Battlefield V draws near, as does the onslaught of all AAA games that come every Fall. In anticipation, developer EA DICE is making the rounds to ensure everything falls in place for Battlefield V and its new features. In order to do that, DICE kickstarted things with a Closed Alpha. A select few Battlefield 4 and Battlefield 1 veterans had alpha access. The developer also made the rounds on social media for other players interested in participating.
What’s the goal for the alpha? Well, it’s much like the goals for any alpha or beta: to ensure the game is well-balanced and technically sound. So, the question is: how did Battlefield V fair in its first multiplayer debut?
Let’s start with the content of the alpha. Players were treated to an early look at the multiplayer map Arctic Fjord. For all of you history buffs out there, this territory’s highlight during World War II were the Battles of Narvik. These battles pit the British, French, and Norwegian troops against Nazi forces. This occurred over a two-month campaign from April 9 to June 8, 1940. The Battles of Narvik consisted of both land battles in the mountainous region surrounding Narvik and naval conflict between the British and Nazi naval forces.
The Allies were largely unprepared for battle in the region as the offensive strategy was never made clear. Also, Norwegian troops aside, the other units were dogged by the harsh winter climate that they, again, didn’t fully prepare for. The mountainous region provides a beautiful landscape and setting that was just waiting to be realized on DICE’s Frostbite 3 engine.
Right away, Battlefield fans know that the quickest way to get in the game is through the ‘Quickmatch’ selection. Imagine that. The Closed Alpha resulted in issues with matchmaking services through that selection. Some players were either receiving error messages or being placed in server connections with higher latency. Selecting a match with better connectivity through the browser menu proved to help many players bypass this issue.
Many Closed Alpha players also found themselves being removed from their squads in between matches. DICE acknowledged that this wasn’t supposed to occur and that squads should be kept together throughout the course of shifting matches. Additionally, server stability (lack of crashes) seemed to almost be on target. Therefore, these are all items that DICE will be working diligently to improve prior to the Beta.
Now, let’s get into the good stuff: gameplay! There are several gameplay optimizations that the developer has sought to improve with Battlefield V including some entirely new functionality. For instance, the revive function has been refined to be more seamless. Not only has the revive timing been reduced by 2.5 seconds, but delays in the revive icon appearing and other delays that stifle the flow of the game are being reworked. The balance of ammunition for deployed players as well as the benefits some classes hold over others from looting dead players is all being tweaked. The latter fix is all based on ammo type and balanced availability for all classes.
EA DICE also noted that they received lots of positive feedback regarding gunplay, however, they are continuing to modify recoil for some weapons. It seems that some weapons may have been too effective and an added measure of recoil will force players to focus more on each shot.
The item that seemed to draw a divide among players is Time to Kill (TTK). Some players voiced concerns that they felt like they were being killed too fast. Other players feel the speed of TTK is just right. TTK has many factors as a weapon’s power isn’t the only contributor. The other primary contributor, as DICE notes, is how fast the game lets you react to being fired upon. The game’s focus should be to provide players with a good, clear indication of where enemy fire is coming from. This, of course, will then enable players to take action according to the assessment the game/HUD provides them. DICE has noted that this aspect is being “fine-tuned” at the moment. Weapon power will be the second option for tweaking if they feel the first wasn’t enough.
All in all, the developers were satisfied with the map and its usage. Players utilized the map for conflict much in the way they anticipated based on its design. EA DICE is continuing its effort to bring the most efficient, fun, and stable World War II combat experience to all video game platforms. Their feedback with regards to the Closed Alpha is telling of a developer that’s striving to build an excellent experience for fans. If you’re interested in seeing everything DICE covered concerning the alpha, check out their coverage here.
Battlefield V has thrown its hat in the battle royale ring. However, similar to the same announcement for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, nothing is yet known about the mode. Daily Esports contributor Jason Rodriguez recently covered the crossroads these titles might be at with the advent of the favored mode. Be sure to check that article out here. And for more news and updates on Battlefield V, be sure to check back frequently with Daily Esports!
Accountant by day, video games enthusiast by night. Somewhere in between all of that, I’m a husband, dad, and generally a giant man-child, too. If a game is all about action, there’s a safe bet I’m playing it. I started laying waste to virtual worlds as a youngin’ on the ol’ Atari and haven’t stopped since.