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Battlefield 3's Battlelog is STAGGERINGLY BOLD AND BRILLIANT; NOBEL PRIZE INCOMING

dLMN8R

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This thread has been brought to you by:



When this service was announced, along with information about how the server browser would work, everyone was completely rightfully worried. "Shit, there goes DICE fucking up the server browser again!"

Turns out we were all totally wrong.


It's quicker than any other server browser out there

Yes - any other server browser, including the Steam server browser which has obviously been the clear winner for years. It refreshes instantly. It gets you into games quicker. You don't need to load the game ahead of time.

It's buggy, but it's fast. Outside of the existing problem of not enough servers, servers filling up quickly, and the browser mis-reporting the number of people currently in them, the time from deciding I want to play to getting into a server is quicker in Battlefield 3 than Team Fortress 2, Bad Company 2, or any other multiplayer game I've played.

Once they fix those bugs, there won't even be any caveats anymore - the Battlelog server browser will simply be the quickest with absolutely no qualifications.


It handles reserved slots well

The comparisons to All Seeing Eye and other historical browser/external application-based server browsers were apt, but the thing here is that it actually connects you to the game before you start loading any data. You connect to a server and reserve your slot on the server, then it starts loading everything.

This is compared to the old All Seeing Eye, or even the Steam server browser where you can pick a server through Steam before going into a game - both of those functionally work, but the problem is that by the time the game actually gets loaded, someone probably took those open slots, so you're stuck at a "server full" message.

Then you need to exit the game (or go to the in-game server browser) and try all over again, sometimes needing to wait for all that data to re-load in seconds/minutes too.


What's the point of having all that stuff in-game anyway?

I was thinking about this today, and really, having all this connectivity bullshit right in the game just bloats it up and slows it down. All the server connectivity, community stuff, clan stuff - why not put it on the web where it belongs? Why not let the game be the game, and put all that other stuff on the web where it's far more accessible, no matter where you are, or what device you're using it on?

The game loads quickly, and loads in the background, so you can do other stuff while that's happening - including Battlelog stuff. If all that was in-game, then you'd be stuck unable to do anything until you're actually in the game.

In fact, having it all on the web brings me to the next point:


It's buggy as hell - but they can fix it quickly

I was reading one of the DICE guy's twitter feeds - turns out they've already rolled out 4 patches to Battlelog, with doubtlessly more to come.

The fact that all of this networking, communication, and social stuff is outside of the game means they can update it extremely quickly, without pushing down a patch to every single Client. As long as they exploit this potential, Battlelog can improve substantially and quickly.

Hopefully they do :)


The friends implementation and even voice chat already work

It's buggy, but it's working. I think the main problem people are having is that they don't realize voice chat is push-to-talk. It's a problem right now - they hid that fact somewhere in the Communications interface. Defaults to left-shift, but you can change it to whatever you want, and through the web interface, you can even choose what recording and playback device to use for voice communication.

Joining groups, then joining a server all together as a group, works pretty well. You don't join the same squad right now, which is an issue, but the potential is there.


It minimizes, restores, and goes to windowed mode fast too

Whether you want to go back to Battlelog while in-game, or something similar, the game (for the most part) doesn't crash, flickers very little, and is obviously built with this idea in mind.



But obviously, it has some other problems. Most notably, of course, that you can't change your graphics or key settings until you're actually alive in a game. However, IMO as long as they simply allow you to do that when you're dead, that should be more than enough.

I've seen some people suggest that the server browser is proof that DICE doesn't know what they're doing, that it's a shitty console port with the server browser as an afterthought, or something similar.

But this system was not easy to implement. This isn't something that's done as an afterthought - this is something done completely as intentional, thoughtful, very risky, but incredibly bold design. If they implemented it poorly, it could have completely crashed and burned, but in my very humble opinion, I couldn't be happier.
 

XANDER CAGE

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Mar 21, 2011
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It's risky and bold to build a time machine to like 1998? I just don't see why this can't be in game. Like, I see how it can be useful, but not to a degree where it needed to be outside of the game.
 

Sethos

Banned
Apr 9, 2009
18,138
0
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Denmark
I agree. Best server browser I have used in years, love the fact it also acts as a portal to everything else, your friends, stats and launching the game. I'm glad it's in and all the haters can suck it :D
 

legend166

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Jan 31, 2007
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Everyone in AusGAF is saying it's terrible.

I trust them.

It doesn't help the OP reads like viral marketing.
 

dLMN8R

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BigJiantRobut said:
It's risky and bold to build a time machine to like 1998? I just don't see why this can't be in game. Like, I see how it can be useful, but not to a degree where it needed to be outside of the game.
Why are you asking why it needed to be outside of the game?

You should be asking why it needs to be inside of the game.

For all the benefits that web technologies and the ability to update it without patching offer, I just don't see any reason to have this stuff inside of a game anymore.
 

Recon

Banned
Mar 27, 2008
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I hated it at first, but i like the fact i can find a server and start joining without starting up an actual game client. After using it for a couple hours, i can see why they thought this was a good idea.
 

Semblance

shhh Graham I'm still compiling this Radiant map
Dec 2, 2004
6,026
1
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Well, it's better than DICE's usual server browser slop, sure.
 

Angry Fork

Member
Jun 12, 2010
13,444
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Battlelog is nothing more than a clever DRM scheme. You'd get the same performance/speed if this stuff was in-game. The fact that you can't change settings until you're in a match completely negates any positives imo. That shit is monstrously stupid.

Other stuff you mentioned as well, lack of squad/party options, lack of auto-retry/auto-join on all servers (someone else said this was an option when creating servers but it should be mandatory on all imo), lack of a refresh button of all things. I won't flat out say I hate it, I think it works and it's fast, but if it ain't like TF2 server list I'm already annoyed. There are things to fix/add before I'm okay with it.
 

teepo

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Jun 10, 2004
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it's miles ahead of any other battlefield game before it

by far the best browser i've used.
 

Striek

Member
Jan 24, 2005
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Doesn't seem very special to me. Nor does it seem particularly fast (not to mention it only gets the pings of like 10 servers).
 

Rimfya

Banned
Feb 15, 2010
1,840
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I agree with this OP and just pre-ordered the game at GameStop. GameStop’s pre-order includes the Physical Warfare pack, in addition to the Back To Karkand DLC. If you are part of their PowerUp Rewards, you’ll get a free Prima Battlefield 3 strategy guide as well.
 

Nekrono

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Feb 23, 2010
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It still has a few bugs and could use a bit of work but it's FANTASTIC, absolutely love it.

It's like having everything in one place that is super easy to use and accessible.

Good job DICE!.
 

Vire

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Aug 16, 2009
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How much did DICE pay you to make this topic?

Rimfya said:
I agree with this OP and just pre-ordered the game at GameStop. GameStop’s pre-order includes the Physical Warfare pack, in addition to the Back To Karkand DLC. If you are part of their PowerUp Rewards, you’ll get a free Prima Battlefield 3 strategy guide as well.
I see what you did there.
 

dLMN8R

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Dec 14, 2007
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I honestly don't give a shit if I sound like I'm viral marketing something for EA. Most people here should know better - it's my genuine opinion, and I'd like to hear some responses for where I'm wrong.

Outside of the obvious known bugs, what am I wrong about when it comes to the intended design?



Basically, what inherent benefits do you get from having this stuff in the game?
 

Grayman

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Feb 7, 2005
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It is fast because it seems to be sending a random selection of 100 servers that meet the criteria.

It is better than most ingame browsers, EA's for sure, but I have not yet seen a reason to put it above something like Maxbrowse or even Steam. The saving spots is a big positive though. My gut reaction is that the logging in process before the map starts to load is slower than a game like Counter Strike Source or the Quakes.
 

legend166

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Jan 31, 2007
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dLMN8R said:
I honestly don't give a shit if I sound like I'm viral marketing something for EA. Most people here should know better - it's my genuine opinion, and I'd like to hear some responses for where I'm wrong.

Outside of the obvious known bugs, what am I wrong about when it comes to the intended design?



Basically, what inherent benefits do you get from having this stuff in the game?


Why do you keep using bold like that?
 

markot

Banned
Aug 21, 2008
18,838
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Whats the benefit of having this? All of it could be done in game for one. For two, you have to alt tab and crapulent stuff like that, alt f4 to quit and whats nots.

WHATS THE BENEFIT?!!
 

Grayman

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dLMN8R said:
I honestly don't give a shit if I sound like I'm viral marketing something for EA. Most people here should know better - it's my genuine opinion, and I'd like to hear some responses for where I'm wrong.

Outside of the obvious known bugs, what am I wrong about when it comes to the intended design?



Basically, what inherent benefits do you get from having this stuff in the game?
The intended design of needing to connect to a server and spawn and be alive to check your controls or change settings and not being able to quit when you want to(end of round and after your last life) are flaws partly because that stuff is out of the game.
 

bluestuff

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Feb 11, 2009
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Its the best server browser battlefield has ever had. That isn't saying much however, and the source/valve server browser, along with the friend/community implementation is still leagues ahead, in polish alone.
 

Anton Sugar

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Jul 26, 2007
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Agreed 100%. Kinda fun to check in on people via Battlelog throughout the day.

Angry Fork said:
Other stuff you mentioned as well, lack of squad/party options, lack of auto-retry/auto-join on all servers (someone else said this was an option when creating servers but it should be mandatory on all imo), lack of a refresh button of all things. I won't flat out say I hate it, I think it works and it's fast, but if it ain't like TF2 server list I'm already annoyed. There are things to fix/add before I'm okay with it.

These are all beta issues that will be fixed.
 

Saren is Bad

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Dec 20, 2007
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It is a fucking website for the front end menu of a AAA game. I don't want the experience of flash game with Battlefield.
 

Tubobutts

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Nov 30, 2007
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It is much better than BFBC2's server browser, but I'd still rather have it in game. Getting killed while changing graphics settings or trying to leave the game is annoying.
 

luka

Loves Robotech S1
Jan 15, 2009
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Saren is Bad said:
It is a fucking website for the front end menu of a AAA game. I don't want the experience of flash game with Battlefield.
The server browser is part of the experience?
 

Foffy

Banned
May 14, 2009
22,560
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When I've heard about the server browser, I felt EA was making a 2011 mainstream shooter with a online service from the late 1990's. Maybe I'm wrong, but I guess I'll give the beta a look.

I really hope I'm wrong. The only shooters that really wow me are the super tactical Armed Assault games. Battlefield 3 interests me because it seems slower paced than the arcadey antics of Call of Duty. I also loved Killzone 2 for precisely this reason.
 

dLMN8R

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Dec 14, 2007
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markot said:
Whats the benefit of having this? All of it could be done in game for one. For two, you have to alt tab and crapulent stuff like that, alt f4 to quit and whats nots.

WHATS THE BENEFIT?!!
It being in-game is not an inherent benefit. What matters is how it all actually works in the end. The benefits of having it outside of the game, however, are those I already listed - they can update it without patching the game, you can access it anywhere without loading the game, and you can do other stuff on your computer all the way up until the second you actually load the game.

Changing servers is just as fast in Battlefield 3 as Bad Company 2. And you don't need to alt-F4...why would you need to alt-F4?

Everything being in-game isn't an automatic benefit - it's simply the default we're used to.



Grayman said:
The intended design of needing to connect to a server and spawn and be alive to check your controls or change settings and not being able to quit when you want to(end of round and after your last life) are flaws partly because that stuff is out of the game.

I already mentioned this. First of all, not being able to quit when you want to was a problem in Bad Company 2 too - it's not like Battlelog was required for DICE to screw that up.

The idea of needing to spawn to be alive to change your controls or settings is something else I already mentioned - I think that can be easily fixed by simply allowing you to change that stuff when you're dead.
 

dLMN8R

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RukusProvider said:
I love having to start Origin and a web browser to be able to launch the game. What will they think of next!
You don't need to start Origin.

When you want to play Battlefield 3, click a favorite on your web browser or go directly to the Battlelog URL. That's it.

When you join a game, it'll load Origin in the background in a few seconds automatically, you don't need to load it yourself.
 

Saren is Bad

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Dec 20, 2007
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luka said:
The server browser is part of the experience?

You start the campaign and co-op from the browser. As in, there is no menu for this game. You open up Origin, start your game, which opens up the browser, then you click Campaign. It's corny as shit tits.
 

Emitan

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Jun 26, 2008
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Saren is Bad said:
You start the campaign and co-op from the browser. As in, there is no menu for this game. You open up Origin, start your game, which opens up the browser, then you click Campaign. It's corny as shit tits.
Holy shit. That sounds awful with no benefit.
 

dLMN8R

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Saren is Bad said:
You start the campaign and co-op from the browser. As in, there is no menu for this game. You open up Origin, start your game, which opens up the browser, then you click Campaign. It's corny as shit tits.
Actually, I think Demize on Twitter already confirmed that you do not need to use Battlelog to load the Single Player. You can play the Single Player offline without any internet connection.


BigJiantRobut said:
I just don't see why the server browser and the game need to be fragmented.
You're still asking the wrong question.

After playing Battlefield 3, I just don't see why the server browser needs to be in the game.

Battlefield 3 is not a worse game in any way because of the server browser being outside of the game. But it's a hell of a lot better in a huge number of ways.
 

demolitio

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Dec 5, 2008
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It's actually pretty interesting and handy at times, but I'd still like an ingame browser and party system but I can live with it. It just needs some more refinement and I can see it being pretty handy. Hell, I can go straight to a bookmark and check my favorite server to see how many people are on at the time without booting up the game or using another program. My problem is just the fact that you have to alt tab to join parties, check who's on BL, etc. Luckily the game isn't bad with alt tabbing but it's annoying since you don't even get an alert about receiving a message from a buddy meaning Steam overlay is the only alternative since Origin's chat doesn't seem to be enabled in this game.

The stats are also very nice. I think it's an innovative move on their part and could be implemented in other games in the future, but I'd still like to have an ingame browser to use alternatively. There's plenty of time for them to improve this system and it was going to have some problems no matter what given it's the first of its kind for a major game. Everything is rough in the beginning but it grows over time as more people try it out.

Risky but has a chance.
 

evlcookie

but ever so delicious
May 9, 2006
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I don't have a major issue with battlelog at the moment, I honestly think it could actually be awesome if it was built into a chrome, opera, firefox addon / extension. It would simply list your friends online and in game, you would highlight one of them and see the server they are playing in, if it's got free spots press the join now button and off you go or join the queue while you browse.

I feel like we have gotten past the point of having to quit and load up a web browser every time we want to use it. It's safe to say the majority of people keep their browser open, It could just be the 1 tab to keep it from quitting (in chrome) or maybe you have 40 tabs open like a crazy man, Either way it's open.

It might not end up being better, I still need to check it out this weekend, But after a single shot I was actually impressed by it. Part of me got it right there and then but I can see where an issue might arise, if I join a server and the side i join is getting dominated, quickly switching out and jumping servers might be a pain in the ass since it's not in game. Maybe that's where all the hate is really coming from.
 

RukusProvider

Banned
Mar 1, 2011
4,282
0
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dLMN8R said:
You don't need to start Origin.

When you want to play Battlefield 3, click a favorite on your web browser or go directly to the Battlelog URL. That's it.

When you join a game, it'll load Origin in the background in a few seconds automatically, you don't need to load it yourself.

Again, I need 2 programs active to launch 1.
 

Saren is Bad

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Dec 20, 2007
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dLMN8R said:
Actually, I think Demize on Twitter already confirmed that you do not need to use Battlelog to load the Single Player. You can play the Single Player offline without any internet connection.

If that's the case then I'm much more confident in it. It still says "Start Co-Op" and "Start Campaign" in the browser, but maybe it's for people who want to use the Battlelog for everything. Still, though, not a fan.
 

dLMN8R

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RukusProvider said:
Again, I need 2 programs active to launch 1.
Technically, yes. Functionally? It makes no difference in how things actually work for me as a user.

To me as a user, it's still quicker, and still more useful.


Though focusing on that technical part, I don't get at all what Origin is doing in the first place. Maybe they'll build more Battlefield 3 support into it later, but right now it doesn't seem like Origin is doing anything at all except providing an in-game overlay. Everything is handled by the browser plug-in instead.



jgminto said:
When I clicked the link I was honestly expecting a Kotaku article.
Kotaku talks about shit like the Razer Blade obviously not knowing anything about PC gaming since they thought the specs were unique and the price was reasonable. I've been playing PC multiplayer games for more than a decade :)