The community outrage, whining and moaning over Battlefield 3 not shipping with mod tools has been heard and while originally DICE wasn’t (and still isn’t) packaging mod tools with the PC version of Battlefield 3 they’re now reconsidering their stance on the issue and they might add the tools at a later date.
Aus Gamers has an interesting interview with DICE’s Karl-Mangus Troedsson, and they go back over the issue of modding Battlefield 3, since it’s such a hot topic within the PC gaming community. Troedsson stated that…
I will say that there’s been a lot of cool things coming out of the mod community for many years; I have a lot of respect for the people in the mod community. At the same time, as developers of a game of this magnitude -- I mean, it’s the biggest thing we’ve ever done -- we have to select what it is we’re going to spend our focus on. We cannot do everything; it’s basically like that.Troedsson goes on to reiterate what Patrick Söderlund mentioned months ago, saying that…
at DICE, we are very committed to quality and innovation when we do something. So if we do mod tools, we really want to do it right. It can’t just be some hack that we throw together and people have to reverse engineer it and do all these kinds of stuff. It needs to be a very proper tool that people can use and that’s not a small thing to do.The main hurdle is that there’s a wealth of tools required just to make modding possible for Battlefield 3, and while some gamers within the community could potentially churn out some good stuff with said tools, they’re highly inconvenient to use and would ultimately waste a lot of people’s time, including the good folks at DICE.
A reader also pointed out to us that there was a community discussion covering this very topic over at the forums detailing the process of what it would take to mod on the Frostbite 1.5.
The thing is, the later Frostbite outings weren’t designed with modding in mind and therefore, DICE would have to back to the drawing board to find a way to make things “easier” for the community to work with, which isn’t an easy task.
Still, the potential of working with mod tools for a game as ambitious and physically innovative as Battlefield 3 could open up a wealth of opportunities for the gaming community. Remember, mods are some of the main reasons we even have new franchises within the industry to begin with, such as Counter-Strike, Team Fortress, Red Orchestra or DotA.
I think it’s a bigger disservice to the community at large to not have access to Battlefield 3 mod tools, however, if the process prevents DICE from working on their next project or holds up their time that could be better spent elsewhere, it is understandable.
For now, DICE is at least considering the possibility of mod tools but gamers need not hold their breath. You can check out the entire interview with Troedsson over at Aus Gamers.