We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

Battlefield 4 commander mode trailer shows how overwatch ties up the game’s loose ends


Commanders in Battlefield 4 will be taking control of many different functions that were previously spread out across the different classes in Battlefield 3, or out of the player’s control entirely. What’s shown in the new trailer seems to provide a sense of cohesion to the Battlefield series that’s been lacking, it could well be the best thing that’s on the horizon of the upcoming sequel.

Update: DICE have since confirmed both spectator mode and VOIP will feature; two similarly key features.

Yesterday we got the first glimpse of Battlefield 4’s multiplayer in action. Although there was talk of how the new mode would function in-game it wasn’t clear to what extent the commander would have control. What we see in this new trailer is that the commander will be controlling things like UAVs, drone strikes, cruise missiles, vehicle drops, gun ships, mortar strikes; essentially, a whole host of weapons that were already available in Battlefield 3 but were assigned out to the different classes.

It may seem like a bit of a jip to package these things that were already in the game and call it something new but it makes much more sense to give those powers to a player who has an overview position, instead of divvying them up among the troops on the ground. Artillery should be called in by a commander, someone who can see where the enemy troops are assaulting and where their own troops are struggling. For instance, in Bad Company 2 the recon troops had control of mortar strikes and they would obliterate a battlefield with them, but they were directing the strikes from a narrow viewpoint, often blocking an assault path for their own teammates simply because they weren’t aware of where their allies were positioned. A commander has the luxury of overwatch.

I want to see how the commander role affects multiplayer matches, I can see a well rehearsed team benefiting hugely from a good commander. Though, as I learned from Natural Selection 2, if people aren’t playing as a team, ignoring the orders sent from on high, then it can ruin the game.

DICE have confirmed that Battlefield 4 will also include VOIP and spectator mode so it looks like they’re really pushing to support teamplay in this release of the game. You can also click on the map to spawn, now, too. Which is nice.