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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 4:08pm

List of features and changes coming in Battlefield V (per JackFrags' video)

I posted this on the /r/Battlefield subreddit and thought I'd share it here to hopefully create some discussion about the game.

Preface

First, I highly recommend people watch JackFrags' video titled Battlefield V New Gameplay Features and Huge changes that this post is based on. I've outlined some of the features he describes below but I left out a lot of extra commentary which really helps to add context. Watch the video and support JackFrags who is a big supporter of the Battlefield franchise and helps bring us information like this so early before release.

Second, my notes below are a best attempt at summarizing the information contained in Jack's video but it's possible I may have misquoted or misinterpreted some of the things he said, so don't shoot the messenger. As mentioned above, I suggest you watch the full video to make sure you get everything.

Battlefield V Details (per the video)

Design philosophy
  • Higher skill floor and skill ceiling
  • Emphasis on squad-play and team-play gameplay
  • Emphasis on planning and preparation
  • Attempt to eliminate the spawn-run-die-spawn-run-die mentality
  • More tactical and strategic than previous games
  • Focusing the player on the in-game environment rather than the HUD

Setting
  • Set in WW2
  • Will take place in France, Norway, Rotterdam and North African desert

Game modes
  • "Conquest", with the return of the old conquest system (assuming this is referring to tickets counting down to 0 instead of up to 1000)
  • "Team Deathmatch"
  • "Domination"
  • "Grand Operations", new 64 player game mode
    • Takes place over four fictional days
    • Each day is a full match
    • Different objective each day
    • Objectives and conditions are modular and can be changed by DICE on a daily basis to keep things interesting
    • You will always advance to the next day, it's not going to end early like in BF1
    • How well you do on prior days will have an impact on subsequent days
    • Example:
      • Day One - Jumping out of an airplane to pick up bombs to take out artillery on the ground
      • Day Two - Invasion force landing similar to the "breakthrough" mode in BF1 operations
      • Day Three - "Front-lines" style map/mode
      • Day Four - The fourth and final day only happens if there isn't a clear winner from the previous days. Day four will be the "Final Stand", an extremely tense game mode where your team spawns with one life/one spawn per player, significantly reduced resources, one magazine and possible extreme weather conditions such as snowstorms or rainstorms. All players must fight down to the last man standing to win the entire operation.

  • "Combined Arms", coop mode
    • Four players
    • Play through a variety of missions such as "paratroopers behind enemy lines" or "high stakes", an extraction-style mode
    • DICE has created a dynamic mission creator and AI for these coop experiences, with new challenges and random objectives to keep it fresh
    • Your soldiers and company from multiplayer and coop will cross-over

  • "War Stories", single player mode
    • Will focus on the untold stories of WW2
    • One example: Playing as a resistance fighter in Norway in 1943 during the German occupation, fighting to save her family.


Fortifications
  • Assets and structures can built on the map
    • Sandbags
    • Foxholes
    • Trenches
    • Barbed wire
    • Tank stoppers
    • Machine gun nests
    • Cannons
    • Reinforce destroyed buildings
    • Ladders
    • Supply depots you can build on flags you've fortified

  • All classes can build fortifications
  • Support class is the only class that can build "offensive" fortifications
    • Machine guns
    • Field cannons

  • Support class is much faster at building in general
  • Fortifications can only be built at predetermined spots on the map, but there are plenty of these to give players lots of options
  • Most buildings that are destroyed can be rebuilt with fortifications

Attrition
  • Health no longer automatically regenerates to 100%
  • Health bar is in stages now (e.g. three "stages" of 33% each, this is just an example, Jack doesn't say how many stages there are)
  • If your health falls below one of the stages, your health will only regenerate to fill the current stage (e.g. if your health falls to 25%, it will only regenerate up to 33%, not 100% as before)
  • To get all your health back, you will need to find a medpack

Physical interactions
  • Everything your character does in the game requires player input and interaction, and each interaction has it's own animation
  • Example 1:
    • Using a medpack or ammo pack requires the player to walk over and interact with it
    • After interacting with the medpack or ammo pack, an accompanying animation will play of your soldier picking it up and using it
    • No more magic medic or ammo "auras"/AOE effects that passively refill health or ammo

  • Example 2:
    • If you want to do a ledge grab, you have to time it right and hit the button to grab the ledge at the right moment


Spotting
  • No more automatic spotting (I'm not 100% sure what he means by "automatic")
  • No more 3D spotting, i.e. no more blind shooting at 3D icons and hoping to hit someone, you will have to watch, listen and pay attention to your environment more closely
  • No more relying on the user interface or the HUD [to locate enemies] (brackets mine)
  • No more playing from the minimap (I'm assuming this means enemy players no longer show up on the minimap)
  • You can still call out where vehicles and enemies are but it works differently now, Jack assumes it's some kind of contextual ping system like in Incursions or Rainbow Six: Siege

Reviving
  • Reviving is no longer instant, there is a full revive animation that takes a few seconds to complete, during which the player is vulnerable
  • You can initiate the revive animation from any angle
  • You can see the player detail and customization during the revive animation (it sounds like Jack is suggesting that the downed player will see the revive animation from their point of view as well, but I'm not sure)
  • Your character will keep a low profile during the revive animation
  • You can cancel the revive animation at any time
  • You can drag to bodies of downed teammates, grab their leg, arm, head, whatever and drag them behind cover before attempting a revive
  • Reviving is no longer class-specific, all classes can revive now
  • Medic class revives much faster and restores the player to 100% health while other classes are slower and restore only partial health
  • Downed players can look around in all directions and call for help, the animation of calling for help shows them raising their hand and screaming, as shown in the reveal trailer with the guy on the stairs

Gunplay
  • No more visual recoil
  • Every gun now has a unique recoil pattern that is predictable to a certain extent and can be learned and mastered
  • DICE is attempting to reduce the impact of randomness and increase the ability of the player to control and learn a weapon over time, Jack believes this will create a higher skill ceiling on the gunplay
  • If your character's hand is on the trigger and you're facing forward you can always shoot it
    • For example, if you're doing a one-handed vault and facing forward, you can shoot during the middle of the vault
    • The same goes for jumping, but when jumping you can only shoot from the apex of the jump
    • It will be inaccurate in both instances, but still possible

  • LMG bipods are much easier to setup and use
  • Guns have bullet penetration, you'll be able to shoot buildings with thin walls, wood and sheet metal
  • DICE didn't give any answers concerning whether suppression is returning, they're supposedly still looking into it

Movement
  • Completely overhauled
  • You can now dive forward, back, left and right
  • After you dive you can stay on the ground, crawl backwards or to your side, and shoot (as shown in the reveal trailer)
  • Very similar to prone system in ARMA and Rainbow Six: Siege
  • There's a big delay after you dive before you can shoot to prevent dolphin diving
  • You can now crouch sprint (i.e. low-profile sprint)
  • You can burst out of windows and commando roll to keep your momentum going instead of having to destroy the window first before vaulting through it
  • Large explosions can knock you off your feet even if they're not fatal

Towing
  • You can now tow things with vehicles (as shown in the reveal trailer)
  • Vehicle that can tow include tanks and half-trucks
  • Things you can tow include:
    • Stationary anti-air guns
    • Supply depots
    • Field cannons

  • Teammates can use the objects being towed as they are being towed

Destruction
  • Revamped and more drawn out
  • If a shell explodes inside a building, the walls and windows will explode outwards
  • If a shell explodes outside a building, the building will break inwards
  • If a tank drives through the wall of a building, the walls will crack and bend depending on how the tank has entered the building, with debris flying and falling on the tank
  • DICE is attempting to make destruction more drawn-out and believable

Squads
  • Heavy emphasis on squad-play and keeping your squad together
  • When you join a game you're automatically placed in a squad and can leave it if you choose
  • New squad spawning system
    • If you die while in a squad, you'll go to the squad deploy screen which is before the tactical map deploy screen
    • The squad deploy screen is live third-person spectator mode of your squad members
    • You spectate different squad members so you know exactly what you're getting into before you spawn
    • If your squad is wiped, you will need to spawn back from the tactical map screen, which Jack says takes longer than the squad deploy screen

  • If you're the last surviving member of your squad, you get a notification alerting you accordingly
  • On the deploy screen (he doesn't specify which one) you'll be able to see who is spawning on who
  • Squad "Call-Ins" are special "abilities", a bit like killstreaks, that your squad can activate after accumulating enough squad points
  • Confirmed "Call-Ins" include:
    • V1/JB2 rockets
    • Supply drops
    • Smoke barrage
    • Heavy weapon pickups, i.e. NOT hero kits, they are powerful weapons that don't change your class similar to battle pickups in BF4
    • Squad vehicles like the Churchill Crocodile flamethrower tank or the Sturmtiger (massive German assault gun)

  • Only the squad leader can spend squad points to activate Call-Ins

Classes, progression and customization
  • You create your own company of soldiers, weapons and vehicles, with the ability to customize appearance and play-style
  • The four classes will return (Assault, Medic, Scout, Support)
  • You create a soldier and add that soldier to your company of soldiers
  • You can customize soldiers appearance in a variety of ways:
    • Gender
    • How their face looks
    • Face paint
    • Fair
    • Facial hair
    • Hats
    • Helmets
    • Jackets
    • Pants
    • Shorts
    • Accessories
    • Prosthetic arms

  • You choose a class "archetype" for each soldier
  • Archetypes are highly customizable and utilize a skill-tree type system
  • The purpose of the archetype is to create separate roles within a class that specialize in different things, such as giving an assault class the ability to specialize in anti-tank, anti-infantry, or a mix of both
  • There are highly specialized archetypes called "exotics" that are really good at one particular thing, for example the "Recon Paratrooper" archetype that is a stealthy, short-range, behind-enemy-lines guy that uses a silenced SMG and silent gadgets like pistols and garrotes, and is equipped with silent footsteps, smokes and throwing knives
  • You can add additional specialization trees to your class such as Agility, Flak Armor, Suppressive Resistance
  • The more you play your class, the more you will level it up and get access to more archetypes and specializations
  • You can customize and level up your guns, unlocking specializations within the skill tree for that gun, such as bipods, bayonets, stocks, sights, muzzles, chassis, skins, leaves on the front, cloth on the back, straps, etc.
  • Each gun should have around 5-7 different specialization elements that you can customize and change
  • Gameplay and visual customizations are separate, "specializations" are things that affect gameplay, visual customizations are a different thing entirely
  • Tanks and air vehicles can be customized similar to soldiers and guns, with specializations and visual customizations such as paint jobs, sand bags, boxes, teddy bears, horse's heads, bottles, etc.
  • Jack will be doing a dedicated video on customization and progress later because it's much more complicated and in-depth than in past games

General gameplay
  • Players spawn with much less ammo
  • There are more ways to get ammo:
    • Ammo packs
    • Ammo crates
    • Supply depots that you can build on flags
    • Looting enemy bodies
    • All with their own physical interactions and animations

  • You can throw back grenades that are on the ground
  • You can catch grenades in the air and throw them back
  • You can shoot grenades in the air to explode them
  • Much less grenades overall
  • No more hero kits or elite classes
  • No more behemoths
  • Vehicles will be asymmetrical, meaning both factions will have vehicles with different strengths and weaknesses. For example, one team might have tank that is big and slow but does a lot of damage, while the other team has a tank that is faster and smaller but has less health and does less damage, or you might get a tank that's a glass cannon. This is different from previous games where both sides essentially had re-skinned versions of the same vehicles.
  • Transport vehicles are live on the map and you can jump into them
  • Combat vehicles spawn from the tactical deploy map
  • You will be able to experience the "shush" animation from the reveal trailer in live gameplay (I'm assuming its a melee execution of some kind)

Environment
  • Grass and other in-game objects will move and react to the environment, e.g. creeping through the grass will cause the grass to move
  • Ragdolls and environmental objects are server-side and have physics now, which allows for some new and interesting in-game interactions, for example, if a player dies on a hill, his/her body will roll down the hill interacting with the environment on the way down (grass, puddles, etc.)
  • Character models interact with the environment much more
    • If there is tall grass or reeds, character models will knock them down
    • If a character is sprinting in water, the character will change to a wading animation
    • Character will put their weight into objects when they crash into them


Business, communication and post-launch content
  • All logic in the game can now be controlled server-side, so if something is broken or imbalanced it can be changed instantly without requiring a patch, this includes things such as cap times, respawns, time to bleed out, etc.
  • DICE is promising that communication between the devs and the community will be significantly better in this game, promising more roadmaps and visibility
  • No premium pass for multiplayer; all maps, modes, etc. after launch will be free to all players, i.e. no splitting the community between players with standard and premium content
  • DICE is calling their post-launch content drops "Tides of War" and will include daily, weekly and monthly challenges with overarching chapters and quest lines that reward you with unique items and cosmetics
  • "Tides of War" will also include new maps, modes and limited time experiences

Closing Thoughts

BFV includes extensive cosmetic customization options in the game that allows players to change everything from their soldier's gender, hair, prosthetic limbs, clothes, etc. to the pain job and accessories on their guns, tanks and airplanes. Given the fact that new maps, modes and other post-launch content will now be free with BFV, EA/DICE is most likely going to try to make up this lost revenue in another area, most likely by monetizing cosmetic elements instead. This is purely conjecture on my part but it seems like a no-brainer from a business perspective. I'm personally fine with this but I just want to forewarn people so they aren't surprised when it happens.

Personally, I love the changes DICE is making with BFV (assuming this is all true) and I'm more excited for this game than I have been for any Battlefield games in recent memory. I know a lot of the changes above are based on a preview event that JackFrags attended and things could still change, but I definitely like what I see so far.

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 4:34pm

This is a very nice write-up which I would most definitely rep, if it were possible in the off-topic section. :D

Mofixil

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 4:36pm

Quoted

Every gun now has a unique recoil pattern that is predictable to a certain extent and can be learned and mastered


So, does this translate to "we are trying to sell what we already have again" or "we went full CS recoil patterns"?

  • "Novan Leon" started this thread

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 6:27pm

So, does this translate to "we are trying to sell what we already have again" or "we went full CS recoil patterns"?


It's just speculation, but to me it sounds like they're going the CS route.

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 7:03pm

Quoted

Every gun now has a unique recoil pattern that is predictable to a certain extent and can be learned and mastered


So, does this translate to "we are trying to sell what we already have again" or "we went full CS recoil patterns"?


I never got what the deal was with that. I see the appeal for maximum predictability for players who define skill as musclememory. MIght just as well roll back all the way to the 90s, where recoil was not a thing. It is a rather unauthentic design choice, recoil will always be random, because most of it is caused by your own body moving. Anyway, with all that marketing palaver it could very well be that they only roll back to BF3 or 4 levels, since they acknowledged that the BF1 systems were totally bonkers. In any case a total 180 on behalf of DICE.

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 7:04pm

Moved thread to (new) BF:V section.
Links to users' thread list who have made analytical/statistical/mathematical/cool posts on Symthic:
  • 3VerstsNorth - Analysis of game mechanics in BF4 (tickrates, effects of tickrate, etc)
  • InterimAegis - Weapon comparisons/scoring.
  • leptis - Analysis of shotguns, recoil, recoil control and air drag.
  • Veritable - Scoring of BF4/BF1 firearms in terms of usability, firing and other mechanics.
  • pmax - Statistical analysis of BF4 players/games.
  • Miffyli - Random statistical analysis of BF4 battlereports/players and kill-distances. (list is cluttered with other threads).
Sorry if your name wasn't on the list, I honestly can't recall all names : ( . Nudge me if you want to be included

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 7:40pm

BF3 or 4 levels, since they acknowledged that the BF1 systems were totally bonkers. In any case a total 180 on behalf of DICE.


Recoil has been using essentially the same system since BF3. BF1 recoil is very similar to BF4. The only thing that BF1 changed was some new spread mechanics. Reverse spread on LMGs and a first shot spread multiplier for SMGs. Yeah, some people don't like the hold mouse 1 for LMGs, but the FSSM on smgs unended the microbursting meta from BF4. People--not saying that you do this--seems to keep calling BF1's gameplay causal, but it is same as BF3/4.

This post has been edited 1 times, last edit by "dwojtk" (May 24th 2018, 7:46pm)


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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 7:57pm

I never got what the deal was with that. I see the appeal for maximum predictability for players who define skill as musclememory. MIght just as well roll back all the way to the 90s, where recoil was not a thing. It is a rather unauthentic design choice, recoil will always be random, because most of it is caused by your own body moving. Anyway, with all that marketing palaver it could very well be that they only roll back to BF3 or 4 levels, since they acknowledged that the BF1 systems were totally bonkers. In any case a total 180 on behalf of DICE.


What I don't get is why you're focusing on this over everything else on the list. We're not "going back to the '90s", because look at the interaction/reviving/building lists. One of the most defining features of arcade-style gameplay, and yes this does include CS, is that actions and interactions with the world are not, well, interactions, they're just a first person animation. Reviving in BF3-1 are stellar examples of this, where you just shove a needle forward with a first person animation, and a ragdoll on the ground jumps back to life. There's no connection or interaction there, no physical animation like BF1 vehicle entering has. That lack of interaction is a classic example of games feeling game-y.

BF1 is doing away with this entirely, where everything will have proper physical interaction animations. From reviving to simply picking up ammo, you have to do it yourself, with your character physically interacting with the world. This is a massive step in the right direction, and a step away from the claims of BF being arcade-y and game-y like CS or CoD.


Recoil has been using essentially the same system since BF3. BF1 recoil is very similar to BF4. The only thing that BF1 changed was some new spread mechanics. Reverse spread on LMGs and a first shot spread multiplier for SMGs. Yeah, some people don't like the hold mouse 1 for LMGs, but the FSSM on smgs unended the microbursting meta from BF4. People--not saying that you do this--seems to keep calling BF1's gameplay causal, but it is same as BF3/4.


Exactly this. BF3/4/H/1 are all just iterations of the same core game. BFV is different in the same sense BF3 was different to BC2, it's a radical shift and rebuild from the ground up. Direct comparisons to previous games won't work like they did until now.



EDIT: Flakfire's trailer breakdown, fantastic as always. Apparently the DICE sound team found a real working V1 rocket engine to record. 8|
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This post has been edited 1 times, last edit by "BleedingUranium" (May 24th 2018, 8:30pm)


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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 9:17pm

BF3 or 4 levels, since they acknowledged that the BF1 systems were totally bonkers. In any case a total 180 on behalf of DICE.


Recoil has been using essentially the same system since BF3. BF1 recoil is very similar to BF4. The only thing that BF1 changed was some new spread mechanics. Reverse spread on LMGs and a first shot spread multiplier for SMGs. Yeah, some people don't like the hold mouse 1 for LMGs, but the FSSM on smgs unended the microbursting meta from BF4. People--not saying that you do this--seems to keep calling BF1's gameplay causal, but it is same as BF3/4.


I would have loved to call BF1 casual, I found it to be disturbingly complicated how the guns worked out in various ways. They must have figured this is not as desirable for a WWII shooter, and since everybody and their mother is talking about skill in gunfights (BF1 for sure had the highest skill ceiling in all recent BF titles), they looked for inspiration in CS. I am a full-on fan of the BF3 and 4 mechanics, becaus it is understandable, intuitive and it correlates well into the game. I have little experience with recoil only mechanics, but I think it is a step back in various ways. In any case we will se how far they will actually go, from the comments it could still be the same overall concept, but toned down, their comments are deliberately imprecise.

@BU

I chose this from the list, because I quoted Mofixil on that topic and wondered what it is that makes the CS recoil system so popular, which I find to be a very traditional feature from another era of shooters. I have a lot to say about the other features, especially the revive (or no-revive-ever)-system.
As far as interactions go, I do not need that stuff, it is visual fluff that is detrimental to my personal gameplay and likely prone to bugs and exploits. If a revive takes 3 seconds in fire, players will not revive. I have also yet to see a ragdoll system that works well enough to fully immerse me, while not causing issues, like not being able to pick up fallen soldiers kits, revive persons, or where bodies deny access to doorways, medbags etc.
Resupplying from a medbox or ammocrate where I have to press buttons just for an animation to play is unnecessary as well as tedious. Sure it looks nice when the guy tosses me an ammo pouch, but does the animation always play? Can I shoot whilst catching it? What if I have my back turned to the support, when it is thrown, or is it something that I have to initiate by myself and the pouch magicall flies towards me when I press Q and aim at a support? It's something I will shrug my shoulders at after an hour in the best case.
Don't get me wrong, I acknowledge the visual benefit, but it is only good when it has no effect on gameplay and I doubt people will notice it all together after playing the game for a couple of hours. While they added stuff like animations when entering vehicles in BF1, they forgot to add exit animations, which would have a real beneficial gameplay value by eliminating the number of hijacked tanks and cowardly pilots.

And I want my BF game to be gamey, otherwise I would play Arma and go full mil-sim. The game looks especially arcadey, too, when you judge by the trailer. We are talking about a game that allows german soldierettes with katanas and likely an extensive wardrobe back at the barracks. That is a feature solely aimed at the current people playing Overwatch, Fortnite, PUBG and such. I am not against it, since they need to find a way to get at players cash, but they are getting overboard, when you want to play a WWII themed shooter.

There are other things tendencially sounding more intriguing like the towing of vehicles, which can be a gamechanger or a total balance disaster. Imagine a good tanker, towing his mate with a flak to a good spot and both just stay at that supreme position until the end of the round. We saw these kind of tankers a lot in BF1, now untouchable also by air, maybe? On the other hand, the thing missing at times (though BF1 did a good job) is placed stationaries. Often their reach was limited or when they were needed there was nothing around. Shooting a Flak or a PAK whilst being toweed though, is stupid and very arcadey.
The other thing is fortifications, cover was scarce in BF1, maybe this will help, but what was mostly missing was cover from above and I doubt anyone will be able to craft these things. The other question is: Do you need a special gadget to build sandbags and such? If I can have an AT grenade and a grenade launcher as assault, why would I also pick up a hammer to build very situational fortifications. Building times and durability and generally the mechanic will decide if it will ever be used. Also this is bound to be really buggy and exploitable. Could help though to fortifiy the notoriously uncovered flag zones of BF.

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Thursday, May 24th 2018, 9:39pm

You're describing all that as if its effects on gameplay are some kind of negative side effect, and as if the devs are doing it this way for immersion/visual flair. But that's the opposite of the case. Having animations and taking time to do stuff is entirely the point, it's being done for gameplay.

Somehow you're complaining about old school FPS aim mechanics while simultaneously complaining we're finally moving past old school, arcade-like movement and interaction mechanics. You're not going to be a floating camera that doesn't have to physically interact with the world anymore, and that's a wonderful thing. That old style of movement is, above anything else, the quintessential trait of old, arcade-like, video-gamey FPS games.

"Arcade-y" is a gameplay term, having interesting visual customization is utterly irrelevant to it.
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