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The Battlefield franchise is a series of award-winning computer and console games that started with the Windows/Mac game Battlefield 1942. The series is developed by the Swedish company EA Digital Illusions CE, and published by Electronic Arts. The games feature a greater focus on large maps and vehicle warfare than traditional first person shooters. The PC games in the series are mainly focused on online multiplayer. The Battlefield series had sold 25 million units as of July 2009. The series has a recognizable 6-beat sting which is often used in promotional material for the games.

Games

Codename Eagle, released in November, 1999, was the predecessor to the Battlefield series, using the Refractor graphics engine that formed the basis of Battlefield 1942. Battlefield 1942 was released on September 10, 2002, and introduced the "Conquest" gameplay mode, in which players fought for "capture points" throughout the map. The game marked a turning point in first-person shooters towards teamwork objectives rather than deathmatch play. Two expansion packs were released, The Road to Rome and Secret Weapons of WWII. Battlefield Vietnam, released in 2004, moved the setting to the Vietnam War, and was built on a modified Battlefield 1942 engine with various gameplay improvements.

The 2005 game Battlefield 2 takes place in the modern day, during a fictional war between the United Statesmarker, Chinamarker, and the fictional Middle Eastern Coalition (MEC). While requiring numerous software patches due to the large number of bugs and glitches in the game upon its release, it was a commercial success, selling over 2,250,000 copies worldwide, as of July 2006. It also received widespread critical acclaim, with an aggregate review score of 91%. One expansion pack, Special Forces, and two booster packs, Armored Fury and Euro Force, were also released. A version of the game called Battlefield 2: Modern Combat was released for consoles, with an improved single player mode but more limited online play.

Battlefield 2142 was released in 2006, taking place during a global ice age in the 22nd century. While much of its gameplay is similar to Battlefield 2, it introduced a variety of equippable items to unlock and battles between two giant "Titan" airships. Its use of in-game advertising was controversial among players. While generally praised by critics, it received lower review scores than its predecessors, with an average GameRankings score of 80%. The Northern Strike booster pack was later released, including new maps, vehicles, and a new game mode.

In 2008, EA released Battlefield: Bad Company, which follows the infamous "B" Company's AWOL escapades and their search for mercenary gold. A sequel, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, is in development and is scheduled for release March 2, 2010 and March 5th for EU users.

In 2009, EA released Battlefield Heroes, a free-to-play download-only game supported by advertising and micropayments. Battlefield 1943, also download-only, was released in July 2009 on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, while scheduled for release in Q1 2010 for Microsoft Windows. Battlefield 3 has been confirmed to be in development.

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