Battlefield: Hardline’s cops and robbers turn downtown L.A. into a war zone

More money, more problems

Heist was more of a warm-up — I spent too much time getting lost and re-learning the controls to fully comprehend what was going on. But I was ready when EA switched us over to Blood Money, where both sides are killing each other over a stolen pile of cash. Since the money is at the center of the map, the area around it quickly became a death trap full of heavy gunfire and grenades. If you manage to get past that first wave of hostility, you still have to collect the money, and the couple of seconds it takes to grab it feels like an eternity when bullets are whizzing by your head.

In case you forget, Battlefield: Hardline reminds you in big letters about just how much money you’re carrying, making it easier to curse whatever god you believe in when a sniper kills you from afar. On my first run, I stopped collecting at $300,000 and immediately sprinted toward my vault, which shows up as a blue square on the screen. The only way to increase your team’s score — measured by the total amount of cash your side accumulates by the end — is by taking as much money as possible to that vault and storing it in there. But the vault isn’t safe, either. If no one’s guarding it, the other team can swoop in, steal the cash, and take it back to their own vault without much hassle.

I made it to my vault just fine, but I wasn’t so lucky in my second and third attempts, where I barely made it past the door before dropping hundreds of thousands of dollars. So I tried a different strategy. I hopped into an abandoned police car and followed my other teammates to the enemy’s vault, hoping I’d have an easier time. But a sneaky criminal hiding in a corner with his shotgun made sure that I didn’t last long.

Though we were playing on the same map as before, Blood Money didn’t feel nearly as empty as it did with Heist. The stakes felt more immediate: You can easily tell who’s carrying money by the big bag strapped across their back and the cloud of bills flying behind them. Since the match unfolds over three different points on the map, I always felt like I was just a few steps away from the next fight.

The various weapon players can use in Battlefield Hardline, according to a leak.

Above: The various weapon players can use in Battlefield Hardline, according to a leak.

Image Credit: Koen Vlaswinkel

EA didn’t let the press play for too long, kicking us out of the room after only 20 minutes. That’s a tiny fraction of the time hardcore players devote to the franchise’s multiplayer modes, its raison d’être. But I liked what I saw. It’s ridiculous (both teams pack enough firepower to level a city block), it’s in-your-face, and the cops and robbers shtick, while popularized by recent games like Payday 2 and Grand Theft Auto V, is a welcome change from the international wars fought in Battlefields 3 and 4.

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Electronic Arts Inc. (EA), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is a leading global interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, the Company develops, publishes, and distributes interactive software worldwide for ... read more »

DICE (EA Digital Illusions Creative Entertainment), the award-winning developer based in Stockholm, Sweden, is best known for producing the phenomenally successful Battlefield franchise. The studio is located in the heart of Stockh... read more »

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