Battlefield 2042 open beta impressions; Oh boy.....

FakeSympathy

Elite Member
Legacy
Apr 24, 2020
925
213
48
Country
US
I decided to NOT pre-order, which made me join the beta a few days late, with only two days to play the game. I find early beta access to be an incredibly stupid incentive. But that's a discussion for another time.

As it is with any beta gameplay, there were tons of technical bugs and glitches. I won't cover them in this impression. I'm sure you can find out more on thos on youtube or battlefield subreddit. No, I want to focus on the gameplay itself.

First off, the loadout customization is not available on the main menu. They can only be customized in-game, before spawning into the game. I find this feature to be stupid; I mean you want to take your time to customize the loadout to fit your gameplay style, so why not give player some time to do so and not during in-game, when every second counts? And you are restricted to one gadget of your choice + one forced gadget. This felt rather annoying, as I am used to freely choosing two gadgets in BF3 and 4. It restricts the creativity of the player and what you have is more or less same as 127 other players in the game. All guns are available for all specialist, and I think that ruins the theme; I meant with a specialist that looks like this, who carries a recon gadget, do you think he would wield a loud, full auto LMG?

Speaking of which, I do not understand the point of specialists. I mean I understand that they are inspired by previous BF games' classes, but why give them the character and distinctive designs when there isn't even a single player to explore who these guys are? In a multiplayer-only game, do you think anyone would give two shits about where they come from, and why they are fighting in the battlefield? Because everyone is forced to use the same 4 specialists, I had a hard time telling if they were enemies or allies. The uniform design of both sides is almost non-existent, and the only way to tell which side you are on is by checking the scoreboard or squad menu. When the full game comes with hardcore mode, I can already see the confusion causing problems.

This game also takes a lot of element from BFV, reviving your team, how to get into vehicle, map secto division, etc.Vehicle controls feel weird. And at first I thought this was just because I always sucked at aircraft controls, but even ground vehicles control really weird. It's hard to explain. Spawn locations are a mess. Sometimes you can get spawn killed because the game puts you on a big open space where an enemy was just waiting. The map is big and there are key locations here and there, but otherwise it just feels so.... empty. There are multiple towers in the game, and players can just camp there until someone flys an entire squad on top of it. There are no convinient and other ways to get up there, so this means there's a potential to just lockdown an entire sector by camping.

On top of this game trying to be a $60 multiplayer-only bullshit, which already earns a huge minus from me, the game is just.... okay. Like, I wouldn't pay this game anything more than $40, let alone $60. Due to the game having no single player campaign and therefore no focus on the setting, I have no idea and confused on why US and RU are fighting again. And it's not like Overwatch where the game had comics, animated shorts, and outside materials for the world-building.

The worst part is that under all these flaws, there is a solid game hidden. It is still chaotic, big-open fps game that you and your friends can have fun with. But This is in no way worth $60. Since the beta is near the end, that's even a lesser reason to pre-order the game.
 
Last edited:

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
May 11, 2020
3,825
626
118
Country
Philippines
I mean you want to take your time to customize the loadout to fit your gameplay style, so why not give player some time to do so and not during in-game, when every second counts? All guns are available for all specialist, and I think that ruins the theme ...why give them the character and distinctive designs when there isn't even a single player to explore who these guys are?
Disclaimer: I myself have not played the beta, and probably won't. It would explode my computer. But to answer your questions...

Because, even after almost 10 years, EA is still so desperately trying eat at the same lunch table as CoD. And it sucks that I have to say this, because as a Battlefield fan, I absolutely hate when the community bitches about CoD. Jesus Christ, some of these people care more about this fake BF vs CoD "war" than they do about their country's politics.

But you just can't deny it with this game. Why are there specialists instead of classes? Because that way EA can sell skins, just like in CoD. Why are takedowns janky ass third person animations instead of slick first person ones? Because EA can sell those too, AND you can see the skin you wasted money on, just like in CoD. Why do specialists all have some random overpowered ability? Because specialists need to be special so people will buy skins for their "mains", and maybe eventually EA is gonna start selling the specialists themselves too. Why is there some gimmicky attachment system? This is a stretch, admittedly, but you could easily say that they wanted to incorporate the attachment system of popular battle royales. They added armor plates and tactical sprinting from CoD, without even fucking bothering to change the animations.

My "favorite" decision from DICE was the universal weapons thing. Guess how they came up with that. They supposedly collected a ton of data from past games, and concluded that players were choosing classes to play not based on the class itself, but because of the weapons available. So, instead of admitting that they've mostly fucked class weapon balance in their past few games and committing to finally getting it right, they decide, "FUCK IT, let's just let these dipshits use whatever they want! We can't be bothered to balance our games!". Oh, and classless weapons are a CoD thing too, let's not forget that. Combined with the Specialist system, and we can say goodbye to one of the last pieces of gameplay that gave the franchise any uniqueness.

And apparently the movement and gunplay have been made more similar to CoD as well. Battlefield has not been hardcore tactical action for a long time, but it's never gone as far as CoD into the "point and shoot" arcade gunplay. Unlocking a new gun, learning its playstyle and recoil pattern, and mowing down goons with it is the core of the solo Battlefield experience for me. Without that, I don't know if the game will have any staying power for me.

They also fucked team gameplay to hell. At least in the beta. Barely any points for doing things with your squad. Giving out ammo and medpacks is highly discouraged. For some fucking reason, they've nerfed reviving team mates more than in any BF game I can recall. Yet another BF unique selling point down the drain, though admittedly this is a much easier problem to fix.

This game began development with a bunch of suits listing down features they thought sounded cool, bonus points if its from a different franchise, and then they built everything else around that. 128 players! Big ass maps! Attachments on the fly! Grappling hooks and drones! Robot dogs! A Specialist whose special power is a radar that tells you when someone finally made it up to the tower you were camping on and is trying to rightfully slit your throat!

Fucking ridiculous. We just can't have nice things can we? And like you said, it sucks, because at the very least it looks like they brought back the sandbox feel of the franchise. Jets and tanks and helis all over the place, people parachuting in from God knows where, some prick zooming all over the map trying to get roadkills in an ATV. Sigh.

On top of this game trying to be a $60 multiplayer-only bullshit, which already earns a huge minus from me, the game is just.... okay. And it's not like Overwatch where the game had comics, animated shorts, and outside materials for the world-building.
To be fair, there is still Hazard Zone and Portal. Hazard Zone is probably some Escape from Tarkov thing, while Portal actually sounds pretty great. But the fact that they've shown almost nothing about either and the game supposedly comes out in a month is quite telling. The marketing for this game is terrible, almost all information comes from devs' fucking twitter accounts.

Oh, and they did release outside materials for world-building. A couple of short stories on their website I think, and a single short film. Meh.

Sorry for the rant. Battlefield defined my high school gaming life with my buddies. To see the franchise come this low genuinely makes me sad and angry.
 

XsjadoBlayde

Intersectional Multidimensional Pansexual Alliance
Apr 29, 2020
1,696
1,506
118
Britannialand
Yeah, tried it last night, and does seem a bit of a mess of badly thought out compromises. Honestly though, I just wanted to see how much of a technical shitshow it would be, and in that regard it did not disappoint! No fun to be had playing it like a serious battlefield unfortunately, so defaulted to rookie noob vehicle suicidal madness to get something out of it instead.

It should definitely be free to play with their blatant greedy intentions for the game product, it isn't worth money.
 

The Rogue Wolf

Stealthy Carnivore
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
12,415
2,288
118
Stalking the Digital Tundra
Gender
✅
I quit playing PlanetSide 2 a while back, but if you're looking for a futuristic high-player-count FPS I'd still recommend it over this mess. It looks like EA disposed of everything unique about the Battlefield series in order to chase the hero-shooter microtransaction money train.
 

Dirty Hipsters

This is how we praise the sun!
Legacy
Apr 18, 2020
7,120
1,356
118
Country
'Merica
Gender
3 children in a trench coat
Yeah, tried it last night, and does seem a bit of a mess of badly thought out compromises. Honestly though, I just wanted to see how much of a technical shitshow it would be, and in that regard it did not disappoint!
Speaking of technical shitshows, the game barely gets 80fps on top end PCs with 3090s. As someone with a midrange last gen graphics card I'm really not cool with playing a high speed twitch shooter at 40fps.

In terms of technical specs who the hell did they make this game for? Most people can't get a current gen graphics card even if they could afford it at msrp, and even the highest top end cards don't blow this game away.
 

Gordon_4

The Big Engine
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
2,786
1,892
118
Australia
Speaking of technical shitshows, the game barely gets 80fps on top end PCs with 3090s. As someone with a midrange last gen graphics card I'm really not cool with playing a high speed twitch shooter at 40fps.

In terms of technical specs who the hell did they make this game for? Most people can't get a current gen graphics card even if they could afford it at msrp, and even the highest top end cards don't blow this game away.
Which begs a question to me of what the fuck have they been developing and play-testing it on? They got Starship Enterprise hidden in the basement or something?
 

meiam

Elite Member
Apr 19, 2020
1,661
285
88
Speaking of which, I do not understand the point of specialists. I mean I understand that they are inspired by previous BF games' classes, but why give them the character and distinctive designs when there isn't even a single player to explore who these guys are? In a multiplayer-only game, do you think anyone would give two shits about where they come from, and why they are fighting in the battlefield? Because everyone is forced to use the same 4 specialists, I had a hard time telling if they were enemies or allies. The uniform design of both sides is almost non-existent, and the only way to tell which side you are on is by checking the scoreboard or squad menu. When the full game comes with hardcore mode, I can already see the confusion causing problems.
That sound like something for monetization purpose, I'd guess they'd introduce skin/new specialists for cash.
 

Dirty Hipsters

This is how we praise the sun!
Legacy
Apr 18, 2020
7,120
1,356
118
Country
'Merica
Gender
3 children in a trench coat
I heard somewhere they had a top of the line anti-cheat system, dunno how long that is gonna hold tho
Apparently there's already cheating in the BF2042 beta, though I'm not sure if the anti-cheat is active in the beta.

Edit: Just did some research and BF2042 is using easy anti-cheat. That's not top of the line. That's not even close to top of the line. It's bottom of the barrel janky garbage that has caused nothing but problems for every game I own that uses it. It was also apparently already bypassed before the launch of the beta.
 

laggyteabag

Scrolling through forums, instead of playing games
Legacy
Apr 4, 2020
2,937
479
88
UK
Gender
He/Him
I never had a chance to play this, but the game certainly appears to be divisive.

The Battlefield faithful seem to think that Battlefield is back, and just about everyone else seems to think this game has a lot of problems.

My biggest concern is how the Specialists work - where each specialist comes with a piece of unique equipment, with one extra gadget slot, and they can use whatever weapon class they like. It really seems like a solution to a problem that never existed, which in turn creates way more problems. I just have no idea what was previously wrong with the previous class system, and why loads of games feel the need to have unique Overwatch-style characters, but I feel like this is definitely going to wreak havoc with sandbox balance.

I also find it rather stupid that each specialist looks exactly the same, regardless of team, with the only differentiating feature being whether or not they have a little blue dot over their head. Again, a solution, which just creates problems where there were none.

And this is why I have such an issue with the recent trend of betas releasing a month before release. They are just glorified server stress tests, with a chance of maybe getting some decent bugs fixed, and that is about it. Any of these mechanical or design issues cannot be resolved before launch, so this is the game that we will be stuck with.

Im interested to see in what state this game launches, as BF games have traditionally had rather poor betas, with rather poor launches.
 

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
May 11, 2020
3,825
626
118
Country
Philippines
My biggest concern is how the Specialists work - where each specialist comes with a piece of unique equipment, with one extra gadget slot, and they can use whatever weapon class they like. It really seems like a solution to a problem that never existed, which in turn creates way more problems. I just have no idea what was previously wrong with the previous class system, and why loads of games feel the need to have unique Overwatch-style characters, but I feel like this is definitely going to wreak havoc with sandbox balance.

I also find it rather stupid that each specialist looks exactly the same, regardless of team, with the only differentiating feature being whether or not they have a little blue dot over their head. Again, a solution, which just creates problems where there were none.
Wow, I can't believe my long ass rant didn't include this.

Immersion is basically a meme in the community, but watching a McKay (because of course the grappling hook character is the most popular) who killed you get stabbed by a friendly McKay, who then proceeds to revive your McKay, who has been squirming on the floor screaming for help, is jarring as fuck. Three different players, all doing different things but with the same goofy face and cringey voice lines. It has big pointing Spider-man meme energy.

But undeniably the worst thing about it is visibility. I watched a video of a guy playing the beta in 4K, no HUD. The game actually looked great, with all the chaos in the crisp background. Then he got into some firefights, and you could not fucking tell what was going on. And you could tell he couldn't either. He was constantly shooting his teammates, and failing to shoot back at his enemies. DICE did differentiate players with different shaders or something, but it was evidently not enough. Even with the HUD on, I've seen players get confused between friendly and hostiles. And apparently, their fix for this is to add lights to soldiers that will indicate friend or foe. Ah yes, the very realistic tactic of purposefully making yourself visible to your enemies on a battlefield. Genius!

What will probably end up happening is DICE will come up with faction specific skins for the Specialists, but again, a solution to a problem they themselves created.

OT: I've been hearing that since BFV and Battlefront, DICE devs have been leaving the studio in droves. This turns out to be true. Whether these were the "main" employees who have been working for decades or the usual contracted employees I have no idea, but this game really does look like it was developed by a completely different studio. The sound design and graphics aren't as polished as usual, and the destruction has been toned down significantly from BF1 and V. Maybe one day, some YouTuber will take a deep dive of what happened to this game and we'll all get the juicy details then.
 

laggyteabag

Scrolling through forums, instead of playing games
Legacy
Apr 4, 2020
2,937
479
88
UK
Gender
He/Him
Wow, I can't believe my long ass rant didn't include this.

Immersion is basically a meme in the community, but watching a McKay (because of course the grappling hook character is the most popular) who killed you get stabbed by a friendly McKay, who then proceeds to revive your McKay, who has been squirming on the floor screaming for help, is jarring as fuck. Three different players, all doing different things but with the same goofy face and cringey voice lines. It has big pointing Spider-man meme energy.
FBJvCp9UYAURbdk.jpg

Guaranteed, the most popular characters are going to be the dude with the grappling hook, and the lady with the med kit.

Congratulations, we have gone from 4 distinct classes, with 4 distinct roles, down to effectively 2 - one of which has basically 0 teamplay.
 

Bob_McMillan

Elite Member
May 11, 2020
3,825
626
118
Country
Philippines
Guaranteed, the most popular characters are going to be the dude with the grappling hook, and the lady with the med kit.

Congratulations, we have gone from 4 distinct classes, with 4 distinct roles, down to effectively 2 - one of which has basically 0 teamplay.
I am genuinely curious what the "meta" will be when all 10 specialists are available. Not too different from the one now I imagine. The wingsuit girl sounds absolutely fucking useless, as does having a deployable shield.
 

Gordon_4

The Big Engine
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
2,786
1,892
118
Australia
Wow, I can't believe my long ass rant didn't include this.

Immersion is basically a meme in the community, but watching a McKay (because of course the grappling hook character is the most popular) who killed you get stabbed by a friendly McKay, who then proceeds to revive your McKay, who has been squirming on the floor screaming for help, is jarring as fuck. Three different players, all doing different things but with the same goofy face and cringey voice lines. It has big pointing Spider-man meme energy.

But undeniably the worst thing about it is visibility. I watched a video of a guy playing the beta in 4K, no HUD. The game actually looked great, with all the chaos in the crisp background. Then he got into some firefights, and you could not fucking tell what was going on. And you could tell he couldn't either. He was constantly shooting his teammates, and failing to shoot back at his enemies. DICE did differentiate players with different shaders or something, but it was evidently not enough. Even with the HUD on, I've seen players get confused between friendly and hostiles. And apparently, their fix for this is to add lights to soldiers that will indicate friend or foe. Ah yes, the very realistic tactic of purposefully making yourself visible to your enemies on a battlefield. Genius!
What they couldn’t jazz the idea up with some kind of fancy, future soldier IFF system? I mean it’s a future war. Put futuristic shit in it.
 

The Rogue Wolf

Stealthy Carnivore
Legacy
Apr 3, 2020
12,415
2,288
118
Stalking the Digital Tundra
Gender
✅
My biggest concern is how the Specialists work - where each specialist comes with a piece of unique equipment, with one extra gadget slot, and they can use whatever weapon class they like. It really seems like a solution to a problem that never existed, which in turn creates way more problems. I just have no idea what was previously wrong with the previous class system, and why loads of games feel the need to have unique Overwatch-style characters, but I feel like this is definitely going to wreak havoc with sandbox balance.

I also find it rather stupid that each specialist looks exactly the same, regardless of team, with the only differentiating feature being whether or not they have a little blue dot over their head. Again, a solution, which just creates problems where there were none.
They want microtransaction money, and what better way to get people to buy than to make it almost impossible to tell their character apart from anyone else unless you drop some cash on skins?

And this is why I have such an issue with the recent trend of betas releasing a month before release. They are just glorified server stress tests, with a chance of maybe getting some decent bugs fixed, and that is about it. Any of these mechanical or design issues cannot be resolved before launch, so this is the game that we will be stuck with.
They're demos that you often have to preorder the game in order to play.

What they couldn’t jazz the idea up with some kind of fancy, future soldier IFF system? I mean it’s a future war. Put futuristic shit in it.
From what I've seen, friendlies have a very, very small blue "dorito" over their heads. It doesn't seem to scale with range, so at close ranges it might as well be invisible.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BrawlMan