Battlefield 1 is one of the most anticipated titles of the year. Not just because it’s another Battlefield instalment, but it seems like for the first time in years the Battlefield Series has a chance to finally one up the Call of Duty franchise. Does the beta give us a true representation of what we saw at the E3 reveal? Or is it just another hype train? I’m going to go over The good, the bad, and the ugly in the Battlefield 1 beta. I played countless hours on both Xbox One and on PC. I’m going to touch on my experiences with both of them.
The game looks absolutely amazing both on PC and console. Graphically it’s almost an exact representation of what we saw E3 demo. Battlefield has always been known for its large destruction and maps and this instalment falls right in suit. The game looked sharp on console, but there were some parts of the game that looked fuzzy and out of touch. It’s a beta so I expect it to be much cleaner on release. On PC even on low settings the game looked amazing. What really impressed me was that you could see every nook and cranny in the rocks, even the detail on the soldiers cuff-links stood out when reloading weapons. Careful attention to detail went into this game. When on the battlefield being able to sprint and shoulder charge doors open was a nice upgrade. As well as being able to jump and climb over larger walls. I also cant tell you how epic it is to run your bayonet through a player. IT IS SO MUCH FUN!!! You must do this at least once when you get the game. I also enjoyed how when you spawn it dives down into the battlefield. I absolutely loved this new spawn feature. When its fully cleaned up this will be the best looking game to come out this year.
The map available during the beta was Sinai Desert. The map was great, it was a lot of fun. But I was a bit disappointed that we didn’t get a chance to play on Monte Grappa, the map that they had in the closed Alpha. It would have been nice to have a little bit of variety. Playing a ton of hours on a great game is fun and all but we kind of wanted to take out a windmill with a tank or Kamikaze with an airplane.
Sinai Desert on Conquest was amazing. You actually felt like you were in the middle of a large-scale war. Huge explosions, tons of craters, massive destruction going on everywhere. Even the air strikes seemed to be much more brutal than they were in Battlefield 4. The biggest boots on the ground fights were in the middle sections of the map. I would say between B, C, and D. But when you got to the outskirts of the map like Flags G & E, the action seemed to die out. Flag E was so far off in the distance that it was very rare for people to head out in that area. There should have been at least another flag in between and D and E just shortly off in the distance. It seems that they randomly put the E flag so far off just to cover the large map.
Rush was a lot of fun but I had some issues with it. The map seemed more like a funnel rather than an oval or half circle. Because of this snipers had free reign to pop off heads. If you went too far off away from the rocks on the left of the map, you had no where to hide you were a sitting duck for the snipers. Planting bombs also seemed a bit off. On both console and PC it wouldn’t read when I was holding the plant button. I had to back away a few times to plant and this caused me to either get shot or blow up. If I’m laying on the objective I should be able to plant.
The vehicles were fantastic I really enjoyed the tanks, planes, jeeps. Even the random train that was spotted on the map. The train was absolutely the most beastliest thing to drive in. Flying felt so old school. I got lost just listening to the motor hum while cruising alone. As well as the exhilarating feeling you got when you’re trying to catch up to an enemy plane or a bomber to shoot it down. The planes also felt like they had weight and resistance to them. Sometimes when you are flying with the bomber, you can feel the weight of it when trying to do a sharp turn because it wouldn’t turn as quickly. Sometimes even feeling like it would stall. When using an attack plane the feel of doing barrel rolls avoiding shots felt quick and fast. The speed felt right on point. Some folks were beasts at flying planes. I even caught a couple of pilots on both PC and Xbox, land on the ground cap a flag and then take back off. This mainly happened on the E-flag since it was so far away from the action.
The tanks were so much fun to play with. One of the tanks felt very odd because when you’re the driver you usually feel like you’re going to be sitting on the Canon. But in this particular tank you are the Gunner and your two side guns were Cannons. This caused drivers to think outside the box when they were trying to attack flags. I know I was always trying to be patient. Constantly communicating for clear shots. My favorite vehicle in the game had to be the armored Jeep. My squad on PC and on Xbox just drove around circles around enemies. Getting tons of kills. People actually got mad because we were top squad for about 6 games in a row. “CAMPERS” the people yelled. We said “No we were in a jeep, look the drivers didn’t even have any kills.” These new players need to realize that Battlefield is about working as a squad not as an individual.
Speaking of squads let’s think back to the Battlefield 4 launch. The Battlefield 4 launch was absolutely horrible. No real way to connect with friends. Having to join your friends by joining sessions in progress. No Squad lobbies. The experience was horrific. This is what in my opinion crippled the Battlefield 4 launch. With Battlefield 1 it seems that they’ve completely learned their lesson giving a great easy menu to look for friends and individual players. The server browser worked and also the ability to Squad up with friends in the main lobby was working. Who would have thought right??
You may be asking your self this all seems so good so far so whats the bad? Well here goes nothing. I’m not going to hold back either. The only way for this stuff to get fixed is to just lay it out there.
On PC, my experience was almost flawless. I only had a few issues logging in or showing that I was offline when I really was online. On both PC and console the hit boxes on most of the guns were way off. At times I would get solid head shots but nope it wouldn’t do jack. I do understand that they have metal helmets on and it absorbs damage. But if I blast a guy in the nose with a sniper he should go down period. Speaking of guns the medic starting rifles seemed like pea shooters. Going to almost one and a half clips sometimes two clips to bury somebody. No, my aim wasn’t off either they were shots to the head and upper torso. A half clip should be enough, or even a full one and that’s a stretch.
Some of tank spawns were off. It would show that you have a tank ready but there is nothing there. Also when you spawned in a vehicle no matter what it was it would change your class. You select support, spawn in a tank and become a medic. If I select support class that’s who I want to play with. It threw my game way off in some of the tighter rounds. This also occurred on all platforms.
On console the menus were horrible. Saying you could join games then just waiting on a blank screen. Or if you wanted to back out to group up, when you hit start the game would freeze. You would have to either wait 5 min for it to pop back up or quit the game completely. This happened a few times during my live stream.
There were also rubber band soldiers. Whats that you say? Think to when you are playing and you see a comrades back pack stretching back and fourth. That’s what I’m talking about. This happened way too often. Also there were times where players could glitch into some parts of the map. I was able to crawl into a crater and half of my body was hidden under the map. Players riding horses had issues as well. Some folks had issues mounting or dismounting. Also the horses seemed way too over powered health wise at times. I gave a rider two tank shots dead on only for him to ride away. But also at the same time horse riders were sitting ducks. So it seemed odd to me that they were OP and weak at the same time, depending what servers I was in. This needs to be tweaked so its consistent one way or the other. I would like the horses to be some what beefy to take a few shots but not a tank. As for riders I would like to see an element like in MGS:V. Where you can hang on the side of the horse to avoid damage. That would be sweet.
There also needs to be a limit on certain classes as to how many of each class can be available. There was one lobby where it was just all snipers. It was very annoying. Limiting classes may bring greater balance to the game as well as force players to play out of their comfort zone. The melee needs to be tweaked up as well. If I have a trench knife and come at someone from behind I should be able to take their tags right away. Not stab them a few times and then take the tags.
Overall impression: Excellent.
I had a blast with this game. I loved how they stayed with boots on the ground and not take the series down a rabbit hole that it didn’t need to go in. The beta had issues but that’s what a beta is supposed to have. Once these minor things are fixed and cleared up it will be a front runner for game of the year. DICE don’t mess this up!! Clean up the game. Make the necessary tweaks to the issues that the community has provided to you. If you listen I guarantee that you will crush every other shooter that will come out.
Have you played the Battlefield 1 Beta? What do you think about it? Let us know in the comments or the RGM Forums.