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If you’ve been reading the news regarding video games recently, you have seen that Nintendo’s new Super Smash Bros. game was uploaded onto the Internet before it was officially released. This led to Nintendo banning the accounts of people accessing the game online before the release date came around.

This is not the first time this has happened: games like Crysis 2, Spore, Half-Life 2, and Super Mario Odyssey reached players before the store shelves. How does this happen, and what are companies doing about it?

Product Leaks

The problem with having a product release countrywide on a specific day is that you can’t ship it to every store on that day. Trying to do so would just be a logistic nightmare! As such, the games are usually sent to the stores weeks before the release date. The employees then keep it tucked away in storage until release day, at which point it’s moved onto the shelves.

The more ambitious a launch a game expects, the more vital it is to have the game in-store on release day. This means games can be held in stock for long before the street date. Unfortunately, this gives people plenty of time to sneak a copy home and leak the contents onto the Internet. Super Smash Bros. was leaked when an employee from Mexico distributed the game from stocks.

Companies are trying to cut down on this method of leak by sending out the game as late as possible. While they can’t risk having the game missing from the shelves due to a late delivery, they can cut down on the amount of time it’s sitting in storage, ripe for the picking.

Source Code Leaks

Sometimes the source of a pre-release leak comes from the developers themselves. This can either be a malicious attack on a former employer, a hacking attack stealing a game in development, or simply code getting out into the wild. Half-Life 2 was originally hacked from developer Valve’s servers and leaked onto the Internet, causing the hacker to come under serious allegations with the law. Valve saw it unfit to release a game everyone had already played for free, so they remade the game to keep it fresh.

Of course, this is only fixable by keeping code under tight wraps! Locking employees out of their accounts before telling them they’ve been let go, as well as keeping the code itself tight and secure, are ways companies can prevent their code being leaked to the public before it’s ready.

Simple Mistakes

Sometimes a full leak isn’t due to people pilfering product from a store or a hacker gaining access to the developer’s database. Sometimes it’s down to an honest, well-meaning mistake. Players were excited to hear the next installment of the Yakuza series, Yakuza 6: The Song Of Life, would have a demo release before the main game came out.

The demo came out, but it had a strange file size: 35.6GB, roughly the size of a full game. Sure enough, players soon discovered that the demo was just the full game with restrictions placed on it. By circumventing the restrictions, players gained full access to Yakuza 6 two months before it was supposed to be released. The demo had to be pulled after the developers heard of this.

Sneak Peek at Leaks

Seeing full videogames leaked before the release date can be shocking and can damage sales of the game as a result. Unfortunately, there are many avenues through which a highly-anticipated game can be leaked. Developers and publishers have to take great care to stop games from reaching player’s hands before the release date.

Have any games you were looking forward to suffered a partial or full leak? Let us know below.

Image credit: Video game retail store, consumerism at its finest..

Simon Batt

Simon Batt is a Computer Science graduate with a passion for cybersecurity.

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Htc Evo 10 (Bolt) Release Date: Specs Leaked!

Update [October 22, 2023]: HTC Bolt, which could be called HTC 10 Evo (in US, or everywhere), now has a full list of specifications available under the rumor mill. Basically, it’s an HTC 10 with bigger 5.5″ display and some cut-down on specs, while still remaining a beast. Check out the specs below.

Update [October 22, 2023]: New rumors give the HTC Bolt a name, an official name that the devic ewill known to consumer, and a solid name we must say. The HTC Bolt could launch as HTC 10 Evo, banking on the goodwill of both the HTC 10 and HTC Evo sets from long ago which has some good reputation back then. Do we like the new name, HTC 10 Evo, well we do. What about you? The news comes from Evleaks, one of the most trusted source of news as you could find.

BTW, what’s more intriguing to know is why the comeback of Evo brand? Does it have a special camera, or new connectivity feature that Evo 4G was known for. Or simply the return of the kickstand? The specs leaked till date don’t highlight any very distinguishing feature that would warrant the Evo tag, so let’s see how this all shapes up.

Update [October 19, 2023]: We just spotted the HTC Bolt say hello to certain US certification agency, FCC, which means the device in entering final round of approval and testing. Here’s its document found at FCC’s site.

Also known by its codename HTC Acadia, rumors today have the processor and display specs identified for the HTC Bolt. You must have already seen it in pics leak earlier, so now is the good time for some specs leak, right?

First up, it’s being said that the HTC Bolt would be house a Snapdragon 810 processor — Galaxy S6, One M9 fame! — the very processor that was equipped in flagship devices of last year.

Next, you get a Quad HD display here, on the screen size of 5.5″, measure diagonally.

From the first looks, it seems clear that HTC Bolt isn’t a mid-ranger. It may live in the price bracket right below the HTC’s current flagship, the 10.

The latest leak comes from a well-known and very, very trusted by us sources, the LlabTooFer — that’s the guy who brought you the Android 7.1 system dump, and Pixel launcher, among other great stuff. Yes, he’s amazing!

HTC Bolt Specs

Android 7.0 Nougat

Snapdragon 810 processor

16MP rear camera (with OIS), while 8MP front camera

5.5″ WQHD display (resolution: 2560 x 1440 pixels)

3GB RAM

32GB storage (microSD card support up to 2 TB)

3200 mAh battery

USB Type C

Colors: Cast Iron Black and Opal Silver

Expected release date: December 2023.

Now that HTC Bolt has impressed the folks at FCC, it should be near it release. We expect the Bolt to hit the stores before the end of this year, and it shouldn’t be taking more than few months now.

If you are looking to buy an HTC device, surely give this buddy a thought.

HTC Bolt Price

The HTC Bolt aka HTC 10 Evo is expected to be priced between 480 to 500 Euros, which translates to $522-545. Given the specs, and build quality added to mix as it’s an HTC device, the price looks appropriate.

Could Analyzing How Humans Think Make Better Video Games?

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Recently, on a cold, solitary evening, I decided to reprise one of my teenage pastimes: I played Super Mario 64. At first it was a little different than I remembered—the picture grainier, the music tinnier, my computer keyboard unnatural as I tried to put Mario through the classic moves I would have completed with finesse with an old-school Nintendo controller. But as I got my bearings in this uncanny digital world, I looked up at the clock and an hour had passed. I thought it had been ten minutes.

This is called playing in a flow state, according to Edward Melcer, a doctorate student in computer science at the New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering. “Flow is that boundary between excitement, boredom and frustration, and it’s really hard for game designers to get right.”

Game designers spend years developing games to get players to this place. It’s what makes the difference between a hit game that fans play for hours on end and something they’re done with after 20 minutes. Melcer and his colleagues may have a new way to understand players’ needs–even better than the players understand themselves.

“There are a lot of things that go into a gaming experience that can be difficult to communicate, and some people don’t have the verbal skills to be able to do so,” Melcer says. “Sometimes communicating with visual objects makes that a lot easier.”

Since the 1940s, neuroscientists have found that the brain associates certain shapes with particular emotions. Sharp corners are angry, circles are happy. The authors of a 2006 paper concluded that psychologists could use these associations to assess a person’s feelings with more accuracy than verbal evaluations. Melcer is developing software that would allow game players to manipulate a digital sphere to match their emotional state. Using sliders, angry participants could make a side of the sphere stick out like a bird’s beak, or discouraged ones could bore a hole in the ball.

Credit: Eddie Melcer

Credit: Eddie Melcer

Video game developers could use this tool to get a better sense of how users’ emotions change as they play the game, Melcer says.

How A Video Game Is Made And Tested

Game developers start by deciding on a few basic elements that are more difficult to change later on, such as the way the camera follows the character through the game, the preciseness of the user’s movements, or even controls the players use.

Once developers establish these basic elements, programmers and artists create a working version of the game. This first usable game is then subjected to a few different kinds of tests with different types of users so that developers can figure out what changes need to be made. Professional video game testers push the game to its limits, looking for technical glitches that happen only when the game is played for hours on end, or if users repeat the same action many times, so that the programmers can fix them. “[The testers] represent a hardcore set of users,” according to Randy Pagulayan, the director of user research at Microsoft Studios. “In the population of people who game, there will be a small but important set of users that will always go to the most difficult level, jump right for the most competitive gaming situations, that your average user may not go for.”

The game designers need feedback on lots of other game elements that make a difference to the average game user, too. Pagulayan noted that his team is constantly bringing in “external consumers” who represent this demographic to weigh in on elements of the game that its designers can fine-tune. These players make sure the game doesn’t get too challenging too quickly, that the villain and hero are clearly defined, that the signage can help the player navigate to the next level. The further along the developers are in this process, Pagulayan said, the fewer game elements they can change, so it’s important to get feedback on these basic parts early.

Pagulayan and his colleagues get this feedback by asking the participants a series of questions and asking for answers on a five-point scale. Some questions might include: Was the game too hard? How were the graphics? Did you have enough ammo? Was it fun? This scale is fairly intuitive to both users and designers, Pagulayan said, “but what went behind it was years of research around wording and statistical analysis on interpreting results, along with collecting competitor info so that we have a database to create a distribution of responses for analysis and interpretation.”

Melcer hopes to get to a deeper level of participants’ psychology.

Melcer hopes that his tool can get to a deeper level of participants’ psychology, but not everyone in the field thinks it will be more effective than the existing questionnaires. “I have never seen people have a problem expressing their emotions,” says Amy Jo Kim, the creative director of Shufflebrain, which helps design games and apps. Marc Hassenzahl, a psychologist specializing in the digital user experience at Folkwang University of Arts in Essen, Germany, notes that video game developers already use a number of different measures to understand how testers feel while playing the game, such as their facial expressions and heart rate.

Pagulayan added that he and his colleagues already collect additional data when they bring participants in to the lab by monitoring their eye movements and sweat from various parts of the body. But he doesn’t think these metrics are perfect yet. “I don’t believe there is a single ‘silver bullet’ measure that will make a huge difference on its own,” Pagulayan said. He foresees that measures for player response will incorporate some bigger-picture elements like those that Melcer has been working on, while also making sure that feedback is reproducible and easy for designers to understand.

As these tools improve, designers will continue to refine ways of getting players into that elusive flow state. “At the end of the day the experience that a designer is trying to create can be a very abstract thing,” Pagulayan said. “How do you measure something like fun?”

8 Reasons Seo Audits Are Needed Before Sites Are Built

If you’ve worked in the SEO industry for any significant length of time, you’ve inevitably had a situation arise where a brand new site was being planned or an existing site was being overhauled and you were brought in to ensure the new (or new version) site would get SEO.

And unless you have magic fairy dust at your beck and call, you have also had to deal with the fact that you were called in after the new site was already planned.  Or more likely, the build was already taking place.  Or worse, already done and in launch mode.  Unfortunately this is the wrong time to be doing SEO, let alone performing an SEO audit.

1. Keyword Focus

If you don’t know what keywords to focus on, you can’t truly know or understand the topical focus you need to convey across the entire site.  Sure, you may have content already written – maybe even from a previous site.  Except without current data on now-trending topics, your message could now be irrelevant.  Or even if it’s relevant, it could be lacking the focus necessary to current search trends.

In an SEO audit, keyword research is paramount.  Not only to hone in on timely relevance and trending, but to also help reveal who the true competitors are that are currently ranking for those main topics you need to focus on.

2. URL Structure

All too often, marketers or site designers or developers know there needs to be content related to services or products, and information about the company or business, yet without first having an SEO audit performed, URLs can’t properly be seeded without that keyword research being performed.  And only after the keyword research is performed can you understand what the URL structure needs to look like.

3. Content Organization

URL structure is integral to content organization, and builds on topical organization.  Without a proper SEO audit, you don’t know the best way to organize the content on a site.  Sure, you can guess, or “think” you know, yet that’s like rolling the dice believing (falsely) that “good enough” is well, good enough.  If you don’t get your content organization plan hammered out before site build or rebuild, you end up causing topical dilution.

4. Content Depth

Without a proper SEO audit, how do you know the amount of content you need, whether it’s on an individual page, an entire section, or the whole site?  Only a proper audit can reveal the sweet spot in your goal setting plans for competitive success.  And only the sweet spot, weighed against topical focus priorities, will reveal how much content you need.

5. Inbound Link Planning

Only a proper SEO audit can reveal the details of a  link building plan, based on the combination of the previous four reasons you need to do the audit first.  From what keywords you’ll need in your inbound link mix, to what the URLs will be you’ll be targeting, to which groups of content need how much link building effort to support, supplement or overcome content depth factors.

6. Social Media Needs

Without a proper audit, social media initiatives are another shot in the dark.  Maybe you’re going to succeed at reaching your prospective clients or customers, yet even if you do, you won’t be able to maximize the value of your effort without that site audit.

A properly performed audit will reveal details about your target market, competitive landscape and opportunities for social media initiatives.  Again, the sweet spot grid will help identify some of these, as will an understanding of those topic priorities.

7.  Production Costs

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been brought in to perform an audit after production has begun.  Let’s just say “too many”.  Given all of the issues I’ve described above, it’s going to inevitably mean some of that production effort will have to be scrapped if you want to get the full value from your SEO efforts.  URL changes, content re-organization, topical messaging, starting link building campaigns…

All of these cost additional money that can always be saved by first having that audit performed.

8. Sanity

This is actually an important reason – not just for the sake of the person performing the audit.  Every person involved in the process, whether they’re willing to acknowledge this factor or not, will suffer a lot less stress, a lot less chaos when an audit is performed first.

Real World Barriers

Quite often, you’ll find key players in the web initiative will have a vested interest in having the site build started or even completed before SEO is considered.  Usually it’s a financial issue – “we have to get the new site out there sooner – we can’t afford to wait a week or a month…”

Sadly, that’s usually because people have made promises or commitments they are unwilling to break.  Sometimes its fear based, other times its more subtle fear – pride, stubborn thinking, ego-driven need to maintain control of a process.   And yes, sometimes its even a matter of “any site is better than no site”.

Nonetheless, when taking a detached view of everything involved and the ramifications of failing to have that audit performed before the site build, everything points to the sequence needing to be audit first, build later.

All Metro Games In Order By Release Date

Metro is a Russian/Ukrainian video game and novel franchise that began with 2005’s Metro 2033 book by Dmitry Glukhovsky. 

So far, we’ve seen a trilogy of games. On top of the original trio, there’s an extra remaster we’re including. The grand total of Metro series games is four. Also, the last game, Metro Exodus, has two expansions.

The series happens in the writer’s fictional world, a post-apocalyptic Russia after a worldwide nuclear war. Gameplay-wise, Metro offers a first-person-shooter survival formula on a mix of linear, non-linear, and semi-open maps.

The plot follows a series of survivors who found shelter on Moscow’s underground metro system. Each station has a different group, and most groups have unique social structures.

Beneath the surface, these factions are struggling for power, resources, and supplies. The tunnels are a nasty place, full of radiation, mutants, and environmental hazards. Above the surface, the situation is worse. 

You play as a Stalker, someone who scavenges the world for supplies.

The first Metro game happens mostly in the tunnels.

As it follows a linear plot, it would be best to play the whole trilogy instead of only the third one. However, if you’re going to pick one, pick Metro Exodus.

Metro 2033’s former publisher, THQ, is a German-Austrian company.

Developer: 4A Games (Ukraine)

Publisher: THQ (former) / Deep Silver

Release Date: 2010

Platform: Xbox 360, Windows

Studio 4A Games made an alliance for Glujovsky to create the first game of the series together. They began working on the title in 2006. 

The result, Metro 2033, combines horror, survival, immersive sim, and FPS. It came out with top-of-the-line graphics, performance, and gameplay.

The game follows Artyom, a young Stalker trying to find supplies for a newly-formed faction alliance. You scour both the tunnel and the surface. The alliance’s ultimate goal is defeating a mysterious race of mutant beings, the Dark Ones. 

It’s not an easy task. Surviving in Metro’s world requires strict resource and equipment management. In particular, these equipment are present on all Metro games:

Gas Mask: You need a gas mask to survive the toxic air.

Filters: You need gas mask filters for proper air filtration. You can loot these items everywhere, or buy them from specific stores.

Metro-Made Watch: It measures the gas filter durability. 

Flashlight: You’ll need it a lot, as the game is full of dark areas. However, it consumes power, and the light fades when the battery runs low.

Night-vision Goggles: These allow you to see in the dark. They also require power.

Universal Charger: It allows you to charge the flashlight and the night-vision goggles. 

Geiger Counter: It checks radiation levels. You need to check it constantly to avoid damage.

Lighter: It’s a secondary light source. It can also guide you as it often tells you where the exits are by the way the wind is blowing on the fire. The wind will blow the lighter to show you where you need to go. 

Medkit: It replenishes your health. The game doesn’t have an HP bar. You can only see blood splatters on the screen, plus your heart’s rhythm to tell how much damage you’re receiving.

Compass: It’s your only means of traverse in the game, as there’s no map. It’s strapped on your wrist, and you read it in real-time, much like you use the other items.

Metro 2033 is one of the best survival FPS of all time.

On top of this, you wear either heavy armor or stealth armor. The game encourages stealth playtime, as bullets are scarce while enemies are tough. 

Even more, military bullets are the only currency in the game. You also have access to more rudimentary bullets made beneath the surface, but these are weaker. All of these means ammo management is vital on Metro 2033.

Lastly, you can tweak the game further for an extra challenge. In particular, you can increase enemy damage and play without a HUD for total immersion (Ranger mode)

Metro: Last Light sold more copies than the original title.

Developer: 4A Games

Publisher: THQ (former) / Deep Silver

Release Date: 2013

Platform: Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Windows, MacOS, Linux, SteamOS

4A Games wanted the name “Metro 2034” for the game. However, Glukhovsky thought the title didn’t have anything to do with his newer book of the same title. Interestingly, though, the next novel, Metro 2035, is inspired by Metro: Last Light. That’s a neat feedback loop.

In any case, Last Light happens years after the original title. Without spoiling the first game, your new goal is defeating the Dark Ones on the surface.

You play as Artyom on a long surface quest that uncovers conspiracies and rivalries between the tunnel factions.

The second title in the series emphasizes the action and less on stealth and resource management.

Last Light offers linear maps with some leeway to explore.

Most of your playtime happens on post-apocalyptic Moscu, which means you need a gas mask. You need to change the filters every 30 minutes or so. 

However, the filter may degrade as you suffer damage. Some hits may crack and break your mask, therefore making the filter less effective and durable. Other filter mechanics increase or decrease your breathing speed or your field of view. 

Additionally, there’re five types of gas masks in the world. However, you need to replace a broken gas mask with another, as there’re no means of repair. 

Then, as I said before, you get the same equipment as the first game. The only change is how the Watch works, as there’s a digital model that’s easier to read.

Other than that, you get the same trading system, improved FPS mechanics, better graphics, and longer playtime. 

Metro Redux is the currently available option for the original games.

Developer: 4A Games

Publisher: Deep Silver

Release Date: March 2014

Platform: Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Nintendo Switch, Windows, MacOS, Linux, SteamOS

Metro Redux is the remaster of Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light.

It comes with a graphic overhaul, 4K-res for the Xbox One X and PC, or 1080p-res for PS4, Xbox One, and PC. The frame rate also improved from 24/30 fps to 60fps.

Another critical thing the update took care of are enemy AI, new zones, new secrets, and weapon customizations. 

The remaster also brings two new game modes: “Spartan,” a combat-oriented mode, and “Survival,” a horror-oriented mode.

You can only buy the separate Metro 2033 Redux and Metro: Last Light Redux on Steam. Both games debuted together in a single bundle, but you may also buy them separately. And, sadly, The Redux bundle is not available for PC right now.

Metro REDUX (the bundle) is currently available for Xbox and PlayStation.

Metro Exodus is a semi-open survival-sim FPS.

Developer: 4A Games

Publisher: Deep Silver

Release Date: 2023

Platform: Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, Windows, Google Stadia, Amazon Luna

Metro: Exodus offers the biggest journey the game has ever since. Most of the game happens above the surface, on non-linear, vast levels offering a sandbox survival experience.

The story follows our hero, Artyom, traveling the surface with his companions to search for a safe place.

Notably, the new game has a strong focus on realism.

For example, it adds a crafting and repair system, and crafting also happens in real life. You crouch to check your bag and craft ammo, weapon mods, filters, and supplies.

Crafting resources are metals, chemicals, and weapon parts. You can make ammo, health packs, filters, grenades, and more. However, what you can craft is scarce, and you can’t make everything.

At the same time, you need to manage your limits. You need to be aware of what you carry and consider your needs before a long journey.

There’s no interface to see map areas.

For new equipment, the game introduces a binocular to explore the land. It’s the only means to know what lies ahead, as the game doesn’t share information about the map.

Other elements include the need to recharge or pump some weapons manually, repair gear, and maintain your mask.

And as before, the game thrives on severe resource scarcity. It’s often better to sneak by enemies or let enemies walk past.

Enemies are also unpredictable, and you never know when they may appear or what they might do if you kill or spare their companions. For example, you can take shelter and sleep in a safe house, only to discover bandits surrounding you when you wake up. These are part of the AI-driven events that make the game more immersive.

Similarly, the game reacts to player choice, and you do have options that introduce consequences into the game. Characters remember your choices and actions and respond accordingly.

All of this comes to you with outstanding performance, sound design, OST, character animation, and gameplay.

The Two Colonels is the game’s first DLC. It debuted in 2023. You explore a mysterious tunnel, full of slime and mutants, to save a group of stranded survivors.

It has a different character, though. You play as Khlebnikov on a single linear chapter with new weapons.

You play as Sam, a US marine who was a Moscow embassy guard before the war. After the bombs fall, he makes his way across the tunnels to find a way back home to his family.

The 2023 DLC has a fair amount of new content. It takes about 10 hours to complete Sam’s journey across linear and non-linear scenarios.

Metro 2033 – 2010

Metro: Last Light – 2013

Metro Redux – 2014

Metro Exodus – 2023

Metro Exodus – The Two Colonels – 2023

Metro Exodus – Sam’s Story – 2023

All Battlefield Games In Order Of Release Date

Battlefield is a first-person shooter series by Swedish developer EA DICE. The franchise intends to live by its name and offer increasingly larger PvP battles and campaigns.

These games are famous for their multiplayer shooter experience. It’s about vast maps, dozens of players, and vehicles to drive for a gruesome playthrough.

Almost every year, Electronic Arts releases a new title to compete against Call of Duty games. So far, we’ve seen XX Battlefield titles.

We’re also running down the dozens of expansions available. Some of these offer campaign content; others only add multiplayer content.

Most Battlefield games don’t have a single-player campaign.

Battlefield games focus on large and explosive multiplayer battles. Often, you play as part of a squad and require communication, strategy, and teamwork to survive.

Major elements include airplanes, tanks, jets, choppers, and other vehicles you can drive to battle.

A class system is also prevalent in most Battlefield games. Each class has a different loadout (weapons and gadgets). It’s crucial to properly fill every role in the field.

Lastly, the series introduced the Frostbite engine in 2008. The tech delivers destructible environments, one of the most iconic features in the series.

Battlefield focuses on delivering the best graphics and multiplayer experiences for PC players. Post-launch mods kept Battlefield 1942 relevant for many years.

The first title in the saga debuted in 2002 for Windows and macOS PCs. It was a multiplayer-only game, albeit a further update introduced a single-player mode, where players can enjoy the same features offline.

Notably, the game introduced the Conquest game mode. Conquest is about capturing control points spread across the map. Competing matches were delivering deathmatches and capture-the-flag game modes instead. 

The class system delivers Scout, Assault, Anti-Tank, Medic, and Engineer options. Additionally, players could fly WWII aircraft, bombers, capital ships, submarines, aircraft carriers, tanks, jeeps, and APCs. They could also control anti-aircraft guns, machine guns, and artillery. 

Battles happen on maps across WWII historical sites. These included Eastern, North African, European, and Pacific Areas. Lastly, there were two factions: Axis Powers and Allies. However, each map determined the armies involved. For example, a Japan vs. United States conflict played out on the Pacific’s Wake Island. 

Battlefield 1942 has two expansions:

The Road to Rome debuted in 2003 and added six new maps.

Secret Weapons of WWII also debuted in 2003 and added new weapons and game modes. 

Vietnam has similar gameplay as the first game.

Battlefield Vietnam debuted in 2004 for Windows PCs. DICE’s Canadian subsidiary developed the game. Months later, EA re-released the title as Battlefield Vietnam: Redux with new maps, vehicles, and an official WWII mod. 

Vietnam’s gameplay had few changes. Yet, the studio added some concepts like vehicle passengers being able to fire from the sides. 

You may also find the Battlefield Vietnam 10th Anniversary, a 2014 edition that celebrates the game’s 10th birthday.

Battlefield 2 is more “realistic” than previous Battlefield entries.

Battlefield 2 debuted in 2005 for Windows PCs. Unlike previous games, it has a modern setting and adds tactic and realistic shooter elements.

First, it adds a hefty single-player mode. It’s a series of missions where China, U.S. Marines, and the fictional Middle Eastern Coalition clash. The campaign story happens in the 21st where Eastern powers are invading the USA.

Then, it has a multiplayer aspect where players enter as a squad and part of a bigger team. Each team has a single commander that promotes teamwork and active communication.

Players can choose among 7 classes (assault, medic, anti-tank, engineer, support, special forces, and sniper). Then, the goal was to reduce the opposing team’s tickets for respawning allies. Multiplayer allowed up to 64 players on a map or 8 players on local LAN.

There’re three DLCs available for Modern Combat:

Special Forces: It debuted in 2005 and adds various maps, playable factions, vehicles, and gear (like night vision goggles, gas mals, zip lines, grappling hooks, and tear gas). 

Euro Force: It’s a 2006 Booster Pack. It adds the European Union army as a faction, on top of weapons and vehicles. 

Armored Fury: It’s another Booster Pack, also from 2006. It adds more maps, vehicles, and classes. 

Modern Combat is not available for PC.

Modern Combat is a 2006 stand-alone expansion for Battlefield 2. It debuted for PlayStation 2 and Xbox 360, so it’s the first game in the series for consoles.

The title features a new single-player campaign. The plot is about a fictional war between China and Nato in Kazakhstan.

It also had a multiplayer side, and it was capable of supporting 24 players on either console. The game modes were Capture the Flag and Conquest.

Battlefield 2142 is one of the least successful Battlefield entries.

Battlefield 2142 debuted in 2006 for Windows and macOS X PCs. It brings a new fictional plot, “The Cold War of the 22nd Century,” where two fictional powers battle during a new ice age.

It has a sci-fi setting, and so the combat gameplay is fast and full of fictional weapons.

That said, the multiplayer allowed 64 players per server or 16 players in single player against AI bots. The game also has a ranking system that tracks player performance. This rank system rewards players with weapon unlocks and aesthetics.

Northern Strike is the single post-launch content available for 2142. It’s a 2007 Booster Pack that adds central Europe maps.

Bad Company features the most iconic Battlefield campaign.

The plot follows Private Preston Marlowe trying to steal gold from mercenaries alongside his squad. The “B-Company, a ragtag group of soldiers, are in the midst of a Russia vs. United States War.

The storyline opened a co-op multiplayer campaign mode, Gold Rush. Later on, the studio released Conquest for a full-on multiplayer PvP battle.

Lastly, the game debuted with EA’s Frostbite engine. That means, for the first time, a shooter game had destructible environments like walls and houses.

Battlefield: Heroes is a defunct game.

Heroes debuted in 2009 for Windows PC. It’s the first free-to-play game in the series, although there’re microtransactions and pay-to-win features. 

The multiplayer demanded less PC power, and there was a system to match players of similar levels together. It made Heroes appeal to a larger audience.

Yet, Heroes is not available in official stores anymore.

Battlefield 1943 features one of the best multiplayer modes in the series.

For example, it added new mechanics to a new mode, Air Superiority. These tweaks were unlimited ammo and health regeneration over time. }

The gameplay is similar to Bad Company. The game runs on the Frostbite Engine, so there’s environmental damage. It also includes the Conquest Mode, new weapons, classes, and vehicles.

Bad Company 2 is currently one of the most successful games in the franchise.

Bad Company 2 is a sequel to the successful Bad Company. It debuted in 2010 for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Windows PC.

The game continues the Bad Company storyline. It follows the B-Company amidst WWII. The squad is searching for special operatives trapped behind enemy lines.

The game features an intense single-player campaign, offering the neat character focus Bad Company had. Also, Preston Marlowe is back, once again featuring as the protagonist.

Then, the multiplayer mode is well fleshed-out. It packs multiple game modes, maps, vehicles, and weapons.

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Vietnam is the single expansion pack for Bad Company 2. It debuted in 2010 for Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360.

The content adds maps, vehicles, and weapons, plus licensed music from the Vietnam War era.

Battlefield Online debuted in 2010 for Windows. It’s a multiplayer-only Battlefield 2 remake. 

It was also a free-to-play edition. Sadly, though, it came with a catalog of technical issues, performance glitches. Plus, it had an overall graphical quality. EA surprised no one when they shut down the game in 2013. 

Play4Free is another defunct Battlefield title.

EA followed Battlefield Online with Battlefield Play4Free, a 2011 free-to-play multiplayer fps.

Play4Free had no single-player mode, though. It was a multiplayer-only experience. As such, it had most of the weapons and maps of Bad Company 2 and Battlefield 2.

The game is not available on official stores currently. EA shut it down in 2023.

Battlefield 3 has five DLCs.

Battlefield 3 is Battlefield 2’s direct sequel. It debuted in 2011 for PS3, Xbox 360, and Windows PC. The newer game features bigger maps, more vehicles, more scales, and 64 players in a multiplayer PC campaign. On consoles, the game supports 24 players.

It also has a single-player mode, where you can play the campaign alongside bots. Likewise, it has extra co-op missions to try out. Similarly, the game has several elements from the Bad Company titles, like fighter jets and prone positions.

The campaign’s plot follows the fictional “War of 2014” between the United States and Russia. The story happens across Iran and Iraq.

On a technical side, the game debuted with the Frostbite 2.0 ending. It improved performance, lighting, visuals, and overall destruction. As a result, the game felt more interactive and realistic.

There’re 5 DLC packs for Battlefield 3: 

Back to Karkand: The 2011 expansion added new maps, remade from Battlefield 2. It also introduced new vehicles and weapons.

Close Quarters: The 2012 expansion adds infantry-oriented games, new weapons, assignments, the Conquest Domination game mode, and better textures. 

Armored Kill: The third DLC debuted in 2012. It adds new vehicles, mobile artillery, and the largest map in the game.

Aftermath: It premiered in 2012 to add a crossbow on top of weapon mods.

End Game: The fifth DLC debuted in 2013. It adds four new maps and a 4-wheel bike. 

Battlefield 4 continues the storyline from Battlefield 3.

Battlefield 4 debuted in 2013 for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.

The game continues the large-scale warfare of the series, with old and new features alike. Moreover, it introduced the Frostbite 3 engine for better-than-ever destruction.

Notably, the game has ways to change the physical properties of a map. For example, toppling a skyscraper and kicking dust may cover the whole map with smoke.

However, its single-player campaign was quite short and simple, with a plot that continues the main storyline. The pilot continues the war between Russia and the United States, six years after Battlefield 3.

Battlefield 4 includes 9 post-launch DLCs, available at the Premium Edition. 

China Rising: The first DLC debuted in 2013. It added four new maps across China. It also has new vehicles, the Air Superiority mode, and new assignments. 

Second Assault: The follow-up DLC debuted in 2013 with fan-favorite Battlefield 3 maps, plus the Capture the Flag game mode. 

Naval Strike debuted in 2013 with four new island-centric maps and the Carrier Assault game mode. 

Dragon’s Teeth: It debuted in 2013 with a new game mode (Chain Link), new maps, and 11 new assignments. 

Final Stand: The next DLC debuted in 2013 and added new maps, new weapons, and a hovercraft tank. 

Weapons Crate: The Booster Pack debuted in 2023. It brought a new game mode, weapons, and balance changes. 

Night Operations: In 2023, the next DLC introduced night-time versions of various maps. 

Community Operations: The 2023 DLC brought a new forest-centric map, as well as balance changes. Notably, DICE created the site alongside the game’s community. 

Legacy Operations: The last DLC debuted in 2023. It was a free pack that updated the Dragon Valley map.

Hardline is more of a spin-off than a main Battlefield title.

Hardline premiered in 2023 for Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Xbox 360. 

The game changed the military approach delivering a Police vs. Robber experience. So, it’s akin the Ubisoft’s Rainbox Six series. That means gameplay features Special Response Unites vs. criminals. 

For starters, the single-player mode is about arresting robbers. There’s a campaign with a story that happens in Miami. Rookie Detective Nick Mendoza follows a drug supply source and finds himself amid a drug war. 

The multiplayer added new game modes where players joined either the police or the criminals. Some of these game modes are Heist, Blood Money, Hotwire, Rescue, and Crosshair.

Hardline has five expansion packs:

Battlefield 1 debuted in 2023 for Windows, PS4, and Xbox One. It takes the games back to a WWI setting, with both single-player and multiplayer modes. 

As one of the best games in the franchise, Battlefield 1 packs a lot of content. First, it has a hefty single-player campaign across the WWI frontlines. Then, it brings various multiplayer game modes, war machines, and weapons, all WWI-inspired. 

For example, the game introduces horses into the franchise. Horseriding combat added a touch of realism and cruelty into the series. 

On top of that, the title has top-notch graphics and performance. If you’re going to choose a single Battlefield game, this might be the best option. 

There’re four DLCs available for Battlefield 1. 

They Shall not Pass: The first DLC debuted in 2023. It brought a new playable faction (the French Army), new maps, weapons, and vehicles. 

In the Name of the Tsar: The next DLC debuted in 2023. It added a Scout class for the Russian Empire, four maps, and infantry weapons.

Turning the Tides: The next DLC added 2 naval-centric maps, infantry weapons, a new class, and a new game mode. 

Apocalypse: The 2023 DLC added three maps that re-imagine some of the bloodiest WWI battles. Also, it introduced new weapons and gadgets. 

Battlefield V sits a a popular FPS game even after Battlefield 2042.

Battlefield V debuted in 2023 for PS4, Xbox One, and Windows. It has a WWII setting and serves as a thematic continuation of Battlefield 1.

That said, Battlefield V takes many elements from the previous games. That means the single-player campaign is similar, but multiplayer modes, classes, and graphics are alike. Similarly, the game has a co-op campaign that allows four players across WWII missions.

As a novelty, the game allows players to modify vehicles and weapons. Players can earn modifications as they earn ranks. There’re also Cosmetic items plus a currency to purchase cosmetics.

Lastly, the game focuses on party-centric playstyles. There’re scarce resources, which is crucial on the titles’ Battle-Royale modes.

Battlefield V has six post-launch DLCs. These are seasonal updates within the episodic Tides of War storyline.  

Overture: It’s the first chapter, and it revolves around the war between the United Kingdoms and Germany. 

Lighting Strikes: The chapter delivers vehicle play and time limits on its various game modes. 

Trial by Fire: It introduces Outpost and Firestorm game modes and the Battle of Greece. 

Defying the Odds: The fourth DLC adds new maps and various game modes. 

Battlefest: It’s a minor DLC that adds new skins and weapons. 

War in the Pacific: It’s the fifth chapter of Tides of War. It introduces the Pacific Theater and includes Japan and the United States into the game. 

Into the Jungle: The latest DLC expands scope with new Asian-forests maps. 

The title promised larger-than-ever battles in a futuristic setting. It also promised real-time dynamic weather and destructible environments. On top of that, it supports 128 players per map on PC and newer consoles, or 24 on old-gen consoles. 

2042 also supports a special game mode that allows players to revisit old maps and modes, with the chance of adding personal tweaks. Another new experience was Hazard Zone, focusing on Battle-Royale squad-based combat.

Sadly, it seems like the game is unfinished. The game is sitting with a 2.4 user score on Metacritic, one of the lowest scores on the site. Most fans have found glaring performance issues, a short arsenal, few customization options, a weird bullet spread mechanic, and severe crashes. There’re also no classes and no stats, simply Specialists with some microtransactions involved.

Moreover, the game erased some key Battlefield elements. These included scoreboards, clans, voice-chat, or regular chat. It takes out the sense of community from a multiplayer FPS meant to have fun.

Battlefield 1942 – 2002

Battlefield Vietnam – 2004

Battlefield 2 – 2005

Battlefield 2: Modern Combat – 2006

Battlefield 2142 – 2006

Battlefield: Bad Company – 2008

Battlefield: Heroes – 2009

Battlefield 1943 – 2009

Battlefield: Bad Company 2 – 2010

Battlefield Online – 2010

Battlefield Play4Free – 2011

Battlefield 3 – 2011

Battlefield 4 – 2013

Battlefield Hardline – 2023

Battlefield 1 – 2023

Battlefield V – 2023

Battlefield 2042 – 2023

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