“We have secured to what appears to be a WMD break…there may be more than one.” — Campo reports the discovered nuke to Cole
Misfit 1-3 are waiting for orders to commence the assault on an apartment complex housing strategic intelligence. The Marines of Henry Blackburn’s squad are lying at the top of the hill, and Campo passes Blackburn the M224 Mortar that the squad are to transport down to the canal. Cole, the unit leader, orders the assault after getting confirmation that friendly Marines of Haymaker unit were at their jump-off position, and the Marine unit begins their assault. Campo and Blackburn set up the mortar behind a wall, and launch an illumination round to help their comrades in the assault. Montes takes over from Blackburn, who uses a fellow Marine to “buddy boost” over a concrete wall, and pushes towards a canal where fellow Marines are assaulting PLR positions. Blackburn and the rest of the Marines push into the canal, but are pinned down by fire from machine gun and mortar positions on the other bank. Blackburn flanks through the canal to the right, eliminating several PLR soldiers who are defending the area, and arrives on the opposite bank of the canal. Using grenades and rifle fire, Blackburn eliminates the two positions, and his fellow Marines, alongside Campo and Montes, who had moved up as well, push towards a rendezvous with Haymaker company, who are clearing apartment complexes on the canal bank. Blackburn’s squad are tasked with clearing one, and storm the building after a grenade is tossed inside, blowing off the door.
Using a shotgun, Black kicks open several doors, before moving towards a final door towards the end of a main corridor. However, a PLR soldier kicks open the door, throwing Blackburn back, but Black is able to shoot the soldier with his shotgun. Blackburn’s squad then rallies outside, meeting up with Captain Brady. Blackburn’s squad, rallying outside in the street, are told to follow his unit towards the Metropolitan Bank. Boarding a Humvee, the squad proceed through the streets into a dark tunnel. The Marines of Blackburn’s unit question the route towards the bank, and, upon exiting the tunnel, come across a fuel-tanker blocking the road. Disembarking the vehicles, the Marines advance towards the makeshift barricade, but an RPG fired from an overpass hits and blows up the fuel tanker, causing casualties amongst the Marines. Blackburn’s squad, led by Campo, flank the PLR ambushers and arrive on the overpass, engaging the insurgents from the side. Clearing the street, the squad pushes up and clears the street further down the road, but are engaged by a T-90 tank, which forces the squad to take cover in cracks in the road surface. The Marines duck into cover in an outbuilding, but are hit by a round from the T-90’s cannon before reaching safety. Regrouping in the outer building, the Marines check themselves before advancing onwards. They exit the outbuilding into a corridor, which leads towards a road leading to the bank. A T-90 reverses down the street beside the exit, and begins to traverse it’s turret towards the squad, but is destroyed by an AT4 rocket before it can shoot. As the Marines push towards the bank, Blackburn’s squad moves towards the Javelin team overlooking the bank. However, a PLR unit gets to them first and kills all three members of the unit, and Blackburn is forced to pick up the Javelin himself. Three T-90s enter the plaza, but using the Javelin, Blackburn destroys the tanks.
The Marines now regroup outside the bank, but are pinned down by the PLR defenders. Matkovic and Blackburn flank the side, climbing over a wall and arriving at the rear of the bank. With help from Blackburn, Matkovic jumps up and releases a ladder, allowing the pair to access a catwalk, and then jump through an open window into a toilet cubicle. A PLR soldier bursts into the toilet block, but Matkovic grabs him, allowing Blackburn to plunge his knife into the insurgent’s chest. Moving in front of Matkovic into the bank’s atrium, Blackburn kills another soldier using his knife, dragging his body away, before the rest of the Iranian defenders react and begin firing on the pair. With help from Campo and Montes, who, alongside other Marines, have pushed into the atrium, Blackburn and Matkovic clear the mezzanine floor of the artium, as well as eliminating several PLR fighters on higher floors, who were firing down onto the Marines. Regrouping at the entrance to the bank’s basement areas, Captain Brady tasks Blackburn’s unit with gaining access to the bank’s vault, and to look for any intelligence concerning Al-Bashir. The four move into the area quickly, and find themselves at an empty lift shaft. Campo and Blackburn rappel down, tossing a flashbang through an open set of doors below, and charge into a squad of four PLR insurgents, engaging and eliminating them. Montes and Matkovic follow, and the squad push through and engage the fighters defending the vault entrance. After eliminating between them a sizeable number of defending guards, the squad rallies outside the vault, and break open the iron gate. Montes, Blackburn and Campo check the vault, while Matkovic checks the computer screens at the security station. Finding the vault empty of life, Montes and Campo find maps of Paris and New York, as well as train timetables, and a large, green box. The three Marines lift open the box, to find a portable Russian nuke, but with spaces for two others, which are missing. Maktovic then calls the three of them over to the computer screens, where a CCTV feed shows Al-Bashir, Solomon (unknown to the Marines), and an Iranian soldier on the camera feed. Campo makes the decision to leave the intel behind and focus on moving the nuke.
- After a bit of an intermission with anime news, we’re back to talking about Battlefield 3. The fifth mission opens with a mortar being used to fire an illumination round, and in the multiplayer, the M224 Mortar is an indirect fire weapon that excels at providing suppressive fire.
- As per usual, I will be switching between a lot of weapons in the campaign for the sake of diversifying the screenshots up. For the most part, the weapons equipped by default are versatile enough to last the entire mission, and the presence of supply crates mean that ammunition shouldn’t be a problem.
- “Opeation Guillotine” is a longer mission, taking the player through a post-earthquake Tehran. The missions in Battlefield 3 provide glimpses into the story, and from what I’ve heard, those who really want to experience the story in its full glory should go check out the novel of the same name.
- Light machine guns are used heavily as defensive weapons in the multiplayer, being able to lay down a vast amount of suppressive fire that impedes enemy movement for a sustained duration thanks to their large ammunition capacity. My current preferred loadout is the M249 with the Kobra red-dot sight, a foregrip (for death-match) or bipod (for defensive roles in either conquest or rush) and extended magazines.
- For the campaign, the relatively small number of enemies makes assault rifles and shotguns preferred, as well as the occasional anti-tank weapon one is given. I’ve a ways to go yet before I unlock the Javelin for the engineer class, and my scoring is sub-par as an engineer: most of my points come from supportive roles such as resupply and healing.
- Everybody runs faster with a knife! This quick-time event took me a few tries to get right: right after this scene, it’s time to switch back to a weapon and stay low. There’s a sniper rifle at the end of the hallway to the left, but the assault rifle works just fine here.
- Most of the enemies are on the balconies above: a weapon with optics and extensive use of cover will allow one to make their way across the atrium to the other side.
- Out of trigger-happiness, I shot the stacks of bills on the carts and was amused to see that they scattered into the air. The last phrase of the mission is largely close quarters, so a shotgun is most useful here.
- After rappelling to the basement in the bank, a firefight at close-quarters ensues. A combination of shotgun shells and grenades allows this part to be cleared quite easily. While writing these talks, I draw upon a combination of my personal experiences and facts pertinent to the game to tell the story. What about opinions from other reviewers?
- Opinions from others are regarded in the passing, and I rarely mention them unless they contain insight into the game that might be worth mentioning. In this case, I’ve heard that Battlefield 3 was rather like Battlefield 4 shortly after launch, with bugs and errors in both the campaign and multiplayer. In the case of the former, scripted events simply were not triggering, leaving players to be stuck while waiting for a squad-mate to open a simple wooden door. There is another notable bug that I will mention in a later review.
By now, quick-time events have worn thin, and I find myself being sent back a to the last checkpoint after failing to hit buttons with a precision that would make Japanese gamers proud. Before I continue on with the mission, I would like to note that quick-time events are completely out of place in Western games and are more at home in Japanese games. As for the mission itself, it has now been a few days since my exam, and I had just finished handing in a term paper. I continued on with the campaign, and of all the missions, I am inclined to say that Operation Gulliotine is my least favourite: it’s a protracted shooting gallery in a dark city that seems a little disjoint from the previous elements so far. Things pick up once the bank vault is reached, though. The mission isn’t entirely lost, as Blackburn and his company come across a treasure trove of enemy intelligence and a nuclear warhead, with two missing weapons that will play a role in the not-so-distant future. From a personal perspective, missions that involve intelligence gathering are quite entertaining for me, and so, even if this mission turned out a little longer than I would have liked, the prize at the end did leave me wondering what would happen next.