While most of us expected the World War II setting, last night’s Battlefield V reveal also brought with it several surprises in the form of the return of co-op, the epic-sounding Grand Operations, and the hugely pleasing news of no more Premium Pass signalling the end of paid-for DLC. However, even with all that, there was something else that was even more surprising in its absence: Battle Royale.
Going into the event, I would have bet good money that the folks at DICE would follow the biggest trend in gaming at the moment and introduce their own version of the game type popularized in PUBG and Fortnite. Even competition Call of Duty now has its own Battle Royale mode in Black Ops 4’s Blackout, so it only made sense for Battlefield to follow suit, especially since the mechanics of Battlefield – expansive maps, high player count and destructible terrain – are already perfect for the mode which sees a large number of players have to scavenge, sneak around and fight each other until only one is left standing. And yet, there wasn’t a peep about battle royale from anybody during the event.
However, after the event, this omission was raised on Twitter where the official Battlefield account responded rather tellingly.
We’re big fans of Royale experiences at the studio, and as we think about the experience it really fits Battlefield’s epic scale, big maps and big player sizes. We’re thinking about what we can do here, but we’re not in a place where we can talk about this yet.
— #Battlefield V (@Battlefield) May 23, 2018
Thing is though, they have already thought about what they can do and did it. If you listened carefully during the reveal when Grand Operations was being discussed, they stated that this new multi-map epic game mode will take place across four fictional days. Seeing as objectives and game modes change dynamically based on the performances of the different teams during those days, it’s not guaranteed that the match will ever make it to day four. If it does, the game goes into a Last Stand mode, where whatever players are left, broken down and tired with no extra resources except the one clip in their gun and no extra respawns, will need to either squad up or go it solo to fight to the death until representatives from only one side remain standing. That sounds awfully Battle Royale-ish to me.
Like mentioned above though, certain things need to happen – like both teams fighting to a stalemate on previous days – for you ever to see Last Stand, and based on how the guys from DICE spoke about it, it sounded like it could be rare. So in other words, while Battlefield V may some sort of Battle Royale mode now, it’s not a dedicated Battle Royale mode that you can just hop into when you want to. But that could also change in the future.
Personally, I would say it’s only a matter of time before it does. This is a very potent untapped market for the franchise to ignore. And yes, pure Battle Royale doesn’t quite fit in with the “most immersive and authentic World War II experience” that EA and DICE are selling for Battlefield V, but based on the first trailer this is also a game where we have crack commandos in colourful face paint and garish garb with prosthetic hook hands shooting rocket launchers off the back of bikes, so maybe there’s some wiggle room.
Last Updated: May 24, 2018