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Gamecyte Preview: Battlefield Heroes

Gamecyte reports:

''Assuming you're not the type of gamer who demands every game be drenched in blood and contain only the colors grey and brown, Battlefield Heroes looks quite fine, and I'm of the opinion that DICE has really nailed the approachable, "casual-friendly" look that they're going for. Yes, it's still a game about solving your problems by shooting people, but the whole thing has sort of a "My First FPS" feel to it, from the cartoony graphics to the large-print ammo counters and event warnings to the almost Disney-esque "neener-neener" music that plays when you lose. Even the most vigilant parents and game-hating politicians will be hard-pressed to get up in arms about BF Heroes. Actual game players, on the other hand, may well pick up the slack for them.

As interesting a concept as Heroes is, and as great as a social network could be when centered around an inherently large-team-based game like Battlefield, there's really no way around the main problem: The game I tried at the EA Studio Showcase wasn't very fun to play. I'm willing to grant some leeway here; I know the game is still in production, and any number of things could be tweaked or improved by the time the game hits general release. They'd better be, mind you, because as it is, there are some elements of the game which are unplayably bad.

DICE has dumbed down a number of Battlefield's standard features to keep the game more casual-accessible, and that's not what I take issue with. For instance, players can no longer choose their spawn points; the game now handles that automatically in order to drop players right back into the action. Ammo and resupplying is a thing of the past; all players need only worry about reloading their current clips, and health/vehicle repair can be done at any time, in the field, with a command that needs only to cool down before being available again an unlimited number of times. Again, for a more casual-flavored "My First FPS," these aren't bad choices. It's the actual gameplay and core design which need work.''

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