Everything We Learned From EA’s Battlefield 2042 Reveal

Everything We Learned From EA’s Battlefield 2042 Reveal
Image: EA (Origin)

After months of teasing through investor calls and some weird ARG-like marketing over the last few days, EA finally lifted the lid on their sort-of-but-not-quite next-generation Battlefield 2042. And while it’s not far enough in the future that we’re getting Titans back, wingsuits and tornados will make an appearance.

While the official trailer wasn’t ready to be unveiled until 1:00am AEST Australian time, plenty of good details leaked beforehand. Screenshots and details of the next-gen Battlefield, which is officially called Battlefield 2042, went live on EA’s Origin platform hours before the official reveal.

Here’s a shot of the game’s key art, confirming the title:

battlefield 2042
Image: EA

More screenshots show inclusions like a wingsuit, some desert environments and what looks like a more urban area with soldiers jumping off a skyscraper.

battlefield 2042
Image: EA (Origin)
battlefield 2042
Image: Origin (EA)
battlefield 2042 battlefield 2042 battlefield 2042

According to what leaked online prior to the event, Battlefield 2042 would be set to launch with 7 maps supporting a maximum of 128 players, although details remained on how last-gen consoles would fare and what the cross-gen support entailed. Two of those maps would be set in Egypt and Seoul.

Other details included a robotic dog that could be brought into battle and a grappling hook, although it wasn’t clear how players could unlock or use these abilities in-game. A detail on the Origin page noted that pre-orders would gain access to “4 New Specialists”, with specialists having a single trait and speciality, although the rest of that character’s loadout would be fully customisable (not unlike modern Call of Duty titles).

Interestingly, the official Battlefield reveal livestream ended up not actually being a livestream — but a countdown clock. “Stick around at the end of the livestream and you’ll be automatically redirected to the trailer premiere,” the video description said, giving no indication beforehand that hundreds of thousands of fans would be tuning in to watch a timer.

When the trailer officially launched, fans finally saw a combination of themes, environments and styles a little reminiscent of Battlefield 3. DICE confirmed last gen consoles would only support 64 maximum players, with 128 players reserved for PC, PS5 and Xbox Series X / S.

The game would have three multiplayer modes, including an all new mode built specifically by DICE LA that would be unveiled next month.

Launching on October 22, Battlefield 2042 would not ship with a single player campaign:

All-Out Warfare – the next generation of fan-favorite modes Conquest and Breakthrough, featuring the largest maps ever for the franchise and for the first time, up to 128 players*. Experience the intensity of All-Out Warfare in large-scale battles like never before on maps filled with dynamic weather, dangerous environmental hazards, and spectacular world events that see tornadoes rip across the map and sandstorms block out the sun. 

Hazard Zone – an all-new, high-stakes, squad-based game-type for the Battlefield franchise that is a modern take on the multiplayer experience that is distinctly DICE but very different from All-Out Warfare’s Conquest or Breakthrough modes. 

TO BE ANNOUNCED – the third experience, being developed by DICE LA, is another exciting new game-type for the franchise. This experience is a love letter to Battlefield fans and one that long-time players will feel right at home with. Tune-in to EA Play Live on July 22 for all the details. 

EA also unveiled other details with pre-approved outlets, including the fact that a narrative will be weaved into the game’s multiplayer of some description. “Narrative elements will be fed through the battle pass seasons. They’ll be unique to those specific time periods where players are present,” Nickole Li, senior game designer at EA DICE, said in an interview.

“You still have a narrative driven world, that’s something that you will see through the eyes of the specialists that we’re introducing. As we go through the live service, and the seasons, we’ll introduce new specialists, and you’ll see how the world evolves through the eyes of the specialists that we have,” Daniel Berlin, design director on Battlefield 2042, told Eurogamer.

You’ll also be able to spawn vehicles directly on the map — no running back to a vehicle spawn point — although as has always been the case, there will be a cap on how many vehicles can be on the map at any given time.

Battlefield 2042 won’t be bringing back Firestorm, EA’s attempt at incorporating battle royale into the franchise. And interestingly, the first “Technical Test” with the game will be shown off to players in an incredibly unusual way, according to an interview with Ausgamers.

“It’s going to be running on a grayscale version of a map, meaning it won’t have textures or anything like that,” Berlin said. “It’s not a space to present something super-refined and balanced. It’s more like this is a space where we go in so we can get the data that we need in order to make sure that at launch the experience is very, very solid.” Players will also be able to play against bots (with a party or alone), and, crucially, your choice of specialist or loadout won’t affect your ability to use vehicles.

Ranged healing will also be a thing, according to Berlin in another story. “So you can play a support role that is a specialist with ranged revives, ranged healing – so a really strong medic type of specialist,” he explained. “But you can still say I’m in a space right now where there’s a lot of vehicles. So I’m going to bring some C4 with this specialist, and I’m going to bring a rocket launcher.”

Comments

    • I saw them jump off Damavand Peak and was already excited, then many of the very identifiable maps like shanghai and noshahr canals kept coming…. then by the time the rendezook hit I was laughing my ass off. If nothing else, this trailer definitely showed that they are back in touch with what fans of the franchise want.

    • Definitely will be disappointing if it’s not. Considering the 128 player mode will be ps5 and xsx only the player base might not be there for long.

  • Ugh, I must admit that the info about now everyone’s a ‘Specialist’ doesn’t give me the highest of hopes. IMO, the less rigid class structures have massively hurt teamplay, especially since BF4 onwards, and this is like a doubling down.

  • I thought they were finally re-making 2142 and got very (unnecessarily) excited.

    RIP 2142. I saw a copy of that in a St. Vinnies store last weekend. Didn’t have the heart to tell them it should be binned because it won’t ever be able to work and someone who’s shopping for games at St. Vinnies probably needs that three bucks. It will be a sad lesson.

  • No single player? (bots don’t count)

    I get how great multiplayer can be, but as someone who last played real multiplayer at LANs playing B1942, I just don’t have the time for online multiplayer anymore, and enjoy a good single player romp, even if it’s largely linear and uninspired.

    • when it comes to battlefield, bots DO count. Battlefield was never ever about a single player story campaign, it followed in the footsteps of Unreal Tornament and Quake 3 Arena

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