The Battlefield Stats Conundrum

The Battlefield Stats Conundrum

Forgive me a moment if I reminisce about a simpler time, a time when a kill in a game lke Battlefield 2 would result in a nice and easy two points. Getting a kill damage assist would grant you a point. Everyone knew where they were at, but now, you look at the beta for Battlefield 3 and people are racking up thousands of points in a round.

If you take a look at my stats for BF2 you can see that in over 500 hours of game time I managed to get a total score of 59,265. I then look at my stats for Battlefield 3 (search for ChrisWales) and I have already managed to accrue a total of 38,607 points after a little over three hours of game time.

Part of me had been hoping that Battlefield 3 would revert back to a more sane scoring system, at least for the PC release, rather than going down the same path of Bad Company 2.

Getting points for every award feels so wrong, hell, even getting tons of ribbons in a round comes across a bit strange. I remember a time when a ribbon or a medal was something special, it showed your dedication to a class or vehicle. Now, I get a ribbon for just finishing a round. What on earth have I done to deserve that?

There weren’t many weapons to unlock in Battlefield 2, but you had a real sense of satisfaction that you had finally reached your new rank allowing you to actually choose which new weapon you received. In Battlefield 3 you get new targeting reticules and new weapons at the drop of a hat, I don’t feel like I have earned these new tools, they’ve just been dropped into my lap as a way to keep me interested in the game until I get that next unlock.

Is this trend a sign that developers don’t have confidence in their core game to keep people interested in playing, or does it show that they think that gamers won’t play a game without the regular feeling of ‘ooh something new!’

I’m not sure which it is, but I know that I would like to see more games which rely on your performance on the day, rather than which gun you have unlocked show themselves again. Saying that, I’ve nearly unlocked a new type of ammo for my shotgun, back to Battlefield 3 I go.

4 thoughts on “The Battlefield Stats Conundrum

  1. Yeah, it’s a sign of the times really in an age of achievements and levelling in multiplayer fps. A game needs to feed into this constant sense of improvement and progression to keep the players attention over a period of time (in much the same way MMO’s do).

    It’s kind of a false thing too, as you level up you get more ‘powerful’ in that you have more tools at your disposal. It doesn’t mean you’re actually any better at the game, but this sense of back-patting convinces people theyre doing well, that theyre improving as players, when really they’re just being given an unfair advantage over newcomers that can allow them to dominate.

    But, on the other hand that steady trickle of unlocks and the tantilising sight of the next weapon or perk feeds into this sort of compulsion to continue and I’m not immune to it myself. I gave up on pure skill games like CS or Quake 3 quite a while ago, because (age aside) you don’t feel like your building towards something, at the end of a game your stats are erased, you have nothing to show for your victory except a screenshot if you remembered to take one. There’s something powerful in feeling lieky ou’ve really earned a reward, be it a title or rare dogtag that showcases your victories and you can lay down as a marker to your opponents.

    I could go on (for quite a long time), but I’d be surprised if anyone reads to the bottom of this rant..

      1. I read it!
        Your point at the end, feeling like you’ve earned something and then getting rewarded for it is strangely addictive, it is why I went back to BF3 right after writing this.

  2. I’m confused to the max about all the different things I’ve unlocked since playing the beta. I understand the bonus for completing a game however. It’s more than annoying when people keep quitting out a game and causes unfair advantages to either team, but even if your on the losing side you can still gain XP by undertaking certain checkpoints like staying till the end of the match.

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