Perhaps the biggest bragging right in Battlefield 4 is the Rank you achieve, from 0 (Recruit) to 100 (Colonel). Rank is strictly a number that shows your dedication to the game, and each Rank has five sub-ranks denoted by Roman numerals – similar to the system used by the U.S. Marines. So at Rank 16 you’ll hit “Sergeant”, with Rank 20 being “Sergeant V” and Rank 21 bringing a new title (“Staff Sergeant”). Your Rank is directly tied to your accumulated score throughout your multiplayer career, and is a way to represent the sum total you’ve accomplished so far. A very skilled player will rank up faster than an average player, but it also comes down to sheer time that you have dedicated to the Battlefield. Even if you hit the Colonel 100 Rank milestone, there are still new items to collect – we’re adding high-end Assignments that are only attempt-able by high-rank characters, with unique rewards that let your friends know they’re dealing with one of the few elite veterans in the community.
1-5 Private First Class
6-10 Lance Corporal
21-25 Staff Sergeant
26-30 Gunnery Sergeant
31-35 Master Sergeant
36-40 First Sergeant
41-45 Master Gunnery Sergeant
46-50 Sergeant Major
51-55 Warrant Officer
56-60 Chief Warrant Officer 2
61-65 Chief Warrant Officer 3
66-70 Chief Warrant Officer 4
71-75 Chief Warrant Officer 5
76-80 Second Lieutenant
81-85 First Lieutenant
96-99 Lieutenant Colonel
For Every Ribbon a Medal
Every Ribbon in the game has a clearly corresponding Medal, usually awarded when you’ve earned 50 ribbons of one kind. And now more than ever, these Ribbons and Medals are more tailored to the unique characteristics of the four playable classes. Some of the Ribbons are only earnable by Recon, Support, Assault, and some by Engineer. Players who gravitate heavily towards one of these classes will automatically have a trophy cabinet that differs wildly from that of a player that hones in on one of the other kits.
The concept of grabbing dog tags from other players in the game has been an exciting cat and mouse chase between players since Battlefield 3 and earlier in the series’ history. We’re now more clearly defining how the hundreds of dog tags obtainable are displayed in the game, and what they are used for. The left part of your dog tag is now more focused on who you are – this is where you’d display your country’s flag, your clan tag, or Rank. The right hand side dog tag is where you can display what you’ve achieved on the Battlefield. If you’ve got a knack for flying jets, your right dog tag could for example display your number of jet kills, which is dynamically updated to show your latest tally for everyone to admire.
Service Stars are also returning in Battlefield 4. These are additional distinguishing marks that you get awarded for heavily investing in distinct areas of the game. Think of it as a sub-rank of sorts that takes much more dedication than Ribbons. If you’ve amassed a great accumulated score playing as an Engineer, you might be awarded an Engineer-specific Service Star. In a similar manner, getting great results with a specific weapon will earn you Service Stars for that weapon. This time around we’ve even included Service Stars for winning the available game modes. Note that only objective scoring and actually winning rounds will earn you Service Stars for game modes. So if you run into a player with one or more Obliteration Service Stars, you know you’re up against someone who knows what to do with the bomb that just spawned on the map.
Scoring will show the way
There’s a role for everyone, and you can always play to your strengths in Battlefield 4. That said, one of the major design goals going into Battlefield 4 was to use the underlying scoring system itself both as a friendly guiding tool and as a strong incentive to great gameplay. Since your score is directly related to ranking up and gaining new weapons, gadgets, and accessories, this is where the foundation for the online career is set in place. The scoring system effectively allows us to influence all aspects of Battlefield 4 – from teamwork to playing the objective and the more strategic aspects of the game (such as the Commanders receiving points when their teams use the Supply Drop provided.)
* Commanders receive points when their team uses their help or strategic guidance (ex. Supply Drops)
* Points will start ticking into your score as soon as you start taking objectives, so you’ll get points for trying whether you succeed or not
* In Obliteration, this translates into getting points for carrying the bomb or killing the bomb carrier, not just arming the bomb
* Vehicle hits will reward differently, based on the weakness of the spot where your attack lands and the corresponding damage dealt
One new way scoring is meant to incentivize playing the objective relates to flag capturing and arming objectives. Now, as soon as you attempt to capture a flag or arm an objective, the points will start ticking into your account, even if the overall attempt might fail. So if you are trying to reclaim a base but get killed just one second away from completing the capture, you’ll still be handsomely rewarded for the great attempt, for the risk you put yourself in, and for playing the objective. By contrast, doing the same in Battlefield 3 would have netted you 0 points if the flag was not at least neutralized.
Similarly in Rush or the all-new Obliteration mode, simply starting to arm or disarm an objective will make the points roll in. While succeeding in the arm or disarm will naturally yield even greater sums, doing the right thing that actually drives the game mode forward will always be advantageous to your career progression. We’re also more greatly rewarding playing the objective this time around. So in Obliteration, you’ll be granted quite a large sum of points for doing pivotal actions like running with the bomb, arming it at an objective, or killing the enemy bomb carrier. It’s all part of an increased effort to drive each game mode to a distinctly different experience than the next one.
Another aspect of using scoring to promote great gameplay is tied to the new vehicle hit mechanics. In Battlefield 4, the way vehicles take damage from the Engineer’s RPG attacks is directly dependent on the angle of attack and the hit zone. The new ”top zone” on tanks, for example, is especially vulnerable to RPG attacks. By greatly rewarding attacks that deal heavy damage and letting players know how much damage they’ve dealt via the VEHICLE HIT message, the game will drive more and more players to try to achieve certain kinds of attacks. Over time, the full potential of anti-tank weapons will be discovered in a joint effort by the Battlefield community.
The concept of handsomely rewarding great gameplay is also highly relevant for Commanders. Scoring in itself is one of the major ways for Commanders to verify that they are making a critical impact in their team’s struggle on the Battlefield. The Commanders are naturally distanced from the ground fight (this is especially true for Mobile Commanders). The scoring system is a great means for letting them know they are performing well and helping their team out.
A new concept in Battlefield 4 is that of KILL ASSIST COUNTS AS KILL. If you get a few shots in on an enemy but can’t manage the kill, you’ll still get awarded the kill if that enemy is later eliminated. The thought here is that if you’re contributing to your team you should be rewarded accordingly, since team play is at the core of Battlefield. In Battlefield 3, you could take down an enemy from 100 to 1 in health, then a friendly player would sometimes “rob” you of the kill by dealing the decisive shot. Battlefield 4 rewards both players with a kill and with a healthy dose of points. This means that players who put themselves in harm’s way at the frontlines are more likely to rack up decent scores even if they don’t manage to get a lot of regular kills. Overall, the scoring design in Battlefield 4 is meant to make everyone willing and able to contribute to the greater cause. Team play is one of the defining aspects of Battlefield 4, and with the new Field Upgrades system, rewarding team play specifically within your squad. A squad is a team of two to five players and you are free to join or leave a squad at any time on the fly like in Battlefield 3. Performing team actions within a squad will net you score towards your own progression, but will also benefit the entire squad. As your total score for squad actions in a round rises, you will move along an accumulative upgrade path that gives all squad members benefits like faster sprint, more grenades, or better cover from enemy spotting. But beware – if your entire squad is wiped, you’ll all lose the progress you’ve made. If you get the message “LAST MAN IN SQUAD” in-game, make sure to stay alive until your friends can respawn and rejoin the fight.