We caught up with Dice's Niklas Fegreaus to discuss the new vehicles, maps, modes and experiences that Armored Kill has to offer.
Battlefield 3’s release last year brought sprawling multiplayer combat to PCs and consoles, earning critical acclaim and commercial success in the process. The class-based shooter sold 8 million copies in its first month and was declared by EA COO Peter Moore to have “successfully captured a slice of the COD market”. The next expansion, Armored Kill, will be arriving in September, but ahead of that, we managed to corner the game’s designer, Niklas Fegreaus, to find out more. The order of the day in this DLC is vehicular-based destruction, with four new additions: tank destroyers, mobile artillery, ATV quad bikes and an AC130 gunship. Each offers new strategic options from speed to firepower to airborne spawn-points, giving you new ways to tackle your opponents. You’re going to need these new wheels too, as the expansion arrives sporting “the largest map in Battlefield history” among its new, vehicle-focussed multiplayer levels. Armored Kill also brings with it a new game mode, Tank Superiority, pitting teams of vehicles against each other.
GameSpot: Can you tell us some of the advantages the new vehicles bring to the game?
Niklas Fegreaus:The new vehicles in Armored Kill all bring something well adapted for the large Battlefield.
The new tank destroyers carry a lot of firepower, while sacrificing armor for speed. This means they have the ability to bring the big guns to contested areas much quicker than the main battle tanks, providing your team with great mobility and area control.
The mobile artillery, on the other hand, are slow and poorly protected but, properly placed, can suppress entire bases with heavy shelling. There's nothing better than a skilled artillery gunner to have on your side, softening up a base before moving in for the capture.
The ATV quad bikes make a popular return as well. Fans of Battlefield: Bad Company 2 might remember these as the ultimate fast transport, carrying soldiers to their intended location at great speed. They are also a blast to drive, especially when bashing dunes on Bandar Desert.
The AC130 gunship brings a completely new experience to Battlefield. If your team wins control over a specific base, it starts circling the battlefield. When doing this, your team can use it as a parachute spawn and also man the weapon positions. These range from heavy auto cannons to high caliber shells and anti-aircraft machine guns. A fully utilized AC130 can suppress and destroy ground targets with great efficiency, so the other team needs to quickly scramble their pilots and mobile AA to shoot it down. She is a big bird though, and can both take a hit and defend herself.
GS: Could you explain to us what the new, “Tank superiority” mode is, and what it will entail?
NF:Tank Superiority is a vehicle focused mode where large number of heavy vehicles clash in order to control key areas. It covers vast areas, so tactical positioning and precise long range firing are two very important skills players need to deploy in order to win.
GS: What can players compare the new “biggest map in Battlefield history” to? How big is it?
NF:We've made some really big maps in our franchise before, and I think our core fans will get similar feelings of size as classic maps like for example El Alamein. These two maps differ in design of course, but the sense of scale is definitely similar.
GS: With the new maps being very vehicle-centric, can we expect them to be very open in terms of terrain, with scarcely any buildings?
NF:You can expect both. For example, on Bandar Desert, there is a whole town being constructed near the shore, and there's always intense building to building combat taking place there. However, surrounding this built up area are vast deserts populated by artillery bases and supply lines that are key to controlling if you want to stop the enemy from getting the upper hand.
GS: How are you expecting players to react to the new maps and vehicles?
NF:I think fans of the big epic Battlefield are going to love it. We are not only stretching our capacity when it comes to how much content we can fit into a map and how large we can make them, we are also introducing new gameplay and experiences that I'm sure players will love getting their hands on and learning new tricks with.
GS: Tell us about motorbikes, how else do they add to the game?
NF:We are introducing motorcycles in our fifth expansion, End Game. These will of course be nimble and fast transport vehicles, but might offer something else as well.
GS: Is there any special types of tricks or things you can do with a motorbike that you can’t do with other vehicles?
I don't think I've seen a tank do a wheelie before jumping off a bridge!
GS: Armored Kill isn’t out until September, almost a year since the game was released--why the long wait for this DLC?
NF:We are truly humbled by our fans' response to Battlefield 3, it’s been amazing! So when we started thinking about how to provide players with DLC post launch, we wanted it to be something really special that fans would truly appreciate. That's when we thought of doing "more than just maps" and instead give players a chance to enjoy something suited for their favorite Battlefield experience. And that's how we committed to the themed expansions we have presented now. We are putting a tremendous amount of work into these, and we just hope that players will enjoy all that these expansion packs have to offer.
It all sounds good on paper, but I'm not holding my breath. Remember when they said BF3 would have maps the size of 3 Atacama Deserts, and then it turned out it was just a few flags in the middle of nowhere? Hoping this will finally be the sequel to BF2 we've been waiting for, one year later.
Only problem I see with this DLC is the map size, I love giant maps but for console users, 24 people is not enough to fill a map, hell operation firestorm seems to big and gets dull quite fast. Hopefully these vehicles are as quick as they say they are.
@Ares360 thts where the AC130 and the quad bikes will show their involvement...everyone will try to capture the point at which u get the AC130..leading to more actioin...secondly..vehicles will be provided which i think should solve these probs...but it also depends on map designs!
@Ares360 I agree, I just wish they could have been able to put more players on the maps, at least 32. 24 really is too low for a Battlefield game
to be honest its why i dont really like conquest on the consule cause everyone is so spread out and thats why i prefer rush
@Ares360 BC2 had plenty of large maps that didn't feel too empty. It's not so much the size of the map, but how they implement their game modes on those maps.
@anvilone I'd rather that they didn't implement anything on consoles because PC gamers are better than console babies and console babies ruin everything...
Well, you should have thought of that before buying it for that platform.
Whoa. This expansion is getting better and better by the minute! Tank Superiority sound exciting.
So....can we expect Mammoth Tanks for use? XD It's a huge tank that can take out tanks in just a few shots, can engage air targets, heck, you could run over OTHER TANKS with it if you really wanted too!
bf3 all the way! i was on the fence about geting premium... but i know what i must do... screw cod man all its good for is blk ops zombies when im drunk.
Sure new DLC is always welcome but bring the Ultra Ban hammer on all those fucking cheaters & hackers! game is full of them! Admins are too few or lazy, profile report is useless. Game is not worth playing right now unless u wanna get owned by cheating scum.
I would not be interested in flying the AC-130. It'd be like being the selfless AAMTRAC driver who ferries everyone around and only gets assist points. If you played hardcore, without 3p view, you'd spend most of the match staring at the same clouds passing by the cockpit, over and over.
@anvilone It circles the map.
Meaning no pilot. :P
You can still be that selfish guy in the gunner seat
@sheepdk I know. I was responding to all the people saying it is an affront to Battlefield to have an unmanned vehicle. To me it seems practical. Plus, I'd rather be jumping out of it over an objective than sitting in a cockpit listening to engine noise the entire match. To each their own, though. That's part of the idea of Battlefield.
I like the approach they are taking with the DLC so far, they are making something for each different playing styles. As much as I wasn't sure about CQ, I totally enjoy it and now I can't wait for this one to come out.
why not delete the mini map in hardcore mode ??and move the flag meter to a corner and not put it in the middle of the screen? or i have to get premium for this ? someone here said that dice *listens* to there community!? *they listen my ass!!!* idiot
@ailecks True!! is so F...! annoying have that MASSIVE flag meter specially in the heat of the moment!!! just move it to a corner! ANY corner, PEOPLE form DICE, you choose the corner.... we don't care! we just want to be able to see what is going on. and no, in premium you get the same lovely flag in the middle of the screen....
niiiice! This is my fisrt BF game, used to play MW/Cod non stop until I saw the fisrt previews for this game... I almost shit my pants!
Nothing like a cup of coffee and blow stuff up on a Saturday morning!
@Liliroots yeah it's totally worth it. you get new dog tags to unlock, a new knife, so far double xp every weekend, plus all the expansions that will continue to be released until March when the last one is released. It's totally worth it. And who's to say they will stop there?
@Liliroots I would just get it for $15 then. I got premium but Tis is definitely the expansion I am anticipating the most. Close quarters is okay. And getting priority in queues is nice as well!
it was worth it to me, and not to mention u will get a couple more too
DICE and EA, what about instead of a DLC a proper security setup programming to stop the cheaters/hackers? I think this should be priority!. Don't take me wrong, I love BF3 and the expansions, but there are so many cheaters/hackers that are ruining the game.
@asmoddeuss I don't see enough cheaters that it bothers me.
If there's a cheater on the server, I simply find another server to play on.
Lets put all the known cheaters on the same servers
@asmoddeuss The problem there is they have a contract with Punkbuster, who are terrible at their job, but a contract is a contract. They cannot get anything better.
It is worth noting though that EA claimed to be inventing it's own anti-cheat system, time will tell if that turns out to be effective...
I love BF3 as well, but this is my only one real big complaint.
@djpetitte I definitely agree, not that they affect the overall enjoyment because I know they are hacking and just ignore it but it can be annoying getting headshot across the entire map and having to respawn again etc.
You guys are expecting way to much from the new DLC. Maybe you should all give it a rest and wait till it actually gets released?
Can't wait for this, BF3 has been a blast so far. This DLC sounds like it's gonna rehash some old BF2 memories! Large maps and vehicles galore, should be good.
- Release Date: Sep 11, 2012 (US)
- ESRB: MTitles rated M (Mature) have content that may be suitable for persons ages 17 and older.
- Release Date: Sep 4, 2012 (US)
- ESRB: MTitles rated M (Mature) have content that may be suitable for persons ages 17 and older.