PIPE DREAMS: Battlefield 1


This is an opportunity for JTGA staff writers to dream big, with a wish list of features and ideas for brand new game announcements, as well as debating the possibilities of how a series could evolve in the future. Our first instalment focuses on the recently announced Battlefield 1, as DICE take hold of the reigns once again and journeys back to its roots in historical warfare.

Despite being beloved by many, the identity of Battlefield’s magnum opus continues to be hotly debated among the franchise faithful. For a great portion of the audience, it never got any better than 1942 (or even the 1943 sort of remake / sequel). Then of course there’s Battlefield 2, the PC stalwart that gave a glimpse into what the series could achieve with scale and balance.

It would be wrong to discount the Bad Company spin offs, possessing a lighter tone that challenged the preconceptions of what makes a hardcore shooter tick. And despite suffering through woeful launch issues and an onslaught of patches, the ambition of Battlefield’s 3 and 4 are the starting off point for a lot of people who were late to the party. They remain the only frame of reference for what this series has achieved.

So with a dose of cautious optimism we find ourselves faced with Battlefield 1; a World War 1 FPS making its proper debut at the end of the week during EA’s press conference. We’ve divided our thoughts between the single player and multiplayer modes, and with E3 2016 creeping up on us, it’s the perfect opportunity to throw down our expectations and lock down what we’d like to see.



Jay Tee Games Alliance. Only For Everyone.

By MIKE HAZLETON and JAY TEE - 06/06/16

The Frostbite engine showing off all it’s perty lighting. Previous sky box medal holder Bungie faces quite the challenger here. Also, JJ Abrams just wooped for the lens flare.



SOME SERIOUS STUFF - We all know this isn't going to be a Battlefield Bad Company style story, it's going to be fairly serious. But DICE really need to take the opportunity to do something memorable, respectful (as much as you can be) and sombre in the right places. I want to see at least one genuinely harrowing level that gets some press coverage for how 'real' it is. - MIKE

ONE PLAYER CHARACTER - COD and Battlefield have a nasty habit of bouncing around between playable characters throughout their all too brief campaigns. It’s tough to care about what happens to so many silent, faceless protagonists and I’m left without any investment in their journeys. Centre the story on a single character that fights through one excruciating event after another. Give us time to settle in with our squad “Brothers in Arms” style, adding weight to their deaths and providing a reason to fight on. - JT

HISTORICAL AUTHENTICITY - OK, so most people don't care about this, and DICE have already commented on how they won't feel constrained by history into making a boring game with slow vehicles that break down when they go over a bump. But I don't want to see super soldiers ala Medal of Honor, weapons that really don't belong, or ludicrous set pieces that could never have happened. - MIKE

NO SQUAD CONTROL - This could be a deal breaker for me. I don’t want any control over my A.I. companions. Put me in the boots of a regular nobody who’s left to fight the good fight. DICE could really sell the futility of trench warfare by stripping away control over your compatriots. You’re just one guy trying to survive in hell. - JT

SOMETHING NEW FOR THE GENRE - Battlefield is probably the more innovative of the two main FPS series (the other being CoD), and Hardline was a decent attempt to change things. I'd like something new from this though, and the Zeppelins and Biplanes seem a good start. How about weather effects? We all know the flooded trenches were a big part of the war and no FPS games have really done decent weather effects so far. - MIKE

A SIMPLE TALE ON FOOT - Don’t give us any lofty “bearing the weight of command” storylines. The choices you make are rooted in the need to survive to the next trench. Your objectives are simple, forcing you to dig in and hold your ground or push up “Conquest mode” style and take back the next patch of land. Infact, I’d prefer an entirely on foot campaign, without any land or air vehicle sections to break the tension of surviving in close combat. Save the epic scale for multiplayer, and tell an intimate, brutal story. - JT


AN ATTRITION GAME TYPE - This definitely falls under pipe dream. I'd love to see a MMO-style mode with the Axis and Allies where you drop into a trench and generally spend 20 minutes taking pot shots at the other army, being super-careful, trying to grind down the enemy on the other side of no man's land. When you log off, everyone is still in that same epic battle, and you can view how each side is doing overall. This would be ace for me. - MIKE

BALANCED MELEE - If early reports are to be believed, and melee combat is indeed getting an increased focus, I’m excited. To make it truly stand out, I’d like to see the option for other players to quickly interrupt a melee execution, instead of being locked in to an inescapable death while your squad mates watch you die. I realise Battlefield 4 provides a limited window for you to counter a melee attack yourself, but it would be cool if your friends could swoop in and save the day. Moreover, the actual act of melee combat should feel heavy and laboured, and go all out on the portrayal of brutality. - JT

FULL DESTRUCTIBILITY - We are always promised this and never get it. But in the wide open battlefields of WW1 there is really no excuse. I will accept gun emplacements being indestructible, and MCOM stations (or whatever the equivalent is), but you should be able to flatten literally everything else. I want to see no buildings left at the end of a match. - MIKE

FULL DESTRUCTIBILITY - I’d like to second Mike on this point. Nothing is more frustrating to me, particularly online, than discovering certain walls or surfaces that don’t break despite looking exactly the same as ones that do. Or when developers at DICE allude to having full destruction in the game, but it gets “scaled back” to prevent breaking the map design. For this one, go all out. Terrain deformation is a must. Buildings should be able to gradually break apart and eventually collapse completely, Red Faction: Guerilla style. This could fulfil the original promise of the Frostbite engine, and in turn create another point of differentiation between Battlefield 1 and Infinite Warfare. - JT

WEAPON DURABILITY - I'd like to see weapons that jam, armour that degrades and a proper stamina bar. This is all about The Great War, and making it more realistic (maybe in just one mode?) would be very interesting. Perhaps you can get perks or upgrades that increase your weapon durability at the expense of ammo capacity or something along those lines. - MIKE

MEANINGFUL SUPPRESSION - The act of suppressing someone should have a tangible, visible effect on the target. They should be left visually impaired, reducing their situational awareness which then increases the importance of the support class. Their 200 round light machine guns shouldn’t be accurate at range, because that’s not supposed to be their function (despite what the most recent Battlefield’s would have you believe). This could help cement the importance of the returning class system, and better define the purpose of this particular combat role. - JT

LESS VEHICLE FOCUS - No helicopters is almost reason enough to play this, but I don't want to see tanks and planes being more important than they should be. The Zeppelins also have a real risk of being overpowered compared to what they should be. Let's face it, they are not the most resilient craft in history. For me the focus should generally be on ground combat with vehicles in
support. - MIKE

The scale of a Battlefield game is important, but the best vehicle set pieces and moments are usually found when you’re playing the multiplayer. Food for thought!

Horses! Swords! Definitely two things you shouldn’t bring to a gun fight. But! This will certainly make for some visually interesting moments.


RENAME THE GAME! - I can see what they are trying to do with the whole Battlefield 1 name, but what with Microsoft already doing that and picking up a lot of flack for it, I feel they would have been better doing Battlefield 1914 or maybe even a whole different name, such as Trenches or Warfield (if you want a good ideas man EA, I'm available in a few months). - MIKE

RENAME THE GAME! - It’s a terrible name. Just like Xbox One is a terrible name, and Wii U is a terrible name. It’s confusing from a marketing standpoint, to go from Battlefield 4 to Hardline to 1, as it makes you stop and question it rather than simply accepting the title and understanding its place in the franchise. It also suggests a reboot of sorts, when in fact this is an original title set in a brand new era of warfare. It also sets up future branding issues, because surely they can’t go to Battlefield 2 next, and a jump to Battlefield 5 would feel disjointed and weird. DICE have named themselves into a corner with this one. - JT

NEW BOX-ART/KEY ART - I'm fed up with the dark and orange combo that they have been going with in Battlefield games of late. I think they could have done something really exciting with the art direction of that side of the game as the setting is so different but it's really disappointing to see them going down the same route as always. Change it please! - MIKE

SMOOTH LAUNCH - The last couple of DICE Battlefield’s launched in a terrible state. The old excuse of “we didn’t anticipate such a high demand” isn’t good enough, especially when EA boast of increasing sales with each new game. Say what you want about the evolution of COD, but those games (generally speaking) offer a great day 1 experience. Battlefield 1 needs two betas before launch - a closed one to balance gameplay, and another [open beta] right before launch to stress test the servers. - JT


- WW1 single and multi player FPS from the developers of the previous mainline Battlefield


Playstation 4, Xbox One, PC


Offline - 1, Online - 64


No word on campaign co-op, but multiplayer offers support for up to 64 players.


- Expect a Season Pass of DLC maps, weapons, and game modes, along with free map packs and updates. Nothing confirmed.





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