This article will be discussing the latest entry within the Battlefield series. It may contain spoilers in some areas of the game.
With much of the EA DICE’s competition racing towards the Future, we witness the 15th installment within the Battlefield series take a step back in time to a “War to end all Wars”. Across several different battle-scarred Operations, we are tasked with raining Hell upon our enemy within this gruesome take on World War I!
System(s): Playstation 4, Xbox One
Developer: EA DICE
Release Date: October 21, 2016
Price: $60 USD
Battlefield 1 holds back nothing when it comes to providing us with a grueling and savage experience and combined with a dynamic weather cycle the Player is introduced to a battle system that is constantly changing.We are taken back to a global war that originated in Europe but from 1914 to 1918 ended up claiming over 9 million combatants and 7 millions civilians and EA DICE really sank their teeth into bringing us that haunting experience.
Destructible environments range from the likes of France to the Mesopotamia and provides the savourable appetite for chaos, also acting as a means for intuitive maneuvers (if you see a sniper in a building, bring it down on top of him) . A FPS that places heavy emphasize on teamwork, we are introduced to several new elements of combat, such as chemical weapons like mustard gas, weaponry from World War 1 (such as bolt-action rifles and flamethrowers) to biplane aircrafts, battleships and even zeppelins. EA DICE took measures to a higher standard with attention with exposure to the grueling elements of the weather and combat, muddy areas will cause your weapons to get dirty, fog will lower visibility while nighttime will help conceal your movements in the shadows more effectively. It seems that although the combat aspects of the game seem rather polished, the controllers seemed to have a glitch or two in some areas, which may be the result of the rework of melee combat. With such emphasis on trench warfare the rework of the melee system was needed to have a stronger focus.
The Single Player Campaign consists of 6 separate characters of different nationalities each with its own Chapter that are spread out across different parts of the World. The environment is larger and much more open compared to previous Battlefields, which allows different choices with the way the Player can complete different objectives or enter combat. This sandbox approach opens up the Player’s experience and adds some decent replayability as well. The game handles well, yielding heart pounding situations that lean more towards objective based and subtly grabs your attention, but at roughly 5 hours long it seemingly doubles almost as a in-depth tutorial for the Multiplayer.
- Storm of Steel – The 369th infantry (also known as the “Harlem” Hellfighters) fight to hold their position against the Germans in France during 1918. Acting as a Prologue, the Player is tasked with surviving as long as possible, if you die you simply shift to another random soldier.
- Through Mud And Blood – During the later parts of 1918, we assume the position of a British Mk. V Tank driver named Danny Edwards as we rip through enemy lines to Cambrai. Set during the Battle of Cambrai within the Hundred Days Offensive, as we penetrate the German lines. Acting as a tutorial for driving tanks as well as targeting anti-vehicle weaponry, you must learn to maneuver the vehicle as well as repair on the run.
- Friends in High Places – Taking place in the Spring of 1917, we follow the story of an American Pilot turned gambling thief Clyde Blackburn and his crazy tale. After stealing an airplane after a card game, he poses as a British Pilot and thus we are given the tutorial for flying bi-plans and later introduces the Player to a German Zeppelin. During the training we are ambushed by Germans which leads to them accidentally stumbling onto a German munitions base which leads to complete warfare within the skies. The dog fights that ensure are gripping, pushing you to the edge of your seat continuously until the end.
- Avanti Savoiai – Set in the Fall of 1918, the Player assumes the role of Luca Vincenzo Cocchiola, a member of the Italian Arditi Unit during its offensive drive on key Austro-Hungarian positions in Dolomites. During the offense we are given a suit of heavy armor with a LMG and lead the attack which eventually initiates the Austro-Hungarian forces to cause a landslide to disrupt over advancement. Battlefield 1 overall had a good representation of the horrors of War, but within this War Story we are shown a devastating example of it
- The Runner – Taking the Player to roughly a year after the War has started, we follow a Australian message runner named Frederick Bishop during the Gallipoli Campaign against the Ottoman. The Player is given an inexperienced new charge whom we must take under our wing.Through the perils of War we watch the growth between the two and how strong of a bond Bishop forms.
- Nothing is Written – Joining the forces of Lawrence of Arabia in the Spring of 1918, we assume the role of Zara Ghufran, a Bedouin rebel in our fight against the Ottoman Empire. During our campaign to weaken the Ottoman control of the Arabian Peninsula we learn of an armoured train called a Canavar and the means to stop it. Well we survive the incoming onslaught that is en route?
Featuring support for up to 64 players (with the options for 40) we are also introduced to a new squad system, which allows Players to enter the battlefield with other Players or groups of friends. Trying to playing the maps solo is doable but with the amount of Players it can become daunting at times to hold your position. Across 9 different maps representing different locations around the world, Players are able to play 6 different modes: Conquest, Domination, Operations, Rush, Team Deathmatch and also War Pigeons (Pigeons are secured and used to call artillery strikes.
The multiplayer features 4 different classes (Assault, Medic, Support and Scout) as well as 3 vehicle spawn based classes (Tanker, Pilot, Cavalry) and 1 pickup-based class (Elite with different variations ranging from Tank Hunter to Flame Trooper).
Final Judgment – 85%
Although the Single Player experience was structured in an in-depth manner with stories that inspire different emotions, it was short-lived. It was compelling with the ability to invoke connections to the Character and the overwhelming feeling we seek with games based on War. Once the experience was over I was yearning for more without an ounce of doubt if that gives you any idea of how solid was. The overall experience was intense, with the background gun fire, explosions and parts of buildings flying in the air, the depth EA DICE was able to reach with this game is astounding. The chaos that was present during most encounters had a charm that invited you to dive deeper into the experience that a lot of shooters lack. Don’t get me wrong, the Campaign is great but the length of it does hinder my final grade on it. The Multiplayer was a fun and invigorating experience many games have not been able to achieve. With 64 Players on one map, and combined with Battlefields knack for destruction, the WW1 theme just further complimented my brutal experience. Altogther Battlefield 1 offered an overall great experience.
- The WW1 theme was a refreshing break from futuristic FPS
- The requirement of the gas mask and the hindrance it present added another noteworthy WW1 experience
- Squad-based gameplay offered a more in-depth war feeling.
- Great Visuals
- Minor glitches with melee combat and other extremities of combat.
- Short lived Campaign
- Multiplayer can be overwhelming if you don’t play with a squad