We recently got a chance to check out both the single- and multiplayer modes in Battlefield 2: Modern Combat at an Electronic Arts press event, and it looks like Digital Illusions is ready to bring the battle to the PlayStation 2 and Xbox this fall.
We recently brought you a preview of a one-map multiplayer demo of the game, but this time we were able to jump into the action on a few of the other maps in the game. There are 13 maps in the final game, and the ones we played offered a good variety of terrain from deserted villages, to bases tucked away in the snowy crags of a mountain on the Russian border, to a deep gulch spanned by high bridges. The maps are all huge, so there is plenty of incentive to use vehicles for transportation, as well as for extra firepower.
In this particular demo we got a chance to play not only as the Middle East Coalition and the US forces, but as the Chinese and Russian forces as well. Each team has different weapons, although the soldier classes are the same.
Sometimes it's better to stay on foot though, since the obstacles scattered throughout the levels can significantly impede your progress if you're cruising around in a huge tank. Some of the obstacles are temporary though, as you can destroy them with a well-placed grenade or a few rounds from an assault rifle. In one area, we avoided taking fire by shooting through a wooden panel in a wall and marching through to get the jump on our enemies.
While the levels are full plenty of interactive objects, nothing looks out of place, and it all seems natural. It feels great to stand on top of a high bridge and fire grenades at tanks passing below, and likewise it's quite satisfying to blast a bunch of people off a bridge with a shot from a tank. There are plenty of environmental effects employed in the game as well. In some levels, weather effects like sand storms and snowfall can make it difficult for snipers to find their targets.
The single-player mode looks like it will offer the same explosive action of the multiplayer game, but with a bit more detail in the environments. We did notice that the frame rate wasn't too steady in single-player mode, but there's plenty of time to fix that before the game releases in November.
At this point, Battlefield 2: Modern Combat looks pretty close to finished. The weapons, vehicles, chaos, and explosions are all here, and it's all worth getting excited about. Stay tuned for more details as the November release date approaches.