Apart from the fact that EA blatantly ripped off the art style of Team Fortress 2 I was looking forward to playing Battlefield Heroes, not least because it is free. They have slapped together FPS game mechanics with an RPG style consistent character and presented the whole thing as a first/third person shooter. The two forces are obviously Brits vs Nazis but the game is like a watered down version of a typical shooter, that is if you can get into it!
I’m sure EA were delighted with their browser based install system which is obviously intended to make things easy but I’m not a big fan. Poor layout and a refresh problem which you aren’t warned about meant my installation took a while to complete and I don’t really like having to sign into the browser every time I want to play. It is like having an individual Steam for one game and it runs Punkbuster as well, which after install wants to start itself up whether you are playing or not.
With the game installed and my character created I tried to start the game. The tutorial worked fine and I was ready for my first battle but everytime it connected the server would dump me and an error message would pop up. The forum revealed that the game has been plagued by errors and the dev team have been slow to post solutions. Considering it was delayed it is disapointing that they’ve released a buggy game and while I’d buy the whole “What can you expect for a free game?” if it was made by an indie I am less sympathetic when it comes to someone with pockets as deep as EA.
Once in the game is underwhelming. It should be called Battlefield Lite. It may appeal to casual gamers or non FPS players but then again why would non FPS players want to play an FPS? Anyway it’s not too bad, there is some fun to be had and the microtransactions are easy to ignore but I can’t see them making much money from it. It will be very interesting to see how well they decide it has done, especially since it is part of their Play 4 Free range.