Battlefield 3 Text Effect in Photoshop

Skill level
Beginner

I’ve been asked quite a few times to create the Battlefield 3 text in Photoshop, but I’ve always put it to the side because it didn’t seem too complicated. But since I’ve recently received a few more requests on this effect, today, I’m going to be showing you how to create this Battlefield 3 text effect in Photoshop. Of course, you can use the same technique to type any word that you like and incorporate it into your custom stickers or gaming related designs.

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There are a few variations of the Battlefield text, but the one you see below, which was taken from the official website, will give you a great starting point if you want to further customize the effect.

Of course, the first step after you’ve created your document, is the base text. We’re going to be using two different fonts for the text. One for the word Battlefield, and one for the number three.

Battlefield Font: Agency FB Bold
Number 3 Font: Chica Mono

The size of your font is up to you. I’m going to be starting large, around 200 points.

Now that our text is ready to go, let’s add a very subtle Gradient Overlay. The top color, which is on the right of the Gradient Bar, will be a very light grey, then the bottom color, will be slightly darker than the top.

At this point, we need to add a canvas type texture to the text, which can be done in a few ways, including a Pattern Overlay, but when combined with a Gradient, it’s a bit tricky, so we’re going to resort to a Filter. Now before you aimlessly add a Filter to your text, make sure you convert it for Smart Filters under the Filter menu first. This will not only ensure that you can edit the Filter’s settings later on, but you’ll also be able to go back and change the text if needed.


The Filter we’re going to be applying is Texturize, which on Photoshop CS5, was under the Texture submenu. But in Photoshop CS6, it’s now accessible in the Filter Gallery. When the Texturize Filter is selected, select Canvas for the Texture, decrease the Scaling to 50%, and set the Relief at 2. Of course, if you want a stronger texture, or a completely different texture, experiment with the different Filters that are available.

The next step in the effect is the black and blue outline that you can see on the bottom half of the text. For this, we’re going to create our own pattern, which will give us a lot of flexibility on how the final result looks.

Start by creating a new document with the dimensioned 8px by 8px.

When the document is ready, zoom in as far as you can go. You can do this by holding Command + Spacebar on the Mac, or Ctrl + Spacebar on Windows, and dragging your mouse to the right.

Now we need to create the pattern. We’ll start with the blues. The base color of the texture is going to be a light blue. The value for this will be #b4d0df. With that color set, use your Pencil Tool, which can be found in the flyout with the Brush Tool, and paint the left half of the document with the blue you just set. And finally, with a black brush, paint the right half of the document completely black.

Perfect. Before we save, one optional step you may want to take, is to blur the pattern. This will give it a slightly softer feel. Filter > Blur > Blur.

Now that our pattern is complete, it’s time to save it. Under the Edit menu, choose the Define Pattern option, and give it a name. Battlefield 3 sounds appropriate.

Hop back over to our original document.

Because we’re going to be using a pattern, we’re able to apply it as a Stroke, but, if we apply it directly to our original text layer, we won’t be able to fade it out using a Layer Mask, so we’re going to need to create a separate layer for that.

– In your Layers Panel, click on the New Layer icon to quickly create a new layer.
– Turn your text into a selection by Command/Ctrl+clicking on the text layer’s thumbnail.
– Once selected, fill the selection with whatever color you have. (Command+Delete or Ctrl+Backspace will fill the selection with your background color.
– As we don’t actually want the color to be showing, turn the Fill to 0%. Decreasing the Fill will hide the original layer, but allow us to see our Layer Styles, which we’re about to add.

Now we’re ready to apply the pattern. Double click on your new layer to bring up your Layer Styles, and hop into the Stroke section. Towards the bottom, change the Fill Type to Pattern, then in the Pattern Picker, find and select the pattern you just created. It should be at the very bottom of the list.

Now depending on how thick you want the Stroke, you can change the Size at the top. 4 should work well.

Another neat trick, is that you’re able to move the pattern if you’re not happy with it’s positioning. By simply clicking+dragging your mouse over top of the text, you can position the pattern exactly where you want it.

Almost there! The last step is to fade out the Stroke. Your first instinct would be to add a Layer Mask, select a Black to White gradient, and drag it from the top to the bottom of the text. However, when applying Layer Masks to a Layer with Layer Styles, the result isn’t always pretty. So to work around that, just like we did with the text layer, convert your layer for Smart Filters first.

Now we can apply a Layer Mask, and with a Black to White gradient selected, drag out a gradient from around the middle of the text, to the bottom.

And that just about does it! If you want, you can also duplicate the design to add a reflection underneath. (Select both layers, pop them into a group, duplicate the group, convert it to a Smart Object, flip it, move it into place, add a Layer Mask, and with a White to Black gradient, fade it out, just like we did for the Stroke.)

Looking at the original (top) and the design we just created (bottom), it looks like we almost nailed it! Of course, you can use the same technique to type any word that you like and incorporate it into your gaming related designs.