Multiformat + PC
Developer DICE Publisher EA Format PC, PS4, Xbox One Release October 21
Battlefield 1, Steep, Final Fantasy XV, Quake Champions, Injustice 2, Abzu, Overcooked, Grow Up, Titanfall 2, Wilson’s Heart, Serious Sam VR, Absolver, Call Of Duty: Infinite Warfare, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Special Edition, South Park: The Fractured But Whole, Giant Cop, Dishonored 2, Mafia III, We Happy Few, FIFA 17, Fe, Feral Rites, Unspoken, Obduction, Star Trek: Bridge Crew, Civilization VI, Dual Universe, Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, Tacoma, Mass Effect: Andromeda, The Elder Scrolls Legends, Pyre, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Ghost Recon Wildlands, For Honor, Oxygen Not Included, State Of Mind, LawBreakers, The Turing Test, Vampyr, Watch Dogs 2, Prey
There’s a darker tone to Battlefield 1 that sets it apart from previous entries in the series, an aspect driven home by a harrowing encounter we experience in the attic bedroom of a ruined house. After moving in cover to avoid snipers and tank fire, we chase an enemy soldier into the building and lose sight of him. After a quick search of the ground floor yields nothing, we creep up the shattered wooden staircase and sweep the first floor. Still nothing. Rifle held in front, we creep nervously up the second set of stairs and find our quarry crouched in the corner. A disheartening click reveals an empty chamber, so we resort to a bayonet. But it’s too late, and our failure to keep an eye on ammo means his hatchet punctures our chest first. It’s a confrontation that also serves to illustrate changes made to
Battlefield 1’ s close-quarters combat: melee attacks can no longer be countered, and if two soldiers charge each other, whoever activates
their dash first will win. Battlefield 4’ s universally equipped knife has gone, and there is now a variety of grim melee weapons.
Ballistic weapons are entirely class based and they’re more specialised than Battlefield 4’ s to emphasise teamwork. The assault class carries an SMG and shotgun, medics get semi-automatic rifles, support soldiers wield LMGs, and scouts use bolt-action rifles. Engineer class, meanwhile, has been subsumed into the new Medic and vehicle classes: Pilot and Tanker. The latter additions make the relevant vehicle type your primary weapon, to give vehicles more permanence, and more impact. For example, the Tanker can slowly repair damage to his vehicle from within the machine, but the patch-up job will be much quicker – albeit considerably more dangerous – if he hops out.
Despite these tweaks and a new setting, our 64-player Conquest session feels comfortingly familiar as we set about trying to control the five capture points. But this game feels sturdier and more hefty than
Battlefield 4’ s high-speed scrambles. Battlefield 1 ticks along at a more considered pace, but isn’t any less thrilling – every action is leant greater weight and working well as a squad is more important than ever. If your side is in particularly dire straits, however, you can call in a Behemoth-class vehicle and force the opposition to focus their fire – the arrival of a Zeppelin during our match is a welcome sight.
Battlefield stalwarts will also be cheered by the news that enemy spotting now requires you to be looking directly at your target, while the previous game’s exaggerated visual recoil has been toned down.
The Behemoths are an imposing presence and can turn the tide of battle, but the slower pace of planes and tanks combined with the new Tanker and Pilot classes ensures that vehicles play a more important role than ever