Last month, DICE General Manager Oskar Gabrielson dropped a blog post about the new Battlefield game, setting some pretty big expectations. Today we got our first look at the latest installment in the blockbuster shooter franchise which we now know will be called Battlefield 2042.
The reveal trailer was indeed big and bold, full of all the explosive, all-out warfare you’d expect from a Battlefield game. And although we didn’t get to see any actual gameplay (check back on June 13 for that), we did learn a lot about what Battlefield 2042 will offer.
Setting and plot
As the name suggests, Battlefield 2042 will be taking us to the near future. And boy is it a bleak one as the world is struggling with shortages of food, energy, and clean water (likely a commentary on what’s to come if global warming keeps up). On top of all these problems, the United States and Russia are in an all-out war.
All of these problems have created a refugee crises will millions of families and civilians now referred to as “Non-Patrioted” (aka No-Pats). These No-Pats fight on both sides of the war, and that’s the role you’ll play as a Specialist.
Here’s the official synopsis:
"In Battlefield 2042, the world is on the brink. Shortages of food, energy, and clean water have led to dozens of failed nations, creating the greatest refugee crisis in human history. Among these Non-Patriated, or No-Pats, are families, farmers, engineers – and even soldiers. Amidst this crisis, the United States and Russia draw the world into an all-out war. No-Pat Specialists join both sides, not fighting for a flag, but for the future of the Non-Patriated in this new world."
Despite the seemingly social commentary on global warming and No-Pats, Battlefield 2042 will not actually deeply explore any of those topics as there will be no campaign. It’s still a narrative-driven world, but no single-player campaign which I honestly don’t mind.
Specialists are a new type of playable soldier for the Battlefield franchise. Although they are inspired by the traditional four Battlefield classes, Specialists have their own unique Trait and Specialty along with fully customizable loadouts. The goal with Specialists is to allow players the option to customize their playstyle.
All-Out Warfare on next-gen and PC
Battlefield has always been about large-scale warfare and Battlefield 2042 is kicking it up a notch. Fan-favorite modes Conquest and Breakthrough will not only feature the largest maps ever created in a Battlefield game, but will also expand the max number of players in a match to 128. This will only apply to the PS5, Xbxo Series X|S, and PC versions of Battlefield 2042. The Xbox One and PS4 version of the game is capped at 64 players with reduced map sizes.
Conquest and Breakthrough are returning with all the dynamic weather and environmental hazards we’ve come to love in the franchise. We get a glimpse of that in the trailer with the massive tornado and sun-blocking sandstorm. However, two additional game modes have been confirmed as well.
The first is Hazard Zone, a “high-stakes, squad-based game.” This mode has been described as a “modern take” on DICE’s multiplayer but “very different” from the classic Conquest or Breakthrough modes.
The third experience is still unannounced but said to be a “love letter to Battlefield fans and one that long-time players will feel right at home with.” While Battlefield 2042 gameplay will be revealed on June 13, we’ll have to wait for EA Play Live on July 22 to find out more about this game mode.
No Battle Royale
EA is ditching battle royale which was introduced into the franchise with Battlefield 5’s Firestorm. While traditional battle royale is off the table with this game, EA did hint of “other experiences within the game” that might offer a similar experience or evoke similar feelings.
Release date and price
Battlefield 2042 launches on October 22, 2021. It will be available for $69.99 on Xbox Series X|S and PS5 and $59.99 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC. EA Play members will have access to a 10-hour trial starting October 15. Additionally, EA Play members and those who pre-order the game will get early access to the Open Beta which doesn’t yet have a launch date.