EA and DICE have taken up the call to respond to last year’s Call of Duty WW2 and from what I’ve played, they’ve done so. While people may still be focused on whatever Anthem is going to turn out to be, while still trying to get over the Battlefront II debacle, Battlefield V has be the balancing, steady hitter in EA’s non-sports lineup and it seems poised to succeed. Different types of FPS players tend to gravitate mainly towards either franchise (CoD and BF) for different reasons, but Battlefield V seems to bridging that gap with gameplay tweaks while continuing to expand on what has made their franchise stand out from the rest.
At this year’s EA Play, their off location E3 satellite showcase, I was able to sit down for a whopping 90 minutes of their new Grand Conquest mode and the time went by like nothing. Grand Conquest isn’t that much of a leap from their other, most popular game modes, as it is just a clever combining of the too. An hour-and-a-half was also a decent amount of time to really get a sense of how the new additions to the gameplay could change up the meta of the game in interesting way, but for the most part I was just enamored with how good BFV feels. This shouldn’t have been as much of a surprise, since they kind of nailed an interesting take on playing World War I, but the movement, gun-feel, sound design, and overall control all come together like a medley of mayhem.
As a lot of people who quickly turned on Destiny 1 on launch know, viscerally good shooting doesn’t mean much if there’s nowhere to go with it. Sure, 90-minutes of a single mode isn’t enough to judge the longevity, but Grand Conquest’s design showed potential for being a mode that people can go to over and over again (mostly if they’re tired of vanilla conquest). The version of Grand Conquest we played, over and over again, was a two “day” mode. One phase was essentially the standard Battlefield RUSH mode and then night turned to day, the map advanced a lot more into another area, and the mode turned to an attacker/defender version of king of the hill where attackers push to hold flags. The new hotness this time was the tools your squad gets to really be more effective. Now every member of the squad can revive their mates. Medics will do this faster, of course, but you’ll never be out of options if everyone wanted to blow shit up as an engineer. Squad deploy also is a lot faster and more intuitive now that you can view your squadmates after you die and just hit a button to spawn right behind them. You can also still redeploy and view the classic Battlefield multiplayer map.
Of course there’s probably a dozen more changes that a more hardcore Battlefield player will notice as people play the game more. There’s potential for the game stretching itself thin in places with gimmicks like the building mechanic or even a battle royale mode, but that’s up to meta that the community sets to decide. But overall it feels like DICE is more polished than ever with this title, and if that amount of attention is paid to the rest of the game, then BFV will have it in the bag. 4.25/5 Bibles.