EA laid out its post-launch plans for Battlefield 2042 through the rest of the year, and while new content isn’t in the cards until 2022, there will be three waves of ongoing fixes between now and the end of December. Welcome to the season of the never-ending beta.
Here’s a quick summary of the game’s launch so far. Early access for Battlefield 2042 began on November 12 and soon started crashing Xbox consoles. The shooter got its first small update addressing “critical issues” like stuttering and server performance the following week, just a couple days before the game launched for everyone else on December 19. Then over the weekend, Battlefield 2042 went on to become one of the worst reviewed games on Steam in the history of Valve’s PC storefront, with players complaining about the new operator system and poor performance on high settings.
So what are EA’s plans going forward? First there’s a big patch on November 25 to address, among other things, overpowered hovercrafts, a bug that keeps you from being able to revive allies, and wildly inconsistent bullet spread that makes some guns incredibly frustrating to use. That will be followed in December by a third update, and the biggest thus far, addressing everything from performance and bugs to UI and vehicle animations.
“Fixed an issue where a player driving the Hovercraft can not be shot through the front window,” is just one example, and my favourite from the bunch. You can find a more thorough but still partial breakdown of the changes coming over on the Battlefield 2042 website. A third update is expected in-between the Thanksgiving and December holiday patches, but no information was provided about what it will focus on.
What’s not coming in any of these patches? The much-requested return of scoreboards, server browsers, and voice chat. Yes, if you haven’t been paying attention, you read that right: Battlefield 2042 launched without voice chat. The lack of chat has been especially challenging for people taking advantage of cross-play. See me trying to stop my 8-month old from closing the laptop running Discord while my friends get ambushed in our latest round of Hazard.
As for those struggling to run the game at high framerates on otherwise beefy gaming rigs, EA hears you but can’t promise any quick fixes. “Identifying engine level optimisations and developing solutions will require a lengthier response time from us so that it gets done right,” reads the latest announcement.
Battlefield 2042 was originally set to launch in October but DICE made the decision back in September to delay it a month. It probably should have been delayed even further. While EA says Battlefield 2042 has almost twice as many players as Battlefield V did at a similar point after release, it’s currently averaging about 50,000 concurrent players on Steam, or less than half of Halo Infinite on that platform.
“We’re also listening closely to your feedback which is helping to shape updates to come,” the game’s development team wrote. “We couldn’t be more passionate about this game and will be supporting and evolving it for years to come.”