The next Battlefield game is Battlefield 2042, thrusting the large-scale FPS series into a near-future Earth (think Boston Dynamics-style robot dogs, not laser guns) where stateless mercenaries fight for superpowers. That's all fine, but for once the new setting isn't the focus of a Battlefield reveal.
The big news is that Battlefield 2042 doubles the player count to 128 and redefines the class system to feature "specialists" with unique gadgets. The previous Battlefield games have all tweaked the basic Battlefield format, but this feels like the most significant change to the series since it started in 2002, almost 20 years ago.ul">
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On top of the usual Conquest and Breakthrough game types there are also two mystery modes. Battlefield developer DICE hasn't fully explained what they are yet, but has said is that they're not battle royale modes, and has made a few other comments that have us real curious—read on to find out more about that and everything else about Battlefield 2042.
What is the Battlefield 2042 release date?The Battlefield 2042 release date is October 22, 2021. On PC, it's releasing on Origin, Steam, and the Epic Games Store.
Battlefield 2042 will also release on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S, but if it exists, crossplay support hasn't been announced. A version of Battlefield 2042 is coming to the older PS4 and Xbox One consoles, too, but those versions won't support 128-player matches.
Watch the Battlefield 2042 gameplay trailer
The Battlefield 2042 gameplay trailer was revealed during the Microsoft and Bethesda Showcase at E3 2021—watch it above.
At the top of this article, you'll also find the cinematic trailer that revealed the game before E3. It includes some great renditions of Battlefield stunts.
The big changes: 128 players, specialists, no singleplayer
The max player count has been doubled to 128 (two teams of 64) on PC and current-gen consoles.
128-player maps are divided into sectors containing clusters of control points; capture all the control points in a sector to control it.
Classes have been replaced by specialists, characters who have unique gadgets but can carry any gun. (Specialists themselves belong to Battlefield classes such as engineer, assault, and support, but you won't play as a generic 'support' soldier.)
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), a wingsuit.
No battle royale mode
No singleplayer campaign
How do 128-player maps work?
The increased player count is accommodated by bigger maps that are divided into sectors. Within each sector, there's essentially a mini-Battlefield match playing out. In the standard Conquest mode, teams can hold a sector by holding all of the points within it. It sounds like you could spend all your time hanging out in one map sector, but there's nothing stopping you from calling in a vehicle and heading elsewhere. The near-future tech doesn't include mechs—sorry Nat!—but you can get a tank dropped from the sky with maneuvering thrusters. And yes, you can drop them on snipers to squash them.