Battlefield 4 didn’t exactly … work when it came out at the tail end of 2013. In truth, the game was a disaster. Some people considered themselves lucky just to be able to join matches, but any positivity was washed away in a torrent of corrupted saves, server attacks, work stoppages, connectivity issues, and even a shareholder lawsuit. The real shame here is that DICE actually crafted a stellar game in Battlefield 4, it’s just hard to recognize when you’re constantly staring at an error screen.
Well, most of those issues have now been addressed and DICE wants to thank fans for their patience with a full month’s worth of free content. February 2014 is officially “Battlefield 4 Player Appreciation Month,” a 28-day period during which DICE will shower players with extra stuff as a thank you for buying the game on what amounts to pre-ordering the game at full price. Karl Magnus Troedsson, the studio’s general manager, runs through what goodies you can expect in a new Battlefield Blog post.
Every day you fire up the game in February, you’ll receive a free Bronze (on weekdays) or Silver (on weekends) Battlepack, an in-game booster kit that contains various weapon attachments, camos, XP boosts, and the like. You’ll also get two free shortcut bundles, to open up all unlocks in the pistol and grenade categories. You won’t have to take this if you’d rather unlock everything the hard way, but these shortcut bundles are typically sold as DLC for players that don’t want to grind through the multiplayer progression. Premium subscribers aren’t forgotten either; in addition to pistols and grenades, BF4 Premium users also have the option of nabbing free DMR and shotgun shortcut bundles.
On top of all that, there’s going to be a double XP weekend during February, plus a second double XP weekend for Premium subscribers. Here’s a handy protip: save any XP boosts you get from your free Battlepacks and use them during the double XP period. Bonuses stack, so you can effectively quadruple your XP gains if you’re smart about it. DICE will also be hosting a number of community missions – the first of which involves hitting a community target for dogtags collected (via melee kills) – with Gold Battlepacks as the reward, as well as developer talks, which will give players a chance to ask questions about the game.
There’s less clarity at the moment on how these community missions and developer talks will work, but we should be hearing more soon. Battlefield 4 is easy to poke fun at after the rocky launch, but it really is an outstanding game when it’s working right. If not for the post-launch issues, it would have been an absolute frontrunner for the best shooter of 2013.