First published: April 4, 2019
Written by: =420th= SemperFi
So it’s now been roughly five months since Battlefield V released to lukewarm fanfare and although we’ve seemed to have all but wandered off to greener pastures, I catch myself looking back occasionally to see if it’s worth revisiting. Against the advice of my clanmates, I purchased a digital copy of the full game rather than subscribe to the monthly Origin Access service, which in hindsight was regrettable. At release, our clan hit the game with some fervor; and admittedly, we shared some fantastic Battlefield moments. (I’ve shared a few videos below.) Everyone seemed delighted with the renewed emphasis on squad/team play and the visual environment was really quite stunning.
So what precipitated our rather rapid decline in interest only a few months following release? Honestly, I may still not completely know for sure, but alongside the shine and glitter, there lurked an undeniable hint of malaise with the overall experience. Battlefield V didn’t appear to have any major game-breaking bugs, glitches, or exploits. So what exactly was it then?
Perhaps it was just an amalgamation of many little things. There seemed to be a subtle, ever-growing collective aggravation with the combat, highlighted by outbursts and sometimes the occasional rage-quit. I don’t know if any keyboards were harmed in the process, but I do fondly recall =420th=Atillius perilously flirting with aneurysms on a few occasions.
Had we grown too accustomed to the relatively more “realistic” WW2 titles like Post Scriptum, Heroes & Generals, and Hell Let Loose? I mean, there is something inherently irritating about shooting players numerous times with little effect, especially in a historical setting where body armor was unheard of. But in all fairness, we can’t seriously expect too much realism from this title.)
So I ventured onto the interwebz in search of answers, or if nothing else, other opinions.
Over on Reddit, the main Battlefield subreddit had multiple threads of people angrily complaining with EA’s latest marketing promotion since they paid full price for the game. Some were even clamoring for a class action lawsuit. I don’t know what actually became of that, but it didn’t really bother me too much.
Then I perused the Battlefield forums and found a number of complaints about Hardcore mode.
We were promised by EA and the CEO that there would be a HARDCORE MODE, now we only have speculation about it, and anytime you ask. They always say, “we are working on it”, or “We are looking into it”. Never a straight answer. I’m so sick of shooting someone 2-3 times in the face, not the helmet, the face. And they walk away. Then somehow find and kill me, because Why not. You only got shot in the face 4 times. You’re fine. ~ Grubbs008 (Battlefield 5 Forums)
Hey now, come to think of it, I actually DID miss Hardcore mode, its intensity, and more cautious pace and style of play. And most of all, in Hardcode mode, the bullets actually felt deadly (rather than like an early warning system to alert the enemy that they were being shot repeatedly), suppression really triggered some momentary PTSD, and when you’d get the drop on an unwary enemy squad it usually meant they were in for some serious hurt. So what ever happened to that beloved mode from previous installments of the Battlefield series? Well, EA/DICE, what do you have to say for yourselves?
Perhaps our group has just grown out of the marketable demographics for this title. And if so, we could very well be witnessing the final chapter in a very long history of The 420th Infantry Division with the Battlefield franchise. And that would be a shame. Maybe someday Hardcore mode will return, but I get the feeling that keeping us hanging on in quiet desperation is the EA way.