Battlefield V, in case you hadn’t guessed already, is a very real video game that sees DICE return to World War 2 for the latest instalment of its large scale multiplayer-focused shooter. Ahead of tonight’s reveal, press were invited to a two-hour rundown of everything that’s new in Battlefield V – a detail-rich dive into all that sets this year’s edition out from what’s gone before. And a little on what it’s taking from the likes of PUBG and Fortnite as the world’s most popular games leave their mark on the old guard of shooters. Here’s all that we learnt from the reveal.
The history of Battlefield goes all the way back to 2002 – and a game that used World War 2 as the setting for its own spectacular 64-player sandbox. DICE has returned to the era before with the brilliant Battlefield 1943 – a stripped down revisiting of the game realised on the Frostbite engine that hit PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade back in 2009 – but this marks the first time the studio has properly gone back with a fully-fledged title. “All of us have yearned for years to go back to this era,” Lars Gustavsson, creative director at DICE and the producer of the original Battlefield 1942 said at the event. “We wanted to go back to where Battlefield started. This is back to where it all began, with new possibilities.”
Battlefield V’s aim is to present an unexpected take on World War 2, though – to go towards the “unseen, untold, unplayed” scenarios, in DICE’s own words, as the studio looks to go beyond the beach landings that have become familiar in countless other takes on the same material. To that end it’ll go to the arctic circle in Norway in one of its War Stories – the single-player component that returns from Battlefield 1 – and, DICE said, to the French countryside, the devastation of Rotterdam and the North African desert throughout its adventures, some of which do seem a little over-familiar already, admittedly, but perhaps DICE has got its own spin prepared for our return to these arenas.