Why Battlefield will never outsell Call of Duty

Why Battlefield will never outsell Call of Duty

So, let’s be realistic shall we …

by: aksobey

©2011 Kent Sobey

battlefield 3 screenshots“Why Battlefield will never outsell Call of Duty.”

You’ve read the title, and now you’re in a fit of rage. “How can this fanboy propose such a preposterous idea?!”

Well, I’m not a fanboy and I love both franchises equally. I play more Call of Duty online than Battlefield but am well versed in both nonetheless.

To put it simply, I’m a realist who enjoys the best of both worlds.

It’s a good thing I didn’t shout “why Call of Duty is better than Battlefield” out over the internet because I am sure we would have several angry mobs heading our way.

I am not here to decide which game is better, I just thought a little insight into why Call of Duty sells so well might be interesting.

Firstly, what makes a good game?

I think it’s a combination of several hundred things that all grab our attention in the right way that make a game good. Graphics, plot, character development, player controls etc. Etc. Etc. I also think it’s pretty safe to say that both of these franchises have got it almost spot on since the start.

So why then does one of these giants have a bigger following than the other?

At the end of the day it all comes down to the online modes – you all knew this already I presume.

Call of Duty, simply put, is not realistic and Battlefield is.

Ok, so maybe it’s not realistic but it’s about as close as you can get. This, however, is not necessarily a good thing, is it? Well I happen to think it’s both a good thing and a bad thing. For single player campaigns it is fantastic, for multiplayer I don’t like it.

I am looking for one simple thing when I am playing online and that is to have fun. The truth is that I am not very good either so a lot of the time I am not having fun (which is co-incidentally when the Xbox gets turned off). (Ed- I’m with you there!  My teen son kicks my butt.)

Who is playing?

This leads me to my first point. If you head into a game of Battlefield: Bad Company 2 and you have not played before you are going to get your behind kicked – even if you are a seasoned FPS veteran.

If you’ve played a bit of Modern Warfare back in the day and now want to give Black Ops a try you will more than likely be ok. So you’re not going to be amazing but you will know what’s going on, get a few kills and generally have a good time.

The point I am trying to make here is that the game is easy to pick up quickly so it is more accessible.

I am fully aware that this might be why some people play Battlefield but this article is simply about the number of players and why people choose what they do.

Sometimes less is more.

My next point is very closely linked to the first one but I thought I would mention it anyway. Vehicles in online gaming are always great fun but sometimes they make things a little more complicated than they need to be.

If you’ve ever been the guy who jumps into a vehicle that a newbie manages to run off a cliff or crash into the ground at high speed then you probably did a little shouting.

Shouting at newbies scares them off. I hear some of you saying, “good, we don’t want the newbies anyway”. Well the truth is that these franchises do, because newbies become . . . erm . . . oldies.

I firmly believe that the inclusion of vehicles in the online modes has scared a few people off of Battlefield and ultimately sent them running towards Call of Duty.

It is a pity though, because the vehicles are indeed good fun to play with. Maybe some thought should be given into how they can be included into the game, without scaring people off? It’s an ‘accessibility’ thing again really.

Numbers create numbers.

My next point is one that unfortunately will be extremely difficult for the Battlefield developers to do anything about. Call of Duty already has a massive online following which for some people is one of the main reasons they play it.

Their friends are playing it and if they want to find a game it only takes a few seconds.

The bottom line is that the more people are playing a game online the more people will be drawn to it.

Not much can be done about this to change anything, it is simply a fact. Play with your friends, or play with strangers? Ok, so it’s not that dramatic because a lot of people play Battlefield too but you get the point.

So, how do we gauge fun?

My last point on the matter is one that might offend some people but it needs to be said anyway.

Call of Duty online is more fun because more thought has been put into the game modes, classes (weapons etc.) and overall usability.

There, I said it and I won’t take it back.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not perfect but I believe that the “jump in, jump out” nature of CoD online means you can have a quick game when you feel like it, or you can play all day like some people do.

• Battlefield 3 & Modern Warfare 3 battle it out


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Not everyone has hours and hours to spend playing games in the evening so it’s nice to get a 15 or 20 minute session in when you can. Battlefield doesn’t cater for this as well.

That’s all.

Now I have said my peace and won’t offend anyone anymore. People can bash CoD and it’s players as much as they want but the bottom line is that they are making money which is what they set out to do… so good for them.

Keep the Call of Duty games coming because people will buy and play them for a long time to come.

©2011 Kent Sobey


• Battlefield 3 & Modern Warfare 3 screenshot gallery

Support R18+ In Australia

buzz-yahoo gamekicker Add to diigo Bookmark and Share News for Gamers
Add to Technorati Favorites

19 thoughts on “Why Battlefield will never outsell Call of Duty”

  1. Nice post, I find it very agreeable. Some points I want to make however, and before I make them, I want to warn you BF fanboys that I like both games.
    First thing: I see a whole lot of people claiming that “Battlefield is sooo much more realistic”. I just get SICK of people saying that. If your idea of a game is based on realism, then you arn’t a gamer I want to meet. However, some games DO tend to be so bad in realism that you can’t help but notice it. Modern Warfare 3 was terrible in that regard. Modern Warfare 1 and 2 were quite good for the time they were made in. However, Battlefield has got OK realism, but I think that if you are a realism games you should get out of both games and lean towards Crysis. Can’t wait till Crysis 3 comes out, looks terrific. I think personally that what catches gamers nowadays is a good balance between gameplay and realism. I think Battlefield and Halo fanboys need to lay off. The REAL gamers are ones that enjoy the game for what it is… atleast in my opinion. Also, I hate half the community playing call of duty games because most of them are under 15 years of age or are just people who sit on their arse all day and rage in front of their PC/Xbox/Playstation. Battlefield Bad Company 2 has a reasonable yet very short campaign, Battlefield 3 has a absolutely terrible campaign. Call of Duty has a very good campaign compared to them.
    To the multiplayer:
    Ragers are most likely 10-year-olds, and therefore I dislike most of the multiplayer servers online. Modern Warfare 3 and Black Ops 2 are absolutely FILLED with hackers, chances are every 2nd match has a hacker. Battlefield 3’s multiplayer is good, but I don’t personally like the way it works too much. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a fanboy of CoD or anything. I just don’t like it that if you hop into a tank chances are that 60 seconds later you’ll be dead. Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 has the best multiplayer I have personally played. It isn’t filled with hackers, and if it is then you can easily switch to another lobby. The class modding is very simple and very usable, unlike Battlefield(in my opinion, at least). Battlefield gamers have to lay off CoD because half the time they complain about campers, which are easy to take out in CoD yet because they are used to an open environment where you need a sniper to survive. Quickscopers arn’t that common these days, trust me.


    1. battlefield is not fun its OHH WE GOTTA HAVE A STRATEGY AND MOVE IN A PINCER MOVEMENT TO THE ENEMY -_- what the fuq in call of duty u just go in there and kill the people


      1. And that’s what makes call of duty soo realistic? with its tactics, oh and also its magic perks and kill streaks?


  2. cod is not reallistic but its not unreallistic, infact it is more reallistic than bf2, that took a billion bullets to kill someone.

    As a rule of thumb, a fps focused around gunplay and giving customization to the player is far more fun than a specifc type of fps that demands teamwork and vehicle usage and focuses around objectives rather frags.

    “skill” is irrelevant becasue you could be topscorer on bf and your team still lose or do nothing and the rest of the team winning.

    It is more likely you play a game that your personal skill does the diffirence in the game rather play a game that one player can hardly change the match.

    Now apart from that, cod haters are raging going everywhere they can and bash cod like immature kids. Its sad and annoying. While cod players dont give a damn.


    1. Wait, wait, wait… Did you just say that CoD is more realistic than BF? Shut. Up. Get out now. Sure, maybe it takes more bullets to kill someone in Battlefield; however, real-life tactics generally work much, much better in BF than they ever will in CoD. You lay down some suppressing fire in BF, it’ll be effective. You do that in CoD, someone’ll quickscope you. Oh, yeah. Cause quickscoping’s realistic.

      Also, you just said “fps focused around gunplay and giving customization to the player is far more fun than a specifc type of fps that demands teamwork and vehicle usage and focuses around objectives rather frags.” Have you ever considered that maybe, just maybe, people have different opinions on what fun is? I personally prefer an experience that rewards me for being a team player and actually helping out other teammates to a game where I sprint, kill, die, mash “Respawn”, and repeat. Yeah, dude, your above comment has been filed in my “Shit that CoD fanboys say” folder, along with “I’d rather by CoD than pay for a $50 expansion” (True story).


  3. I own both games… I am a fan of both games.. Battlefield has won my heart and is my cup of tea. I use to get absolutely devastated when I first started playing Bad Company, but once you learn how to play and peoples playing habits..

    The moments that happen in BF you will never get in COD, such as sniping a pilot out of a helicopter..

    Or putting C4 on a humv and gunning it towards a tank, jump out at the last minute, detonate, and no more tank.. It is just too epic. Lately it has been hard for me to find any fun in COD seeing how the gameplay is so redundant and stale. T

    he one thing I can agree on is.. COD will outsell BF3. The reason is what you already mentioned and of most importance in proving this point.. It is easily accessed, run and gun, not much of a learning curve, and offers more in player identity..

    This attracts the masses, all age groups. At this point in the franchise the name CALL OF DUTY sells, always will… Regardless, Battlefield is my choice.. I enjoy it thoroughly.


  4. My first fps on the ps3 was uncharted 2. So I’m late at this party. My 2nd was BFBC2/BFBC2 Vietnam and my third was black ops. Hands down, bfbc2 was the best fun I had. Vietnam was a close 2nd. You right it was hard to get into the game b/c half the time you wonder how you died.

    The learning curve is much higher. Sniping was unreal. It took me about 250 hours just to learn most of BFBC2 to the point where i can actually make a difference. I played black ops for a month, and stop and went back to BFBC2.

    The difference was night and day, bo degraded my skills so bad that i stopped playing it completely. Call of duty will always dominate sales wise. But thats b/c DICE is doing it right irt its genre.

    A few things I did learn … about vehicular combat start driving, and driving and driving. When sniping take a practice shot to find your gravity effect. When shooting go with medic. One final word, the people playing bfbc2 never cease to amaze me in regards to play style. Haha


  5. For the guy who said why not just buy a wii, thats exactly the point. the wii sold so well due to it being tailored toward casual gamers. Its the same concept. And since there are no good fps’ on the wii, call of duty is number one.


  6. This is a great article & i totally agree with all ur points.I have played both COD & BF.COD is by far my fav COD has many different modes 2 play & BF only has a few.I feel COD is more fun as well.Also 4 me & several of my friends BF’s boards r way 2 big.& if ur not a sniper u wont last long.I like BF’s campaign mode better then COD but 4 online play COD win’s hand’s down.I will buy MW3 4 the online playability & will get BF from GameFly just so i can play the campaign.


  7. I general I agree with your points. Funny how a lot the things that make me pick BF over COD you say the masses want. I want my military shooter to be realistic. I want to be on a battlefield with vehicles and a huge sense of scale.

    To me all that makes the game more fun. I don’t care which one sells better- its not like BF is going lose money- lol. Both games deserve to do well, I know which one I prefer to play, and I don’t want it dumbed down for the masses. Newbies that can’t adjust need to move along. Starhawk will be the game changer.


  8. Nice post.

    I agree with all your points. I’ll admit I’ve never played Battlefield and two main points stop be from picking up the game. One, my friends are not playing BF and, two, a whole new game.

    I guess you can say I’m nervous about becoming a newb again. Battlefield has much more content that CoD; destructible (although cool) maps, vehicles, more players, so the learning curve seems that much more.

    Maybe if a few friends decided to give BF3 a shot, so would I. At least I wouldn’t be the only newb going in blind.


    1. You make some good points: I also hate joining a game where online commandos (who seem to train with their mates daily) have so much an advantage that it isn’t even fun.

      Especially team based ones where your own team gets angry at you because you haven’t memorised the map or whatever.

      I’ve seen some online games bringing in ‘casual’ games where you can suck and have at least some fun sucking.

      Or games like Assassin’s Creed multi which reward you for HOW you kill, not how much.


      1. You still have “fun sucking” in a BF game.

        Take BFBC2: is the term “base raping” familiar to you? It’s when the opposing team is way better than the other, so the losing team can’t advance from their base.

        Point is, from a CoD player’s perspective, they would rage quit.
        In BFBC2 although, people keep playing, and yes KDR are screwed that match. But so what, it’s fun to keep trying as a team and sometimes we can eventually advance.

        That’s the point: people dont care about KDR, but just about having fun and winning as a team.
        I would think CoD gives me more stress than any BF game in that regard.


    2. You are acting like trying a new online shooter is such a big challenge lol…

      And why should you wait for your friends to try a BF game? Why can’t you be the one that buys it first, tells your experiences and get your friends to play it?

      And christ, the learning curve aint that big. it’s still a game, people! It’s not a war simulator like Arma II.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s