With the Battlefield 2042 beta now officially in the hands of everyone, many are wondering why, with the game being so close to release, has this many bugs. While DICE has confirmed that the beta build is already a “few months old,” there’s more to it than just the studio giving gamers everywhere the latest game build. Curious why that’s the case? Well, as it turns out, there is a very good reason for this that not only pertains to DICE, but as a industry as a whole and how betas/demos are created.
Taking to Reddit, DICE Producer Ben Walke has shared details on how beta builds are handled, how they are separate from the retail launch version and more.
This is a super simplistic version, and doesn’t do justice to the work involved.
It’s the nature of software development. We work in branches, so while we have our launch day branch any spin-offs (betas, demo, E3, gamescom etc) all get created from it.
The beta was taken a few months ago from our main build, and from there you then go into hardening mode. This is where you focus on bugs, stability and no further work should get checked in. With each check-in, comes the risk of new issues coming up (as is the case with Software Development). We’re making so many changes to the build so you have to make a call between locking the build or stopping active development.
We don’t want to stop development of our launch build, so you have to ‘cap’ the branched build (in this case the beta) at a specific time.
This won’t be unique to us, this is how the industry will operate as a whole.
The same thing will happen to release builds the closer a studio gets to launch, it gets locked down and then the hardening process can begin.
Worth noting as well that with dates changing, it just makes the build older etc
Day 1 of the beta and we’re already in the territory of people losing their jobs. Have you ever asked yourself why you don’t have more devs interacting with players across the industry?
There’s a valid way to give feedback, I don’t think anyone on the team is against receiving it when it’s done in a constructive way. But the amount of personal attacks I’ve seen in just a few hours since it went live is disappointing.
Everyone that contributes to our UI are fantastic people, super colleagues and talented developers.
As we mentioned before in our Crystal Dynamics harassment story regarding Marvel’s Avengers, it is never okay to attack a developer or issue threats, even if you are not happy about the decisions made. We as a community have the right to criticize, however that does not make it acceptable to use toxic behavior.
For more on the Battlefield 2042 beta, we wrote an extensive article on what we want changed, and what we think worked in our playtest.
Battlefield 2042 is set for release this November 19 on the PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.