It’s the weekend, and we’re about done with the second week of the new year. Battlefield 2042 players looking for news regarding the game’s roadmap, first season, and info on bug fixes are left in the dark. This doesn’t look well for a game already hemorraging players at an insane rate. So, the question is: what’s happening, DICE?
Believe it or not, it hasn’t always been this way. For reference, the last Battlefield game released before BF2042 was Battlefield V, and some players might not believe it now, but DICE was excellent in communicating upcoming fixes, content, and just what the heck was going on to make the game better.
When Battlefield V was released in November of 2018, it didn’t exactly set the multiplayer shooter world on fire (same as Battlefield 2042). However, DICE kept on working on it until it was appreciated by the community (somewhat). But the big difference between BFV and BF2042 is that DICE communicated with the player base.
EA’s Director of Communications for Shooters has commented that the devs are away on holidays, which is one of the reasons why the studio has been silent. Mind, I can’t find fault with that; devs are fine taking a break. What’s not fine is, the week is over, and we still have not heard a thing. Compare this to Battlefield V, DICE not only apologized for the silence in communications, but we got patch notes for the upcoming update, a preview of what’s coming the following week, and more interaction regarding a bunch of issues — all within the same time frame (first two weeks of the new year). Heck, the studio even issued a letter apologizing for the BFV Coins issues, which is outside of the silence apology. Again, ALL these we got within the first 15 days of 2019! So what happened with Battlefield 2042?
Is it because of the personnel change regarding who handles communications for Battlefield 2042 now? Maybe. But the thing is, some of the people who were communicating with the BFV player base then are still with the EA/DICE. By my count, DICE and the Battlefield franchise has four community managers/communications people on-board, but yet, here we are, clawing at every bit of info that’s made available via official channels.
So, what happens now? I’m hoping that we’ll hear something this coming week. Maybe it’s a preview of the upcoming fixes, plans for new content, when the first season will start? Anything, really. Anything is better than being silent. With DICE’s silence, the subreddit has been boiling with anger, confusion, regret, and toxicity that it’s even being threatened by the mods to be shutdown if it doesn’t stop.
Mind, players aren’t asking DICE to lay everything on the table right now. All they (we) want is for the studio to communicate. Communicate what changes are being made, what bugs are being prioritized, what content roll out is planned. Basically, anything except the canned tweets that we’ve been getting that seems to highlight just how out of touch the studio’s communications people are.
DICE, tell us what’s coming. tell us what can be fixed, what can’t, and what’s out of your reach. Anything is better than what we have now, and the Battlefield community deservers better. Not every franchise gets a second or third chance, and the Battlefield franchise is in danger of losing any chances of getting redemption; the last thing the franchise needs is for its communications people to remain quiet. I mean, they are being paid to communicate to the community and the player base, right? Now it’s needed more than ever.
Amid all the rubble, there is a silver lining. Respawn boss Vince Zampella has been roped in to be the new head of the Battlefield franchise. Zampella is no stranger to shooters, as he’s behind some of the most iconic ones in history. In case you didn’t know, Zampella (along with Jason West) kickstarted this entire modern multiplayer shooter thing with Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Before that, they were the heads of 2015 Inc., which was the studio that worked on Medal of Honor: Allied Assault. Now, Zampella’s studio is behind the super-successful Apex Legends, and are the devs behind the excellent Titanfall franchise. If there is anyone at EA who can turn things around for Battlefield, it’s Zampella & Co. Another person who gives us a little ray of sunshine right now is Halo franchise co-creator Marcus Lehto who has been tasked to be the Narrative Director of the Battlefield franchise. While Lehto is relatively new to the franchise, he has been very vocal on Twitter, and is aware of the issues and frustrations of players.
What’s kind of shocking here is, Activision has acknowledged the issues players have with a Call of Duty Vanguard, and COD Warzone. Inarguably, the Call of Duty brand is bigger than the Battlefield franchise. Not only that, but when it comes to missteps in terms of game releases, Activision hasn’t released as many disappointments as EA has. Not cutting Activision any slack here since Warzone’s issues should have been fixed last year, but at least they communicated to their player base already — something Battlefield fans are thirsting for right now.
Will Zampella and Lehto be enough to “save” the Battlefield brand? Nope. They’ll need the help of DICE Sweden for that. Here’s to hoping that DICE themselves are aware of what’s happening and working on something. But even before they release that, let’s hope that they realize that they need to communicate to players now, and not later, since at this point communication is key, and they better do before the player base stops caring and moves on.
Views expressed here are solely that of the author’s and does not represent that of MP1st and its staff.