Starting today (2/1/2014), DICE will be pumping players full of bonuses for playing Battlefield 4.  This month will be filled with everything everyone wants, and lots of it.  Along with the bonuses, there will be fixes, interviews and reintroduction’s of an old favorite and more.

To start off, they will be hosting Developer talks between DICE and the community.  At first I see this as a lot of tomatoes being thrown at dice but wait, it gets good.  This month there will be free bronze and silver battle packs daily, weapons, XP boosts and the return of an old favorite for many, the community missions.  Personally, I don’t remember the community missions (I have been a huge fan of the Battlefield series), but I will gladly try it out.

I try to play as much as I can, but as a father, husband and worker I find it very difficult to find the time.  I made time today, (2/1/2014) since it was the first day and at first I did not notice anything.  No XP, no battle packs, although the game did seem a little smoother and didn’t crash.  I played for about 2 hours, maybe 3 and my kids woke up, so I played a little more then I exited the game, and was a bit surprised.

Upon exiting, I had about 6 battle packs, 2 of them were gold, some silver and some bronze.  Mind you, I am pretty good (not a god, and not elite, but I am usually in the top 10) so I do earn bonus’ but one of them had the label Fan Appreciation, so that was kind of cool.

Aside from the sucking up I think DICE is doing by offering this, I think it is also a tactic to get people back on after the mandatory patch and see what a difference it has made.  Again I will mention, the game did seem a lot smoother, less glitchy and because of that a lot more action packed.

Aside from this update unlocking AMD’s Mantle, this hosts updates for NVIDIA as well as your PC over all.  I will list everything the update addresses for those of you that have not already seen it.

CPU/GPU performance and monitoring

-Tweaked and improved CPU multi-core utilization to try and avoid stuttering and low framerate due to stalls that happened on some CPU and OS configurations.

-Users can now configure and control themselves how many CPU cores should be used in the game with the new “Thread.MaxProcessorCount” settings in User.cfg.

-“Render.DrawScreenInfo 1” now also shows information about which CPU and GPU is in the system, how many GPUs & CPU cores are used and which renderer (DirectX 11 or Mantle) is active

-Added new “PerfOverlay.FrameFileLogEnable” command that records frame times on CPU & GPU and logs out to a .csv file

-AMD Catalyst driver 13.12 (or later) is now recommended instead of 13.9

-Enabled tile-based compute shader lighting optimization on Nvidia for improved GPU performance (already active on AMD GPUs)

-Improved performance with rendering and spotlights for all GPUs, primarily in in-door environments

 

DMR Balance Tweaks

-Increased the damage of all DMRs across all ranges. Specifically, damage has been increased at long ranges to allow three-hit kills against unarmored opponents.  Additionally, reduced the penalty to accuracy for sustained DMR fire, allowing more rapid follow up shots in combat. The amount of the damage increase varies from weapon to weapon, according to its intended range, rate of fire, and damage. We will continue to monitor the effectiveness of DMRs in combat, and determine if additional action is needed to make DMRs a viable mid to long range weapon.

Other Items

-Significantly reduced the duration of the black screen when spawning in, and fixed the issue with players getting killed before being in-game

-Greatly reduced the risk of crosshairs disappearing, which would also result in hit markers disappearing

-Added a headshot icon on the killcard. This should help identify instances where players are correctly killed by one shot

-Fixed an issue in Squad Deathmatch where the “Win/Lose” text was overlapping

-Fixed an issue with players using an exploit for the SOFLAM

-Fixed an issue with players using an exploit for the MAV

-Fixed the gameplay code to properly track the FOV (Field of View) changes in the options menu

-Fixed an issue where chat would break when entering “false” or “true” in the chat window

-Fixed an out-of-helicopter glitch in Air Superiority where players could spawn on the ground and play as infantry

-Fixed the misaligned crosshairs on the T90 MBT

-Added setting to tweak joystick dead zone

-Various minor crash fixes

 

If you have an AMD card, you will need to the 14.1 Beta drivers, although as of the publication of this article (2/1/2014) this driver is not as of yet released.  A little upsetting for the AMD guys and gals out there, but even without this driver, the game is smoother so give it a try.  How much smoother will Mantle make it, or will it do anything at all?

Catch me out on the battlefield.

 

Sources:

http://blogs.battlefield.com/2014/01/bf4-player-appreciation-month/

http://battlelog.battlefield.com/bf4/news/view/player-appreciation-month-2/

http://battlelog.battlefield.com/bf4/forum/threadview/2979150493815503479/

Iggy Castillo

Iggy Castillo

Senior Editor an Reviewer at Dragonblogger.com
I have spent many years in the PC boutique name space as Product Development Engineer for Alienware and later Dell through Alienware's acquisition and finally Velocity Micro. During these years I spent my time developing new configurations, products and technologies with companies such as AMD, Asus, Intel, Microsoft, NVIDIA and more. The Arts, Gaming, New & Old technologies drive my interests and passion. Now as my day job, I am an IT Manager but doing reviews on my time and my dime.
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