Battlefield 1 Hands-on Preview – A Great Attempt at the Great War

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Battlefield 1 is a game I did not know that I wanted until it was announced. I knew that DICE has had a rocky past when it comes to their games, but hearing the bass-line of the “Seven Nation Army” remix by Glitch Mob blare during the trailer, I was immediately sitting on the edge of my seat.

I knew right then that I’d have to get it eventually. Usually, I tend to wait a year or so before picking up a game like it to grab the complete edition of the game for a better price – but after playing a single match of Battlefield 1 at the EA Play event, I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited for a mainstream first person shooter before.

Battlefield 1 did a great job changing the formula up enough without going too far and alienating their fan-base. When you start the game up and begin to move, you’ll immediately notice that the game feels almost exactly like the previous games – but you’ll also notice some of the small tweaks that make Battlefield 1 a unique experience.

You can still choose from your basic loadouts; assault, support, anti-tank, and sniper. However, planes and tanks are now classified as spawn points as well, and you can select them when you deploy.

This change may not feel like much at first, but it quickly becomes apparent as people no longer need to wait at the vehicle spawn for their precious armored behemoths to spawn.

Instead of waiting for vehicles to spawn, players will actually head out to the battle while waiting for them to be available when they respawn.

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Another change is the focus on melee combat. There are a bunch of different melee weapons to choose from, leaving the player to choose their own personal instrument for murder.

Battlefield 1 has also adopted a bayonet charge attack, similar to Red Orchestra 2, which allows you to charge forward with your bayonet extended with a vicious battle cry. Using it well is hard to master, but when done just right, a good bayonet charge may just be one of the most rewarding experiences in a modern first person shooter.

During our time at E3, we were only giving the chance to play a single match of Conquest; a game mode with each team working to capture and hold strategic control points. Even with just a the short demo, it only took 20 minutes with the game for any doubts I had about the game itself to vanish.

Battlefield 1’s attempt to capture the spirit of the Great War while still making a fun video game to play is not only admirable but also successful, proving that even a step backwards in time can push a franchise forward.

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Battlefield 1 will be available worldwide October 21, 2016 across PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.

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Tyler was a former Niche Gamer contributor.

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