Adding Realism in Battlefield

Posted: July 31, 2013 in Gaming, The Cptains Talk
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

First, a congratulations to the Project Reality Team on 8 years of dedicated work to Project Reality, a Battlefield 2 mod. It will soon be out of beta and onto version 1.0. If play Battlefield 2 and would like to check this mod out you can see it here. It is a great mod with a lot of features and maps and they did a very good job bringing a more realistic approach to Battlefield.

Now back on topic…

Realism and the idea of it has been on my mind the last few months. You see it mentioned a lot when people are talking about all kinds of aspects of any game. Being a Battlefield player I see it brought up constantly and ranging from many aspects of the design of the game. People use realism to compare features, weapons, abilities between the real world and bring it to Battlefield, as well as many other games. Some of that can be really good and is why there are some good things like the graphics, how weapons look, vehicle behavior, load animations, and so on. Realism has really helped in making a game sound and act more like you expect and help immerse you further into it. It also helps puts limits on what should and should not happen in a game with gravity, momentum, environmental factors, and even how a map looks.

Realism has its place and is very helpful. The Project Reality mod has been a huge success because of realism. So has the ARMA series. Both bringing a lot of down-to-earth things in video games for those that really want a real world experience. Mods and games like those have really found their place in the gaming industry.


So you see a lot of the good things about realism and the idea behind it. The above photo is very funny when it comes to Battlefield as a lot of fans feel that someone getting shot by a tank shouldn’t be able to be revived. “It’s not realistic.” and “No way can someone survive that.” are repeated on this and many other realism topics. Those statements are true that no one could survive those in real life. What people seem to forget though is that Battlefield is a game and DICE wanted a game that people could run around and do anything on the Battlefield they wanted. “Play it your way.” was the BF3 motto from DICE and they really stuck with that. As Project Reality and ARMA have their audience, as well as Call of Duty having a particular group of people, Battlefield also has a certain niche in gaming. I personally feel that Battlefield is in between ARMA and CoD.  I don’t mean right next to each other either as Battlefield does a bit of both qualities in those two games.

For some reason people are forgetting this and are crying for realism in everything more and more. What they also forget is as developers start adding these things to the game, it changes it. Some things good, but a lot of things bad. How would you like to not be able to be revived for anything other than a leg or arm shot? How would you like air power being so strong as it is today that nothing can take it down? How would you like it if you can’t respawn in a game? Better yet, lets go real extreme and say that if you die at all, you have to purchase a new license of the game because your one character is forever dead? That is all VERY realistic. I know you might be thinking, “Crunch, you are taking realism out of context and that is too extreme.” The thing is though is that people are actually asking for all those options, except purchasing another game when you die.


Then there is the other flip side to the realism. I was talking on the Battlefieldo forums in a post about having other ways in BF4 to break glass. I mentioned it would be awesome to do a running jump into the window and your soldier would shatter the glass with his body and do a roll into the building. I was told that it was too messy and unrealistic to do that when you can easily just break the glass with your knife or shoot it. Ummm, yeah!?!? SO? Wouldn’t that be a cool feature? No, it is unnecessary. What? When is something unnecessary in a game? See, by using “realism” the idea of a new feature in a game is nonsense when you have an easier way to do it. So now realism is being used to keep features out of a game. Ideas and ingenuity are being stifled with the use of “realism”.

Could you imagine the first time the idea of Commander Mode came up and DICE went; “Yeah, that sounds cool, but having one guy control everything is unrealistic. The military actually is controlled by divisions and no one person is going to be calling in these things on the battlefield.” and “In real life there has to be approval to use artillery. We need to put in a chain of command to allow the commander to arty that area in Karkand.” The feature would be ruined forever!

Games have to do a fine balance of realism or it’s no longer fun. There are things that make Battlefield what it is, as well as CoD, ARMA, CS:S, Doom, and so on. Don’t get tangled up in what is realistic or not, but learn what the game has to offer with what there is. Also, don’t think a feature in a game is dumb because it’s not realistic, you may be missing out on a great new thing for a game. There is a lot of things that are not real in Battlefield and that is what makes it so much fun over and over and over.

So think about your game that you want a feature in and think if it fits or not and how it would. Then mention it. Yeah, it may be dumb and not happen, but you put it out there. You never know what may happen. I remember back when CoD:4 came out and there was a scene in the single player where dogs attacked you. I remember mentioning on the forums that it would be awesome if you could do that in the game. Now I don’t know if what I said had anything to do with it or not, but the next CoD, World at War, had attack dogs in multiplayer. Again, could have been coincidence and I saw an idea Treyarch was already working on, but there it is.

Haters are always going to hate and a feature will never be added or improved upon if its not thought up first.

  1. jimykx says:

    Great article as ususal. I’m glad devs know how to filter out the trash that comes from the community or else we would be doomed

    • CptainCrunch says:

      I am too. Don’t get me wrong as realism helps define a feature and role in many games, but I really think people forget that all games has its own character and uniqueness that can easily be killed with “realism”. Then you have the people that wanted the feature complain about having it and how the game they loved has changed and not what it was.

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