Yesterday Electronic Arts finally unveiled their next chapter in the Battlefield franchise, this time sending players to the near future of 2042 during a time of unrest and disorder across the world. We may have only gotten a reveal trailer, but lots of information has come out since then regarding what will actually be featured in the game.
The most important part is that Battlefield 2042 is officially launching on October 22nd, and at some point soon there will be an Open Beta. But that’s not all, because BF2042 seems to be shaking up the formula quite a lot, which may be a good or bad thing depending on how much of a fan of the series you are.
Either way, there’s a lot to talk about, so here’s a quick breakdown of all the new and changed features coming in Battlefield 2021:
- Max player count is now 128: Only on PC and next-gen consoles (last-gen consoles are limited to 64-players and smaller map sizes)
- Massive maps are split up into sectors
- 7 maps at launch
- Original Battlefield classes now also include specialists
- Gadgets: Such as a grappling hook or mobile sentry turret.
- 10 Specialist classes at launch
- Battle Pass: Free and Premium
- - 4 Seasons per year, 1 new Specialist per Season
- All post launch maps will be free
- Levolutions return
- No Campaign
- No Battle Royale
- Open Beta for those who pre-ordered
- July early technical test for Battlefield veterans
- Release date: October 22nd
- PC Stores: Steam, Epic Games Store, Origin
- Gameplay trailer reveal: June 13th (Sunday: during Xbox and Bethesda showcase)
Phew, that’s quite a lot to take in at the moment, some of those being things we expected like a Steam release, and some quite unexpected like no single player campaign mode. However you feel about any of those though, let’s break them all down to all the details we know so far.
Massive All-Out Warfare
Battlefield 2042’s main multiplayer mode is known as All-Out Warfare, which includes a multitude of classic Battlefield modes like Conquest and such. The difference this time round is that the player count has been doubled to 128 players, something that only a handful of other games out there have managed to achieve.
If you’re worried about how this may affect gameplay though with twice as many players on the map, then say hello to sectors. Each main map is divided into different sectors, and each sector is roughly the size of a typical Battlefield 3 map and plays out with its own objectives,
For instance, during a typical Conquest match players will be able to take control of a sector as long as they hold all of the points within that sector. You could even play the entire game without ever stepping foot in another sector, but of course you can head anywhere you want on the map at any time including to other sectors.
One of the most divisive changes already to the Battlefield formula are Specialist classes. You still choose between the typical Assault, Support, Engineer, or Recon classes, but Specialists fall within those classes.
For instance, recon classes will still primarily focus on reconnaissance, but each Specialist will have their own Recon-themed gadget and special ability. You’re also not confined to a specific selection of weapons based on your class, as any class and Specialist can use any weapon they have unlocked. You can also swap out weapon attachments mid-game, like detaching a red dot sight to a scope when you find yourself suddenly in long-range combat.
At launch there will be 10 Specialist classes available, 4 of which EA has revealed so far, with more to be revealed up until launch:
- Class: Assault
- Gadget: Grappling Hook
- Ability: Nimble
- Class: Support
- Gadget: S21 Syrette Pistol
- Ability: Combat Surgeon
Pyotr "Boris" Guskovsky
- Class: Engineer
- Gadget: SG-36 Sentry Gun
- Ability: Sentry Operator
Wikus "Casper" Van Daele
- Class: Recon
- Gadget: OV-P Recon Drone
- Ability: Movement Sensor
All-Out Warfare encompasses the typical Battlefield experience that includes the standard Conquest and Breakthrough game modes, but there are also a few other modes that EA has teased already.
For one, we know there will be no Battle Royale mode and no campaign either, but if you still want that single player/offline experience you can play the entirety of multiplayer against offline AI bots if you want and you can even level up/progress that way. According to DICE the AI has improved a lot, but we’ll have to wait and see it to believe it.
So aside from All-Out Warfare, what else is there? Well there are 2 other mystery modes that EA has yet to reveal, including one called “Hazard Zone” that is apparently a squad-based high-risk mode, but nothing else has been revealed.
There’s also an unnamed and to be announced mode that DICE has said is a “love letter” to fans of the series. So in that way it really could be anything, but EA mentioned more of that will be revealed at the EA Play Live event on July 22nd.
There will be 7 maps at launch, with more to come post launch, but given the significantly increased size and scale it seems to be more like 14 maps or even more depending on how many sectors are in each. Either way they will all feature some sort of destruction set piece like Levolutions.
For instance, Orbital takes place in a rocket launch site in France, but the launch itself could go smoothly or not-so-smoothly as we’ve seen in the reveal trailer and leaks prior. DICE was quite cryptic about whether players could control the outcome of the rocket launch, but it seems like the general census is yes.
Here’s all the maps revealed so far that will be available at launch:
Pre and Post-launch content
We may have only gotten a glimpse of Battlefield 2042 in the reveal trailer, but EA has promised a proper gameplay reveal trailer this weekend on June 13th, and it has since been confirmed to be taking place during the Xbox (and Bethesda) showcase at 10am PT.
There will also be an Open Beta for all players who have pre-ordered the game, but “players identified as Battlefield veterans” will be able to play an even earlier technical test next month in July but they’ll be under NDA. Interestingly, the mystery Hazard Zone will be available to play early before launch but separate to the Open Beta.
Also all post-launch maps will be free for all players, but if you want all of the new Specialists you’ll have to get the Battle Pass. There will be a free and premium version of the Battle Pass though, but understandably you’ll get the best goodies with the paid-for version of the pass.
Lastly, the PC version of the game will be the same one as next-gen consoles (Xbox Series X/S and PlayStation 5). However, if you get the game on last-gen consoles like the PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, you’ll be getting a slightly downgraded version to still enable epic fights without sacrificing performance/quality. This includes reduced map sizes and a 64-player limit like previous Battlefield games.
Crossplay is likely but has not been confirmed, but if it is eventually confirmed its likely not to be cross-gen since last-gen consoles will be on a slightly different version of the same game.
And that’s all that we know so far about Battlefield 2042 coming out later this year. There’s really quite a lot to unpack there, and has the potential to revitalize the franchise or turn a lot of longtime fans off. Either way, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the various changes and new additions that you’re both excited and not-so-excited for.
What do you think? Are you excited for Battlefield 2042? What new addition/change are you most interested in? And what new addition/change are you annoyed about? How do you feel about no campaign or battle royale? Let us know!