May 2021 - last edited May 2021
Hello all. I just wanted to bring up this discussion and display the letter I sent to DICE talking about the reimplementation of singleplayer/splitscreen offline bots into Battlefield. Here is a different version of the text of the the letter. I hope you all can read this and discuss with me the finer points within:
Hello! I am an autistic college student who lives in the USA who is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science/Application Development. I am a huge fan of your company, as you have created the seminal Battlefield series and two successful revivals of the Battlefront series. I have derived hundreds of hours of enjoyment from these games over the past nine years, from the gripping singleplayer stories to the explosive multiplayer. I am glad players can experience everything the Frostbite engine has to offer, along with true realism and authenticity in each game. Truly, Battlefield is one of the quintessential first-person shooter franchises on the market.
Unfortunately, for those playing the games on console, this gives rise to a crippling issue that has plagued the franchise for years.
I am referring to the lack of offline multiplayer support in every release since Battlefield 2: Modern Combat on consoles. There are neither Splitscreen nor Singleplayer Offline Bots to ensure the titles’ longevity. This is a problem for players on console, as many have voiced their displeasure at having to repeatedly pay an online subscription to play the multiplayer component of the various Battlefield titles. The issue is for me a taxing one- I come from a low income family and live off of disability checks issued by my government’s Social Security Administration. This check is used to pay for taxes and utilities, so it is often a rarity for me to afford even a three-month Xbox Live Gold subscription (I play on Xbox). Ironically, I am able to enjoy matches by myself or with a friend on the two latest Battlefront games, as they support both splitscreen and singleplayer offline bots. I am writing this email to request that the teams at DICE responsible for the inclusion of splitscreen and singleplayer offline bots in Battlefront and Battlefront II, as well as the team at the Search for Extraordinary Experiences Division tasked with developing the self-learning AI for Battlefield 1 come together and collaborate on an overhaul of past and present Battlefield releases so that they support Offline Splitscreen Play, Singleplayer Offline Bots, and Offline Bots in Splitscreen. I have several reasons why I am asking this of you, and as such I will take the time to explain them in detail in this email.
Bots/Splitscreen Keep Games Alive
It is a common fact that the majority of gameplay modes that feature bots and splitscreen are often played offline. This is vital for players who grow an attachment to a game and wish to continue playing it even after its life cycle has ended. As with the Battlefield franchise, the early PC titles have multiplayer that can be played indefinitely despite the shutdown of their servers due to the inclusion of bots. Many players still have games such as Battlefield 1942 installed on their PCs due to bot support, and game franchises like Halo are highly successful due to its Splitscreen support. With full Offline Bot and Splitscreen support, the longevity and immortality of the title in question is ensured.
Bots/Splitscreen Enable Play For Those Without Internet
As mentioned before, most bot/splitscreen-friendly gameplay modes are played offline, which is a much needed boon to those who are for some reason or another unable to utilize an Internet connection, though bot support is more ideal, as only one player is required to play with bots (in most cases). These reasons can vary, but two main reasons involve the strength of the Internet signal itself and the cost set forth by the respective Internet Service Provider. The latter reason is especially problematic among players who live in rural areas of the United States of America. With Full Offline Bot/Splitscreen Support, players from around the world can play a game at anytime, with or without a connection to the Internet. Players who play offline with bots also enjoy games free of lag, cheaters/hackers, and obnoxious players who barrage other players with profanities, racial/homophobic slurs, and maternal insults.
Bots Positively Affect How A Player Learns How To Play
With the addition of bot support, players will be able to effectively learn the basic and core mechanics of the game. In many cases, bots are present in a game’s tutorial (e.g. Battlefront II) to show a player how to play a game. It should also be mentioned that many games with bot support have a ‘Training’ mode for practicing against bot opponents in preparation for online play against real people. A significant portion of players cite this feature as a positive aspect of Offline Bot Support and affirm that Training modes which feature bots allow beginners to smoothly transition into playing the online multiplayer aspect of a game.
Bots/Splitscreen Allow For Extensive Cutomization
Many multiplayer-centric games permit customization, mainly alteration of built-in game modes. ‘Custom Game’ modes in which this is performed are played both online and offline, however offline custom games are typically played among in-person friends. Bots are no exception to this customization, albeit the only options available for customization are often the amount of bots present in a match and their difficulty. Players who speak in defense of offline bot support make a point to indicate this capability and offer praise for it, as built-in game types come off as restrictive.
Bots/Splitscreen Are Fun!
This reason on my list is easily the most critical of them all: playing with offline bots is fun. It allows players to undergo a reprieve from the seemingly endless grind and fight for first place that is online multiplayer. Bots give players who struggle with the game’s mechanics to fully experience chaotic fast-paced multiplayer games in such a way that they can know what it is like to significantly contribute to a team or accumulate kills, dominate the enemy, and achieve victory. Various players report the online portion of games like Battlefield are ‘toxic’ due to the overabundance of cheaters/hackers and ‘tryhards’. With Full Offline Bot/Splitscreen support, this problem is eliminated almost immediately and more people become interested in buying the game.
With these reasons listed, I hope the proper parties will at least read this email and take what I – and scores of other players- have said into consideration for future Battlefield titles. As the aforementioned Battlefront and Battlefront II have bot support and utilize the Frostbite engine, I would assume the same resources could be applied to previous and future Battlefield installments. That being said, I eagerly await the announcement of the newest Battlefield title and anticipate it will garner much success. Thank you very much in advance for your time and consideration.
Great post OP, nice write up. I'm all for people getting what they want, as long it doesn't directly affect others. As long as the online MP game doesn't feature bots, I'm all for it, sounds like fun.
Bots are designed for offline play. There's almost no reason for them to be included in online play.
May 2021 - last edited May 2021
Battlefield runs as a "Game as Service". Been this way for quite a few titles now. Because of this you more than likely won't see an offline mode. Especially a MP/CO-OP variant. This would drastically increase the install size of the game.
Sorry but it's an online world now and offline is just not contemplated these days. But BFV has coop missions for up to 4 players and Battlefront had the same and even full bot matches ??? Can't remember if they were single player only or coop. Maybe my PC master race background but are any of the console shooters still running split screen ??