A Closer Look At Battlefield 1's Historical Accuracy

Fans curious about the history behind Battlefield 1's stories are in for a treat. YouTube channel Games of History released a longform video essay discussing the game in full. They talk about the truth and lies found throughout the game's exciting campaign.

Griffiths is pretty quick to take the game to task for various historical inaccuracies. Battlefield 1 is a great game, but it can play it fast and loose with the setting. He outlines facts in exhaustive detail and helps explain things the game left unspoken. This is definitely a great companion piece for players looking to learn more about the Great War.

Here's a taste of some of the facts you'll learn.

  • The game's Bedouin protagonist Zara Ghufran was likely based off a Lebanese woman named Farida al Akle. She was purportedly a lover of T.E. Lawrence who taught him Arabic.
  • A British tank crew actually did spend extended time behind lines during the Battle of Amiens. They pressed on and advanced for nine hours before being killed and captured.
  • The Harlem Hellfighters arrived in France nearly nine months after the United States joined the war. They fought in their first battle on 8 April 1918. They fought aside the French, as the majority of US forces did not want to fight alongside an African American unit.
  • Australian character Jack Foster bears strong resemblance to James Martin. Martin was 14 years old when he died of typhoid during the Gallipoli Campaign.

Climb out of the trenches for a bit and give it a watch. You'll walk away with a little more knowledge about those control points you keep capturing.


    before being killed and captured.

    I wish more of these events were told

    Last edited 17/11/16 10:51 am

    killed AND captured?

    oof, tough gig

      Historically speaking, dead POW's have been far less successful in escaping and have generally been easier to keep subdued. Makes sense, really...

    The video was "okay", but not well done. First off, EA could not logistically use the rl names of victims in the war out of respect and obviously angering someone who might take offense at a war hero being reduced to a game character. Next, the fact that the single playet campaign has "single player" missions to complete objectives is a two-fold purpose: first, it is in the name: single player campaign where you are to single-handedly experience everything that the mass of soldiers experienced and two, 15000 npcs on screen would have taken the processor beyond task. Sad for video game convenience, but didnt really take from the story. Next, as for "accuracy" such as the german super train in the LoA story... he took on the railway system. Whether you stopped shipping lines of weapons, trains with soldiers, or supertrains is fairly superfluous in video game ex machina. Next, the fact that griffith loved the sequential death storyline vs. Survival storylines is a little heavy handed. Yes, people die in war. The first chapter set the stage for a terrorizing and depressive war. But, in storytelling, why does the hero (in this case, the game player) keep fighting? Hope... a chance for victory. It may not be reminiscent of every wwi story, but without any victories... people did walk away. Unfortunate for history buffs who want a natgeo documentary. And, next, to that matter, as for single player awesomeness with some bad mamajama soldiers who could get incredible kill numbers, jump from artillery to adtillery, and so on... those stories exist, whethet written or not. That was the birth of the would-be future marine... and every scenarii soldier who was exceptionally good at killing. And, in wwi, wwii, korea, and vietnam, their stories (albeit unpopular for countries like America that tried to "hide" the truth of slaughter and war), exist. So, yeah, i love history. Once out of school, learning real history is fun ... not the censored / washed down stuff they teach. But, in this game, at least nothing is pretth. Nothing is nice. The music is epically sad. And, unlike ghost recon or overwatch, it is not a hype game. Cruddy guns that dont work, limited ammo, impossible scenarios and blood everywhere. And, no victory... is a happy one. That is as close to war as a snowflake culture can get. Would it be great to have the real names and real events... maybe in a vr simulator or documentary. But, at least this game is a step in the right direction (imho).

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