Battlefield 3 Is Free On PC Until June 3rd – YES. FREE.

As of yesterday Electronic Arts (EA) made the blockbuster title Battlefield 3 available for free on their Origin store. The October 2011 title has pretty much run its commercial course and has been replaced by Battlefield 4 which came out in October 2013. EA is making Battlefield 3 available for free under its “On The House” program where EA gives away games it publishes for free for short periods of time. The program is probably an attempt to increase usage of the Origin distribution platform, but you have to use Origin if you buy these games anyway so the deal is still a pretty sweet one.

You can download Battlefield 3 for free right here. Remember the deal runs only until June 3rd so be sure to share the news with your friends and family so they don’t miss out on this opportunity to get a great game for a great price! Everything’s better when it’s free right?

Source: Origin

Image courtesy of EA

EA Promises To Learn From Battlefield 4 Mistakes, Or So It Says…

The first weeks after EA launched the latest widely known massive multiplayer shooter title, Battlefield 4, it was impossible not to spot all the bugs and glitches when playing it, rendering the game unplayable and also highly unstable. It is said that it even went as far as building massive lawsuits against EA, claiming that the publisher had misled investors with their comments claiming that all was good despite knowing in advance that the game would be buggy.

There were also speculations that EA might have learnt a lesson from all of this, something which they have picked up during their recent investor call. According to EA’s Patrick Söderlund, he stated that the Battlefield 4 title was a highly complex game and that their focus to produce a highly innovative game that also delivered 60fps gameplay resulted in problems that they did not foresee. Söderlund goes on to state that he believes Battlefield 4 is a lot more stable since its launch, and that they are “taking multiple steps to evaluate what occurred and incorporate those learnings into our development process for future products, so we don’t experience the same problems again.”

“I would close on the fact that Battlefield 4 remains an amazing game with massive innovation, and we’re confident that gamers will be logging-on to play for a long time to come.” Söderlund stated.

There are also news about EA halting all future DLC for Battlefield 4 until all issues inside the current game have been dealt with (or at least the more severe ones). But what are the actual user opinions on this matter? Of course, the Battlefield 4 concept is ideal, but is the gameplay and overall experience worse that previous titles such as Battlefield 3?

Thank you Ubergizmo for providing us with this information

EA Executive Says Battlefield 4 Can Beat Call Of Duty Ghosts

Speaking with MCV, executive president of the games label at EA – Patrick Soderlund, has reignited the war with Activision and the Call of Duty franchise. Soderlund revealed that EA are throwing everything behind Battlefield 4 to make sure it becomes number one. He believes Battlefield 4 has a great chance of beating Call of Duty Ghosts, both in terms of awards and praise as well as in commercial sales. He believes this opportunity comes from the success EA had with Battlefield 3.

“Maybe they weren’t thinking about us much when we made Battlefield 3, but I can tell you, they are thinking about us now. They need too. We made a dent in the FPS market and we took share from them. And I am not going to give up until I’m No.1 and I am going to make sure I’m No.1.”

As usual EA are putting their plentiful money-supply where their mouth is and striving to be number one is their sole aim in the FPS market.

“We are spending a tonne of money on this, our teams are killing themselves every year to make great games. I want to give our consumers the best I can. We will strive to be No.1. If I said: ‘No.5 is probably fine,’ it’s hard for people to rally behind that message.”

Battlefield 4 launches on October 29th in North America and November 1st in Europe. Call of Duty Ghosts launches on November 5th globally. Both games are available on PC and current generation consoles while Call of Duty Ghosts will also make a showing on the Wii U.

For the most part I don’t think it matters which game emerges victorious as the competition is good for the market. Which title do you think will be better, and which do you think will sell better?

Image courtesy of ravexboxlive.wordpress.com

Battlefield 4 Has Redesigned Suppression Mechanics Says DICE

DICE have been speaking publicly on their blog to tell gamers that the suppression mechanic for Battlefield 4 has been totally redesigned. Let’s be honest the suppression tactics of Battlefield 3 did turn into a bit of a joke at times, particularly if you were playing on the map “Operation Metro”. If you haven’t seen the below video then I definitely encourage you to check it out because it shows how stupid the suppression mechanics of Battlefield 3 could be:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxsbTjPe2fs[/youtube]

Interestingly Alan Kertz, the core gameplay designer, writes that the suppression effect of Light Machine Guns will be increased (aka the support class) while the suppression effect of other weapons is decreased. There is also a “Scope Sway” effect that means when suppressed it becomes harder to aim, this means that suppression actually does something other than altering the way you see like it does on Battlefield 3. The announcement about suppression mechanics changes can be seen in full below:

“No one single gameplay mechanic has been as frequently discussed as the suppression system in Battlefield 3. Suppression will return in Battlefield 4, but we’re redesigning it based on your extensive feedback while keeping the intense feeling of being under fire that a system like Suppression provides.

We’re increasing the suppression effect of Light Machine Guns, exclusive to the Support kit, while other weapons are less suppressive. Additionally, we’ve decreased suppression at close range to ensure that close quarters battles always focus sharply on player skill. Besides changing the visual effects of suppression, we’re also replacing the accuracy penalty in Battlefield 3 with a scope sway effect – similar to what snipers get in Battlefield 3 while suppressed. A skilled, focused player can keep his aim on target and get hits, even while under the effects of Suppression.

Overall, we believe we have a great-performing suppression system in Battlefield 4 that doesn’t interfere in close quarters combat, while at the same time allowing for skilled players of the Support kit to really make a difference. Laying down covering fire as Support means your frontline runners can gain a crucial momentum in medium-range combat and still allows you to combat the improved long-range options we’ve given players who prefer to stay back at long range.”

Image courtesy of EA & DICE

Humble Origin Bundle Is Revealed! Top-Tier Titles For Pay-What-You-Want Prices

After the successes of the Humble Deep Silver Bundle I thought the next amazing bundle would take a while to come around but I have just been proven wrong. The latest Humble Bundle is teaming up with Origin and EA to offer a wide range of top tier titles. As you can see above there is Dead Space and Dead Space 3 on offer, Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate Box, Crysis 2 Maximum Edition, Mirror’s Edge, Medal of Honor, Battlefield 3 and the Sims 3 with Starter Pack DLC.

For once there is a “minimum” for the order, of $1, but for $1 you can pick up Dead Space and Dead Space 3, Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate Box, Crysis 2 Maximum Edition, Mirror’s Edge and Medal of Honor. For meeting or beating the current average of $4.74 you can get Battlefield 3 and the Sims 3 with the Starter Pack DLC.

Unlike many previous bundles EA is allowing 100% of proceeds to go to charity or the humble tip. Yes that’s right EA isn’t taking a penny from any of these game sales, they don’t even give you the option to give them money as part of your purchase. The charities are Human Rights Campaign, Watsi, San Francisco AIDS Foundation, American Cancer Society and American Red Cross. You can also donate part of the amount to the Humble Bundle organisation.

In terms of how the games are delivered, all the titles are given Origin codes. Additionally, you can get Steam codes for Dead Space, Burnout Paradise, Crysis 2, Mirror’s Edge and Medal of Honor. That means in effect you get two of those games and of course if you prefer one platform over the other you can give the other keys to a friend.

So we’d encourage everyone who plays games, even if only infrequently, to pick this bundle up because it is unlikely you’ll ever see all these games this cheap again in the history of EA’s existence.

Image courtesy of Humble Bundle

Intel’s Dual Core Haswell Core i5 4570T Gets Benchmarked

Intel’s Haswell has been out for a while now but there hasn’t been any sign of any sub Core i5 desktop Haswell processors yet. That said these Core i3 units still have a while to go but we can get some kind of estimation of their performance level as benchmarks of a dual core hyper threaded Core i5 4570T have been revealed. With two cores it mirrors what we will probably expect to see from a Haswell Core i3 as most of these are dual core hyper-threaded parts. You can see the specifications of the Core i5 4570T below in the graph. The T moniker denotes the energy efficiency of the unit and this is reflected by the 35W TDP.

In terms of performance it is impressive and performs better than a lot of AMD counterparts with much higher clock speeds and power consumptions. It also delivers performance close to that of Sandy Bridge “K” favourites like the 2500K and 2600K processors. In Battlefield 3 it did particularly well.

In The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim it did equally well showing that less cores doesn’t equal less performance. It dispatched of AMD’s FX-8350 8 core processor and blew away the best Ivy Bridge Core i3 dual core part from the last generation,  the i3 3220, which runs at 3.3GHz with 2 cores and four threads while this runs at 2.9GHz with the same physical core/thread count.

Though it does consume a fair bit more power than the Ivy Bridge dual core part though the performance is still very impressive for the tight 35W TDP envelope. We can see that the Haswell architecture clearly scales very well at lower clock speeds.

If you are interested in seeing more graphs from the dual core Haswell Core i5 4570T review then be sure to check out the source article here – PC Games Hardware (de)

Images courtesy of PC Games Hardware (de)

 

EA Offering Battlefield 3 Close Quarters DLC For Free!

EA seem to pursuing a strategy to improve their image recently. First they listened to customer feedback over online passes for multiplayer games and scrapped those, now they are offering free stuff to people – that’s right FREE stuff from EA, who’d of thought?

Electronic Arts are teaming up with DICE to offer all Battlefield 3 owners a free copy of the Close Quarters DLC if you don’t already have it. Essentially Close Quarters is Battlefield’s attempt and bringing in a more traditional style of FPS combat that is fought at close range, in buildings with a high density of players. Furthermore it introduces new weapons and game modes, such as Gun Game, over the standard version of Battlefield 3.

To redeem the free PC copy of Battlefield 3 Close Quarters you must already own Battlefield 3 on Origin and you must not already own Close Quarters (obviously). You can gain access to the free DLC you need to use the code “BF3E3” in the Origin client under the redeem a code section. Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 owners will be able to download the Close Quarters DLC from the in-game store for free.

The deal lasts until June 18th or 19th depending on your region or platform, you can see more details here.

I can confirm this does work and I have personally been playing Battlefield 3 Close Quarters for the past few days. I might add that the Close Quarters DLC maps seem to be incredibly buggy with lag being prevalent, knifing issues occuring and just general glitches everywhere, it almost reminds me of the Battlefield 3 open beta again but hey it’s free so you can’t complain that much. I just feel sorry for people who bought this recently.

Image courtesy of DICE

Rumour: Battlefield 4 Beta Begins On September 24th

A leaked image on the internet has revealed a possible date for the Battlefield 4 Beta, September 24th 2013. This beta will be for the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 platforms and will be an “exclusive access” beta only. That is people that pre-ordered will probably only get access straight away, while the open beta is expected to come a bit later possibly 2 days later. Or EA could be arranging it like they did with Battlefield 3 where the open beta comes at the said date (24th September) and the closed beta comes a few days earlier.

Gamers will be able to test out the Frostbite 3 engine, fight on land, at sea and in the air and then pass their feedback onto DICE. We should expect more details to arrive when the multiplayer gets a reveal at E3 2013. It is worth noting that Battlefield 3 had its beta on September 29th and was released on October 25th. Battlefield 4 is going to have its beta 5 days earlier, September 24th, and be released 4 days later than Battlefield 3, on October 29th.

Battlefield 4 is expected to be released in North American on October 29th and on November 1st in Europe. This will be on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 while Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions will probably come at a later date once the game has been fully optimised and made compatible with the new gaming consoles from Microsoft and Sony.

What are your thoughts on BF4? Are you looking forward to the open beta? Have you pre-ordered?

Image courtesy of BF4Central

Origin Servers Offline

If you are like me, you love your video games, staying up late nights playing your favorite games. This weekend Battlefield 3 is hosting a “Double XP Weekend”. Unfortunately players are unable to play any game that is hosted on Origin. They are having some form of server issues, though their server status site does not show any issues with any of their services. When you try to log into their website or into the Origin client to play a game it refuses to connect, giving you a simple message.

“Sorry! We are experiencing some technical difficulties. Please try again later.”

Issues arose at about 6AM this morning GMT, my game was glitching out when I decided to reload the game, when I started my game back up, I was unable to connect to servers. I closed my client down and continued to have issues. There are several games that have been affected by this server issue, including Battlefield 3, SimCity, FUT 13, Mass Effect 3 and Crysis 3.

Unfortunately, Origin has not posted a status update on their facebook page at this time, we can only hope that they will repair the issues swiftly.

Battlefield 3 Double XP Starts Today, Runs 23rd To The 27th Of May

Battlefield 3’s double XP event was originally scheduled for May 9th to May 13th as we told you here, but for some reason it was rolled back to May 23rd to May 27th.

Today is May 23rd and so it is time to dive straight into Battlefield 3’s double XP weekend. This 96 hour event will span all maps and all game modes across ranked servers. The event was organised by DICE and EA in an attempt to show they haven’t forgotten about Battlefield 3 and they want to give it a bit of a boost before it gets replaced by Battlefield 4.

In terms of the start time, it starts at 10AM GMT so you can convert that into your own region’s time but chances are it will have started when this article is live.

I will certainly be cashing in on this double XP for a few hours this weekend. It is a great opportunity to finish some of those classes that you despise so much. Will you be playing Battlefield 3 for double XP?

Source

Battlefield 3 To Have Double XP Between May 9th and May 13th

Recently there has been a lot of talk and hype surrounding the next Battlefield release, Battlefield 4. However, Battlefield 3 is still going strong with thousands of online users and it is nice to see DICE hasn’t forgotten about giving them a little thanks every once in a while. That said DICE have announced plans to give all Battlefield 3 players, premium or not, the ability to grab double XP on May the 9th through to May the 13th.

Battlefield 3 has sustained itself relatively well since its release way back in October 2011. This is mainly thanks to DLC packs keeping the game going for the past 18 months: Back To Karkand (December 2011), Close Quarters (June 2012), Armored Kill (September 2012), Aftermath (November 2012) and Endgame (March 2013).

Now with DLC all but finished and Battlefield Premium only promising to keep Battlefield addicts interested for so long, DICE is hoping some double XP will get a few gamers back on Battlefield 3 in the near future.

DICE announced the news over on their Facebook page this week and anyone looking to make some quick progression through the levels in Battlefield 3 should definitely jot this one down. Double XP will be available on all ranked matches.

Expect DICE to announce some more details on the double XP event nearer the time.

 

Nvidia Show Off Kepler Mobile Running Battlefield 3

Nvidia’s CEO Jen Hsun Huang has been showing off the companies next generation mobile graphics processing chip, simply named “Kepler Mobile”. Speaking at Nvidia’s company investor day Huang said that Nvidia has been making large investments in transforming their Kepler desktop graphics into equivalent mobile forms and the end result has been Kepler Mobile.

Nvidia have reportedly managed to reduce the size and power consumption of the Kepler chip to the point where it can run on just “hundreds of milliwatts” of power as opposed to the “dozens of watts” that desktop PC graphics use. This Kepler Mobile chip was demo’d running Battlefield 3 and it means Kepler Mobile could enable Smartphones and Tablets to run Direct X 11 graphics. This opens up a whole world of possibility for genuine gaming on tablets and smartphones.

Huang said “We want[ed] to get multiple years ahead of the competition, It was worth the sacrifice”. Nvidia supposedly delayed other products and priorities in order to move Kepler mobile forward at a faster pace. In the demonstration Huang compared Kepler Mobile running Battlefield 3 against the best that the iPad can do in terms of graphics which he described as “Vintage 1999”

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/63838994[/vimeo]

As impressive as this all sounds we don’t think smartphones will be running Battlefield 3 anytime soon but tablets certainly look like they could fit these graphics processors inside them. We aren’t sure when these will come to market or how much they will cost but if they can offer high performance DX 11 graphics to the mobile market then this looks set to change the game in a radical way.

What are your thoughts on Kepler Mobile?

Source

Battlefield 4 to be Revealed on March 26th

The past few days have seen some rumours and leaked images about various aspects of the new Battlefield 4 game. Following that EA and DICE have officially confirmed that they will be revealing Battlefield 4 to the world on March the 26th (2013) at the San Francisco Game Developers Conference event.

To get people in the mood EA and DICE have released a  “teaser” image about Battlefield 4 – as seen above. We knew about the existence of Battlefield 4 since the release of Battlefield 3 when EA implied they would be undertaking more-regular releases of the Battlefield series. Battlefield 4 is sure to be anticipated by millions after the success of the Battlefield 3 game which has been somewhat sustained by the constant supply of DLC and support from EA/DICE.

 

In addition to the teaser image EA and DICE have also sent out invitations to select individuals to invite them to the upcoming press event. We don’t really know much more than that about the upcoming release from EA so you’ll have to hang on until the 26th March for more details. If this has got you in the mood for Battlefield then Battlefield 3 and Bad Company 2 will have to keep you occupied for the time being.

With that said how many of you are actually excited for the release of Battlefield 4? Did you enjoy Battlefield 3? Are you looking for Battlefield 4 to be similar to Battlefield 3 or radically different? Let us know what you think!

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