Battlefield 3 developers happy to return to Wake

If you’re looking forward to heading Back to Karkand with the impending release of Battlefield 3, you’re certainly not alone. Even the development team at DICE is squeaking in anticipation of revisiting the classics – Strike at Karkand, Gulf of Oman, Sharqi Peninsula and, of course, Wake Island.

Back in 2002, Lars Gustavsson was working as Producer on Battlefield 1942, creating the original Wake Island map. Today, he’s still working with DICE, and sheds a bit of light on the development process.

The basic premise was that we looked at how real-life Wake Island [from the Pacific Theatre in WWII] looks today. We knew we couldn’t do it to scale, but that kind of one-to-one fidelity wasn’t really of interest to us.

History buffs will note that, in one glaring aspect, accuracy wasn’t important to DICE either – the runway is still going the wrong way.

Battlefield 3 - Concept Art for Wake Island

Concept Art for Wake Island
Click to embiggen!

According to Gustavsson – like Lara Croft – part of the fun of the new Wake Island map actually started life as a mistake.

Funny thing is, it was in fact downscaled so much due to a decimal error in programming. The map was originally meant to be bigger, but the involuntary downsizing created a very cool and concentrated gaming experience.

This “fun over realism” approach has resulted in a sort of “Kelly’s Heroes thing”, Gustavsson explains, combining an island paradise with some fairly hectic, messy battles.

For more from Gustavsson – and Lead Designer Niklas Fegraeus (who says that Wake Island was his first Battlefield experience back in 2002) – head over to the latest [surl=]Battlefield blog[/surl]. There’s still no release date announced for BF3, but with the game all set to be on show at E3, we’re hoping we’ll get plenty more information within the next few weeks.

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