Overview and review:
“Battlefield 4 is a 2013 first-person shooter video game developed by Swedish video game developer EA Digital Illusions CE (DICE) and published by Electronic Arts. It is a sequel to 2011's Battlefield 3 also developed by DICE and published by Electronic Arts.
Battlefield 4 for the most part builds upon the gameplay systems and mechanics that are found within BF4, with a few occasional new 'innovations', the forefront of these additions being DICE's levolution concept. Levolution comes in two different forms, mirco-levolution and macro-levolution.
Macro-levolution events are large set-piece event's either triggered by player interaction such as players destroying some support pillars to collapse a large skyscraper (with an in-game objective on the top floor) in the center of the map (kicking up a massive dust cloud throughout the map and bringing the objective closer to ground level). Or timed weather events that through their interactions with the player cause dynamic changes to their gameplay, one example of this being the storm on Paracel storm, that whips up the waves making it harder for boats to gain (and keep) line of sight to each other.
Where as micro-levolution includes effects such as shooting a fire extinguisher to fill the room with obscuring clouds, car alarms going off when stepped on, metal detectors going off once passed through, or cutting the power in a room to reduce others' visibility.”
All of what I've written above is basically the sales pitch that EA and DICE created for this game, which in practice makes the game sound like a great addition to the Battlefield franchise, where in really it's more of a diluted clone designed to appeal to the widest possible ordinance without once asserting itself or it's core values. It feels like a political candidate that is popular due to them not having an opinion on anything, that then just go's with what's popular at that moment in time. Basically it's having a identity crisis, does it want to be this years ego shooter or a team based tactical game, sometimes I'm not even sure the developers themselves know.
Due to this Battlefield 4 is plagued with a host of problems (some small others glaring) that even over two years later still remain. These range from it's pretty yet poorly designed maps, it's complex and somewhat confusing attachments system and the host of poor or pointless gadgets that seem to have been added into the game just to be used as a advertising figure. Such as the issues with 'net-code' that can still be a issue now in 2015, with a possible solution being tested as I write this review.
Then we have the usual subscription service that divides not only opinion but the player base, Battlefield premium. I could say a whole essay of things on this topic alone but suffice to say it one the surface is one of the better subscription/premium systems I have seen (in terms of pure volume of content). Yet the quality of this content as with the overall game is definitely lacking, with most of the new maps only lasting in rotation for a week or two, while the new game modes where never carried to the later DLC maps. Which is sad as both Carrier assault and Chain-link are both some of the more innovative game-modes Battlefield has seen since Rush was introduced. This is not to say the whole DLC package is without merit, as the weapons that accompany the maps are not overpowered in most cases (stopping a pay-to-win situation from being created) though sadly several fan favourites where sectioned off into DLC. Dragons teeth also stands out as extraordinary compared to the other DLC's and the core game, in terms of both the maps themselves and the game-modes included with it.
Overall this game pains me... It feels like the death-knell for a series I have loved for around ten years now. It feels like it's given up it's core beliefs and allowed 'EPIC MOMENTS' to be popularised within it's advertising and game mechanics over the old tactical team play of old Battlefield titles, which produced these epic moments via the virtue of that focused gameplay. I want to love this game, I really do but in the end it just frustrates me and upsets me to see something you love die a slow painful death. This isn't a bad game by any standards.. It's just not a good Battlefield game. Basically this game is one that can be fun but it won't ever be that Battlefield experience that the EA & DICE claim it is.
This concludes my overview of Battlefield 4 and my review, below I will break down some of the issues (if not all) I listed above, while creating suggestions and alternative answers to them. If you have any comments to make on the points I made above or the one's I'll make below feel free to do so, I will try to respond to any question (or response) as quickly as I can.
In-depth discussion and proposed alterations:
First off lets take a look at probably the most glaring issue with the game, that being the imbalance in the risk/reward of kills verses objective play or to simplify it a bit, the reason playing the objective (PTO) is dying in public games. There are many, many reasons for this, all are partially correct if not wholly. These included the enlarged player base, the games pre-launch advertising, incentivisation of kills and skill shots over objectives, play how you want and the 'Epic moment' stylisation of content producers.
Many of these comeback to the earlier point of Battlefield 4 being in the midst of an identity crisis, let's focus on the idea Battlefield was based on, team-based, tactical objective focused game play and move forward analysing these in relation to these (a few of these can be grouped together so they will be covered as such).
The advertising campaign DICE & EA lead was for the most part based upon the core values of the Battlefield series. Yet it did also try to emphasise some of the weaker aspects of the game as key features that set this game apart from the rest. These being the set-piece Levolution events that dominated the pre-launch trailers and b-roll footage. So much so that when people first got into the game they just wanted to trigger them all. Many of these require dedicating a large portion of your time to activating and/or in fact making the gameplay of the map significantly worse after their triggering. One such example is in Seige of Shanghai, where the tower will usually fall within the first few minutes due to someone sitting in their deployment with a tank shooting at the pillars. A tank mind you being one of the more important battlefield assets your team is provided with. So not only does this hamper the gameplay experience in cases it also requires you to take yourself out of the action putting your team at a disadvantage.
The advertising campaign as well should have possibly instead focused on a more team-based tactical approach like many the fan-made movies from BF3 and 4 have managed to do while still getting people excited for the game. This situation was not helped post-release by the fact of the numerous Battlefield content procedures making guides on how to trigger these events. Which just ended up adding extra emphasis of this currently ill aligned gameplay mechanic.
After launch many a content producer as well as EA's own 'only in battlefield' videos constantly focused on the wild, crazy and idiotic aspects of the game. Things like rendezooking or launching a tank across the map with twenty plus anti-tank mines, while funny or epic on occasions they have become the norm within public battlefield games leading to not only an often waste of a valuable resource but the fact that a team has had at least one person doing nothing for them all game, leaving them at a definite disadvantage.
Sadly there is no 'cure' for this as a thirty second video of a once in a million shot will always be more popular that a half hour video of a squad or team working together to achieve victory. As this is how the mindless masses of the gamer world work... yet we can try to limit peoples willingness to do such things by insensitivity winning the game or playing the objective.
Now lets look at the core issue of the failing team play dynamic, the incentivisation of kills and skill shots over objectives as well as the imbalance between the and the risk/reward factors of these actions. To look at this and analysis it in detail we firstly need to create or set up the theoretically abstract situation where this take place. In this example the average kill death ratio (K/D) will be taken to be one kill for every death, we will then set this as our base risk factor that all others will correlate to.
So lets look at current the risk/reward system, where for an abstract risk of one you gain 100pts. Now lets look at arming the M-COM in Rush, this is worth 200pts but a player may die four or so time to complete this action giving it a risk rating four times that of a kill for only double the reward. This is a similar situation for the destruction of the M-COM, which is worth 500pts. Now, both of these M-COM's need to be destroyed before the attackers loose all their tickets, typically seventy or so. So in this theoretically abstract example we'll say each M-COM on average requires thirty-five lives to arm it and let it be destroyed giving us a risk factor thirty five times larger than a kill, which is worth a fifth of the points. This creates a situation where players are more likely to kill someone over pushing for and arming the M-COM. Now I know what you're probably thinking, “Doesn't the M-COM destruction reward you in more ways than just points?” And while you're correct there as it also puts you a step closer to winning the game, that matter very little to players as there is no real insensitive to win the game, compared to being at the top of the scoreboard due to the thirty-odd kills you got sitting at the back with a sniper rifle.
Now let's look at a simple proposed change to the risk/reward values for kills and objectives, using the same theoretically abstract situation:
Kill - 50pts
Headshot bonus - 5pts
Kill assist - 1-50pts (Any assist over 50% automatically grants 50pts)
Marksman headshot bonus - (Enemies distance away/4)pts (enemy has to be over 50m away, a 100m headshot would be worth 25pts. Capped at 50pts)
Spot assist 10pts
Double kill bonus - 10pts
Triple kill bonus - 20pts
Multi kill -40pts (for 4 or more kills)
Savior kill - 20pts
Avenger kill -10pts
Killstreak stop - (5x enemy kills)pts
Suppression assist - 25pts
M-COM armed - 200pts
M-COM destroyed - 800pts
M-COM disarmed - 400pts
M-COM attack/defend kill bonus - 25pts
M-COM arming/disarming kill bonus (killing someone arming or disarming the M-COM) – 50pts
This places a greater emphasis on the team-play orientation of the mode and tries to (not perfectly) make the objective the true core focus of both the players and the game mode. This way a successful arm and destruction attempt that (theoretically abstractly) should take 35 kills to do so (as well as numerous arms and disarms which we can ignore) will leave both teams sitting at 1000pts (Attackers) and 1750pts (Defenders).
Most people will point out two facts when looking across this theoretical situation. Firstly the defenders still have gained more points from this situation and secondly the attackers will surely of killed almost as many defenders as attackers have killed defenders. Both of these points are true but what must remember is the following:
In regards to the first point each kill the defender gets also contributes towards towards their teams overall goal (reducing the attackers to 0 tickets). Meaning that overall both teams have reached a point closer to balanced in the overall matches objectives (with defenders still in the lead due to there being multiple bases.)
In regards to the second and first point, most bases taken will be taken before all the attackers tickets have been used up. Meaning that the difference in points between the two teams will in most cases be closer together. This also helps balance out the overall teams victory chance as now the difference would be in the attackers favour but due to the multiple bases it then breaks even. Thus allowing for the game mode to be overall more balanced between the two teams while also making sure objective based team-play is the focus of round due to the incentive of these greater point values.
The next topic to look at is the idea of gadget proliferation and the issues that this abundance of gadgets has caused, not only in terms of balance but team play as well.
In Battlefield 4 each class started off with roughly 5-8 gadgets each, for the most part these where well balanced (for the majority) with each if not a little bland in their differences. The issue that has occurred through the DLC is the massive influx of new gadgets that either promoted selfish gameplay or had no real useful function to speak of.
As I've said, for the majority of the gadgets in the core Battlefield 4 game they where well balanced to each other. A few exceptions being the C4 and the mortar, which are once again have low risk/reward ratios (remember the lower the ratio the easier it is to gain points for while not putting yourself at risk). C4 I will address in the vehicle section, while all I can really say about the mortar is that it is one of those gadgets that is not conductive towards team play in it's current state.
One suggestion I have thought of and also heard of would be to make it so you do not place the mortar down and that instead the gadget consists of a tablet that shows a blank map of a area roughly 50-75m around you. This map will not show enemies upon it and you would have to use your head to determine where to place the rounds. Once you have selected where to fire the off map mortars will fire a 2-4 round mortar barrage that has a large inaccuracy and spread while also taking several seconds to arrive at the target. Meaning you cover an area without being able to be pinpoint accurate while also increasing the risk factor due to you needing to be near the action to actually use it. Initially when you spawn with it you will need to be alive for 60 seconds before being able to use it and the after firing it it will have a 120-180 second cool-down on it that persists after you die.
Back on topic. These gadgets whether they are part of the core game or expansions need to make sure they have a actual team-based advantage as well as drawback, so that they are not a auto include in a classes load out. Gadgets like the Ucav should never, never be included as they not only are a free kill they cause people to wait around for that 60 second time at the back of the map just to use them to, meaning they are not helping their team and once more causing people to loose sight of the core concept of the Battlefield series.
Now as I said I would talk about C4 in the vehicle section let's now talk about the situation that seems to of arose in Battlefield 4. This would be the imbalance between vehicles and their impact on the battlefield, as well as the weapons and gadgets used to tackle them. I feel a large portion of this come from the underwhelming and somewhat papermache feel the vehicles in battlefield give off, making APS ( a terrible game mechanic) a must have addition to any vehicle that can use it. I understand right now a lot of you may be screaming at me for being a idiot and having now idea what I'm saying but just hear me out.
Currently in battlefield there are a thousand and one way to destroy a tank, a machine meant to cause a lone infantry to run away in fear of it's might. I do not, I repeat do not propose a system change that doesn't also have it's drawback for the vehicles. For this following theoretical abstract situation we will be using the MBT as our test subject, comparing and contrasting my proposed changes to the current system.
The current MBT can withstand on average three rockets, Rpgs or tank shells before being destroyed. Sadly my changes to the vehicle system are so radical I can't accurately give a comparison yet I will say that someone who knows the weak spots of the tank will at most require one extra shot on average. Now I guess I best reveal my new radical solution to vehicles, which to be honest is stolen straight from another game, with that game being Warthunder. In Warthunder, tank combat is realistically modelled with armour thickness, round penetration and interior damage. I feel this system is much better than our current 'living tanks' situation we currently have. This would allow skilled players to aim at the correct spot on a tank to cause maximum damage while also allowing Tanks to once again be something to be feared on the battlefield.
There are probably two or three points that people will be thinking of, one of those will be how will the repair tool work another will possibly be how will you balance this and the third will be I thought you where going to talk about C4. In the next three paragraphs I will address each of these points individually.
Firstly in much a similar way to Warthunder, each component of the tank will, when damaged need a certain amount of time to be repaired (with the game having a priority for which is repaired first). The repair tool will be the system to repair these, removing the regenerating health, requiring greater teamwork between the tank and infantry. Due to the situations where multiple systems within the tank that are damaged repair times will most likely take longer in average requiring the vehicle to be out of combat for longer. This will require the tank to either limp away in retreat or be covered by supporting infantry. Making a fire and retreat shot potentially more effective while also once more increasing the level of teamwork to increase as well, due to the need for the supporting infantry, completing the combined arms feel of Battlefield.
Secondly in regards to balance it allows rockets to have increased characteristics for them to be compared and balanced upon. As each weapon will need a different penetration value, shrapnel cone spread as well and many more. In regards to increasing the potency of tanks and all vehicles and balance, a simple yet effective change would be to increase they're re-spawn timers by 50% or so (also just remove the instant vehicle spawn setting, it is just plain stupid). Making them resources you strive to keep alive much more than currently, once more rewarding team play and objective play.
Thirdly C4. C4 is currently not only the most effective anti-tank weapon it is also the most effective anti-infantry weapon. With it's ability to be thrown long distances with no arm time and a infinite detonation range, not to mention the high damage it does. To balance this I would remove the ability to throw it, requiring it to be placed on a surface with a half second or so arming animation, this could be a wall, a floor or even the side of a tank (though the tank would have to be stationary). It would keep it's high level of damage against infantry and light vehicles while having it reduced for heavy vehicles, this would turn in from the best solo infantry tank killer into a guerilla weapon used to trap infantry, take out lightly armoured targets and immobilise heavily armoured targets, with two C4 packages destroying a MBTs tracks, requiring it to undergo a lengthy repair, leaving it vulnerable to other enemies, once again increasing the potency of teamwork. Lastly I would limit C4 to being on the Recon class only, giving the class the ability to have more of a saboteur role.
Another area that could do with some rebalance or adjusting is the helicopters, where currently the scout is the out and out winner over even the attack helicopter, below I will list some changes I feel could differentiate each vehicle while allowing them to have their own select role:
-Is pretty much fine as is (now they have removed the ability to have launchers on the side, though I personally would've removed the ability to have a repair tool equipped and kept the launchers, the scout is meant to be a glass cannon).
-Up it's manoeuvrability, making it the most nimble of all the vehicles.
-Add a extra set of Flares or ECM. These would be on the same recharge system, meaning that if you used both you'd have to wait the normal amount of time to recharge one (not both) and twice as long for both sets to come back. If you only used one you' wait the normal amount of time (As you do currently).
-In exchange for this bump up the re-spawn timer by 25-75% making it worth keeping it alive and punishing mistakes (If you're on a instant vehicle spawn server, I don't pity you)
(This way it can still be brought down by an AA team just gives them a chance to survive or retreat)
-Remove the secondary transport positions (the transport positions where you can use your gun or equipment)
-Replace the two secondary transport positions with four interior transport positions (unable to use your gun or equipment but better protection from small arms fire, ect..)
-Add a extra set of Flares or ECM. These would be on the same recharge system, meaning that if you used both you'd have to wait the normal amount of time to recharge one (not both) and twice as long for both sets to come back. If you only used one you' wait the normal amount of time (As you do currently).
-Increase the mini-guns damage vs infantry while also decreasing their accuracy, giving the bullets a (much?) larger spread.
(With this it allows for a dedicated helicopter team to work while allowing for a squad to still be transported within. It also increases its survivability against AA allowing it to be used as a transport and not as a 'get to the top of that building and abandon vehicle'.
Next we have the issue of class and weapons balance and how these two interact. This has been a topic I have spent no small amount of personal time dedicated too and for the longest time the solution or even a plausible possible solution escaped me, that was until playing Destiny and Call of duty black ops 3 (It would be at this point I ask you to remain with me for a bit as it may seem as I have lost the plot).
Both of these games do something intriguing that I feel can be re-purposed and re-worked into the Battlefield franchise to allow for a compromise between the play how you want to play and dictated play styles of past Battlefield games.
What is the intriguing feature you ask. It's simple.... Sub-classes.
By dividing our now greatly diversified main classes down into four main classes each with two sub-classes we can strike a balance between the many aspects of Battlefield.
For example let's look at the Assault class from Battlefield 4, this class is by far the most popular class in the game, for good reason. It has not only some of the best all round weaponry in the game it is also the only class that lets you heal yourself. If that wasn't enough you can revive players allowing you yourself to physically alter the balance of the whole game.
My proposed example:
Assault Class (Main class)
.Armed with a choice of PDW's, Shotguns or DMRs'
.Has access to the Defibrillator, Small med bag and Large med bag.
.Armed with a choice of Assault rifles, DMRs' or Carbines
.Has access to the Grenade launcher (and all it's variants) as well as two currently unknown gadgets that would also focus on the core concept of this class.
With this set up the more powerful team-play sub-class is left with weaker PVP play reducing it's use as the all round best class, while the stronger PVP sub-class is left with greatly reduced sustain necessitating the need for interplay between the two newly formed sub-classes.
This can be done across the other classes as well making it harder to be unhelpful to your teams overall 'war effort'. For example not allowing the Sniper recon subclass to have the spawn beacon making it harder for one person to sit at the edge of the map all game finishing the game 10-0 and still being near the top of the leaderboards.
Now we come on to the topic of weapon balance. In many regards the aforementioned class balance has addressed many of these issues needing very little to be mentioned in a stand alone topic.
I would however like to address the issue of choice when it come to weapon customisation and the issue and/or flaws that the current system creates. By no means to I think that is a bad system, I just feel it often creates situations of confusion and weapons set ups that hinder the weapons handling rather than improve them.
When I look at a weapon and it's attachments in BF4 I am almost immediately confused and lost mainly due to the mass choice of it all and sometimes poor explanation of what these changes to the weapons stats actually does, leaving me just guessing for 50% of the changes I make.
This plethora of choice is amazing but i feel it needs a way of being curtailed and controlled, allowing for greater effectiveness overall (It might even allow for more attachment to be added in if done correctly).
What is this solution? Well it's actually something DICE had previously created for another game, Medal of Honor
Warfighter, yes you guessed it it's the Upgrade package system.
The Upgrade package system works exactly how it sounds. Instead of unlocking and attaching individual attachments you attach a whole package of attachments focused in a certain direction.
I feel a lot of people's first reaction to this made be confusion in regards to when i said it allowed for a great variety of choice, well that variety comes down to the implementation of the system. Lets look at the following example I've made.
Lets take the M416 Assault rifle which currently has the choice of the following attachments for it's Grip, Barrel, Sights and Rail:
(As well as all the fraction equivalent sights, suppressors and grips.)
In the weapon package system you would have the following choices (initially):
-Close quarters assembly
Now lets look at the Close quarters assembly in detail and see what it includes:
-Red dot sight
-Flash hider (Or other appropriate barrel option I get so lost with the barrel attachments)
Looking at the above list of options you must feel like you've lost out on choice but remember there are all the other fraction options as well as different close range optics like the Holo sight, which can now be unlocked by using this Package with the weapon giving each package it's own unlock progression (unless it's decided to stick with the current system and then they could be available in battlepacks. Please can we not do this).
Due to each package having it's own specialization extra attachments could be added in to be unlocked for these packages allowing for a more in-depth customisation, that at the same time allows even first time users to understand what each attachment will do for their weapon.
When looking at the perceived failure of the Nightmaps within CTE I feel it comes down to the fact we are given too much information to help us deal with these situations as well as the fact the IRNV and FLIR scopes have little to any down sides. Turning it into "an exercise in how to use IRNV scopes" as Supra put it in his video. This is due to loads of additional features that cater to the 'casual' player, when I say casual player I am talking about the sort of casual we would of had back in BF2 which has now become a dominating percentage of how the players view a Battlefield game should be.
Anyway lets move onto the solutions and/or changes I've thought of:
Firstly lets look at the minimap in BF4, it provides a plethora of information often being more use than simply looking for targets (Unless the target is using a suppressor but I'll get to that in a moment). It allows you to know the position of a enemy halfway across the map, which is unrealistic and often makes the use of a suppressor a overpowering advantage, with the reduced muzzle velocity being negligible in most cases.
This could be changed, so that when a target fires on the mini-map there weapon will have a "sound-range" on the weapon, which will vary between weapons( High caliber sniper-rifles having much larger sound-ranges than say a pistol). Vehicles would also works off this system of sound-ranges but due to their weapons this will rarely effect game-play unless on the larger maps. What this sound range will denote it the range a enemy player will spot you on their mini-map when you fire. Suppressors will decrease this range but not flat out remove it, allowing for people to still react to you while allowing you to get in closer, balancing out the negatives of the suppressor without being a flat out 'good trade'.
In regard to the 3D spotting, It seems that it should only be available in the new player servers (The ones that allow only ranks under 50 to join them) allowing for them to be a aid to newer players while not ruining the balance of the game in higher level games or maybe having this setting as an server setting.
Active spotting would remain but much like the sound-range only people within a certain range of the person who spotted the target would see them on their mini-map. Gadgets like Tugs and Motion balls would be the exception of this sending their data to their 'owner' no matter the range while transmitting the data to players around in a similar manner to how normal spotting would now work (In the new proposed version of it).
After this I moved onto the issue of the current attachment Vs gadget issue between IRNV, FLIR and smoke. I feel changing the way these work while also adding in a additional type or night vision scope the light intensification optic, would leave us with two different types of night vision scopes that could have their own benefits and drawbacks. Below are a few suggestions and alterations that could be used to create these benefits and drawbacks:
IRNV - Can see targets night or day with high target definition. Can 'see' through smoke (What I mean is it can see the smoke that has been 'heated' up by the player within it. This appears as a area around the player that becomes smaller and clearer the longer the player remains in one spot)*. Has a battery limit (that recharges when you're not ADSing). Takes longer to ready the weapon when equipped, compared to standard optics. Cannot be turned on/off. Susceptible to blinding by flares.
IINV - Can only see targets at night with normal target definition. Can be turned on/off. No battery life/limit allowing indefinite ADS. Cannot see through smoke. Takes longer to ready the weapon when equipped, compared to standard optics. Susceptible to blinding by flares but can turn of the night vision to avoid the worst of the effects.
*with this a person behind smoke would never be viable from either side if looking through with a IRNV, but person standing still arming a objective or hiding in wait, this would stop the smoke INRV Spam while not making smoke without a counter. It would also rewarding accuracy and skill of a player who has learnt how to use a IRNV to counter smoke (In regards to the extra lead and factors he has to take into account to land his shot).
The last topics I wish to speak about are map design, Battle pick-ups as well as team play scoreboard incentives.
Currently in BF4 maps seem to be designed from a looks point of view first, combined arms approach second. While this makes for some very, very pretty maps the game play suffer for it, with most maps becoming a scramble for the middle flag or flags, even Propaganda BF4's best map still suffers from this. They need to focus on allowing each type of combat to exist in inter lapping layers that don't force or cause these horrible fishbowl gunfights where each team has 90% in one part of the map. Maybe start with certain set pieces of terrain that will include combat you want, linking them between each other in different ways and creating an overall more fluid combined arms experience.
Now we move on to Battle pick-ups, these are another subject that divided the community at launch. Now however most see them as a pointless addition that has no real effect on the battlefield. Falling way short of DICE's proclamation that we'd be fighting over these as potent side objectives. For me they need to be something each team wants to dedicated time and manpower to take. There are multiple routes that could be taken but my two favourites are the following:
Prototype vehicles, these would be vehicles that using the new vehicles system would be even more potent than their standard counterparts. The possibilities for how include (but are not limited to) thicker remodelled armour, making them harder to penetrate and take down or maybe it's armed with enhanced weaponry that has a much higher armour penetration rating than the standard armaments. And these could be map and/or fraction specific allowing for a range of prototypes to take the field. To balance this they would start locked away in a vault perhaps, that requires an interaction to begin opening it, which would also alert enemies players to the fact it's being opened. The vault door would have a set timer on it (much the same to Zavod's bomb) that could be started or stopped by either team and forcing them to defend it till it opens if they wish to secure the vehicle. These vehicles would also only spawn in each vault once (a map might have multiple vaults with different vehicles within them) making them a valuable yet incredibly rare resource on the battlefield.
The second route would be something akin to how the AC-130 spawns in Battlefield 3. Being a side objective or radio tower that when captured allowed for reinforcement vehicles to spawn into the battlefield for the team who captures it. An example of this would be a map that has two jets on each team yet the team who captures the radio tower will have an additional stealth jet available to spawn into, making the other team want to dedicate resources to this dynamic objective.
Last but not least is the idea of leaderboards and leaderboard incentives. Early in this I quickly addressed the idea of changing the point system to effect position of the scoreboard now I wish to address how the leaderboards' presented and with what information it shows to everyone. In the current system it will show only kills, deaths and your overall point score. In my proposed changes it would revert back to how it was shown in Battlefield Bad Company 2, where individual achievements where shown to you only, these would be things like kills, deaths, revives, repairs, ect.. with the main scoreboard that everyone can see showing your overall point score and your objective focused achievements, such as how many M-COM arms you got or maybe how many Conquest flags you defended in the round. All things that encourage teamwork and team play, being shown off in a positive light and being reflected in peoples position on the scoreboard.
Leaderboard incentives, is sadly a phrase that doesn't really match with what it actually does. In fact what a leaderboard incentive is, is the following a pool of all your objective based points, captures, defends, arms, disarms, ect, ect... that at the end of the round is then multiplied depending on whether your team won or not. For a winning team the points could be multiplied somewhere in the range of 2.5-5x their initial value where as the loosing teams would only be multiplied by one, not increasing their overall points earn in this round. This increased point value would not show up on the leaderboard and would only be reflected in your progression towards levelling up or unlocks for classes. It would also be dependent on how long you had been in the game with those who had been on that team for a much shorter period of time receiving a lower percentage of the bonus (Top 5 players on the winning team would always get full multiplier value). For example:
Player A has been in the game for the whole match getting a score of 10,500pts, 4,500pts of it from objectives. This would be times by 2.5 as his team won gaining him a total of 6,750pts as a bonus.
Player B has also been in the game for the whole round but switches team half way through the game. He has a score of 6,150pts, 3,000pts of it from objectives yet only 2,000pts from being on the winning team. This would then be times by 2.5 as his team won gaining him a total of 3,000pts as a bonus. Except that due to him switching sides halfway through he will only receive 50% of these bonus points, gaining him 1,500pts as a bonus.
Player C joins the game half way through and has a final score of 5,500pts, 2,400pts of it from objectives. This would then be times by 2.5 as his team won gaining him a total of 3,600pts as a bonus. Due to him joining the game half way through though he will only receive 50% of these bonus points, gaining him 1,800pts as a bonus.
I think eleven pages of word text is more than enough for people to work on for now. If you have any question, critiques or suggestions feel free to leave them down below and I'll get back to you as soon as humanly possible.