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Battlefield 3 multiplayer maps detailed

DICE talks through three new stages.

Battlefield 3 developer DICE has lifted the lid on a few of the game's multiplayer maps.

In a new post on the title's official blog, level designer Niklas Åstrand explained the thinking behind four of the nine maps that ship with the finished game later this month.

Anyone who has checked out the game's ongoing open beta should be familiar with Operation Metro, but Tehran Highway is new.

"One of the inspirations for this map was a photo of a night time skyline of Tehran which now is basically the same vista that is available in the game," he explained.

"You start up on the hills above the city outskirts and eventually work your way into town. This atmospheric night-time map, where you can see rockets lighting up the sky, has a balanced mix between vehicle and infantry focus.

"It plays length-wise and starts semi-open with plenty of room for vehicles, but ends on a much more urban and tight note with less focus on vehicles and more on infantry."

Then there's Operation Firestorm, a huge vehicle-friendly map set in the Iranian desert.

"Size-wise, and with some puzzle skills, you could actually place three Atacama Deserts - one of the largest maps from Battlefield: Bad Company 2 - within the playable area of Operation Firestorm," said Åstrand.

"This is a wide-open desert map where the burning oil fields in one direction are contrasted by clear blue sky in the other direction. Construction sites dotting the area bring interesting possibilities for infantry to hide in elevated positions, spot vehicles, and take them down by mortar or RPG."

Finally, Damavand Peak is a rugged mountainous stage designed to let players fling themselves off its cliffs.

"Damavand Peak, internally known as Base Jump, is built on the idea that we want players to be able to base jump, and features our most extreme height differences ever in a Battlefield map," he explained.

"Attackers in Rush and Squad Rush will start high up on a mountain ridge above a mining facility. The only way down into the valley is to somehow make the 500 meter descent. The further the attackers progress in the map, the more vehicle warfare will be present.

"There is also a large tunnel section dug into the mountain side at the bottom of the map, and the view when you look up at the starting location is spectacular."

DICE is promising to reveal the other five maps later this week.