How did you spend your Whit Monday? I took a look at the first season of Battlefield 2042 for you. After a brief introduction, I was allowed to hop into the two modes, Breakthrough and Conquest, and get a quick glimpse of the upcoming content coming later this week.
Before I share my newly gained knowledge with you, here are the facts about the first season. This starts under the name “Zero Hour”. on June 9 for all platforms and brings helicopters, a new map, the specialist Liz, a Battle Pass and other content.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to look at all the new content in the two-hour game session. The event was limited to two hours in terms of time and two modes in terms of content.
Exposure: The new map offers ups and downs
In the Canadian mountains, the two factions fight in breakthrough and conquest in the mountainous landscape of Exposure. There is also completely free space here, but the map is dominated by uneven, rocky surfaces and large differences in altitude.
That’s pretty cool, because in addition to an incredibly beautiful view, there are also many new tactical possibilities and what is probably the highest high ground in the game. You can stand at the top of the slope and shoot down your unsuspecting opponents far away – of course only with the right weapon. It’s fun until you’re the little ant at the bottom of the mountain, spinning wildly trying to figure out where the shots are coming from.
There are also a few bases, a tunnel and a few fir trees on the map. These locations have fewer open spaces and wide fields of view, allowing for closer-ranged combat.
Overall, I found the size of the map to be very pleasant. Now and then you walk a short distance without anything happening. In most cases you might be able to count to five and be in the middle of a fight. I was able to orient myself unexpectedly well on the map. The dots are fairly easy to spot, the paths are clear despite the open-world feel of the landscape, and the routes are manageable.
I’ve already gambled breakthrough on this map with only 64 players left. The map was perfectly adapted to this size. There was no trace of the chaos that I experienced in the preview of the game. Sometimes too much is really too much of a good thing. The 128-player experience should no longer be an issue in breakthrough, even in future maps. From Season 2 onwards, you only want to focus on the best 64-man experience. On the original launch maps, however, it should still be possible to experience the chaotic mess with twice the number of players.
Liz: New specialist makes life difficult for tanks
Ewelina Liz is the name of the new operator who joins the No-Pats. Instead of a killing machine, the Polish woman is a machine killer. With her rocket launcher she does a lot of damage to tanks, helicopters and other vehicles and receives information about damaged vehicles. Even a troop of soldiers easily blows them away.
You have two shots at your disposal. But after aiming and firing, it gets really fun, because you can steer the rocket with your mouse movement – in first-person view. It feels like you’re the projectile. In a flash, you race in the targeted direction. If you want to steer, you have to react quickly and remember that you can’t even do a quick 180-degree turn.
If you shoot at a tank, it’s pretty easy to hit it. The target is large and moves quite sluggishly and predictably. Meeting people is a bit harder because they are just a lot smaller. Helicopters are the supreme discipline here. If the pilots got wind of your rocket attack, they can easily dodge it with a maneuver.
With the loud impact you see a gray noise and return to Liz’s body. So while you control the projectile, you just stand there motionless and are an easy target for the opponents. A good position is definitely an advantage here, otherwise the rocket cam was the last thing you see in your life.
Helicopter, guns and a Battle Pass
Liz comes at just the right time, as the two new stealth helicopters RAH-68 Huron and YG-99 Hannibal offer you and your enemies further possibilities for aerial attacks. The operator here is a good counterplay against vehicles of all kinds.
For the ground troops there is a crossbow (!) and a new marksman rifle. The Ghostmaker R10 feels a bit primitive in a future war scenario, but of course it keeps up with the rest of the weapons and convinces aurally with the wonderful whistling sound of the arrows hissing out of the barrel.
If you prefer a more modern look, the BSV-M is a solid rifle. It covers a fairly long range and I was particularly impressed by the nice crosshairs on the scope. I prefer it minimalist here.
Smoke grenades are also thrown around in Season 1. With the new grenade launcher, you can use it to cover your team in thick smoke to retreat safely. Offensive uses are also conceivable. The potential of the smoke grenades is particularly great in the tunnel, since you have fewer opportunities to run out of the smoke here. After a while the dense gray fog is gone again.
I was also able to poke my nose into the Battle Pass and can at least give the all-clear: You can earn all game-related content, such as weapons and vehicles, in the free part of the pass. A few cosmetic items are on the house. If you pay, you unlock skins, in-game currency and other goodies. You can reach the 100 levels of the pass through weekly missions and XP. Very cool: The missions are retained until the end of the season so that you have the chance to catch up on the many rewards.
Portal and what the future holds for Battlefield 2042
That was all the content I watched in action. I couldn’t get a taste of the new features of the portal mode – there’s a new builder toolset and additional content for Battlefield 1942, Battlefield Bad Company 2 and Battlefield 3 here.
In the future, DICE would like to overhaul the Battlefield 2042 leek maps. Kaleidoskop will start in August. On this map there should then be more destructible privacy protection and new areas, such as a base in the park and a second command post on the tower. In Season 2, the team then takes on the map with the appropriate name “New Beginning”. Here the “A” and “E” sectors are removed to bring the fight to the center of the map. There should also be more coverage here.