Battlefield V: Two steps forward, one step back

From Issue 6

On November 9, the latest edition to the Battlefield franchise was released. Battlefield V has brought the franchise back to its roots with a World War Two setting, but is it really as good as fans of the franchise had hoped it would be? My answer is more complicated than a simple yes or no and requires a deeper discussion of the game and its unique place in the Battlefield series, as well as the nearly polarizing impact it has had on the Battlefield community.

Courtesy EA
Battlefield V

The launch of the game was rocky at best. The game’s developer, DICE, did little to nothing to help sell the game with fans. They publicly criticized the many members of the community who disapproved of the developers’ choice to focus more on being politically correct than focusing on historical accuracy. I myself found this to be off-putting, but as I have played Battlefield games since the first game was released in 2002, I trusted that the game would shape up to be a good addition to the franchise. Once I finally got my hands on the game, I realized I was both right and wrong at the same time.

On the one hand, I enjoy the game’s return to more tactical gameplay, and I enjoy Battlefield’s signature game modes like Conquest and Operations. On the other hand, the game is riddled with bugs, and it doesn’t feel complete. DICE has put a lot of work into updates for the game since its October launch. They have worked to resolve many of the game’s bugs, and have brought in a number of new weapons, cosmetic items, and even a new map, with plans for many more to come in subsequent updates. Although many bugs still remain, DICE’s commitment to regular updates to resolve issues is promising for the future development and maintenance of the game.

Battlefield has switched to a new game model with this iteration, and the game has made a number of significant gameplay changes that set it apart from its predecessors. The game uses the live service model that games like Fortnite use. This model allows for the game to be treated more as a service than simply a complete product at launch. Although many gamers are concerned by this due to that fact that it allows developers to release games that are light on content, the service model does allow games to get more frequent updates that fix bugs and add new content.

In terms of gameplay, BFV has made an attempt to focus more on squadplay and tactical gameplay. The time to kill, essentially how many bullets it takes to kill an enemy, has been reduced, making it much easier to take down opponents. Squad size has been reduced from five players to four, which allows for an extra two squads on each team. In previous Battlefield games, each team usually had one or two squads that were not full, reducing the benefits these squads had for their members and their team. With the decrease in squad size, this problem occurs far less often, and players are able to better coordinate with their squad.

The Battlefield community at Prep is, for the most, happy with these changes.  The squad I typically play with enjoys the game. Sure, we know that the game has a number of problems, but we are confident these issues will be resolved. There are currently five very skilled Battlefield V players that play in our squad. Gatlin Hixon, Charlie Ott, Thad Crawford, MRA football legend Jake Flynt, and myself. As a group, we hope to see much more content added to the game, such as American, Russian, and Japanese DLC content, as these nations are not currently represented in the game. We hope to see more game modes, maps, and the much needed bug fixes that accompany the launch of many Battlefield titles. Most importantly, we hope that this game will be another great Battlefield title, full of many classic “Only in Battlefield Moments.”