Battlefield 2042 revealed: 128 players, Siege-style characters, no singleplayer

The next Battlefield game is called Battlefield 2042, and it’ll be out October 22. It’s set in the near-future (think Boston Dynamics robot dogs, not laser guns), but for once the setting isn’t the biggest thing to talk about. In fact, it’s the least interesting thing about Battlefield 2042, which I may never have said about another Battlefield game. Here are the important facts:

  • The max player count has been doubled to 128 on PC and the new consoles
  • The 128-player maps are divided into sectors containing clusters of control points; capture all the control points in a sector to control it
  • Classes (engineer, assault, support, etc) are now categories that contain specialists. Each specialist has a backstory and unique gadget, but can carry any gun.
  • Gadgets we’ve seen: A grappling hook, a health/revive gun (think Doc in Rainbow Six Siege), an auto-turret (think Team Fortress 2), a movement sensor (to catch people sneaking up on you while you’re sniping)
  • 10 specialists at launch 
  • Free/premium battle passes
  • Four seasons and four new specialists per year
  • Post-launch maps will all be free
  • “Levolution” is back, baby. What we’ve seen: tornadoes lift players and vehicles into a vortex, a sandstorm blots out the sky, a space rocket launches (or maybe explodes)
  • Everyone One guy has a wingsuit (Correction: I thought I’d heard wingsuits were universal, but EA tells me it isn’t so. It’s one specialist’s gadget, and that specialist hasn’t been revealed yet.)
  • Some vehicles have spotter seats (a small detail but I like the sound of it)
  • No battle royale, but there are some mystery modes
  • No singleplayer campaign
  • Release date: October 22, 2021
  • PC stores: Steam, Epic Games Store, Origin
  • Gameplay trailer reveal: Sunday, June 13

That’s a lot of information, so it’s probably for the best that the reveal trailer focuses on being fun more than explaining everything. The video isn’t all that tonally different from the Battlefield 5 reveal trailer—a montage of Fast and the Furious-style speed and violence—but there’s an enthusiastic self-awareness to it that comes off as more confident. The renditions of stupid Battlefield stunts are great.

I first saw the trailer last week under NDA when DICE introduced the game to press and influencers. A small part of the NDA from that event still remains in effect, but I can talk about all of the Battlefield 2042 design details DICE shared—the specialists, modes, maps, and so on—as well as the release and post-launch plans. Here are all the important details we have so far:

(Image credit: EA)

128 players