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DICE Answers Some Battlefield 3 Gameplay Questions

Posted on July 31, 2012 AT 09:30am

In the latest installment of Inside DICE, core gameplay designer, Alan Kertz answers some of the Battlefield 3 community’s questions about the game.

The selection of tweeted questions mainly focus on various weapon balance issues, you can check them out below:

1. Why are there no US acquired RPG or RU Acquired SMAW unlocks?
(Asked by @Deffik_E05)
Unlike the primary weapons, there’s no real difference between the RPG and the SMAW in terms of gameplay. We felt like it was better to keep these weapons faction specific, like the IGLA and the FIM-92.

2. Could you explain why some gameplay changes can be made server side while others like the patch must be done with client update?
(Asked by @Sirdiealot53)
A great question, with a bit of a tricky answer. Generally, there are some things that are controlled entirely on the server side, and what we call “replicated” (that is, copied over the network) to the client. Generally this means things like vehicle weapons and armor and guided weapons like missiles.

For other things, we require that the client and server agree, this applies to vehicle and soldier physics and soldier weapon behavior. If weapons or physics are not in sync between the server and the client players will experience lag when the server “corrects” the client, or worse the client maybe unable to connect or be kicked from the server when data differs (a part of our anticheat protection). Going forward into the long term future, we’d like to see the ability for the server to deliver updated balance data to the client, though is unlikely to happen in the short term.

3. Will the M1911 S-TAC be released to the public? It says in official guide that is for veterans, not DICE only?
(Asked by @GAMINGDRAG0N)
Right now the M1911 S-TAC is only available to DICE Devs. There’s a misprint in the guide for this specific issue that was missed before it went to press. We know lots of players are eager to get their hands on our S-TAC, though right now the only way to do that is by clicking here and being awesome:

4. The FAMAS nerf for RPM & smaller mag is good & more accurate for the F1 model — but the recoil is way overboard dude, c’mon…
(Asked by @LethalPenguin)
This was a tough balance to make, due to the FAMAS having significantly different stats on the 3 platforms, as well as being extremely varied in player popularity on the different platforms. The FAMAS should get a bit of vertical recoil reduction to offset its now smaller mag and to make it generally a bit more controllable. It’s a rather frustrating weapon to use now, which is not the intention.

5. Hey. What is your definition of close, medium and long range? 30, 60, 100+?
(Asked by @psn_steve10120)
Close range in the game is about 8m. Inside 8m is considered “point blank” and all weapons do their maximum damage here. For longer range guns, 12-15m is short range (like a sniper rifle) and they get damage bonuses at longer ranges since their fire rates are much lower. Medium range is anything under 25-30m. The vast majority of combat and kills in BF3 actually comes between 25-30m even on large maps like Operation Firestorm. It’s likely that our even bigger maps will move this out to 40m, however infantry tend to close on their targets and distance kills are much harder to achieve. Outside of 50m is considered long range. Here most weapons have hit their minimum damage levels and some guns are no longer accurate enough to hit reliably. For distances of 50m or more a bipod and a heavy barrel is needed to be really effective. 100m and up is almost exclusively for sniper rifles. Kills at this distance are rare and actually only account for about 12% of all kills in Battlefield 3.

Matthew Bennett, Associate Editor
Matthew Bennett finally got his big break with EGM three years ago, following years of volunteer work for various sites. An ability to go many hours without sleep and a quick wit make him ideal for his role as associate editor at He often thinks back to the days when the very idea of this career seemed like nothing but an impossible dream. Follow him on Twitter @mattyjb89. Meet the rest of the crew.

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