Why am I writing a guide about how to move your soldier in Battlefield 4 multiplayer? Because your movements can be a deciding factor in matches, to you and your team’s advantage.
– But aren’t you supposed to just run around and shoot at anything that moves?
By all means – if that’s your cup of tea, go for it.
I’ll still say that you get more out of using your head than running around like a chicken with its head chopped off.
There’s almost always more than one road to any goal – and that goes for Battlefield 4, too.
How you take advantage of these different routes can make or break your gameplay. And, in addition to this, the most obvious path isn’t always the right one to take.
I’ve written this guide with these things in mind. It’ll help you become a smarter and less predictable player.
To put it differently, you’ll become a more dangerous opponent.
Walk Idiot Walk
No, no, no! I’m not calling you an idiot. But I thought this Hives song title was well suited for the following section.
Moving around in multiplayer games like Battlefield 4 is an art of balance.
You shouldn’t be moving too slowly. But then again, you shouldn’t be moving too fast either. And you definitely shouldn’t stand still for too long at a time.
So what’s the ideal here?
Let’s look at some pros and cons first:
- To walk – You’ll take in more of what’s going on around you in the game. It’ll take you a shorter amount of time to raise your weapon, and fire it. But you’ll also become an easier target.
- To run – You’ll be a more difficult target to hit. You’ll get from A to B quicker. But you’ll also become less attentive. And it’ll take you longer to raise your weapon.
- To stand still – You’ll definitely become aware of what’s going around you. But you’re never as vulnerable as when you’re not moving. In reality, you’re a sitting duck. (quack).
I believe that a wise combination of running and walking is the smartest choice.
When Should You Definitely Be Running?
I think a lot of players run way too much when they’re playing online. But there are times when moving as quickly as possible is a clear advantage.
The name sort of says it all. In Rush you’ll often gain from moving quickly to the M-COM stations – either to destroy or defend them.
This goes for the start of the match in particular. On maps where you’ll reach the station most efficiently by foot, sprint away.
Those who reach the station(s) first usually have the upper hand.
I’ve played a lot of matches where a station is destroyed almost instantaneously, because one or more players were fast enough.
I’ve also experienced two stations throwing in the towel right after the start of the match.
This worked because two squads co-operated on sprinting to and destroying each station (now there’s some teamwork for you).
A quick sprint can also work when the next couple of M-COM stations become available. But it’s often harder to succeed. The reason being that the defensive team often spawns closer to the stations that come after the first two.
Sometimes you want to move over greater distances. Maybe you want to attack someone from the side, or from behind.
The challenge is that you should move quickly in order to preserve the element of surprise. When this is the case, there’s not much else to it than running.
Do choose a route some distance away from the most intense battles, though.
You can, for instance, move along one of the map edges. The chance of meeting opponents is much smaller there.
Just remember to slow down when you’re approaching the targets you want to take out.
When Should You Walk?
I used to be a runner and gunner, primarily. I wasn’t noticeably good. After a while it actually seemed like I was getting worse.
So I slowed down.
Wanna know what happened?
Well, my character started dying less, I killed more hostiles, and I contributed to more victories than before.
Because I was paying attention to, and absorbing, more of what was going on around me. Additionally, I was able to better handle surprise resistance.
And the moral to the story is? (Drumroll, please)
Slow down more in Battlefield 4 online. You’ll gain a lot from it.
Running vs. Walking – Other General Tips
Slow down when you’re approaching a corner. Expect a hostile on the other side. Be ready to shoot as you turn the corner.
Decrease your tempo when you’re about to lose your overview. You never know who or what is lurking on the other side of the hill or at the top of a staircase.
Raise your weapon, be ready to pull the trigger, and move calmly till you’ve got a full overview up and running again.
Don’t run into buildings. Expect one or more hostiles to be waiting quietly for you.
Move calmly into the building. Scan from side to side with your weapon raised, ready to fire. You can also throw in a flash bang or grenade first.
Be careful when moving over large distances. Have you suddenly found yourself in open terrain? Run as quickly as you can to the nearest cover.
Approaching an M-COM station or control point? Slow down and try to figure out how many hostiles are situated nearby.
From Cover to Cover
I’ve touched on this briefly already. Your character is rarely more vulnerable than when it’s situated in open terrain, or in the middle of a street.
These characters are easy prey to loaded barrels.
So try to always be thinking, while you’re moving, “Where’s my next cover?”
Whether it’s a rock, a concrete block, a vehicle (preferably one that’s not about to explode), a container, or a wall hardly matters Just make sure you’re moving towards something that’ll shelter you from hostile bullets.
The process is fairly simple:
- Choose some cover.
- Move there and take cover.
- Have a quick look around. Any unfriendlies nearby? Yes? Take them out (preferably in shelter of the cover).
- Find your next cover.
- Repeat 2-4 – over and over and over again.
When you make this a habit, you’ll live longer – it’s as easy as that.
As Much Cover as Possible
A lot of times, you have a choice:
- You can move in front of the cover.
- You can move behind the cover.
Choose the latter as often as possible. Try having a form of cover between yourself and your opponents as much as you can. This really only requires two things from you:
- That you know roughly where your enemies are situated.
- That you’re conscious about where you are and where you’re going.
When you combine these two points, you’ve got the foundations for safer movement in Battlefield 4 online.
Let’s imagine that you want to attack your opponents from behind. In order to make this happen, you know you’ll have to move from A to B.
On the way (from A to B) you know that the majority of hostiles are situated to your right. Now, all you need to do is choose a route with as much cover as possible on your right-hand side.
Using cover effectively will often mean the long way round. The bonus is that your character will live longer and die less.
I honestly don’t know why. But it seems the chance of survival is greater when you move your character close to a wall. The alternative is skipping along in the middle of the street.
I think a lot of the answer lies in that most of your opponents expect you to do the latter – to walk in the middle of the street, that is. Cause that’s what most people do.
A lot of your opponents will turn the corner with their gun and attention directed at the middle of the street.
This is why you can gain a second or two from the enemy turning the corner ahead of you, if you move your character close to the wall. At least until every Battlefield player on the planet has read this guide…
Another reason might be that you blend more into the environment when you move close to a wall. The wall gives your character a kind of camouflage. And this brings us onto the next point.
What’s Your Backdrop?
Your surroundings can either save you or give you away. Here’s what I mean:
You character can, to a certain degree, blend in with the environment.
The backdrop you place it in front of can contribute to hostiles struggling to spot it. Walls and vegetation are, for example, excellent pieces of camouflage.
The opposite happens if you place your character on top of a roof or a hill. Then its silhouette against the sky will quickly reveal it.
So – keep backdrops in mind as you’re moving on the different maps. Try taking advantage of or avoiding them to your own benefit.
(It doesn’t hurt to choose a camouflage for your soldier that’s adjusted to the map environment either. You can trick more people than just me by choosing a sand coloured camouflage for a map with a lot of sand. Or a darker uniform on a night map, or map with a lot of dark alleys.)
Turning a corner is one of the most dangerous things you can do in first person shooter multiplayers. You have no idea what’s waiting for you on the other side.
For a long time, I was one of these players who ran around every single corner.
My character died almost every time. ‘Cause (surprise, surprise) behind every corner, a hostile was usually waiting for me. At least, that’s how I eventually learnt to think.
Now, I’m a lot more careful when approaching corners.
The idea is still that behind the corner, a surprise might be awaiting with a boom. That’s why I decrease my tempo considerably when the corner’s coming up. Then I do this:
- Right ahead of the corner I raise my weapon and aim down the sight.
- I move forward, carefully, then stop, and scan the area I’ve got an overview of – (still aiming here, guys).
- When I see it’s all clear, I move a little bit further, then stop, and scan again.
- I continue like this all the way, till I’ve turned the corner. And I’m keeping my aim up the whole time.
Plan Your Moves
The more you play, the better your situational awareness will become.
In Battlefield 4 multiplayer, situational awareness is the sum of what you hear and see on your HUD, including the minimap, in addition to map knowledge.
The better you are at detecting and understanding what’s going on around you, the better you get at planning your movements and actions.
The road to full situational awareness can be long. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t plan how to move.
Here are some tips:
Flank Your Opponents
Engaging hostiles full frontal isn’t always the best way to go. You’ll often have better results when attacking from one of the sides (the flanks) or from behind.
This might mean that you’ll have to choose a detour in order to reach an advantageous position.
But because a surprising flank attack or an attack from behind often gives you the upper hand, it might be worth the extra walk.
Use the Minimap
The minimap is there for a reason. It’ll often help you when you’re planning where and how to move.
It can, for example, highlight areas completely empty of unfriendlies, and where it’s thus safer to move.
Learn how to do a quick scan of the minimap at regular intervals. Just don’t stare at it for too long at a time. It shouldn’t steal your attention away from what’s going on elsewhere on your screen.
Use the Routes Less Taken
Most multiplayer maps in Battlefield 4 consist of a main road, as well as several side roads, that lead to a target.
Yes, I know that’s a grave oversimplification. But bear with me – I’m trying to make a point here
The main road is usually the shortest way. It’s also the one most heavily trafficated. Your opponents know this. So a lot of them will be situated on, or close to the main road.
The side roads are often detours. That makes them less populated, too – both by friendlies and unfriendlies. You can use this to your advantage.
The chance of surviving and reaching the target is often greater when you make use of a less obvious route to the target. So go against the flow. Move alternatively – use the side roads.
Don’t Be Predictable
This is an extension of what I wrote above. A lot of Battlefield players, especially beginners, repeat themselves. Or, they do as everyone else does.
I’ve experienced this in every single multiplayer game I’ve ever played. A pattern arises fairly quickly.
It doesn’t matter which map or game mode we’re talking about here. A short time after launch, a load of players will have gotten stuck in a repetitive playing style.
One example is that they choose the same routes from A to B, every single goddamned time, with few or small variations.
Don’t be one of those players. Be unpredictable.
Here’s a couple of ideas:
I’ve done it countless times myself. And I see others making the same mistake – time and time again.
Let me paint you a picture: you’re headed towards and M-COM station. Your character’s got a nice pace… Boom! And, you’re on the ground, life slowly seeping outta you.
– No matter, you think, and brush off the humiliation. ‘Cause here you go again. The pace is still good, the route’s the same. The M-COM station’s just over there. Almost there now…
And once again, you’re on the ground, the screen as blurry as a hazy day.
Killed in the same place twice!
If you’re anything like me, you’ll feel the thirst for vengeance rushing through your body. You choose the same route, just a tad more carefully this time. But the outcome’s usually the same. Your character dies once again.
Seasoned players know that a lot of other players, and the newbies in particular, repeat themselves (did I hear someone say Christmas n00bs?)
The quicker you learn not to do the same things over and over again, the harder it’ll be for others to pick up on your playing style.
So, never choose the same route twice in a row.
But Everyone Else Does It!
As I’ve mentioned previously, most maps in Battlefield 4 multiplayer have set routes and areas that are more heavy on traffic than others. After having played the game for a while, you’ll know where these different high traffic areas are.
And you’re not the only one. Your opponents know where they are, too.
So what’s a smart thing to do when your opponents think they know where you’re going to move?
Well, choose another, less obvious route.
It might be a long way round. But you can get a good handle on a number of hostiles if you show up where they’re least expecting it.
Don’t do what everyone else does. Don’t be scared to experiment. Test new routes. Remain unpredictable. You’ll become a more dangerous opponent this way.
In a range of game modes in Battlefield 4 online, tickets are the going currency. The more tickets you and your team lose, the bigger the chance of you losing the match. So – die as little as possible.
This is when being a coward becomes completely legit if you want to avoid the team losing yet another ticket.
Let’s imagine you turn a corner with your character. Suddenly, you’re getting shot at by an unfriendly waiting on the other side.
What a lot of people choose to do is return fire. The problem is that the hostile’s already gotten one or two hits in. He just needs to hit you with a couple more rounds, and it’s game over.
You, on the other hand, will have to get in three to four hits before you can walk victorious from the duel.
Thus, your opponent already has the upper hand – before you can even pull your trigger. Most situations like this end in your enemy winning. You and your team has lost yet another ticket.
What can you do?
It’s pretty simple, grasshopper. Just do a basic 180 degree turn and scoot on back to where you came from. Get behind cover.
Now it’s important to keep it cool and not do what everyone else does. Do not turn around and use the same route again in order to challenge the guy that just shot you.
Find an alternative route instead. One that’ll let you attack from one of the sides or from behind.
If you manage to get up to the side or back of your opponent, you’ll often find him waiting for you. He’s expecting you to return, to use the original route.
But not you, clever cat.
You’ll surprise him instead, by showing up on one of his sides, or from behind. Now you’re the one to get a kill, struggling to hide your pride at being a smarter player than the others, of course.
Here’s a situation that looks a lot like the one before. You’re surprised by an opponent who, in the worst case scenario, gets a couple of hits in on your character.
You throw yourself around and start running away from the enemy. Well, that’s what you’ll let him think you’re doing, anyway.
And what does the hostile do? Well, he thinks you’re running away to save your own ass, of course, and takes up the hunt.
Here’s the twist: as soon as you’ve turned a corner, and you’re sure your pursuer can’t see you, stop.
Turn 180 degrees, raise your weapon, and shoot a couple of deadly rounds as soon as your opponent’s in sight.
You see? Now you’ve got the upper hand all of a sudden.
For the most part, you’ll have time to fire enough bullets to stop the hostile. He, on the other hand, will struggle to return fire on time, since he’s running and has just been caught red-handed.
Back to You
These were some simple ideas on how to move smarter in Battlefield 4 multiplayer. Here’s a quick summary:
- Walk more, run less.
- Move from cover to cover.
- Take advantage of, or avoid, different backgrounds.
- Try flanking your opponents as often as possible.
- Choose the less obvious routes.
- Don’t follow in everyone else’s footsteps, literally.
- It’s OK to be a wimp – sometimes, at least.
What about you? What tips do you have on how we can move with more brains? Use the comment field below to share your tips with the rest of us.