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Battlefield: Bad Company 2 - Prima Official Strategy Guide

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Shacknews - Xav de Matos

EA president Frank Gibeau has learned that it doesn't matter where you say something, it will find its way onto Twitter. Speaking at the University of Southern California yesterday, Gibeau reportedly stated, "There is going to be a Battlefield 4," and attendees took the news to social media.

Of course, the continuation of the franchise is an inevitability; however, what does the quote mean for the fate of the Bad Company series--the spin-off from the original Battlefield franchise?

An EA representative told Shacknews, "Frank was speaking broadly about the Battlefield brand -- a brand that EA is deeply passionate about and a fan community that EA is committed to."

In only its first week, Battlefield 3 has sold five million copies--this according to internal estimates at Electronic Arts.

Though the Battlefield series isn't known as an annual affair, EA could trade off both the classic Battlefield series and the Bad Company spin-off series to launch a new title franchise annually. Also competing for attention is EA's Medal of Honor series, which was teased on inserts included in Battlefield 3.

Shacknews - Steve Watts

Whatever else you might say about Battlefield 3, you can't deny that the game is (in 1920s parlance) a looker. Its visuals have been the claim to fame throughout EA and DICE's marketing efforts. Now for those curious to see an extremely detailed explanation of how DICE reached this point, Nvidia has released a video of the full keynote speech from its GeForce LAN 6 event, which featured DICE's Johan Andersson explaining the finer points of making games look good, spanning the Battlefield series.

It may be a bit inside-baseball. In fact, it is probably a lot inside-baseball. But Andersson's detailed dissection (via Edge) is a fascinating watch nonetheless, and you can see in five parts below.

Shacknews - Jeff Mattas

A new patch for Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is headed to PC this weekend. The main thrust of the patch is to address stability and performance issues, but it will also remove the SecuROM wrapper from non-Steam versions of the game.

The large 2.6GB patch will be a one-stop update, as it includes all previous patches, though announcement notes that a smaller version for those who've already installed Client R10 was forgone this time in order to prevent the patch from being delayed. "We thought it better to release a larger patch now, than a smaller patch sometime in the future," the announcement notes.

At 4AM UTC on Wednesday morning, the patch will hit Steam's automatic distribution system. Non-Steam users should have access to the patch around the same time, via the game's auto-updater. Manual updates will also be possible. A link to the forums with instructions for users who installed the "Client R11 Public Beta patch" was also provided.

Here's the detailed list of fixes included in the upcoming patch:

  • Removed some memory leaks

  • Fixed crashes when the game attempted to render lots of content (high detail, high FOV or
  • multiple-monitor modes); this should particularly help multi-monitor users

  • Chat window no longer causes lag spikes

  • Chat window reworked opacity & visibility-time is controllable through settings in settings.ini

  • Clantag is remembered when using auto-login

  • Banner URLs can be up to 252 characters in length

  • SecuROM wrapper removed from non-Steam version

  • Minor performance enhancements

  • Reduced rubberbanding on servers with more than 24 active players

  • PrintScreen takes a screenshot, file stored in Documents\BFBC2\Screenshots directory

Bad Company 2's servers will also begin updating "starting at 4AM UTC on Wednesday," and "most of the servers should be updated and visible in the new game client's server browser" by the end of the day.

[Note: The information about patch size above has been changed to correctly indicate that the announcement does not confirm that a smaller version of the patch is in the works for those who had installed Client R10. -Ed.]

Shacknews - Jeff Mattas

It looks like virtual soldiers--particularly those fond of unlockable content--will have plenty of swag to keep them coming back to Battlefield 3. Battlefield 2 was the first game in the series (and one of the first shooters, in general) to contain (the now nearly ubiquitous) persistent unlockable perks, and Battlefield 3 is poised to deliver a list of unlockables that's an order of magnitude larger than that of it's predecessor.

"Compared to Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Battlefield 3 will have more than 10 times the hardware unlocks spread over weapons, weapons attachments, gadgets," notes the fifth entry to the Battlefield 3 Battleblog, "and a huge unlock tree for vehicles alone."

Battlefield 3

Skill-based ribbons and medals are also in the mix, and based on what you've earned, other players can get a general glimpse into your relative level of badassery.

On top of these ingame hardware items, players will also be richly rewarded with medals, ribbons and service stars displaying their skill, commitment, and teamplay prowess. You will be rewarded handsomely in Battlefield 3 for exemplary skill, such as capturing X amount of bases in one round. Excellent teamplayers who keep the team’s vehicles in mint condition and revive fallen comrades will not go unnoticed either. These type of skill-driven rewards are typically handed out in the form of ribbons, and good players can often get more than one ribbon in a single round.

These awards are structured so that players can work toward achieving them without distracting from in-game battles, and some are even commitment-based, like the reward for "playing x amount of hours as a U.S. soldier."

Service Stars are the crown-jewels of achievement, and though unlocked similarly to medals and ribbons, they're described as "hardcore" achievements that apply to your "weapon skill badge, your vehicle, your kit, and your overall rank." They'll be very tough to earn.

The Battleblog notes:

The ultimate bragging right would be for a player to be awarded the rank of Colonel with 100 Service Stars attached, and to have 100 stars in all weapons, kits, and vehicles. Getting there will be a massive task â€" consider that a challenge!

Using a particular gun or vehicle kit will unlock progressive upgrades relative the weapon or kit being used, while accrued experience feeds into the player's overall rank. Those experience points can then be used to "unlocks new weapons, specializations, and camouflages usable by any class."

The announcement goes on to further tout Battlefield 3's "play it your way" mentality, explaining that each of the game's four classes (Assault, Engineer, Support, Recon) are highly customizable. They encourage players to carefully consider how they outfit themselves, given the specific parameters of the battle. Does one kit themselves out with healing equipment before rushing to the front-lines, or bring a 40mm grenade launcher attachment instead?

Battlefield 3 is planned for an October 25 release on PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3. A public beta for the game is set to launch in September.

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