In an update posted this morning, Battlefield 1 developer DICE has outlined the first batch of updates coming to the chart-topping WWI shooter, including tweaks to the popular Suez multiplayer map, a new custom game mode, the addition of hardcore servers for the super-dedicated and a week-long community event that kicks off on November 16. “Battlefest” will follow the now-traditional model for these things, with log-in rewards, community missions and special Battlepacks designed to lure you into playing every day rather than wandering off and trying Call of Duty – which also releases this week – instead.
The first new custom game mode “Fog of War” will premiere with Battlefest on the 16th and is a new Team Deathmatch mode specifically designed for those of you with a particularly masochistic streak. It makes things harder for everyone by dropping a thick soupy fog over the battlefield, turning off the mini-map and removing all the soldier name tags.
For those of you that want to set up specific conditions for your multiplayer games, November will also see EA rolling out the Rent-a-Server Program for Battlefield 1 much as it did for Battlefield 4. You’ll be able to rent these through the in-game store, but they’re definitely not cheap. If you’re playing on PC they will set you back $2.99 for a single day, $11.99 for a week, $42.99 for 30 days, $99.99 for 90 days or a steep $149.99 for 180 days. Prices on PS4 and Xbox One are a little more reasonable, with a single day being $1.99, $7.99 for a week, $26.99 for 30 days, $64.99 for 90 and $99.99 for 180. With your own server, you’ll be able to tweak ticket counts, bullet damage, weapon selections, modes and map rotation. If you’re wondering why the PC servers cost more, it’s because they run at 60Hz versus 30Hz for the console servers. What does that mean? Well…faster is ultimately better, and it should translate to an experience on PC where you don’t inexplicably register damage behind cover, don’t experience trigger or aim lag and won’t see laggy running animations.
Beyond this, DICE hasn’t confirmed when it will roll out its own “hardcore servers” – essentially the studio’s own custom-game-conditions setup – yet, simply stating that it will be “soon.” Battlefield 4‘s hardcore mode was definitely something for elite players only: it removed crosshairs, lowered everyone’s health and enabled friendly fire (among other tweaks) so it’s safe to assume that we’ll see something similar for Battlefield 1.
Players have had some complaints about the Suez multiplayer map since the game first launched on October 21, primarily grumbling that it’s so off-balance that winning teams always destroy their opponents by a significant margin. To rectify this, the studio is changing the map layout so that capture areas are smaller, adding two new control points and an armored vehicle at each team base so beleaguered teams have a better chance of pushing back when they’re being completely dominated.