"full Battlefield experience" on Xbox One and PS4, swears executive producer Patrick Bach. They will accept nothing less than 60 frames per second delivering 64-player conflicts, like on PC.
While there's "a lot of moving parts," the team won't sacrifice anything of this goal. Xbox 360 and PS3 meanwhile will suffice with 24-players. DICE wants the chaos of battle to hit next-gen.
When the teams are 12 vs. 12 the action is a lot more predictable than having 32 vs. 32, where you have to start deciding what battles to be a part of.
"We have a very complicated game with a lot of moving parts," said Patrick Bach.
"We had to decide, yes, we will do this in 60fps. Everything else is secondary. We know the game is great when you have 64 players and destruction, and if we could get what we had on PC for a long time in your living room with a pad, wouldn't that be amazing? That's what we're aiming for."
64-players for Battlefield on PC is nothing new as the desktop crowd has enjoyed this for years, but consoles have always been held back from having battlefields that felt 'out of control'.
Xbox One and PS4 gamers "will experience another level of chaos they haven't seen before," he said. "12 versus 12, you can keep track of quite a few people, but only so many. When you get to 32 versus 32, that's when it becomes hard to keep track of the other team, when it feels like there are more things going on than just around me and what I can control."
"That's the experience we always wanted to get to with the consoles without sacrificing the other core pillars of the franchise." Finally the console soldier can experience getting swamped by a small platoon as they're hopelessly outgunned with grenades, rockets and annoyingly accurate pistol fire.
"It lies in the title: Battlefield. You want it to feel like a proper war and that the things that are happening on the map, even though you're not a part of the battle, you can see the battle going on and you can choose to go to this other fight than the fight I'm just in. When you have 32 versus 32, that's when that starts to happen for real."
DICE is also overhauling their Commander Mode from the Battlefield 2 days.
"A lot of people thought it was fun to play, but they also felt it was this thing they could do on the side, like a jump in, jump out experience. Some people felt it ruined their experience on the ground when they had a bad Commander. So we had to fix those design flaws before we started to implement it," explained Bach.
"We've been working on it for some time figuring that out, and I think we've got it."
DICE's idea this time around is actually having the Commanders more-or-less fight each other, but with teams as the pawns on the chess board. If you help your team capture more flags then you get more toys in your toy box to play with. Commanders get to use the extremely powerful Gunship. "It feels very cool when you see the text on the screen when you're on the ground and it says, 'Gunship above'," said the executive producer.
"When that spawns in you think, 'okay, I can't be in the open any more. I need to go under something because I'm very exposed.' Especially for snipers on the roof - they get very scared when it happens and you see the big shadow over the whole battlefield. It's really cool." Something that gets campers running away like little girls? Gold.
Battlefield 4 releases on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC October 29th in US, November 1st in EU.
DICE determined for 60fps and 64-players on next-gen consoles
21 June 2013 | By Simon Priest