Battlefield 2042 Early Access Impressions – How’s The Latest FPS?

by in General | Nov, 11th 2021

The first three days of this week, I was secretly taking part in the Battlefield 2042 review event, and here are my impressions of it. Each day was about four-five hours of Battlefield 2042 on an account with everything unlocked. Squad 29 did our best to drop bodies and commit to mission objectives. Things didn’t always go well – occasionally a nameless person would fly a helicopter straight into a furious tornado, for example. I’m not certain who that villain was, but it was an exciting moment in time. Each day was dedicated to a particular facet of the game modes, where we played across a full spectrum of the maps. We were free to customize and play to our heart’s content with all of the Operators.

Things may not have started smoothly, but overall, it was a great deal of fun, and I feel like Battlefield 2042’s got a lot to offer and the impressions are positive. It’s going to be a very hectic couple of months for FPS fans. Every release has to deliver and deliver big if it doesn’t want to get smothered by other games. So how did Battlefield 2042 hold up? Before I get into the meat and potatoes of how the game modes felt, I want to talk about the overall presentation.

Since there’s so much to talk about, we’re going to spread the content across a few other pieces:

In The Beginning

In the beginning, the UI was very clean and open. That’s a beautiful thing to see, after going into other games and feeling like I was constantly being advertised to. This may be because we’ve got access to 100% unlocked accounts. We had all the skins, all the Operators. Now, I’m perfectly content with having Operators. It creates a bit more flavor and lore for the game. We have actual characters, not generic soldiers out killin’ folks for god and country. That helps me immerse myself in the world of Battlefield 2042, review event or not.

A Selection of Guns

It’s not all sunshine and rainbows though. I am curious about the actual number of weapons we have access to. Compared to other FPS titles going right now, it seemed like a paltry number. I don’t know if they plan to add more armaments to the game or not. This could be simply a way to keep things more balanced in terms of keeping the weapons worth using. There were a couple of guns that my Squad decided were pretty awful compared to the others though.

Personally, I didn’t mind the amount of guns we had to choose from, but it did seem a bit on the small side. However, it’s only a slight markdown from Battlefield V, which had 30 primary weapons. We have 22 here in Battlefield 2042. This is something that might upset people that don’t know going in though. That having been said, there are quite a few incredibly powerful vehicles that players can work together to destroy opponents.

Loadouts Are Nice, But…

Loadouts are always rad. You can set up exactly how you want your “character classes” to hit the field. Character Classes may be gone, but we have them for loadouts to combine with our Operators. We were able to completely adjust our loadouts, down to the tools we use. You can even adjust the loadout you’re currently using mid-battle when redeploying. That said when you do change your gear mid-match, that adjusts the saved loadout you’re currently using.

Instead of Character Classes, Battlefield 2042 has Loadouts and Operators

That means, before you play another match, you may want to re-do that loadout, making sure it was how you wanted it at first. That could be a little on the frustrating side if you forget. I do love how customizable the characters are though. Each Operator has their own special ability, but they aren’t locked into specific weapon types. Want a medic that also has a sniper rifle? That’s certainly a possibility!

Aesthetic and World-Building

I’ll keep this brief: Battlefield 2042 is gorgeous. We didn’t get too much of an experience at first with the power of nature whipping us around. On the final Conquest map, we did see powerful tornados that did make it significantly harder to fly. Some of the battlefields are absolutely massive, and it was exciting to run around in skyscrapers and malls, hiding behind cover, lobbing grenades, and running to save my squadmates and allies.

As much as there is world-building, there’s world-destroying. It’s so satisfying to take a fully-armored vehicle and plow it right into a building, demolishing most of it! We were watching someone try to snipe us around the side of a building. The rest of my squad comes through with an armored vehicle, and smashes them to pieces, alongside the rest of the building. I absolutely love the combat in this game, especially when we can manipulate our surroundings with explosions.

A Series of Game Modes

Thankfully, no matter what mode you play, you gain exp for your account all the same. It’s not split up at all. I’ll briefly talk about the Game Modes, but we’ll be covering them in a bit greater depth in another piece. You have three tabs on the main screen, and each will be setting loadouts separately. There’s All-out Warfare (Breakthrough/Conquest), Hazard, and Portal. Each of these is unique in its own way. All-out Warfare is what you remember and love about Battlefield. 128-person squad-based combat. Absolutely massive combat and they retain the awesome Battlefield feel.

The game’s Portal mode gives you almost unlimited possibilities with new modes to create and play

Then if you’re looking for four-person squads, tactical/strategy gameplay, you can play Hazard. Portal is its own entity. It features … well, anything, frankly. It’s where community-created content and dev-created content exists. There are some incredible, unexpected possibilities here. Lots of classic content comes back for this – if the community wants to put it to use. Specifically, content from Battlefield 1942 Classic, Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Classic, and Battlefield 3 Classic.

It’s Looking Good, But

All told, Battlefield 2042 feels like a very solid game. I do miss it having a campaign though – that’s my favorite part. It’s what adds the flavor for me as a player. I do feel a little let down by the number of weapons in the game – that might be the biggest flaw for me. I think that’s going to be a real point of contention for players unless the devs plan on adding more in the future. That could lead to even more backlash though.

The gameplay is solid, and I would complain about the server connection, but I don’t think that was anything to do with the game. I think it was just a test issue that did get resolved. It has promise, and visually it was very appealing. I worry about what it’s going to do to keep people playing, other than Battle Passes. While I do not know if there will be SBMM/Matchmaking rules for the standard modes, Hazard Mode will match players based on their performance. We’ll have early access again on Friday, but regardless, my impressions of Battlefield 2042 are mostly positive.

The gameplay is tight, but it did feel like in our last Portal Match that the hit detection was off by a bit. I don’t know if that was something they did in the Portal Match scripting, or if it’s just a symptom of the earlier game maps/weapons.  That said, I liked Battlefield 2042, as I’ve been a fan since Bad Company 2. I do want to know more, and I hope that there is more added to the game, as far as weapon options go.


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