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E3: Battlefield Hardline beta opens for PS4 and PC with 64-player cops and robbers mayhem

New gameplay footage shows criminals executing a heist in the style of Heat

Video game publisher EA revealed new details about the latest title in its Battlefield series at E3 yesterday – as well as opening up the game's beta for PS4 and PC gamers.

Battlefield: Hardline offers a new take on the popular shooter, dropping the army warfare in favour of massive cops-and-robbers style shoot-outs.

This isn't scaling down Battlefield though with developer Steve Papoutsis  saying there will still be 32-a-side mayhem (complete with fleets of vehicles exploding) but with the same “rock-paper-scissors” dynamic of previous Battlefield games.

“We’re focused on creating a game that allows you to feel that rush of being a cop or criminal, by pulling off that big score or feeling that pleasure of making the huge bust,” wrote Papoutsis in a blog post.

“Imagine blowing open vaults, run-and-gun foot pursuits and near escapes via getaway choppers. This is the foundation of Battlefield Hardline.”

It was also revealed that Hardline will get a whole range of new weapons and class-specific gadgets  including grappling hooks and ziplines for moving from skyscraper to skyscraper, tear gas and gas masks, and new melee weapons including bats and batons.

How exactly the single player will unfold isn’t clear but EA released six minutes of gameplay footage and promise that the beta will let gamers take on two new game modes: Heist and Blood Money.

Blood Money plays like a domination style game, with cops and criminals fighting over a pile of cash in the middle of the map before hauling it back to their bases, while Heist looks like a scene from Heat, with the criminal team carrying out specific objectives in order to grab the loot.