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Battlefield 2142 Tweak Guide

[Page 4] Patches, Maps & Mods



Official Patch


EA Games have released several patches for Battlefield 2142, with the latest bringing it up to Version 1.51. The patch adds a range of fixes, four new maps, and the Northern Strike expansion pack is included for free. It also removes the CD check from the game. The 1.51 patch requires that your game be patched up to Version 1.50, as it does not contain all the previous patches.



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In-Game Advertising


EA Games has adopted a controversial new In-Game Advertising Program for a range of games, including Battlefield 2142. While playing BF2142, you will notice a range of billboards and other locations which hold dynamic in-game advertisements from real contemporary companies. These are coordinated by IGA Worldwide, and the technical details of how they work is here. Basically the software in the game monitors your behavior while playing BF2142, recording (among other things) which ads are in your field of view, for how long, the distance between you and the ad, and the angle of view.


My major issue with this sort of advertising is that firstly it ruins immersion in BF2142, since some maps in the game have up to 26 or more billboards/placeholders for advertising, and by its very nature advertising is designed to be seen, not to blend into the background. Not to mention that the billboards look very out-of-place in the futuristic post-apocalyptic BF2142 landscape. However the biggest problem with this sort of advertising is that it provides absolutely no benefit whatsoever to consumers; BF2142 is retailing for full price, and there are no guarantees at all (and certainly no evidence so far) of any better support for this game than there was for BF2.


To start with most ad billboards/placeholders simply have generic logos (such as 'RA'), or 'We want you for the EU Forces' on them in muted colors. Some examples of the ad billboard placements and how prominent they are can be seen here. However the ad system is now live and is serving genuine ads such as this one. Note that at present the Australian version of BF2142 does not have the ad system due to the Spyware Bill 2005.


There is a BF2142 In-Game Ads FAQ which contains more details and has solutions on how to block/disable the ads, so I recommend you check it out.



No-CD Patch


The full version of Battlefield 2142 uses a customized version of the SafeDisc copy protection system which involves a CD/DVD Key which is verified when installing as well as when playing online, along with CD/DVD disk check. This generally does not cause any major issues on most systems, however obviously the CD/DVD disk check is annoying. Unfortunately it seems unlikely EA Games will remove the disk check component from their games as they have rarely done so in the past. I can't provide details of any No-CD/DVDs, however note that these don't work for BF2142 multiplayer anyway since any modified game files cause the game to disconnect. You can use a game image/disc emulation tool to play without the CD/DVD, but I don't cover these here due to the fact that they circumvent copy protection, which is potentially illegal.


Update: As of the 1.51 patch, the game no longer has a CD check, as the DRM has been removed from the BF2142.exe file.



Mods


While some would say that Battlefield 2142 is in itself simply a very large modification for Battlefield 2, in reality just as BF2 had several excellent mods, I have no doubt Battlefield 2142 will also have the same - especially since it's based on the same engine as BF2. Some promising mods are already being developed as you can see here, and you can also check on existing mods here for example. I will try to list the more significant ones in this section as they come out.


Remember though that the Punkbuster anti-cheat system used by BF2142 may not look kindly on modified game files and major alterations to the game's directory structures. Therefore I recommend that you be careful as to what you install for BF2142, and if in doubt check with other players on a community forum first before installing a mod, and worse comes to worse if the mod is causing problems simply uninstall it.



Expansion Packs


EA Games has released a new booster/expansion pack for BF2142 called Northern Strike. This non-free booster pack contains new maps, new vehicles and new unlocks.



The next section goes into the details of all of Battlefield 2142's In-Game Settings.