Upcoming cops-and-robbers shooter Battlefield Hardline is unlikely to suffer the same kind of technical problems Battlefield 4 endured, according to lead multiplayer designer Thad Sasser. GameSpot spoke with Sasser about the steps developer Visceral Games has taken to ensure a smooth rollout for the game, which begins with its release on Thursday for EA Access members on Xbox One.
Battlefield 4 was unplayable for many at launch in October 2013. Publisher Electronic Arts has since claimed that developing for what were new consoles at the time--Xbox One and PlayStation 4--along with the game's massive 64-player structure, led to a level of "complexity" that was partially to blame for the problems.
Thasser says Visceral has learned a great deal from the technical troubles of Battlefield. He points to Hardline's most recent beta, which was a generally smooth experience, as evidence that the developer has cracked the code. As such, he says all signs are pointing to clear sailing for Hardline.
"You can clearly see our efforts have paid off with the stability of the most recent beta; the beta we just had was pretty smooth," he said. "Obviously we expected to collect some problems, and we did. We found a number of interesting issues that we've since addressed and fixed; crashes and so on, particularly on the PC client."
"So hopefully the fact that we've been able to have two betas and we've been able to build on all of the learnings from Battlefield 4 that they've done over the last year or so with the [Community Test Environment]. We've incorporated a lot of their changes and a lot of their fixes as well. So I think, altogether, we're in far better shape and we're really looking forward to a stable launch."
Hardline officially launches March 17 for Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PC.