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Visceral Games’ cop-drama take on EA army shooter franchise was delayed into 2015, primarily over issues with the online multiplayer experience that simply went through a beta in June (but other voices say also from the lukewarm reception and the record low pre-orders). What about the single player campaign?
While the extra time working on Hardline is probably useful to polish the product, it looks like the main story of Hardline is almost complete. Wendy Calhoun (author and producer of Nashville, Justified and other famous TV series) is aboard as a story consultant , bringing alongside Bill Johnson as director. Battlefield Hardline story is going to be a thrilling story about a cop who get frame and fight underground to clear his identity (giving the player the possibility to play in different scenarious and angles as cop as well as robber).
“We begin off with the narrative of two cops who’re good cops, and one actually desires to show himself,” Calhoun explained. “Eventually the tables turn on them, and they are set up by another group and become criminals themselves. They’ve got to fight their way out of prison, and turn the tables on the people who put them there.”
In a video shown at Comic-Con 2014, Hardline appears to feature a star cast, with Eugene Byrd (from Bones) and Kelly Hu (Nash Bridges, and whose voice acting include Batman: Arkham Origins) in major roles. Benito Martinez is also starring in Hardline.
The video shows cops in urban operations as well as out in “desert, Breaking Bad meth country,” in the words of creative director Ian Milham. It appears an undercover team led by Nick (the protagonist) disrupts a large cocaine warehouse controlled by Roark, a crime lord played by Mark Rolston, who was PI Gordie Liman on The Shield. That’s the moment where the player gets framed and turns to the underworld to straighten things out.
“Shows where there’s always a thin line between the protagonist and antagonist,” are Calhoun’s favorite to write, she told the panel. “You’ve got to love your villain like he’s a hero.” The difference [in writing] this, it was really a head-twister, but I love it: You, the gamer, are the hero,” Calhoun said. “Now it’s a 3D world that you’re taking the audience and dropping them into. I have to remember that you, the audience member, you’re that character. It’s very different from TV and film.”
About the delay, Milham repeated it’s been delayed “to early 2015.” Johnson, the performance director, said “We’re really happy about that, to get much more time,” though it’s unclear what else that means for the singleplayer scenes.
“The delay is a real blessing, because over time, games are living longer and you only get one chance to come out,” Milham said.
When it launches, Battlefield Hardline will be available on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.