DICE have announced that the jet and vehicle-filled Caspian Border map has been unlocked in order for DICE to do some testing. The test is for PC gamers only as they are specifically testing the 64-player server configurations, as the console versions of Battlefield 3 only support 24 players. DICE have also reminded users that Battlefield 3 is still in beta, so any crashes, network instability and outages may occur.
DICE is taking this opportunity to fine tune its servers and says that your experience with the beta is not necessarily indicative of the final product. I played 4 hours of 64-player Caspian Border BF3 last night and let me just say the great words of our own Shane Baxtor here (and also, its his Birthday today!): NERDGASM. It is amazing. Absolutely beautiful. Breathtaking. The map is big, but small in areas for firefights. Vehicles help so much with the immersion and having jets flying over you at insane speeds just makes it feel like a literal Battlefield.
The scale of Caspian Border also makes for much more intense fights, and a change in scenery too. Just a little thing I thought I'd discuss. I was in a bit of the level where there's a two storey building, I walked up the stairs and there was a roof section you could access. As I walked up the stairs, the sunlight beamed down against the wall, which enlightened the wall and made it look really 'bright'. As I walked up to the wall and further up the stairs, that bright wall became duller... as I was engulfed in sunlight. The effect has to be seen in game to be believed, but the lighting part of the Frostbite 2 engine is absolutely, hands-down phenomenal.
Remember, there's only three days left of the Beta! So get your Caspian Border gaming in now!