In Battlefield 4, DICE will be resurrecting the Commander mode featured in BF2's multiplayer. The new incarnation of Commander mode will have many changes though, one of which was inspired by the Grand Theft Auto series.
The Commander role in BF4 is a full-time job. You're not switching from Commander to grunt and back again over and over. DICE wanted to avoid the common BF2 scenario of Commanders using their powers just to benefit themselves.
There's clear incentive for a Commander to help their team succeed. The better they do, the better you do. When your team captures and holds objectives, you'll be able to launch cruise missiles or warn players of an incoming enemy missile. You can also perform vehicle or infantry scans to highlight enemies. The ultimate weapon in a Commander's arsenal is the AC-130 Gunship, capable of laying down heavy firepower while also serving as a mobile spawn point that players can use to parachute into the action. The exact assets vary between the different multiplayer modes but the feedback loop is always the same: the Commander supports the team, the team completes objectives, the Commander gets new tools to help the team with.
The Commander can also designate High Value Targets. Any enemy with a killstreak of 6 or higher is eligible to be designated as an HVT. For the 45 seconds after being targeted by the Commander, this player's location will be visible by the enemy team. The team will get bonuses for killing him, while the HVT himself will get bonuses for any kills he makes during this period.
"GTA’s classic “wanted stars” system is what we used as an inspiration for this, we think the highly skilled players will accept this challenge as the ultimate proof of becoming a lethal threat on the battlefield," multiplayer designer Valerian Noghin said on the Battlefield Blog. "As far as personal favorites go, the High Value Target is probably mine for the rush you get when you know that potentially the entire team is after you!"
Commanders also have abilities that affect individual squads. They can provide boosts to Field Upgrades, the bonuses that players earn to ammo, sprinting and other attributes through teamwork. Alternately, they can deploy a light boat or quad bike by parachute to give the squad some mobility. Supply drops deployed by Commanders allow players to heal, resupply, or repairs. These crates can also be used by players to change kits.
BF4's Commander mode will be accessible through the game itself or on mobile platforms. DICE says that the mobile versions of Commander mode will be "on par" with the PC/console versions.
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