Battlefield Hardline's Single-Player Aims to "Do Something Completely Different"

Hardline's creative director talks about the influence of TV on the game's single-player, which features actors from True Detective, The Shield, and other shows.

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Between videos and betas, we've seen a lot of what Battlefield Hardline has to offer, but it's always the multiplayer mode that Visceral Games and Electronic Arts have shown off. For many, the single-player modes in the Battlefield series (perhaps with the exception of Bad Company's) have always been an afterthought. But with Visceral's pedigree as a single-player-game maker--it developed Dead Space--the developer is aspiring to "do something completely different than what's been done in the past, not only in the series but in the genre."

In a post on the Battlefield blog, Hardline creative director Ian Milham offered some insight into Visceral's approach to the game's single-player mode. "Taking Battlefield into the world of cops and criminals gives us an opportunity to do something completely different than what's been done in the past, not only in the series but in the genre," he says. "When we look around the landscape of gaming these days, there are a lot of gravel-voiced super soldiers saving the world from domination. But that's not the world of cops and criminals, and that's not something we're interested in doing with Hardline."

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Visceral had previously indicated that Hardline's single-player would take inspiration from television shows, a point Milham reiterated today. "Our world is more personal and relatable," he continues. "There won't be any five-minute cut scenes where the evil general explains his super weapon in our game. Instead, we want to create the look, tone, and pace of our favorite TV crime dramas."

He didn't offer up any specifics about how it would do so, but Milham said Visceral is "delivering a different type of storytelling and a new tone that feels different from the from most of the first person shooters we've all played a lot of lately."

The game's story is being shaped by director Bill Johnson and narrative consultant Wendy Calhoun, both of whom have worked on FX series Justified. The cast includes actors with credits on TV shows like True Detective, Law and Order, The Shield, and CSI Miami (YEAH), among others. Unfortunately, no specific names were revealed.

"This is a story that takes place in the grey area between cops and criminals, with police who aren't all good and thieves with a cause to fight for," Milham says. "As players, you'll get to see things from both sides."

Tone aside, one thing the game will do is offer you choices about how to tackle situations. Some examples of this include deciding whether to try intimidating someone into surrendering or using a Taser on them; ziplining past enemies or taking them out more directly; and prioritizing the takedown of someone with a warrant (granting you cash) or dealing with their henchmen first.

Although last month's Hardline beta concluded several weeks ago, another beta--this one for all of the game's platforms--is coming this fall. The full version of Hardline is scheduled for release on PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 on October 21.

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