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DICE: Players want games to be “the same, but different”

Tuesday, 25th October 2011 02:34 GMT By Brenna Hillier

DICE built a whole new engine – Frostbite 2.0 – for Battlefield 3, because it was one of the few ways the developer could make it “unique” without putting players off.

“Everyone wants unique. But when they get it, they don’t like it, because it’s different,” the executive producer opined in a huge interview with Gamasutra.

“I’m a consumer, so I know what I want. I want the same, but different. It’s the classic ‘same, same but different’ mentality. It needs to be similar to what I had, but it needs to be unique at the same time. And the question is only, ‘what is the same?’ and ‘what is unique?’ How daring do you need to go?”

Bach said there’s little point doing market research, because players invariably respond with “I want it like it was, but better.”

“But if you do it like it was, and better, it would be the same, more or less. It’s not a new game,” he said.

“So our job is to create a new vision for something, that the consumer can say, ‘Oh, I get it! But it actually feels quite different. It’s brand new.’”

DICE is in a particularly difficult position because it focuses on modern day shooters, which understandably share many elements in common.

“So what do you do to make it feel different?” he asked, highlighting Battlefield 3′s “physicality” and “presence in the world” – things like improved animations and graphics, which require more extensive technology leaps than gamers might believe.

“You could see it as, ‘Oh, it’s just a couple of steps forward,’ but to do that, you have to go back to the foundation of what you’re building, and rebuild it from scratch,” he said.

“Because what we knew when we started the project was that you couldn’t just add another building block on top of it, because it wouldn’t feel new and fresh. So, to us, unique is being daring – and just take down the whole house, build a better foundation, and build a higher building.”

Battlefield 3 releases this week on PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.

Thanks, Shack.

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7 Comments

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  1. ultramega

    And let me say, that engine is fucking incredible. The game is breathtaking. Every. Little. Detail – Sound, animation, lighting, textures, ambient feeling, destruction… the list goes on. Great work DICE, I am thoroughly, and happily, impressed!
    =D

    #1 3 years ago
  2. loki

    Again Battlefield 3 boriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing]
    PS BF3 still sucks

    #2 3 years ago
  3. John117

    Whoooo, Battlefield 3 again :D
    PS CoD:MW3 still sucks

    #3 3 years ago
  4. Deacon

    PS BF3 is a beast of a game too, haters

    #4 3 years ago
  5. Edo

    Playing it wright now,and what I see is the best(sorry for the language)goddamn PC optimized game ever made!!Take notes Mr.Carmack,this game is a proof that you CAN have your cake and eat it too – keep your fan base happy and still sell a shitload of copies!

    #5 3 years ago
  6. Maximum Payne

    @5 He already confessed that it was wrong call to develop first on console and then to pc and that he is going to make it right with Doom 4.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. Edo

    #6 After Rage,I will have to see it to believe it.

    #7 3 years ago