Battlefield 4 Commander Mode ( Alpha )

Posted: August 6, 2013 in Battlefield, Gaming
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

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One of the most talked about feature for Battlefield 4 is the return of Commander. I mentioned in my last commander article how I thought we would see the return of that position as well as changes to it. It looks like we were not disappointed. DICE has made a number of changes that will affect the entire position of commander and how it will play. Though the premise is the same, it is different from both Battlefield 2 and 2142.

I have been wanting to write an update on the new commander mode for some time, but have not really had enough information. Since E3 and the release of the Battlelog 2.0 updates, I think we have a pretty good understanding of the mode now.

Below is a picture of the Commander Mode screen. I will be referring to this picture throughout this article to show how I believe features will work as well as showing what we currently know.

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So what we know so far is that the commander mode is an optional mode for servers for a person on each side to take control of. This person can play the role on PC or tablets and does require owning a copy of Battlefield 4. In previous games the commander was a physical person on the battlefield, but DICE has changed that to where they are an entity instead taking up slots 65 and 66 on a server. So now there will be 64 players and two “ghosts” that are commanders. This will solve the “fighting commander” issue that we saw in previous Battlefield games.

Looking at the picture above you see that both commanders have UAV and EMP abilities by default, in the upper left corner. The other abilities, however, are controlled based on flags captured. Each flag holds a special commander function. We see that the US has three of the five while the Chinese has the one at C flag, which is the AC130 gunship. This makes a huge change in both teamwork and actually assisting the commander and their duties. Without the team capturing the flags, the commander is limited. Instead of destroying assets to stop the enemy commander, flags need to be taken AND secured.

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The commander mode also has a screen in the lower left corner showing live video of squad leaders. They can also select flag areas and get a view of an area. This gives the commander a line of sight view as well as overhead. With that screen and the squad information on the upper right, the commander now has more knowledge of situations and abilities of the squads. They can see who is in the squads, what kits they have, what teamwork level they are at, and much more.

The display is also very well laid out, making it easy to give orders. You can see that squad leaders have been given the command to attack C as well as an incoming tomahawk missile to the target. You can see how much time is left, in the middle/lower left, as well as ticket counts. You pretty much know everything that is going on with everyone and the game itself.

As of this writing there is no information on how to become commander or how exactly the screens work. There has been a recent screenshot of a rating of the commander in-game. It can be assumed that players will have the ability to rate how well you did. Knowing about the commander abuse in BF2/142, I am a bit skeptical with this feature. Granted, we do not know how it works, so I am going to just mention it here with caution. The idea of preventing a bad commander from ruining the game is nice, but what about the teams that do no teamwork and therefore have no assets to give the commander? Is there a rate the squad leader function? It is a team effort, yet this feature may single out the one person that is most at the mercy of “teamwork”. Anyway, we do not know yet, so this is all just concern.

Though I did not miss the commander position in Battlefield 3, I am looking forward to these changes and the chance to play the position in this new way. Hopefully the system abuse will not be as bad and the position will be fun to play as it once was. In my clans I was usually designated commander as most did not like the hassle of it. That’s pretty sad for a position in a game.

The Battlefield Podcast made an excellent video explaining some of the above. Click here to go and watch it as they explain the features as well.

Click here for the official commander mode trailer.

Finally, click here for the Battlelog 2.0 trailer.

Thank you for reading. I hope this helps answer some of the commander questions and how it will work. I plan to write a few more times on the role and changes made since alpha.

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