Players Are Split On Battlefield V's Weaker Guns

At launch, Battlefield V moved at a faster pace than previous games in the series. Not only could you run around quicker than before, but you could kill enemies faster, needing only a handful of bullets. This week, the game rolled out some changes to that gameplay rhythm, alongside a new hardcore playlist, and it has left the some members of the community confused and fractured.

Yesterday, EA DICE made changes to Battlefield V’s “time to kill,” a term that is sometimes abbreviated to TTK. TTK represents how quickly a player can kill enemies. It is the difference between needing to pump tons of bullets into someone like in Gears of War or simply firing a small burst in Rainbow Six: Siege.

Battlefield V’s TTK was relatively short, particularly for the series, encouraging players to move fast and think tactically. You needed to think on your feet, find the best flanks, and take risks. This time to kill value has now been adjusted, and while the change may sound small, it has a large effect on how the game feels and plays.

DICE explained the change in a Reddit post, while acknowledging a perception from hardcore players that the game had felt good to play before the changes. The issue, it seemed, was wider player retention:

“Although not extremely vocal within our deeply engaged community, we see from our game data that the wider player base is dying too fast leading to faster churn - meaning players may be getting frustrated with dying too fast that they choose not to log back in and learn how to become more proficient at Battlefield V.”

The chart above, provided by DICE, shows specific changes to the game’s time to kill, but the big takeaway is a reduction in bullet damage across the board to body and limb shots that means you’ll need to fire more rounds, for a longer time, if you want to secure a kill.

Essentially, Battlefield V has made everyone spongier. Many players might not notice, and it might not even affect how they feel about the game, but it’s a change that not everyone is happy about, especially diehard fans.

“People are leaving the game, so we figured we’d try to scare off whoever’s left,” one Redditor said, presumably joking about DICE’s reasons for the update. Meanwhile, YouTubers who have been playing the game, like Westie and GetGoodGuy are making videos with incendiary titles like “DICE JUST MADE BATTLEFIELD 5 WORSE” and “The BF5 TTK Changes DON’T MAKE SENSE... Right Now.”

Many players feel that the time to kill was well-tuned and forced them to be more careful with how they played the game. Some have expressed concern that this change will also drastically change how certain weapons work. For instance, the 10-round Gewehr 43 now takes four shots to kill an enemy.

For a rifle with such a small amount of rounds, that’s a big deal, and it encourages players to abandon precise firing rifles in favour of automatic weapons. Meanwhile, classes like the teammate-reviving Medic - already considered to have lacklustre weapons - are in an even trickier position. Their piddly submachine guns were a point of contention for fans who enjoyed their access to marksman rifles in Battlefield 1, myself included.

After these changes, it can take a Medic 8 to 9 bullets to secure a kill.

“It was hard enough to get range kills with SMGS but now? RIP my fellow medics 2018-2018,” one Redditor wrote.

Another noted: “Holy shit we got fucked! 9 rounds at range! That’s useless.”

Adding to the reaction is the addition of a new playlist: Conquest Core. This playlist keeps the older, faster time to kill from launch and is advertised in game as “...just the beginning of the hardcore Battlefield V experience.”

But that description is vague, so it’s possible that many players might be confused. It’s also possible that the community will be split between players who enjoy this new gameplay and those who want to stick to the evolving “core” playlist.

Battlefield V has not been without its share of controversies. An initial launch trailer featuring a women soldier led to bull-headed calls for “historical accuracy,” and the beta periods didn’t exactly inspire confidence.

But the game pressed forward and has since proven to be an exciting multiplayer game since launch. The latest changes might continue to enrage irritable diehards and perhaps even split up the community. Whatever happens, it goes to show how smaller tweaks can have big effects.


Comments

    I hadn't been paying attention to the TTK changes but this goes a long way towards explaining why my last few games somehow felt "less fun". I was really struggling with the Gewehr 43 last night and couldn't work out why...

    I've got no problem with women in world war 2 as them being there is historically accurate and they have some great stories to tell.

    But I do have a problem with dice revising history to shoehorn some characters in. They had so many true stories to pick from, like the night witches, Mariya Vasilyevna Oktyabrskaya, and the story of Lyudmila Mikhailovna Pavlichenko possibly the best sniper in the world, just to name a few.

    But rather than use true stories, Dice decided to edit some real world events, lazily. Just look up those Norwegian commandos who actually stoped the heavy water shipments without firing a shot (many still died though).

    Their revisionism is just disrespectful to the man and women who fought.

    I wish I could get a refund, the new speed of the game play was one of the only things I enjoyed about BFV.

    Really disappointed with the new ttk... it feels like a lazy and uninspired solution. I think the reason that players are logging off and not coming back is more to do with the multitude of other issues that plague the game, than dying too much.

      The thing is, that's entirely why I stopped playing Battlefield games. It was no fun to be dying from one or two bullets, often before I even realise I'm in someone's sights.

      I know, "get gud" but honestly, it just wasn't fun.

        I really do sympathise with you on that... getting killed all the time is just not fun, no matter who you are. I know the feeling very well, because I am not particularly good. but like anything if you stick with it you definitely improve, and it does feel super rewarding. also playing as a medic for example, is a good way that you can contribute and get a good score without a fantastic k/d ratio, and get the hang of the shooting /aiming / recoil mechanics.
        At the end of the day, new player are still going to die to skilled players just as much with these changes.

        This is more a problem with time to death than the time to kill, guns that take 6 shots to kill you on another players screen feel like you died in a single bullet due to the dodgy way the games netcode works.

    Yeh I found the TTK fine myself. I think there are legitimate problems with SMGs on the Medic class but that could've been helped out by just giving Medics another weapon class choice like single round rifles. This change sounds like its made medics even worse.

    Hopefully they'll give it 3 months or so for the newer players to get used to the game, then change it back. It won't be selling in any significant numbers by then, so anybody left should be comfortable enough with it by then to be able to deal with the "proper" TTK.

    Well that's disappointing, i quite liked not having to use a full clip to kill someone.

    The problem is that there are bugs in the game that directly effect how the TTD is translated, and instead of fixing those bugs they go and change a core game play mechanic. Then add a new mode that retains the old mechanic, and thus splitting the players.

    You guys say players are split on this but all I've seen is widespread backlash. What is your source for people who like the change? Personally I think the problem is with the one frame kill bug and a lack of health indicators. Most of my deaths I have less than 50 health but don't realise.

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