What a wonderful time it is to be a gamer when video games can visually compare themselves to what can be found in a movie theater. Battlefield 4 on PlayStation 4 vivaciously delivers on all fronts, and the issues the PlayStation 3 version has are all but gone, leaving the AI the only thing left that could use some polish.
The explosions are breathtaking—simply breathtaking. Watching things blow up in Battlefield 4 is a thousand times more rewarding than even watching them in movies, because they look like they belong in movies and you’re experiencing them firsthand and in first-person. With more particles and effects taking up each and every graphical element of this game, far more than the PS3 version’s already substantial count, dust clouds and flames are more vivid, thicker, and all around as realistic as the finest in cinema.
A couple of the early PS4 games have some graphical popping when initially loading. Battlefield 4 is not above this, with the first second or two showing the last rendering process finish. I say the last second or two because I literally mean a second or two, and the results after the hiccups are glorious. No more watching levels finish loading while playing chunks of the game. No more breaks in realism with the strange graphical textures that I mentioned in the PS3 review, where water in some areas looked opaque and almost mercurial. The four-second freezes that were triggered by friends signing online are also gone.
The outstanding difference between the PS3 and PS4 versions of Battlefield 4 is, if you haven’t guessed it already, based on visuals and performance. The game is essentially the same between platforms, but it plays and looks so much better on PS4, and the multiplayer portion is proof of that fact. Maps and modes are all the same for both, but the visual hiccups just aren’t there anymore, leaving nothing more than an invigorating and beautiful multiplayer experience at the debut of Sony’s next-generation console.
The PS4 version’s sounds are the exact same, but this is not a negative in any sense. DICE put so much time and effort into the sound quality of Battlefield 4 that the equally perfect standard between the two versions is a testament to the team.
I can only imagine what my face looked like when I first played Battlefield 4 on PS3 as the story progressed, but I do know that my mental state was the exact same going through it again on PS4: engaged from beginning to end. Sure, I knew what was coming, but the complete immersion that the PS4 creates made the experience fresh and new all over again. The sharp visuals and deeper tones that DICE put in Battlefield 4 revitalize what launched on PS3, and doing it again is all the more rewarding–especially via $10 upgrade.
For the finer points not discussed in this upgrade review, check out our full review of Battlefield 4 on PS3, which discusses the common ground between the PS3 and PS4 versions as well as the issues we found when playing on PS3.