Battlefield 1943

It’s been about seven years, and we’re still playing the same Battlefield mode. Graphics have gotten prettier, and the setting has jumped from past to present to future to past, but you’re still a lowly grunt fighting alongside others in a bid to dominate a map.

It’s lucky that mode is so fun, then, isn’t it?

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Battlefield 1943 is an interesting title. It’s a download-only game for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. It takes the best parts of Battlefield 1942, pares things down, and winds up with three soldier classes fighting over three maps (with a bonus aerial map thrown in too). It costs far less than a retail title, but features a similar level of polish. It’s an interesting experiment that EA is taking here – and aside from a few quibbles, it seems like they’ve pulled it off.

Too much of a PC noob to be familiar with the (proper) Battlefield series? Well, it’s essentially based around territory capture. You’ll be assigned a team (in this case, either Allies or Japanese) and given the opportunity to pick a class. Once in the game, the goal is to take command of as many of the five flag points on the map as possible. Simply standing next to a neutral or enemy flag will convert it to your side – although of course, this takes a bit of time, during which the opposition will be doing its best to kill you.

What results is a fierce game of tug of war, as the two teams try to cling on to their flags while also advancing on the enemy. If at any point you find yourself with fewer flags than the other team, you’ll begin losing points. When these points get to zero, you’ll lose.

The three classes found in Battlefield 1943 are a good mix, and provide a decent amount of variety. The rifleman is good at picking off guys at medium range, although he doesn’t have much in his arsenal to go up against tanks. That’s better left to the infantryman, who has a very nice rocket launcher – although on the other hand, his normal gun isn’t as effective at picking off troops at range. Finally, the scout is equipped with a sniper rifle and charges that can be detonated – so if you’re a sneaky kind of person, stick with this one.

So the basic gameplay works just fine. There have been reports circulating about connection problems and horrible lag, but I have to say that all the games we played ran as smooth as silk, and it was always easy to hop into a game. It’s good to see that EA has local servers!

I do have some criticisms, although they won’t apply to everyone. I’ve played a fair amount of Battlefield on the PC, as well as a lot of console shooters – but I found it oddly hard to adjust to combining the two. That, combined with what seemed like insanely good players on the other team, meant my average lifespan between spans was in the region of 15 seconds. If you’re new to this series, take note: you’re going to face a rough initiation period. It’s a real shame there’s no matching system in the game – if you don’t have many friends to play against, you’re going to get pitted against some pretty hardcore gamers. Still, it says something about the game that I kept going back for more punishment.

Three maps might not sound like enough, but the core gameplay is exciting and varied enough that you won’t mind heading back to Iwo Jima and the like time and time again. You can always try something different, whether you try your luck in the skies, or man an AA gun, or circle around behind the enemy in a boat. Still, whatever you do, try to stick with your allies – lonely soldiers don’t have that much life expectancy. That’s another bad thing about playing with anonymous people online – a lot of them simply bugger off on their own, and end up dying repeatedly.

Battlefield is one of the greater multiplayer shooters around, and 1943 continues that trend. It’s an interesting, stripped down version that still has a lot of fun packed in. This comes with the proviso of playing alongside decent players, of course. If you’re after some no-nonsense team-based action on your console, Battlefield 1943 comes recommended.

"Pared back, but still just as fun - for less money!"
- Battlefield 1943
Follow Own it? Rating: PG   Difficulty: Hard   Learning Curve: 30 Min


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Comments Comments (16)

Posted by Gazza22
On Tuesday 21 Jul 2009 10:08 AM
This really flew under the radder for me.
But have heard good things about it.
Posted by Moneyshot
On Tuesday 21 Jul 2009 2:58 PM
There is 4 maps now with Coral Sea which adds some full on plane battles and it soundlike you got owned , BF1943 was made more for the fans of he series to plug the gap between Bad Company 2 and the mistake of 2142.
If you have played Bad Company the controls are the same and the maps are straight out of 1942, the only problems I have is the crashing during mid game on my pS3. for $25 bucks is cheap fun and is better to play than many $100 tiles.
For a fan or the series I would giv it a nine, it hits all the targets it sets out for without trying to compete with its bigger brothers.
Posted by Genocide
On Tuesday 21 Jul 2009 3:42 PM
Awesome game, it can only get better aswell. hopefully they will release new maps and maybe even new classes? Would love that.
Posted by twisterjamz
On Tuesday 21 Jul 2009 4:15 PM
gonna download trial version next week as we have passed our bandwidth
Posted by Soyerz
On Tuesday 21 Jul 2009 5:55 PM
Might pick this one up in the future. But is Bad Companies multiplayer any better to make it worth the extra $30?
The Host of Chaos
Posted by The Host of Chaos
On Tuesday 21 Jul 2009 6:17 PM
The trial is really fun, but seems buggy. I had no sound for one round. My mate had no sound in both rounds. But he's gonna buy it so I'll get to download and play it for free on my PS3 =)
Posted by Oliver
On Wednesday 22 Jul 2009 7:08 PM
This seems really cool from what I've heard, what with the community unlocking of different areas, etc. Might pick it up and let a few friends have a download too so we can play online.
Posted by guitar93
On Wednesday 22 Jul 2009 7:26 PM
loved BF1943 on PC.

seen some of the easter eggs

good they did think of bad company.

Must of been Haggard's dad getting a tan while the rest are fighting for their country.
Posted by GenBattle
On Wednesday 22 Jul 2009 9:23 PM
21 July 2009, 05:55 PM Reply to Soyerz
Might pick this one up in the future. But is Bad Companies multiplayer any better to make it worth the extra $30?
Soyerz: basically BF:BC has more classes, more maps, and other game modes (gold rush). Great game if you liked BF2 and the likes.
Posted by Oliver
On Wednesday 29 Jul 2009 2:14 AM
I've decided I will only buy one shooter and it will probably be COD6, not this. Unfortunate cause this seems coll, but COD6 seems better!
Posted by Oliver
On Wednesday 29 Jul 2009 2:15 AM
*seems cool.
Posted by SpawnSeekSlay
On Wednesday 29 Jul 2009 7:34 PM
Played the trial at a mates on his PS3.
Dont know if it'll have long lasting appeal, but its definitely a good multiplayer to play teamed up with mates (or against!) for the price.
Wonder if there will be addon map packs?
Posted by kalify
On Tuesday 4 Aug 2009 2:13 PM
Love this game bar losing my connection for no reason and wheres the Platnium Trophy?
Posted by Oliver
On Friday 7 Aug 2009 1:39 AM
4 August 2009, 02:13 PM Reply to kalify
Love this game bar losing my connection for no reason and wheres the Platnium Trophy?
A lot of DLC games don't have Platinums.
Posted by chinaman71
On Monday 17 Aug 2009 5:27 PM
decent game however not very deep i.e weapon options and map options. SP for that matter aswell.... id proberly recommend Bad Company first and foremost if you want a 'full-er' game rather than a pick up an play every once and awhile.
Posted by Inglemoose
On Thursday 10 Sep 2009 2:07 PM
I'll get it simply due to my enjoying the previous games.