Battlefield 2042 release date, trailers, gameplay and modes

The next Battlefield is officially called ‘Battlefield 2042’ and we’re going to get our hands on it this October.

Battlefield 2042 is being touted as “the most ambitious” entry in the series yet, built in the latest Frostbite engine, with 128-player maps available on the latest consoles and PC, while a host of new weapons, vehicles and gadgets are also being introduced - and yes, rumors of a robot dog were true.

And while Battlefield 2042 won’t have a campaign mode, or a rumored Battle Royale mode, players will have access to three “distinct, standout multiplayer experiences”. We don't have all that much longer to wait for Battlefield 2042's release date and we're expecting to find out even more about the game during EA Play Live, which takes place on July 22. In the meantime, read on for everything we know about Battlefield 2042 so far.

Battlefield 2042: cut to the chase

  • What is it? The next installment in the Battlefield game series 
  • When can I play it? October 22, 2021
  • What can I play it on? PS5, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, Xbox One and PC 

What is Battlefield 2042?

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Developed by EA DICE, Battlefield 2042 is the next entry in the veteran Battlefield series. Battlefield 2042 is the 17th entry in the series and is a multiplayer-focused first-person shooter. Battlefield 2042 will mark the series' official debut on PS5 and Xbox Series X.

Battlefield 2042 release date, platforms and price

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Battlefield 2042 releases on October 22, 2021, for PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One and PC.

Battlefield 2042 pre-orders are live now, with three different editions to choose from. The standard PS4, Xbox One and PC versions cost $59.99 / £59.99, while the Xbox Series X/S and PS5 versions cost $69.99 / £69.99. The Battlefield 2042 Gold Edition is also available for $89.99 / £89.99 on PC and $99.99 / £99.99 on console, while the Battlefield 2042 Ultimate Edition is $109.99 / £109.99 on PC or $119.99 / £119.99 on console. Australian pricing is TBC.

Those who pre-order will receive early access to the open beta - scroll down for more information on the beta and technical playtest.

Battlefield 2042 trailers

Gameplay trailer
EA Dice finally gave us a look at Battlefield 2042's gameplay in action during Microsoft and Bethesda's joint E3 2021 conference. The trailer gives us a look at the game's Hourglass map, set in Egypt. 

The gameplay trailer shows tanks shooting down helicopters, which unceremoniously collapse in a heap of flames among the sandy dunes, while soldiers crawl all over the map like well-armored ants. The trailer also gives us a look at Hourglass’ neon-clad skyscrapers, with elevators allowing players to reach the top floor - and we’re hoping all the floors in between, though that wasn’t shown. Once players reach the top of these skyscrapers, they can zipline across to other rooftops or utilize their wingsuit to soar from their new vantage point. 

The trailer also gives us a look at Battlefield 2042’s dynamic weather in action, which is bound to cause complete mayhem. The footage shows a tornado ripping through the Hourglass map, causing utter devastation, but these randomly generated world occurrences can either be a boon or bane for players. While you can choose to avoid the tornado - as much as possible - by seeking refuge in skyscrapers, you can also choose to utilize it to your advantage and devastate your enemies. Check out the trailer below:

Battlefield 2042 reveal trailer
The first official trailer for Battlefield 2042 was shown during the Battlefield reveal on June 9. The trailer gives us our first proper look at Battlefield 2042 and it, frankly, looks like it will be an epic affair featuring dynamic weather, huge battles and even robot dogs? Check it out below:

EA Play 2020
The upcoming Battlefield was featured in a tech trailer during EA Play 2020, though we didn't know much about it back then. In the trailer, we only caught a glimpse of some "work in progress" footage, which showed facial animations and a large number of soldiers running into battle.

From the brief glimpses we saw, it looks like facial animations will be more realistic than previously and that we're going to see battlefields getting even larger this time round (the latter has been confirmed since).

"We are creating epic battles at a scale and fidelity unlike anything you've experienced before", EA's chief studios officer Laura Miele said during the video. Check it out for yourself below, at the 44-minute mark:

Battlefield 2042 setting

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Battlefield 2042 is set in a world that is on the brink of complete devastation. Food, energy and water shortages have led to the “greatest refugee crisis in human history”, following the failure of many of the world’s nations. Among these refugees are the “Non-Patriated” (also known as the No-Pats), made up of families, farmers, engineers and soldiers, who have been left without a nation to call their own. 

The last two superpowers that remain are the United States and Russia, who are battling it out for control of the globe’s last remaining resources. In order to survive, Non-Pat Specialists join both sides so that, when the final bullet is fired, they have “a seat at the table”. Players will take on the role of one of these Non-Pat Specialists.

EA DICE has called Battlefield 2042 a “true evolution” of the Battlefield franchise.

Battlefield 2042 multiplayer modes

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Battlefield 2042 will have three “distinct, standout multiplayer experiences” according to EA DICE, but Battle Royale isn’t one of them.

The first of these multiplayer experiences is All-Out War, which is described as the next-generation of the Conquest and Breakthrough modes we have seen in the series before. This mode features huge 128-player maps on PC, PS5 and Xbox Series X, while PS4 and Xbox One players will have 64-player versions of these maps, which have been scaled down for the last-gen consoles but are still larger than in previous entries (read on for more information on these maps). EA DICE has assured players “that gameplay, events and moments will all be felt for Battlefield players on whatever platform they play on”.

Conquest mode is the “classic all-out war experience” and will see players fighting over a massive space. According to EA DICE, this mode has a lot of varied pacing, with players choosing where to go and how to fight. EA DICE says that Conquest will feature moments with lots of players, making combat a bit chaotic, while other moments will be less chaotic and more personal.

Breakthrough, on the other hand, is a more guided experience. This mode sees one side attacking and the other defending, in an attempt to capture areas, and will see both sides coming head-to-head in massive clashes. 

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

In addition to All-Out War, Battlefield 2042 will feature two other multiplayer experiences. The second of these is Hazard Zone, an “all-new, high-stakes, squad-based game-type for the Battlefield franchise”. EA DICE has emphasized that this is not a battle royale mode, instead, it’s apparently a “modern take on the multiplayer experience that is distinctly DICE but very different from All-Out Warfare’s Conquest or Breakthrough modes”. We’re due to find out about this mode in the coming months.

The third multiplayer experience is set to be announced at EA Play on July 22. This experience is being developed by DICE LA and will be another completely new mode for the franchise. EA DICE has called this third experience “a love letter to Battlefield fans and one that long-time players will feel right at home with”. 

Prominent leaker Tom Henderson, who has a good track record of accurate leaks, has said this third multiplayer experience is called the 'Battlefield Hub' and will allow players to play remastered versions of classic Battlefield maps but we won't know for sure until EA DICE reveals the mode itself.

EA DICE also revealed that Battlefield 2042 will have a battle pass for each season that will include a free and premium tier - though the premium tier will apparently only offer cosmetic items and never maps. 

According to the developer, each season will push the world’s narrative forward and introduce new content. Battlefield 2042 is set to have four seasons in its first year - with four new Specialists to be introduced as well as new locations. 

Battlefield 2042 maps

Battlefield 2042's All Out War multiplayer experience will launch with seven maps. Due to the size of these maps, each is broken into distinct sectors, with multiple objectives within those sectors which are arranged in clusters. Clusters are areas where objects and objectives are focused in one space, such as a village, stadium or oil platform. These sectors change how you take control of areas, with securing a sector requiring completing all the objectives within that sector.

Check them out below:

Battlefield 2042

Kaleidoscope (Image credit: EA DICE)

Kaleidoscope
Set in Songdo, South Korea, this will see you clashing to control a disinformation hub. This map features huge skyscrapers with multiple floors, canals outside with amphibious vehicles, a TV station, and ziplines allowing you to traverse across rooftops.

Battlefield 2042

Manifest (Image credit: EA DICE)

Manifest
Set in Branai Island, Singapore, players will fight for access to supply lines. This map features a massive container yard and automated cranes which pick up and move containers as you play. Players can also access ships that contain capture points. Combat in this map apparently gets “intense”.

Battlefield 2042

Orbital (Image credit: EA DICE)

Orbital
Set in Kourou, French Guiana, this map sees you battling over a rocket launch site as a “controversial space launch becomes a race against time”. This map sees a lot of action around the rocket launch and surrounding area, and the rocket can even take off - but apparently, it doesn’t always go as planned...

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Discarded
Set in Alang, India, this map sees factions fighting to secure rogue nuclear assets. There are huge stranded ships dotted around this map, which were stranded due to the changing water levels, including one called ‘Colossus’ which hides a submarine inside.

Battlefield 2042

Renewal (Image credit: EA DICE)

Renewal
Set in the Eastern Desert, Egypt, Renewal sees players fighting for a groundbreaking agriculture technology center in the Egyptian Desert. This is a map of two halves: one side lush and green and the other desert wasteland.

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Hourglass
Set in Doha, Qatar, Hourglass is a “city lost in time” and sees players fighting for a lost convoy. One of the larger maps, this map features a neon city, with skyscrapers that light up as massive sandstorms pass through, a stadium overrun by sand, and a huge highway intersection where the convoy has come to stop.

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Breakaway
Set in Queen Maud Land, Antarctica, Breakaway is Battlefield 2042’s largest map at 5.9km2. This map sees players fighting over oil and gas reserves, and features exploding silos and distinct combat areas.

Due to the size of these maps, each is broken into distinct sectors, with multiple objectives within those sectors which are arranged in clusters. Clusters are areas where objects and objectives are focused in one space, such as a village, stadium or oil platform. These sectors change how you take control of areas, with securing a sector requiring completing all the objectives within that sector.

Battlefield 2042 Specialists

Players will take on the role of Specialists in Battlefield 2042, soldiers with their own unique Special Trait and Speciality, but with fully customizable loadouts - so you can use any weapon. 

Specialties can take the form of a grappling hook, which lets Assault Specialists zip to higher spots; an OV-P Recon Drone, which allows Recon Specialists to pinpoint targets; or a S21 Syrette Pistol, allowing Support Specialists to fire health vials at those who need them.

The new Battlefield will launch with 10 Specialists, with each falling under a traditional class of either Engineer, Assault, Support or Recon. So far, we know of four Specialists:

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Wikus “Casper” Van Daele
Place of Birth: South Africa
Class: Recon
Specialty: OV-P Recon Drone
Trait: Movement Sensor

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Webster MacKay
Place of Birth: Canada
Class: Assault
Specialty: Grappling Hook
Trait: Nimble

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Maria Falck
Place of Birth: Germany
Class: Support
Specialty: S21 Syrette Pistol
Trait: Combat Surgeon

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Pyotr “Boris” Guskovsky
Place of Birth: Russia
Class: Engineer
Specialty: SG-36 Sentry Gun
Trait: Sentry Operator

Specialists can change their weapon configuration on the go thanks to Battlefield 2042’s new ‘Plus System’ - which allows you to change your scope, undertype, barrel and ammo type on the move. Players will also have access to a wingsuit so they can glide off tall structures in maps.

Players will also get access to new weapons including an M5A3, K30 and AV9. In addition, vehicles will play a big role in this game, with players able to access tanks, fighter jets, helicopters and more - which can be requested at any time to any location. According to EA DICE, vehicles in Battlefield 2042 are a “platform for great team play”. Each vehicle seat has a vital role to play, so having more players in your vehicle makes it a more efficient weapon. 

Battlefield 2042 gameplay

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

Battlefield 2042 is set to lean into the sandbox experience more than any other entry in the series. Maps have dynamic weather which will see players avoiding (or utilizing) the likes of tornadoes and sandstorms. In addition, Battlefield 2042 features destructible environments and terrain, ground deformation and levolution, while there will also be “smaller ways” to interact with the world including raising or lowering bollards and bridges to prevent vehicles from passing. 

Players will also get access to new weapons including an M5A3, K30 and AV9. In addition, vehicles will play a big role in this game, with players able to access tanks, fighter jets, helicopters and more - which can be requested at any time to any location. According to EA DICE, vehicles in Battlefield 2042 are a “platform for great team play”. Each vehicle seat has a vital role to play, so having more players in your vehicle makes it a more efficient weapon.   

In addition, a nice quality-of-life feature means that Specialists can change their weapon configuration on the go thanks to Battlefield 2042’s new ‘Plus System’ - which allows you to change your scope, undertype, barrel and ammo type on the move. Players will also have access to a wingsuit so they can glide off tall structures in maps.

For those who aren’t comfortable fighting against real players, or want to get to grips with Battlefield before jumping into these matches, there is the ability to play this multiplayer experience against and with AI players. You’ll also be able to play with a mix of real-life and AI players. These AI players will reportedly scale based on a player’s skill and AI battles will contribute to a player's overall progress.

Battlefield 2042: technical playtest

Battlefield 2042

(Image credit: EA DICE)

If you want to get your hands on Battlefield 2042 ahead of its October release then you’re in luck. EA DICE is set to host a technical playtest in July for those who have been identified as series veterans (US and Europe only). These players will be invited to play in a closed environment under NDA. 

Following this, but before launch, those who have pre-ordered Battlefield 2042 will receive early access to an open beta. Details on how this open beta will work haven't been shared yet.

Battlefield 2042 news

We've rounded up all the biggest news surrounding Battlefield 2042 below.

Bot invasion

When Battlefield 2042 launches, players on Xbox Series X, PS5 and PC will be able to play in servers with up to 128 players at once. However, players might not always be facing off against humans in these matches.

Speaking to The Verge, EA explained that AI bots will come into play and that up to 64 'AI soldiers' could be used to fill up empty lobbies depending on factors like your region, platform and the time of day. Of course, human players will take priority so if you’re playing at busy times it’s unlikely you’ll be besieged by bots.

Last-gen players are even less likely to encounter bots as, while bots will be used to fill their servers too, the max lobby size is just 64 on older consoles and many Battlefield 2042 players are likely to be using last-gen hardware thanks to ongoing next-gen shortages.

EA Play
EA Dice is set to unveil Battlefield 2042's third multiplayer experience during the EA Play event on July 22. The pre-show will start at 10am PT/ 6pm BST/ 1pm ET on July 22 and will be followed by the main showcase.

See more

Battlefield Hub
According to notable leaker Tom Henderson (via VGC), Battlefield 2042's third multiplayer experience is called the 'Battlefield hub' and will allow players to play remastered versions of classic Battlefield maps.

"Battlefield Hub is going to contain remasters of old maps from old Battlefield titles,” Henderson says in a video. “It’s going to be a map on the Battlefield 2042 engine and it's going to run on that engine, so the movement and stuff like that is going to be exactly the same. However, you’re essentially playing on a remastered map with different weapons and vehicles from past Battlefield titles."

According to Henderson, the major of these maps will be 64-players only, though the Battlefield Hub will support 128-player maps on next-gen consoles and PC. "It just depends on the map," Henderson says. This suggests we could see some of the bigger classic Battlefield maps supporting 128 players.

Henderson also claimed that the Battlefield Hub is going to be "the ultimate sandbox experience" and is touted to be the “fun” game mode when it comes to Battlefield 2042. According to Henderson's sources, the Battlefield hub isn't necessarily going to be a competitive or balanced experience, with the focus being on fun instead. Henderson also claims that this mode won't feature classes, but instead will feature Battlefield 2042's Specialists instead.

Battlefield 2042 briefing
EA DICE held a Battlefield 2042 briefing on June 15 which saw the developer explaining further details on the new Battlefield, following the gameplay reveal on June 13. You can watch the full video on Twitch.

No Battle Royale plans
EA DICE confirmed during a virtual preview of Battlefield 2042 that the developer has no plans to include a Battle Royale mode at launch. 

EA recruits Call of Duty exec
EA has recruited a former Call of Duty exec to help grow the Battlefield series. The company recently announced it has hired former Call of Duty General Manager, Byron Beede, as the General Manager and Senior Vice President on the Battlefield (via IGN). With EA saying that the hire "signals a strategic, long-term commitment to the growth of the franchise".

But it's Beede's experience that is most interesting. Beede has previously been the General Manager of both the Call of Duty and Destiny franchises, most notably worked on the launch of Call of Duty's live service offering, Call of Duty Mobile and Call of Duty: Warzone

While Beede is set to focus primarily on the future of the Battlefield franchise, his knowledge of live service games will likely be a huge boon to Battlefield 2042. 

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