Battlefield V Review PS4
key review info
- Game: Battlefield V
- Platform: Playstation 4
- Gamepad support: Yes
- Reviewed on:
- Show system requirements
Most of the times when you hear about a new FPS coming out, you'll probably be thinking about all the frags you'll be getting in online mode. Unfortunately, few games out there manage to come up with a good basis for why everyone is shooting each other, so the developers at EA realized that there is no better source material than the entirety of human history. However, while there are plenty of other WWII-centered shooters out there, few manage to capture the human side of the story the way Battlefield V does.
Emphasis on great storytelling
I always appreciate a good story and the way it blends elements in a way that makes the entire painting seem complete, even more so when it happens in a FPS. As such, I was captivated by the cinematics, but not by their graphics, but by the blend of story-telling, music and artistic portrayal of human sadness and misery caused by participating at a war no one asked for.
Unlike previous titles where everything was either black or white, and all Germans were bad while all Americans were heroes, Battlefield V does not shy away from showcasing the true nature of what it means to deal with war, and all the grey areas that it creates.
More so, the game deals with two different types of war: the one between nations we all read about in history books, and the war that is inside ourselves, as the game also tackles social issues such as racism or sexual orientation.
Play in areas you've probably never encountered during your history lessons
The single-player campaign is divided into episodic War Stories. These are "Nordlys", "Tirailleur" and "Under No Flag". Each War Story is set to tell the story of lesser-known events that took place during the war, so those of you that played Battlefield 1942 will not be seeing familiar places at all, nor should they consider this title a "spiritual successor" or a "remake."
"Nordlys" takes place from the point-of-view of a Norwegian resistance fighter taking part in the sabotage of the German nuclear program. "Tirailleur" tells the story of a Senegalese Tirailleur during Operation Dragoon, and "Under No Flag" has you take on the role of Billy Bridger, a convicted bank robber and explosives expert conscripted into the Special Boat Service to take part in Operation Albumen,
There seems to be another campaign that won't be released until December 4th, and it would seem to be based on the German's point of view. Each campaign is downloaded separately when you first install the game, and there is no specific order in which the campaigns can be finished, so you don't have to worry about storyline continuity.
The game pushes the limits of what a PS4 can handle, and it manages to do this masterfully, as the environments feel ever so real. Take this aspect and blend it with the music and sound effects and you might feel the chills the merciless Norwegian winter as you walk and hear your footsteps in the snow through a forest that feels dead and desolate.
That being said, playing with headphones is a must if you truly want to feel like you're there.
Fantastic attention to detail
I found the "Nordlys" campaign the most realistic of them all, as the falling snow and rendering of the forest made me want to pull my fur coat closer, even though in real-life I was wearing a T-shirt.
Realistic character interactions further amplify this feeling. For example, whenever you are skiing and you pass a branch or a brush, Solveig will grunt as if she is hurt. Additionally, Billy Bridger's camera seems to shake when walking over rocky terrain, as if he is jumping between stones of different heights.
Make use of the environment as much as you can
You will be playing alone most of the time, thus your environment is the only element you can rely on most of the time. Unfortunately for you, the enemy is pretty smart even at lowest difficulty, as the old "if I can't see them, nor can they" tactic no longer works here.
Taking cover will indeed spare you a few bullets, but the enemy will not hesitate to blow away whatever is standing between them and you, leveling down trees and blowing up chunks of the earth just to get you in their crosshairs.
A rather forgiving singleplayer gameplay experience
If you do happen to die during a mission, a screen will appear showcasing the birth year and time of death of your fictional character, emphasizing the bond you are supposed to create with your character. You respawn at the last saved checkpoint, so you don't have to worry about redoing missions from scratch.
An additional element that makes the game a bit more challenging is the lack of an auto-aim system, and the only thing giving you the upper hand on AI enemies that never seem to miss you is the fact that you can take a lot more bullets than they can.
The reason why everyone wants a new Battlefield title
Battlefield V promises a few features that have not yet been released, such as a personal version of the now popular 'battle royale" genre which is set to take place on the biggest map ever created in the Battlefield franchise.
This game mode is called 'Firestorm," and that is precisely the element that causes the map to shrink, a feature found in all battle royale games.
A total of 64 players will go head to head, but this is not one of those "every man for himself" games, instead choosing to divide players in squads of 16 teammates, thus forcing you to cooperate with whoever you are teamed with.
Blend campaigns with multiplayer experience in all-out war!
You can enjoy some other game modes that are just as thrilling, yet more in tune with what the franchise offered so far. Personally, I enjoyed the "Grand Operations" the most out of all game modes since it managed to blend a micro-campaign with the multiplayer experience.
Basically, the game gives you a premise to start from, based on actual historical events, dividing the players into forces of two opposing factions.
These campaigns last over several "days" (rounds), and the winner of the overall campaign is the one that wins the last day of combat. While you may think that this makes it useless to give it your best in the first days, you must know that being the winner of one day will allow your side to start with more resources in the next.
This makes it so that regardless of who wins the battles, it doesn't necessarily mean they also win the overall war.
As expected of Battlefield games, class roles are divided, and heavy emphasis is put on how unique each of them is, although some historical accuracy is lost here, since never in history did an adrenaline shot cure the damage caused by ten bullets to the chest.
Customize yourself with the rewards you get in-game
Battlefield V brings a brand new feature to the series, called "The Company," which is a mix between an achievement board and a character customization system. Here you can customize the way look based on whichever role you choose during a fight.
These customizations include weapon upgrades, warpaint, custom paint jobs for your tanks, airplanes, and more.
This gives you a sense of accomplishment, and the motivation to complete as much of the game as possible since every new achievement earned and objective cleared will grant you extra features for you to make your characters unique.
The customization goes beyond just cosmetics, as you can also modify the gear you have as each class, such as changing the weapons you use to be more effective against a certain type of foe.
Difference between the Standard Edition and the Deluxe Edition
The Deluxe Edition offers players a few extra customization features compared to the Standard Edition, such as
five sets of paratrooper outfits, special assignments and starter assignments, the chance to test your skills on the battlefield and gain rewards, and an additional 20 weekly customization items with Airlift."
- The graphics
- The game mechanics
- Interesting approach towards FPS Campaigns
- Character customization
- Missing campaign bits
- Missing game modes
- Clumsy controls
- Multiplayer matches are unforgiving for beginners
Along with the customization options you'll unlock, this will have you spending a lot of time playing without ever feeling like you are grinding or wasting time.
The multiplayer gameplay is also neat, and the prospect of having a battle royale game with a historically-accurate setting is something to get excited about (when and if it really arives as promised).
Battlefield V changes the way historical FPS games are told, as it puts the human psyche ahead of glory, fame, and frags, or at least it does so until you join a multiplayer match.