The sight of 128 players running through the Battlefield 2042’s overcrowded battle zones is a wonderful example of how larger isn’t always the best. While gunfights that are chaotic are certainly an element of the Battlefield experience huge lobbies and that numerous players ultimately made the classic modes of the series boring instead of entertaining. The tense game’s new Hazard Zone mode provides an exciting alternative strategy and its wildly customizable Portal tools provide a thrilling look at how the future can flourish with the help of the creative spirit of the community.
When I played Battlefield 2042 on live servers alongside others who own purchased the Gold Edition, Ultimate Edition or subscription to EA Play Pro, I’m not impressed. Like the title implies, the latest Battlefield changes the game’s setting to an upcoming setting that is filled with modern technology and the freedom to play Battlefield in the way you like. The aim was to restore the feel of Battlefield as a place to play. The game also eliminates the tiniest campaign stories Battlefield V had, featuring only single-player choices. The only thing it has is shooting with vehicles and infantry on the huge, gorgeous maps Battlefield is most well-known for, and some fresh concepts of its own, however, not all of the ideas that it offers are positive.
At first glance, it appears Battlefield 2042’s roster of ten Specialists that can be played are a replica of the four original Battlefield Classes: Assault Support Recon, Engineer, and Support. But, unlike prior Battlefield games, where the classes had distinct jobs and abilities to be defined The skills of 2042’s Specialists aren’t going to alter the team’s gameplay significantly. For instance, I had chose to use the Support Specialist Maria Falck to act as the team’s medical specialist. Her specialization skill equips her with a pistol called a Syrette that can fire syringes to heal both her and her allies, but can also harm enemies. I was initially thinking Falck would be the only option for anyone who is looking to play medical professional however there’s a reason that anybody could be healer when they have the medical crate that allows them to put out the traditional Battlefield area-of-effect healing device. While Falck’s specialist trait can help revive her teammates back to full health, any player can also revive their fellow teammates or offer health.
2042’s Specialists’ skills don’t really change a team’s dynamic much.
In the same way, any person can carry a repair tool, which means that it’s no longer limited to Engineers as well as any Specialist can also equip any weapon. There are Specialists with more distinctive capabilities, such as Casper using an OV-P Drone to conduct scouting, or Sundance wearing a wingsuit instead of a parachute for greater distances while falling into the map , however, overall, the Specialists loadouts aren’t more distinct than the roles we’ve played in earlier Battlefield games. I ended up choosing Webster Mackay, whose Specialty is grappling hooks, and putting the medical crate in to have the most mobility possible but still capable of playing in support.
Being able to avoid the usual classes that are exclusive to certain specialists makes choosing classes less restrictive, however it was a bit odd that there’s not much reason to have a team diversify their classes when everyone can fix and heal, make use of anti-aircraft and anti-artillery weapons, and even deploy ammo containers. Specialists are essentially another skill is available to help you enhance your gameplay further. It’s an enjoyable addition however it’s an important shift that reduces the value of specific classes in the process. Everyone is a jack of all trades. This sadly reduces the necessity for coordinated team formation and cooperation.
Everyone is a Jack of all trades.
There are three types of games in 2042. Additionally, your levels are divided across all of them. The primary game, All-Out Warfare, has in it both the Breakthrough or Conquest modes. Both meet the criteria of being a “conquest” with an impressive 64 players for each team. With that many players battling for one another on one battlefield, everything seems chaotic, even dispersed across the huge and well-constructed maps created to make it easier for that number of players.
Conquest is the classic Battlefield mode, where you have to hold and capture multiple points simultaneously spread across the vast map, however this time, the size of the map and the number of players is turned upwards to eleven. Although I’ve really enjoyed Conquest in the past Battlefields and was tempted to try similar here, it was is actually the least enjoyable game mode in 2042. It was that every point I tried to grab was surrounded by the entire opposing team protecting it since there are too many players, and only a handful of points that can be easily accessed. This is the sort of issue which requires a large amount of teamwork and, with teams as large as they are, it’s extremely difficult to solve.
However the maps are large enough that you will not always encounter anyone other than yourself in the huge spaces between them, which can lead to an issue in which you’re running for extended periods of time when you don’t have a car drop-in or your team’s spawn locations are located far away from the next location. This is more of a problem as it was in Battlefield 5, where I did not feel like I was running for hours just to reach another point , and the games were fairly evenly-paced with any dead air. In certain matches, if you’re not quick enough to pick an appropriate vehicle when you the point of spawn (which could happen when the load time is a little too slow) then you’ll have to walk towards the fight. It’s quite amusing to observe an group of about 20 players running around to the next point which feels like as if it’s a long way off however, it’s not the way you’d like.
The space issue also affects the stunningly beautiful weather system in a way it was expected to be larger and better than the previous time but didn’t be a factor regularly during the practice. In the end, I experienced rainstorms that didn’t seem to have any impact on how I played. There were times when I could witness some sort of tornado from a distance but being in close proximity to one made it clear how tiny they really are when you’re close to them. They also don’t appear to have much effect on the map , other than blowing across it, which is slightly disappointing when compared to the incredible trailers that made this new weather look like it could be more important in a normal match.
It can be a lot of fun to run through the utter chaos of explosions and rampaging vehicles all around you.
The return of Breakthrough mode is focused more effectively by placing each team on defense or attack, but with the caveat that every zone that the attacking team takes cannot be reclaimed. This means that the defense team is forced to the next zone and is increasingly determined to secure the previous one until players’ respawn tickets for the attackers run out. This is why it’s difficult to implement any effective strategy this time because your team is large and there is no clear leader. However, in a situation where all the focus is on one object, it could be quite enjoyable to race through the middle of the war amid the chaos of explosions and raging vehicles in the vicinity.
In my games to date, I’ve noticed an imbalance favoring attackers. Since defenders are only able to appear in the zone that is that is currently under attack and be easily attacked by attackers, I’ve witnessed several crowded encounters in which my teammates and me get killed by tanks right away when we return to the map.
Hazard Zone is a brand-new game genre that’s currently ranked as my second most-favorite game of Battlefield 2042’s game types. It’s basically Dice’s take on Escape from Tarkov: 32 players (unless you’re on a console with a last-gen version and in that case, it’s 24 players) form teams of four and search the map for data points, eliminating small swarms AI soldiers as well as each other in the process, before taking them off the map. It’s not exactly an actual battle royale game, but it’s similar in the sense that in the event that you are killed you’ll be unable to return unless your teammate can get an uplink to respawn you back. While the first opportunity to get out is towards the start of the game and the second one has each team fighting for one escape vehicle at the end of the game.
Hazard Zone isn't quite a battle royale.
In each game, you’ll collect “data” that will increase the amount of credits that you get afterward However, you also have the option to take home Uplinks which allow you to summon Rangers (the robotic dogs who are not influenced to the same extent as Boston Dynamics), a LATV4 Recon Vehicle and Team Redeploys that let players to bring back deceased teammates at the same time. (I am much more comfortable with this than games in which I need to revive each one at a time!) If you didn’t have the items in your loadout getting Uplinks could be lifesavers , allowing you to create epic moments. For instance, if you’re last player on your team or a nearby Team Redeploy will be pinged in the map for you to sprint to and take advantage of an incredible save.
What is what makes Hazard Zone great is its development: when you enter the game initially,, you are able to choose any Specialist however, your selection of gadgets, weapons, and tactical gear is limited as you’ll only have enough credits for anything else than freebies. You can play a few more matches however, and perhaps even succeed in extracting at least once before earning enough credits to purchase nice items for your next game, including any weapon you like which you can personalize by attaching attachments, and increasing the data storage capacity in the tactical slot. This allows players to carry and extract using greater data points. My personal favorite weapon in the Hazard Zone is an assault rifle called the M5A3, that comes with 2 scope options, including an option of 1x close range and 2x for a bit more distance.
The best part of this can be that your stakes are constantly rising higher and higher because of Extraction Streaks when you are able to extract at least two times in a row , you’ll get an additional Tactical Equipment slot to play in the next game. If you don’t win this streak it will be reverted to just one slot which is a bit of a loss, and having something to lose increases the tension just a few inches when you’re thinking about whether you’re ready to face the soldiers ahead. Each streak is tied to the specialist you used in the previous match and when you switch between Specialists, you’ll lose the Tactical Equipment slot and begin again. It didn’t seem like an issue since the necessity to switch Specialists doesn’t come up all that often within the Hazard Zone, but establishing the specialist you’d like to work with throughout the game in the beginning is likely to be the best. I’ve found this Casper as well as his own OV-P Recon drone were quite useful to have in your team, especially as it could pinpoint areas using Data points and observe the amount of enemies that were in.
Teamwork is crucial in order to survive long enough to go from one data point to another.
Teamwork is crucial in order to survive long enough to go from one data point to another, and since there are “only” 32 players in a match it felt slightly better paced and deliberate than All-Out Warfare’s chaos. I found myself eager to queue in for another match of Hazard Zone even if I had been absolutely demolished at the beginning of a previous game because I wanted to rack up points to get my best loadout in the next round. The feeling of accomplishment when you steal the extraction helicopter or plane from enemy teams in the last extraction point is exhilarating, and it naturally pushed me to queue in for more matches to ride that high.
One thing that bugged me in both All-Out Warfare and Hazard Zone was that the time-to-kill feels incredibly inconsistent. I don’t know if it’s a bug or what, but no matter what weapon types and attachments I use, it often feels like I have to hit an enemy with a few bullets more than I should need to down them. That gets frustrating quickly, especially when some enemies seem to be able to down me just about instantly. By comparison, the custom Portal mode allows you to play with the settings of past Battlefield games, and the TTK felt just fine next to the likes of Battlefield 3 or Bad Company 2.
The game of All-Out Warfare, the long TTK was not a problem for me in the sense that you respawn quickly and are able to get back into action, however in Hazard Zone it felt particularly difficult since it’s a group-based game, and you’re unable to move until you’re revived. I’d like the TTK to feel valid even in an FPSgame, however, in 2042 I noticed myself changing an assault gun to a marksman as well as a sniper gun in order to make those quicker kills, as other weapons tend to be extremely fragile. In contrast to Apex Legends or Call of Duty: Warzone in which you are able to fight three opponents simultaneously and possibly create an amazing outplay, it’s nearly impossible with Battlefield 2042 – being surrounded by just two enemies seemed like a death sentence.
Things went awry a bit more often than I’d expected, even from a newly launched game.
Another issue was an ongoing bug that would cause me to occasionally go through the area to revive a dead colleague only to discover that they’d already decided to die and then respawn into the world, but their bodies were still on the ground as bait for an espionage trap. Downing someone is unreliable in general, since sometimes I’d be waiting for a revive , but my teammate would be unable to obtain a revive symbol on me, and I’d have to accept the death and then restart. In addition, discovering how the Hovercraft can overtake entire structures was not a pleasant surprise as it can make its way through places it shouldn’t be and cause quite a bit of trouble. There were several other issues, including not being able to open the Uplink screen, or getting stuck in loading until restarting as well as server problems. There were times when I would experience delays and then be unable to connect the point I was. I’d also encounter problems with ping that would cause my latency to drop and I would not be able move efficiently because of connections that stutter. The general pattern was that things went off the rails a little more often than I’d anticipated for a recently launched game.
The true value that lies in Battlefield 2042 is its Portal mode. A vast play area than a fixed mode, it allows players to develop their own games, experiences, modes, or just the game’s rules of play all over the world. You can customize what type of Battlefield you’d like to play and crams a lot from the game’s lengthy story into one big toolkit for developers.
In addition to Battlefield 2042’s maps, toys and maps, Portal currently includes three full Battlefield games you can alter including the original Battlefield 1942, Battlefield Bad Company 2 as well as Battlefield 3. There are maps as well as classes, weapons, and even equipment from each of these. There are several pre-set, dev team-curated games that you can choose to play for a few hours, including Battlefield 1942 Classic Conquest, Battlefield Bad Company 2 Classic Rush and Battlefield 3 Classic Conquest. The experience of playing Battlefield Bad Company 2’s Classic Rush mode during a match with 64 players , using the map and the game’s rules was so satisfying and was a marked contrast from my experience the game’s All-Out Warfare in Battlefield 2042’s main game mode selection. I’ve only tried 1942’s Classic Conquest mode so far however, sniping in there is a blast. While playing these games in Portal made me think of how enjoyable Battlefield could be particularly in the classic games where the classes matter for the balance of the team.
The real fun comes from tweaking things yourself.
However, the most fun is tweaking things on your own. In Portal you can alter everything from whether Friendly Fire is on for the team, to how many headshot damage multipliers are worth as well as if you are taking falls, and so on. In essence, anything you think you want to change in the game, you are able to. It not only lets you create completely distinct Battlefield games and experiences and game modes, but it also offers the player with a better understanding of the process behind the game’s balancing.
Portal is also a great tool for ridiculous things, such as an original game created by a dev with a single rocket that is a launcher your primary weapon and knives as your second and to reload you must leap five times. Why? Because it’s fun and there’s no set of rules in Portal which is the reason. The tools Portal offers can be overwhelming because they go deep to the game’s skeleton It’s an astonishing amount of flexibility, but it doesn’t mean it’s necessarily the most user-friendly customization tool or FPS has ever encountered.
The best part is, you won’t have to be a specialist in any of this to take advantage of the most innovative and most bizarre stuff available by searching for community-created game modes is now easy There’s a variety of fun custom modes created by the community on the homepage of Portal that rotates as time goes by. One of my top features currently is CourageJD’s Fiesta mode, in which two teams compete against one another to get rid of the other’s VIP players. The VIP title changes between the players of each team with the added twist that each time you respawn you’re given a different character loadout and class of Battlefield 1942 vs Battlefield 3. Portal provides an abundance of fun and imagination that it could be the salvation of Battlefield 2042.
Battlefield 2042 tries to do many things and yet, only a handful of its ideas are worth being celebrated. The 128-player matches in the All-Out Warfare modes definitely feel like they’re too big in their own way many times, but the more strategic Hazard Zone mode is incredibly entertaining. However, the reality that the most enjoyable experience I had playing 2042 was playing games that reenacted its earlier games on Portal is an excellent indicator of how the ideas behind the new Specialist system been a bit off the mark. As a game that claims to be the next generation of Battlefield 2042’s impressive Portal options show that it isn’t a match to previous versions. Instead, it’s those exact options for customization that could be used to define it over time.
Battlefield 2042’s highpoint is its powerful Portal mode, which lets you relive the series’ past glories and tweak them to your liking. Its current batch of modes is overstuffed with players and utter chaos, though Hazard Zone scales things down in an interesting, high-stakes way.