless crap during a match. Online gaming on a console is totally a horrible experience. Even if you are friends IRL with someone they can take it way too far at some point. Those Wal-Mart ads with the guy and his annoying douche bag friend are exaggerated but actually conceptually they are not that far off the mark.

So I agree with Yahtzee's stance on why he doesn't play online console games because it is the same reason I don't.
posted by GavinR at 2:09 PM on November 11, 2011


I came in here wondering - a game thread that's not about Skyrim? How long is that going to last?
posted by vanar sena at 2:10 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


The funny thing about Origin getting people all hopping mad is it sounds like it pretty much does the same thing as Steam, which people pretty much love.

Talking of which... You've all heard this, made sure you have Steam Guard, deauthorised all other computers and changed your password, right?
posted by Artw at 2:14 PM on November 11, 2011


That's rather insensitive of you given my copy of Skyrim won't arrive for several more hours.

I was going to commiserate with you, but the UPS guy just came two minutes ago.

SEE YOU ALL IN TWO TO THREE MONTHS, SUCKAS!
posted by Rangeboy at 2:14 PM on November 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


it's nice to have somebody reviewing the games who plays them the same way I do.

That was more or less my take away as well. All my coworkers are raving about how great the multiplayer is, and I get that it is a neat thing, but I've come to hate the fact that more and more, game companies are putting out these anemic single player offerings with the assumption that it'll all be made up for by positive reviews of people playing it online.

I don't like playing online because I can't stand the immature comments (Mefight club notwithstanding) and I get really tired of getting my ass kicked by 12 year olds who are vastly better than I am. A good single player experience is critical for me, and I was pleased to see that Battlefield 3, as great as it might be otherwise, probably isn't for me.

Unlike Saints Row 3 and Batman Arkham City which I'm way excited by.
posted by quin at 2:19 PM on November 11, 2011


I'm not really into multiplayer, which puts me in a minority of FPS gamers, so I kind of appreciate the rare review that doesn't spend so much time on that aspect of a game.
posted by El Sabor Asiatico at 2:21 PM on November 11, 2011


I don't really do multiplayer either so I was never that interested to begin with. Most previous Battlefield games were multiplayer only (outside of the Bad Company subseries) so it's not really surprising the single-player feels tacked on. I think EA was just trying to make it more comparable to that other shooter series. They were super aggressively going after them, it was pretty over the top. Included advertising slogans like "above and beyond the call", get it? Get it?

Saint's Row 3 might actually get to break my cardinal rule of never buying non-Bioware games before they fall to the $20-$30 range (maybe $40 if it's something we really want). Still trying to make up my mind though.
posted by kmz at 2:31 PM on November 11, 2011


I am alos only really interested in the single player, and the drop off in quality this year has made it so the first thing I check is how long it takes to play the full campaign - Black Ops was a disgrace. Apparently Battlefield 3 is 6-7 hours and MW3 is only 5 hours, so both games will go on my lovefilm rental list and neither game will by troubling me for £40. Dark Souls continues to grip me.
posted by biffa at 2:33 PM on November 11, 2011


For anyone complaining about not having friends for multiplayer or for hating the experience of being harangued by 12-year-olds on the onlines, you know about MeFightClub, right? Full of well-intentioned rational adult non-idiot humans who will be happy to kill you (or assist you) in your game of choice (not just BF3) without calling you a fag.

In fact, as I have seen happen multiple times, if someone does call you a fag then everyone else calls them out on it. It's surreal.
posted by komara at 2:37 PM on November 11, 2011


Voice of dissent; I could not care less about single player in BF3, I completely love the multiplayer. The ai of single player games, any single player game is transparent and obvious, whereas the joy of on line multiplayer shooters is the ai...errr...i is really great.

FWIW the slurs and little kiddies trying new profanities they recently learned is been almost absent, and a million times better that fag-nigger-fest that is Modern Warfare. Then again I was squad mates with some dipshit self0glossed "Fuhrer 1943" this morning. You stay classy Xbox user base.

Plus a battle from opposite banks of the Seine in the heart of Paris is the best thing I've ever done in a videogame.
posted by Keith Talent at 2:44 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm just here to give props for his Fry and Laurie "m'colleague" reference.

also yes, there is a place where you can play games free of tosspots. mefightclub.
posted by lazaruslong at 2:45 PM on November 11, 2011


I don't hate multiplayer FPS, I'm just incurably awful at it.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:46 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


Don't worry, they're all clearly cheating anyway.
posted by Artw at 2:47 PM on November 11, 2011


Never mind all this Skyrim and Battlefield 3 nonsense...I'm just waiting until Saints Row: The Third comes out.

I just discovered that one of the NPCs is a former pimp whose cane includes a microphone that autotunes every single word he says.

I MUST PLAY THIS.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 2:56 PM on November 11, 2011 [6 favorites]


Battlefield 3 broke the first-day sales record, then MW3 beat it, now it's beginning to look like Skyrim may beat both of them and all within a few days. Christmas came early for AAA publishers this year.
posted by vanar sena at 3:11 PM on November 11, 2011


I have never played a Saints Row game - hell, the only time I've touched the genre is the legitimately amazing LA Noire - but that may just break the streak. Wow.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 3:14 PM on November 11, 2011


Battlefield 3 broke the first-day sales record, then MW3 beat it, now it's beginning to look like Skyrim may beat both of them and all within a few days.

Wow, really? The 2nd part I can believe, but I didn't think BF3 beat Black Ops from last year. And I really can't believe Skyrim beating any of them in terms of sales.
posted by kmz at 3:16 PM on November 11, 2011


Saints Row is just plain out fun for shits and giggles. It is like GTA with even more parody.
posted by GavinR at 3:17 PM on November 11, 2011


Bf3 is awesome, though I haven't even fired up the single player game.

Skyrim is also awesome.
posted by utsutsu at 3:19 PM on November 11, 2011


I have to admit I've never been able to get into Bethesda RPGs. Everything's just so... I dunno, blah. Part of it is the first-person part. I know technically you can switch them to third-person mode, but it's pretty craptacular.

Mass Effect 3 though... March 6 is such a long time from now. Argh.

(Yes, I know, liking Mass Effect means I'm one of those lazy casual gamers that's destroying Bioware/EA/gaming. Whatever.)
posted by kmz at 3:29 PM on November 11, 2011


I've seen Skyrim ads all over; hot sales aren't so surprising.
posted by a robot made out of meat at 3:30 PM on November 11, 2011


I'll go you one better with my staunch belief that BioWare is half of what's wrong with RPGs (the other half being Japan as a whole since 2002 or so), and has been since Baldur's Gate.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 3:35 PM on November 11, 2011


I recently finished BF3's single player for my own review, and found it competent and vaguely exciting except for the quick time events. The multiplayer is saddled with lack of variation, but I still have some great times on big maps.

Yahtzee is right about it, though, essentially: it does nothing new on either side and if you're looking for originality or fresh ideas, it's as barren as it gets.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 3:36 PM on November 11, 2011


I'm sure mefightclub is great and all, but I've had an account there for years and have never played with anyone because I am mostly console. You guys don't really do consoles still, right?

BF3's single player was really atrocious, even compared to the single player campaign of Bad Company 1 & 2, which I thoroughly enjoyed. BC 1 had a lot of unexpected humor, and the characters were actually characters. BC 2 loss a good deal of the humor and replaced it with metoo features, and BF3 really goes all the way in trying to compete with Modern Warfare by removing any lightheartedness and making a sewious-business shooter.

No humor, no personality. You swap out control of several characters, like the disposable cardboard cutouts they are. They all have names and some have cutscenes but it's all just the barest smearing of story. Single player didn't really even play to the strengths of the much vaunted engine--namely environmental destruction as a mechanic, which separates it from most others.
posted by danny the boy at 3:36 PM on November 11, 2011


It's very strange to hear "lack of variety" comments lobbed at Battlefield 3's multiplayer, considering its main competition is Modern Warfare 3, where the action is pretty much exactly the same thing over and over. Domination? Small maps with two (directly opposed) or three (in a triangle) flags to capture. Team deathmatch? Small maps where you shoot a lot of dudes while trying to earn killstreak perks. Kill confirmed? Small maps where you shoot a lot of dudes and then have to collect their dogtags to earn points. etc. etc.

Meanwhile, Battlefield lets you fly helicopters and drive tanks and blow up jets with missile launchers and spot enemies for your teammates through your sniper scope and bombard positions with mortar fire and heal people with medpacks and etc. etc. One of the big complaints I've heard about Modern Warfare 3--and this is borne out by a few hours of playing online--is that snipers are practically useless on half the maps because they're just not big enough. Which means the only thing you do, really, is run around in circles shooting people in the face.

Modern Warfare 3's multiplayer is pretty fun on its own, repetition aside. It's really easy to just play a ton of matches, thanks to little things like instant respawn times. And strangely, I actually care less about my kill/death ratio in Modern Warfare 3 than Battlefield 3, which is supposed to be more team-oriented. But to criticize Battlefield 3 for not having enough different ways of killing fools just makes no sense to me, unless you're comparing it to Bad Company 2 (which does a lot of the same things as BF3, except on smaller maps with fewer people and without the benefit of jets).
posted by chrominance at 3:53 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


These are the kinds of games that have driven me largely away from gaming.
posted by JHarris at 4:20 PM on November 11, 2011


Modern Warfare 3's multiplayer is pretty fun on its own, repetition aside.

MW3s multiplayer is what you get if you put a bunch of meth addicted sharks in a few tiny fishtanks connected by a bunch of tunnels and then you throw bloody chum in the water. If you stop moving for more than a second or two you immediately get shot in the back and die. If you take up a sniper position you get shot in the back and die. If you stop moving in order to adjust your mouse position you get shot in the back and die. If you turn around expecting to be shot in the back and die, you still get shot in the back and die, just from the other direction.

You just have to run forward at a pretty good clip scanning for targets. Fire. One of you dies and the survivor continues to run forward. Every single map is a maze of twisty little passages, all alike.

Black Ops had a terrible campaign but the multiplayer had a wide range of map sizes and map type. MW3 basically has 8 maps identical to the 2 smallest, most cramped Black Ops maps. There is nothing comparable to Array or Crisis or any of the other large Black Ops maps.

MW3 discared all the good parts of Black Ops Multiplayer while giving you more and more of the bad parts.
posted by Justinian at 4:57 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


It discarded the good parts. Discared sounds like an appropriate descriptor but it isn't actually a word. Accurate, though.
posted by Justinian at 4:59 PM on November 11, 2011


if you stop moving for more than a second or two you immediately get shot in the back and die. If you take up a sniper position you get shot in the back and die.

You forgot to add that you then get teabagged by a ten year old while being called some combo of alternate sexual/ethnic persuation and told that noob campers are (insert sexual/ethnic slur).
posted by Keith Talent at 5:18 PM on November 11, 2011


Apparently, I am the 1% because I'm enjoying Battlefield 3 (haven't played the single player but then I bought Half-Life just to play Counterstrike and haven't ever played Half-Life because multiplayer is all I care about), I had no problems with Origin, and I intend to keep playing the game until I get tired of it and go back to Team Fortress 2. It's a lot of fun, but I play on relatively private servers with a good playerbase, so maybe that's why.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 5:48 PM on November 11, 2011


I sure enjoyed Yahtzee's review of Disc 2 of Battlefield 3.
posted by EmGeeJay at 5:56 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


My analogy was poor. Reviewing Battlefield 3 just about the single player game is like reviewing a steakhouse on the basis of its one vegetarian entree. I get that Yahtzee doesn't like online games. I don't much like them either, for the reasons mentioned above. But that just makes him completely unqualified to review a multiplayer game. I guess EA has made noises that the BF3 single player is serious, which justifies the review?

Skyrim is completely awesome.
posted by Nelson at 6:24 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yahtzee is the best game reviewer out there but the criticisms are correct; reviewing only the single player portion of BF3 is neither sensible nor fair.
posted by Justinian at 7:03 PM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


Mr. Bad Example: "I MUST PLAY THIS."

This screenshot had pretty much the same effect on me.
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 9:09 PM on November 11, 2011 [6 favorites]


oh screw it, I'll probably just get Skyrim anyway

Oh man. I just started playing this tonight. I will just say this: I'm pretty hard to please when it comes to open-ended games like this, and this has totally blown my socks off so far. It reminds me of when HL2 came out and it felt like it was years ahead of its time compared to everything else, and you simply felt compelled to play. Skyrim has set new standards for games in this genre that will probably be struggling to catch up to for a few years. So fun, so insanely big, and I'm not quite sure why I'm not playing right now instead of typing all this out.
posted by SpacemanStix at 9:50 PM on November 11, 2011


I don't have money for Skyrim, I still have many games to beat.
I don't have money for Skyrim, I still have many games to beat.
I don't have money for Skyrim, I still have many games to beat.

ARGH! WHY AM I READING THIS THREAD?!
posted by dirigibleman at 9:59 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Artw: i'm seriously questioning your gamer cred now with your flawed presentation of both Battlefield 3 and Xenosquad.
posted by yifes at 10:56 PM on November 11, 2011


Artw: Battlefield is one of the historically greatest PC online muliplayer shooters, and Battlefield 3 is one of the best iterations of that formula to date. Your me-fi post is like if they released a sequel to X-COM with the best turn-based tactical combat to date, and you link the one review that focuses on the terrible online realtime multiplayer mode, and call the game reviled and wonder why it has a high metacritic score.
posted by yifes at 11:05 PM on November 11, 2011


dirigibleman: "ARGH! WHY AM I READING THIS THREAD?!"

Because your will to not purchase this game is breaking, and you are hoping for someone on the internet to validate your eventual cave-and-buy. I am happy to provide this modest service - you are not a bad, irresponsible person for purchasing Skyrim. You can purchase Skyrim and those other games will wait patiently for you to get around to playing them three months from now. All your friends are doing it. Give in. Relax. Feel the tension in your shoulders melt away. Three clicks and Skyrim is yours. If your SO complains, some guy on the Internet made you do it. And we know all about those guys on the Internet, don't we?

(Disclosure: this comment is mostly for my own benefit, though I'd be thrilled if it is of value to others)
posted by vanar sena at 12:07 AM on November 12, 2011 [2 favorites]


These are the kinds of games that have driven me largely away from gaming.

Ayuh.

reviewing only the single player portion of BF3 is neither sensible nor fair.

Of course it's sensible. It's nice to have one reviewer who will actually review the bits of shooters I'll play.
posted by rodgerd at 12:45 AM on November 12, 2011


I'm playing Skyrim and Arkham City at the moment, popping back and forth depending on my mood. Problem with that is when I'm wandering around Skyrim I keep hitting the left bumper to activate detective mode and find the Riddler clues.

Both are enormous fun but Skyrim, honestly, just feels like Fallout 3 to me, except with swords. It's great and I'm going to play the shit out of it but it hasn't done anything innovative so far (I'm at level 11, so there's plenty more to go) and in a lot of ways feels really clunky. It's a fantasy mod for Fallout 3.

But Battlefield 3 and MW3...well, I have played both of those games ninety-six times before, so I guess I'm happy enough to stick with being Batman for only the second time, and Generic Fantasy Bearded Dude for the dozenth. And next week I'll be Dildo-Whack Guy (and in a game!)
posted by tumid dahlia at 5:33 AM on November 12, 2011


I myself have done some of the reviling of Battlefield around these parts, but the game is really the multiplayer. If that's not what you're reviewing, you're not really reviewing Battlefield. Don't get me wrong: single-player is awful. But only addressing that would be like reviewing a version of Skyrim that had no exploration, just the main quest line, linearly laid out, or nothing more than the Challenge Maps in Arkham City. Not only are those very small parts of the larger games, they're not especially indicative of what that larger game is actually like either.

Anyway, since we're all over the place here, allow me to point out that on XBLA/PSN the "demo" for Saint's Row 3 is actually the character creator. You have to create a THQ account if you want to upload your character(s) to their site for late use, but otherwise, have fun.
posted by Amanojaku at 8:35 AM on November 12, 2011


Yahtzee is the best game reviewer out there but the criticisms are correct; reviewing only the single player portion of BF3 is neither sensible nor fair.

Sensible? Fair? You have completely misunderstood the point of Zero Punctuation.
posted by straight at 9:14 AM on November 12, 2011


Playing Skyrim right now is insane. Not only will it be much cheaper a year from now, with mods and patches it will easily be a game 5x better than the one that's out now (maybe as much as 10 or 20 times better) if Oblivion and Morrowind are any guide.
posted by straight at 9:17 AM on November 12, 2011 [2 favorites]


only addressing that would be like reviewing a version of Skyrim that had no exploration, just the main quest line, linearly laid out, or nothing more than the Challenge Maps in Arkham City. Not only are those very small parts of the larger games, they're not especially indicative of what that larger game is actually like either.


But if there was an audience of people with no interest in playing the mode that makes up the "larger game," isn't it good if they have somebody to tell them which games they'd be interested in? You say "single-player is awful" like it's a self-evidence fact of the universe, but those of us who haven't actually bought the game (but might if we didn't know better!) have to find that out somewhere. Might as well be from Zero Punctuation.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 9:24 AM on November 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


But if there was an audience of people with no interest in playing the mode that makes up the "larger game," isn't it good if they have somebody to tell them which games they'd be interested in? You say "single-player is awful" like it's a self-evidence fact of the universe, but those of us who haven't actually bought the game (but might if we didn't know better!) have to find that out somewhere. Might as well be from Zero Punctuation.

Then that's something a reviewer should put in the context of a larger review that also mentions the multiplayer. This way people with a variety of tastes can find the review useful, and the reviewer can say he actually reviewed the game, as opposed to a bit of it. I would be just as annoyed by a review that addressed nothing but the multiplayer.
posted by Amanojaku at 1:19 PM on November 12, 2011


Hmm, see, who explicitly labeled their review as being abouyt the single player versus who did not explicitly lable their game as only really being multiplayer and the single player being pointless?
posted by Artw at 1:35 PM on November 12, 2011 [3 favorites]


The thing is the single player campaigns of Bad Company and Bad Company 2 were actually pretty awesome. Interesting, albeit outlandish story lines, well executed humor and character acting, and the ability to play in a non-linear fashion on huge maps.

Battlefield 3 threw all that out the window to go essentially rails style like MW series.

Throw on top of that the cut scene bologna and it felt at times like I was playing Dragons Lair. And I LOATHE Dragons Lair.

Multiplayer is awesome as usual though, so EA won't ever learn.
posted by cloax at 1:49 PM on November 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


Hmm, see, who explicitly labeled their review as being abouyt the single player versus who did not explicitly lable their game as only really being multiplayer and the single player being pointless?

Ha. Very good point.
posted by Amanojaku at 2:06 PM on November 12, 2011


MW3s multiplayer is what you get if you put a bunch of meth addicted sharks in a few tiny fishtanks connected by a bunch of tunnels and then you throw bloody chum in the water.

This is totally true. What I discovered a few nights ago is that sometimes, I actually REALLY LIKE being one of the meth-addicted sharks. I never played much Black Ops multiplayer because when the game released, the game was buggy enough on PC that multiplayer was a pain.

On the flipside, Modern Warfare 3 promised me dedicated servers, then gave me those servers in the most passive-aggressive way possible. "Fine, here's your fucking servers. Oh, but no ranked matches ever. And we're hiding the server browser by default. And when you finally figure out how to see all the available servers and filter out all the passworded, empty and full servers, you'll only find TWENTY-FOUR open servers available. Fuck you, play shitty peer-to-peer networked games like everyone else, you fucking PC elitist fuck." For that reason alone, Battlefield 3 wins any multiplayer argument.
posted by chrominance at 2:48 PM on November 12, 2011


RAMIREZ! GO FIND A DEDICATED SERVER WITH SOME OPEN SLOTS!
posted by tumid dahlia at 4:29 PM on November 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


I happen to like multiplayer, not because I'm good at twitch shooting (my K/D ratio is horrible), but because I can rank up and support my squad and win games by helping in other ways. Revive, drop health and ammo, provide support fire (I love laying down some metal). Some guys from tactical gamer have created a solution for VOIP so that it's incredibly easy to get into a squad that actually wants to work together to win.

But the thing I love best about BF3 is the mix of arcade and reality, and of course the ability to hop into a tank or a chopper or a jet. What I hope for next is more extended multi-player campaigns, with squad leaders, theatre commanders, massive 128 vs. 128 maps, etc. BF3 will only continue to get better as the mod community gets into the engine and tweaks it. Project Reality BF3 is going to be insane.
posted by joecacti at 6:03 AM on November 14, 2011


Skyrim, honestly, just feels like Fallout 3 to me, except with swords

They're nothing alike. In Skyrim, I bash the hell out of mole rats skeevers, play hit and run with the occasional super-mutant giant, hone my lockpicking skills, and remember to sleep for my well-rested bonus. I even took the Nuca-cola Oddities Museum tour!

(seriously, though, the feel is very similar, but there's no other company/game I'd rather have imported game concepts and mechanics than Bethesda/F3, if anyone was going to do it. At least Skyrim made jumping slightly less limited in that you can jump-scramble up difficult terrain.)

Playing Skyrim right now is insane. Not only will it be much cheaper a year from now, with mods and patches it will easily be a game 5x better than the one that's out now (maybe as much as 10 or 20 times better) if Oblivion and Morrowind are any guide.

I'm seldom on the cutting edge of anything, but I have to say it's pretty fun to be having a conversation about Stormcloak racism on MeFightClub and have someone ask "do they actually say 'cleanse the land of elves'?" and for an appropriate reply to be "that's what this Stormcloak bigwig just said" like it's an event that just happened for the first time (or just a handful of times). The wikis are bare. We're discovering new (fictional) lands! It's actually pretty cool. Very true, that, about the mods, but now that I'm playing ES on console, it (sadly) won't make any difference.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 9:20 AM on November 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


@Durn Bronzefist Well, as you observe, they're both first person adventure type games, developed by the same company, so there's a lot of similar gameplay. But I don't really understand the complaints about gameplay being similar.

To pick an extreme example, real life has identical gameplay whether you're playing as a cube dwelling computer geek or someone trying to escape poverty by joining the army, or the scion of a wealthy hotel magnate (though obviously that last is playing on easy mode). The fight mechanics, physics engine, etc are all identical. And the death penalty is brutal no matter what.

I suspect that as the first person adventure genre of game becomes increasingly realistic we'll see game mechanics for all of them become all but interchangeable. The essential difference is story, characters, etc.

Honestly I wish there'd been a bit more similarity, I want hardcore mode for Skyrim, and while I'm sure it'll be modded in sooner or later, I'm still surprised they didn't make it part of the official game. Heck, they could even have included some new magic to go along, spells to suppress hunger and thirst, magic items to do the same, etc.
posted by sotonohito at 9:53 AM on November 14, 2011


That's true; whomoever made this office game obviously works for the same company that made that earlier school game, and the restaurant and bookstore games I tried out. Same graphics, very similar cultures; even the same avatar!

It wasn't a criticism from me (I think the person I was responding to meant it that way, though). I love both games, and as I said, I'm happy to see the crossover effect. The lockpicking is good. I like the well-rested bonus. It's not that the tour mechanism is not emulating life better than having to approach and initiate new dialogue portions (which is the way it used to be done) but that, at this point, it's still starkly idiosyncratic -- the work of one company or even I suspect one developer. It's like reading Aaron Sorkin dialogue; possibly the work of different minds coming together but suspiciously like different inflections of the same voice. I suppose that might be counter-immersive. If I see many more similarities, it might be.

There do seem to be many people who don't like that the compass carried over, though, and I agree that it works in F3 in a way that it just does not in Skyrim.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:51 AM on November 14, 2011


It wasn't a criticism from me (I think the person I was responding to meant it that way, though).

It was me. I guess it was more of an initial observation...I've played a bit more of it since and have decided I prefer it to Fallout 3. A lot of it feels a bit samey but it's a good samey, a comfortable samey.
posted by tumid dahlia at 9:26 PM on November 14, 2011


Personally I'm glad I don't have to get good at another fiddly lockpicking mechanic. brb opening master-level chests with unleveled skills.
posted by ArmyOfKittens at 11:41 PM on November 14, 2011


Durn Bronzefist: "I'm seldom on the cutting edge of anything, but I have to say it's pretty fun to be having a conversation about Stormcloak racism on MeFightClub"

I agree here with pretty much everything. I rarely buy games within a year of release, but I'm glad I ignored my best judgement re: legendary Bethesda launch-day bugs and picked it up. A big part of it is MeFightClub - the MFC Skyrim thread is almost like the good bits of playing co-op.
posted by vanar sena at 1:38 AM on November 15, 2011


brb opening master-level chests with unleveled skills.

*Awaits lockpick DLC.*

100 lockpicks for only 100 MS points? SOLD!
posted by tumid dahlia at 5:21 AM on November 15, 2011


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