Preview: Commander Tablet

The guys over at DICE were nice enough to give us a sneak peek at the tablet version for commander mode.

Commander is a stand-alone app that lets you extend the Battlefield 4 experience to tablets, allowing you to keep playing wherever you are. You are able to join as one of two Commanders on any server, and play just as you would on PC or console. DICE has designed the Commander app interface from the ground up to create the best possible experience on touch screen devices, and with a simple Drag & Drop interface players will be able to play just as efficiently as they do on their other platforms.

From the Commander app, you can get right into the action through the Quick Match function, that will find a suitable server and let you join immediately.

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If you want more control over the servers you join, the Battlelog app can be used in synergy with Commander. Commander also features a unique End of Round screen, where the player can compare his or her performance against the enemy Commander.

First, take a quick look at the app in action. It’s incredibly smooth, and quick to load maps & voiceovers:

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I loaded this app from scratch. It wasn’t already in memory when I launched it. Loading times for the maps were less than 5 seconds, though you may experience different loading times on other tablets.

The touch screen functions work flawlessly. Pinch to zoom, drag and drop squads, performing infantry scans and supply drops happen exactly where you drop them. To assign a squad to an objective, just drag the squad from the right side of the screen and drop them on the objective. Simple!

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One of the downfalls: there is no spectator mode. However, it was nice to  be able to zoom in and watch the player icons move around in real time. VOIP is enabled by default, but it’s setup in a way that you have to hold down a button to speak to the selected squad. Assigning high value targets is also as easy as drag and drop.

Launching cruise missiles are just as effective using drag and drop as they are using a mouse. Precision definitely isn’t a problem inside the app.

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Let’s take a look at the end of round screens for the tablet commander. These are unique to the tablet version, showing off your team loyalty, offense and support scores:

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Overall, I’m extremely impressed with the mobile Commander. Everything seems to be slick & smooth. My only complaint right now is you can’t select the server you want to join. You can select a server via the Battlelog app, then command on that server through the commander app. The voiceovers, maps, and seamless soldier movements are perfectly integrated on your touchscreen. This is a full featured Commander app, and probably one of the best mobile apps I’ve ever used. Please leave any questions, comments and requests for me in the section below.