I’ve been a Battlefield player for over 12 years and even spent three of those as a team captain, designing strategies and managing rosters for local tournaments. I have seen the series develop, succeed and eventually grow into what we have now and therefore I dare say stats have ruined much of the Battlefield fun.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not talking about in-round kill and death ratios, capture tickets or specific class scores. Those are actually fine and help you rank how well you did on each map, in addition to allowing comparisons of your performance to your friends’ in sake of the competitive spirit. I believe the problem is based in the permanent statistics picture on Battlelog’s site.
During the long BF1942 era, gaming communities were a lot smaller and there were many of them instead of a huge unified one in which most people are strangers. We didn’t have Origin, nor did we use official forums, and thus most teams had server admins and everything depended a lot on how crafty players were.
We often got to know other players personally and that’s how I saw some of them were tracking stats as far as possible. Even one of the guys in my own team was keeping records: he would save screenshots of the final screen in each match and then make spreadsheets with the little information the game gave him about his kill/death ratio and other small issues. To be honest, it seemed like a very cool effort since I have always loved sports stats. As logs became more complex and detailed, we even began fantasy competitions based on real-player performances.
Most people who have played Battlefield games will agree that its most emblematic game mode is conquest, which pretty much requires a certain amount of teamwork to be won. As statistics became increasingly important. some players changed the way they played. Instead of being selfless team players they would be a lot more careful and tried to die as little as possible. This happened even in championship matches, in which they were supposed to be defending their team’s best interests.