Communication is key to building a strong community, especially when millions of players are involved. Battlefield/Digital Illusions CE has one of the most dedicated following in the FPS genre – rightly earned thanks to their support for those who love playing their games.
Battlefield 3, one of DICE’s/EA’s most important launches ever, has been out on shelves for almost 5 months now. While it wasn’t graced with the smoothest launch ever, things are slowly but surely looking up. Unfortunately, despite the amount of work we know DICE is putting into Battlefield 3 – polishing and ridding it of bugs and and other annoyances, frustration is rapidly building within the community and is caused by that key strength DICE once possessed: Communication, or the lack thereof.
While many factors could possibly be contributing to this decay, be it EA’s rigidity of release date announcements or unwillingness to allow open dialogue between players and developers, one thing is for sure: The Battlefield 3 community has been kept in the dark for too long. While we’re not asking for a patch or DLC right this very instant, a little bit of transparency can go a long way.
Earlier today, community website, Battlefieldo, who recently merged with community podcast, Don’t Revive Me Bro, have taken the first steps in a plan to show EA that the Battlefield community is no longer willing to accept these standards of communication. Cory “Pr3esident” Niblett says it best in a recent article: “As a longtime battlefield player, community manager, and a person who knows what is going on with this community on a daily basis, I’m frustrated, you’re frustrated… Shouldn’t we expect better? At least acknowledge the existence of the issues we present, and have a very long list of things to work on.” He added, “we’re kept in the dark with no patch schedule, no details, and not even direct responses from DICE, at all.”
So, what exactly is going to be done about it? Cory explains, “So… this is what we’re going to do… as a community. We’re going to give Electronic Arts until Friday, March 2nd to announce the next major patch and the fixes that they have made, or are currently making. SOME acknowledgement of the outcry about the issues that is currently wrong with the game right now, today… Or we’re going to black out the entire battlefield community for 1 day, 24 hours, no playing, no posting, and no tweeting. Silence fed right back into the mouths of those who have chosen to give us the very same silence. We’ll be waiting for you to give us our community back EA, and put it in the very capable hands of the people who developed, and made the game.”
Battlefield 3 Community Manager, Daniel Matros, has officially responded, sympathizing with the Battlefield community: “I completely understand the motives behind it.” He continued, “I support the BF community in any way I can and if you express your opinions like this, I must understand it.” Gameplay Designer, Tim Kjiell rightfully added, “Staying in touch with community and having a transparent workflow is key to the lifetime of a game. I understand and agree. Will do what I can to push for more direct comm.”
So, if you love Battlefield 3 and DICE, join the movement and show your support for #BF3Blackout on Twitter. We know MP1st will!
Update: The movement already seems to be gaining popularity and has warranted action from DICE. Matros has claimed it a “top priority for tomorrow. Have some good ideas!”