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Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

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  • Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

    Original here, has a lot of good stuff in it, but I pulled out this nice quote with some discussion of squad play

    http://www.edge-online.com/features/...mode-and-more/

    Commander mode, of course, is a returning feature. Is there a reason you took it out in the first place? What changes did it take to bring back commander mode and what learning did you have from it to make it worth bringing back?

    I think going back and looking at commander… we went back and took a look at Battlefield 2142 commander… and I always felt like I wasn’t part of the game itself [as commander], I always felt like was doing my own thing trying to get as high a score as possible. And I felt like the connection between the world and the commander was distant; it was just there adding ambience. It was one of the things that I felt personally. So we decided, ok, let’s make sure that the commander has enough things to do so he actually dedicates all his time to becoming the commander rather than running around and maybe hiding behind something. And let’s make sure that the gameplay is connected too. How well your team performs is connected to what efforts you have available.

    We wanted to make sure that we feel the presence of the commander when you’re playing with a commander on the server. Now if the player follows orders, does what the commander wants, that’ll be encouraged by… if you do what it says you’re supposed to be doing, you will get more team score, basically. So we added another mechanic for the team score which is essentially what we call the ‘field upgrades’. So this is kind of like a little kick-back to 2142 as well because the squads had progression in 2142. This is like similar to that.

    So the squad, itself, has an experience bar and you get experience by doing team-based actions like capturing the flag together, or I’m healing you in my squad, or I’m following orders from the commander. So all this gets thrown into our shared pool and that gets me nice little upgrades, you know extra ammo, sprint speed, stuff like that. And of course in Battlefield 3 you couldn’t really control what people were giving you, so in Battlefield 3 you had specialisations, so most of the time you had like a full squad and everyone had like shared run speed, for instance. So what we did here is you actually get to decide what upgrades you get on this progression. So [if] I want to play as like an offensive medic or whatever…

    And that’s game-by-game, so it resets at the beginning of each game?

    It resets, right now, when the squad [disbands]. So you build experience, but you can also lose experience and that’s if the whole squad gets wiped [out] it gets put down to your previous level. So it’s like ‘oh no, let’s at least have one guy left [alive] or we lose our points’.

  • #2
    Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

    levelcap talks about this at 4mins onwards in this video

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-cJhOCd7GY

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    • #3
      Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

      "I think going back and looking at commander… we went back and took a look at Battlefield 2142 commander… and I always felt like I wasn’t part of the game itself [as commander], I always felt like was doing my own thing trying to get as high a score as possible."

      This guy makes me want to vomit...

      I deserve a ribbon for Mortar Specialist

      Artillery conquers and infantry occupies.
      J.F.C. Fuller

      Proud to have been a member of the 5th, 71st and my beloved 19th

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      • #4
        Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

        Originally posted by HiTest View Post
        "I think going back and looking at commander… we went back and took a look at Battlefield 2142 commander… and I always felt like I wasn’t part of the game itself [as commander], I always felt like was doing my own thing trying to get as high a score as possible."

        This guy makes me want to vomit...
        Strong words, but yes, this seems like a poor argument. "I didn't play the way it was intended so this feature had to be removed." Presumably we can look forward to Battlefield 4 infantry-only no-respawn edition because some people choose to camp the spawn points with tanks.
        |TG-Irr| westyfield

        Sig pic by Sonic, avatar by Chalcas. Thanks!
        Irregular since 2007.

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        • #5
          Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

          He obviously was never a commander on our 2142 server.

          The commander was respected. His/her orders were followed without question, even when we didn't agree with them.

          Even the enemy commander was respected. Going into the enemy UCB to blow assets, we'd often literally walk right past the enemy commander, leaving him untouched. We weren't there for him, we were there to RDX assets. He was in his commander screen, where he was supposed to be, well connected to his team, very much a part of it. Harming him would have been cheap, TG doesn't do cheap.

          Note: That's not to say it's NEVER happened. I've been knifed more than a few times in the UCB while commanding, but never by a TG member.

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          • #6
            Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

            I am still confused as to whether the commander won't get screwed in the end... I mean, I am glad he looked at 2142's CO, but he is one of those players that I would seriously want to get away from.



            Interested in listening to guitar playing and a good conversation, look for me on TS.

            "Hope is for the weak. I hope for nothing. I work for things. That is the only way for events to unfold." -Cleverbot

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            • #7
              Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

              I gotta defend Gröndal abit. It's all PR speak. Since they have to take out and put in features for every iteration of the game and reporters ask why, they have to come up with something to say. In the end they will say stupid things just because there's no real reasons other than budget restraints and they do not want to say that to a reporter.
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              • #8
                Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                Originally posted by general_alvin View Post
                I gotta defend Gröndal abit. It's all PR speak. Since they have to take out and put in features for every iteration of the game and reporters ask why, they have to come up with something to say. In the end they will say stupid things just because there's no real reasons other than budget restraints and they do not want to say that to a reporter.
                Or it could be the truth.

                I deserve a ribbon for Mortar Specialist

                Artillery conquers and infantry occupies.
                J.F.C. Fuller

                Proud to have been a member of the 5th, 71st and my beloved 19th

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                • #9
                  Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                  I think some of you guys need to take a deep breath and calm down. If they've found a way to make the Commander position even more integral to the game than it was in 2142, for the connection to be improved then what's the problem? He's saying they're tried to make the commander role even more a part of the teamwork on the server and that makes some of you want to vomit and hate on him?
                  TG-3rd Special Forces is Active and Currenly Recruiting!





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                  • #10
                    Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                    I commented on the quote about how he used to play commander not what his future plans for that role is. Maybe you need to calm down and comprehend what people post.

                    I deserve a ribbon for Mortar Specialist

                    Artillery conquers and infantry occupies.
                    J.F.C. Fuller

                    Proud to have been a member of the 5th, 71st and my beloved 19th

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                      Originally posted by Harlequin View Post
                      He obviously was never a commander on our 2142 server.

                      The commander was respected. His/her orders were followed without question, even when we didn't agree with them.

                      Even the enemy commander was respected. Going into the enemy UCB to blow assets, we'd often literally walk right past the enemy commander, leaving him untouched. We weren't there for him, we were there to RDX assets. He was in his commander screen, where he was supposed to be, well connected to his team, very much a part of it. Harming him would have been cheap, TG doesn't do cheap.

                      Note: That's not to say it's NEVER happened. I've been knifed more than a few times in the UCB while commanding, but never by a TG member.

                      I love how everyone blitzed right past the interesting squad stuff to talk about how DICE can't play their game in the proper TG way. ::eyeroll::


                      The reality is that the vast majority of servers never saw proper commander play. TG had proper commander play because you threatened to kick people who did not follow orders. Very very few servers had that rule or the admin presence to do it. The reality is that commander was vastly under utilized outside of competitive play and a handful of public servers for both BF2 and BF2142.


                      You all have been spoiled and seem to comment on this feature from an isolated understanding of the ideal role that commander will play. For a bit of perspective I recommend you read this thread.

                      http://forum.symthic.com/battlefield...ommander-mode/

                      It is filled with hardcore gamers from all the platforms and you can see many various opinions about the commander mode. With quotes like

                      I am also a bit scared of commander mode. Mainly because of how every flag seems to give one teams commander an additional ability while at the same time denying the other teams commander that very same ability. It will possibly make spawncamps even harder to break (imagine being trapped in your spawn with an AC-130 shelling your entire team to oblivion)... It would be ok if there were only one flag per map that would grant an additional advantage (similar to AK), but having abilities for every flag is just ridiculous.

                      My two main worries about commander mode are:-

                      - Getting assets linked to flags seems to me will lead to easier spawn traps. I wonder if things like tomahawks can be fired into bases?

                      - Who gets it? Will new players get a chance? Will people whore it? Can you get rid of a rubbish commander?


                      If the commander can't be killed, the commander doesn't deserve a giant
                      mortar for free kills. There should always be a risk of death for every
                      kill. Isn't that Battlefield?
                      I don't really think the game needed commander mode , but it's going to be included , I just hope it's a server side option and can be enabled or disabled.
                      ^That guy is a PC player by the way.

                      I still don't know how I feel about Commander mode as a whole, though. I never really liked the "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer" idea that capturing bases seems to reward.

                      Was winning the game for capturing bases not enough?
                      ^ Another PC player


                      Point being. There are a lot of opinions out there. There are some people who think that commander has no role on the battlefield at all and is a waste of DICE's time and effort. Perhaps they have never played at TG, but you know what ...the vast majority of players don't play at TG. If BF3 is peaking at 55,000 concurrent users right now and 64 could be playing on a TG server, that means you have .1% of the playerbase on your server. BF3 sold over 10 million copies.

                      So let's remember that the TG way is a tiny tiny minority of the BF experience of all users. You can't design a game around the ideal situation, it has to be fun in the majority of less than ideal situations and, if it is well designed, allow for even greater capacity in the ideal situation.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                        Originally posted by HiTest View Post
                        Or it could be the truth.
                        Yep. But I get the feeling DICE has to check their calender to see what is great for BF today. When we didn´t get a commander in BF3 they said the role didn´t do anything for teamplay and now with BF4 it´s the opposite. The only major difference I can see is that they have excluded the commander from playing on the Battlefield and the assets are tied to flags.
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                        • #13
                          Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                          Originally posted by general_alvin View Post
                          Yep. But I get the feeling DICE has to check their calender to see what is great for BF today. When we didn´t get a commander in BF3 they said the role didn´t do anything for teamplay and now with BF4 it´s the opposite. The only major difference I can see is that they have excluded the commander from playing on the Battlefield and the assets are tied to flags.
                          The bit I posted from the interview suggests that squads level up within each game and get benefits from the level up. Now if you get more squad points for following Commander orders then the quickest way to the squad powerups would be to follow commander orders.

                          That is quite a variation on Commander and Squad Leader roles. While there was the Battlefield promotion in 2142, that was really individually based. This is a battlefield promotion for doing what your Commander says. Big honkin' carrot on a stick.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                            Originally posted by Misnomer View Post
                            The bit I posted from the interview suggests that squads level up within each game and get benefits from the level up. Now if you get more squad points for following Commander orders then the quickest way to the squad powerups would be to follow commander orders.

                            That is quite a variation on Commander and Squad Leader roles. While there was the Battlefield promotion in 2142, that was really individually based. This is a battlefield promotion for doing what your Commander says. Big honkin' carrot on a stick.
                            You also receive the level ups by squad heals, revives, and resupplies. However, if your squad dies......you loose it all and are at square 1 again. Hopefully this slows the run and gun down and makes for better SL's
                            "Everyone makes fun of us rednecks with our big trucks and all our guns........until the zombie apocalypse"

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                            • #15
                              Re: Interview with Dice producer Aleksander Grondal gives insights on BF4 Squads

                              Originally posted by Misnomer View Post
                              The bit I posted from the interview suggests that squads level up within each game and get benefits from the level up. Now if you get more squad points for following Commander orders then the quickest way to the squad powerups would be to follow commander orders.
                              That is quite a variation on Commander and Squad Leader roles. While there was the Battlefield promotion in 2142, that was really individually based. This is a battlefield promotion for doing what your Commander says. Big honkin' carrot on a stick.
                              In theory, yes, in practice the upgrades probably won´t do much difference. If they did the casual gamer would be upset that the organised team was op.

                              Anyway, I just posted in this thread to support DICE in their decision to include a commander. Love the commander, larger squads and the new importance of an SL. Good for DICE to implement them better. Wish they could speak less bad about their older games in interviews :)
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