The more I play squad rush the more I think that each mcom area is acceptable for 4v4 in BF3. This means that each mcom/flag accommodates around 4 players attacking and 4 defending, maybe 5-6 max per team before it an area becomes over crowded. The team interplay of defending or attacking an mcom is awesome – and this is because there are only just enough people to cover each approach, or possibly not enough so responding to threats is important. If the enemy tries to push hard on one approach this must be communicated in order for the rest of the team to assist.
If you can cover all entrances with players then the “teamwork” aspect becomes less important. This is seen in the popular infantry heavy BF3 maps. Metro 64 in particular highlights this. When there is a stalemate at lockers/frontstairs/backstairs progressing becomes very difficult because there are so few ways to attack and all the avenues for pushing are covered. The same can be seen in Seine crossing, grand bazaar, the close quarters maps as well as the new Aftermath maps. There is no teamwork required when all approaches are heavily covered.
Too many players on a map lead to the death of teamplay and Battlefield 3, or any game, it becomes a zerg without structure. This is problematic but quite often cited as “good teamplay”, if only because everyone runs around together / gets stuck at the same point. Once again playing near each other is not playing together nor does it necessarily mean that good teamplay will be seen in action. **Read below for clarification.
Lets back up a bit and look at what I consider to be teamplay. Other people might consider it dropping ammo or health or reviving but I think teamplay is making plays/decisions with your teammates actions in mind.
A basic example : two members on your team as RU are covering lockers on metro. They spot several enemies at the US end of lockers but cannot kill them – they revive or hang back and heal. Pushing lockers is probably not a great call so they hang back. If you were hanging around the stairs a really excellent bit of teamplay would be pushing up past the gardenbeds/backstairs and shooting the players at US lockers in the face. You could delay entering until you see your teammates engage (using mini map/audio) the pair at US lockers, then engage.
This is teamplay at its core. Just because a player is in a jet does not mean this sort of thing is not happening. In fact with a scoreline of 60-2 I think it would be hard that these sort of player ARE happening regularly, even if he is not deliberately doing it. He would be assisting players on the ground that need assistance and he would be locking out the enemy air assets.
At the same time wide open maps just fail for dynamic team play that is good. The problem is not as obvious but the amount of communication due to the more open nature of the map will work the same way. Maps need definition, pathways, walls, chokepoints and flaking routes. Having none of these is the same as not giving enough options. An example of this would be Antenna on Caspian. Generally you can cover everything easily. I think older BF players would point out that you could flank a really really long way around and come from behind. To be fair this is probably possible but I would say it is a bad choice and you are letting your team down if you opt for this. Your team would be playing down 1/2/3/flanking players.
Good teamplay at its core is the interaction between players. It is not dropping health or ammo.
I put it to you – Battlefield maps are the wrong shape. All the maps start narrow, go to one point then maybe out to 2-4. This is wrong, especially for pub gaming because it funnels the team that plays offensively onto one point, then the base. The BF3 maps are also setup so once you have pushed a team back to its base there is very little chance to push out due to narrow approaches out of the base. In my opinion, instead of funneling all resources out through a narrow passage the map designers at DICE should give bases many, many more escape routes to easily attack more than the first flag. This allows more teamplay because of the above mentioned “too many player” syndrome. Designing a map this way also allows comebacks.
I think DICE have partially learnt this lesson, Talah Market has many approaches for the attackers in conquest assault