KEY POINTS

  • "Battlefield 1" is an immersive online multiplayer shooter set in World War 1
  • The game still enjoys a healthy playerbase on the PC platform
  • The game retains much of "Battlefield's" signature gameplay

There are very few games set in World War 1, yet “Battlefield 1” did a tremendous job of creating an immersive and believable atmosphere, with a single-player campaign that pays respect to those who lost their lives in the world’s first global conflict as well as a multiplayer experience that remains true to the “Battlefield” experience.

Released in 2016, “Battlefield 1” was met with generally positive reviews, mostly due to the game’s improved gunplay, satisfying combat, gorgeous environments and DICE’s award-winning sound design that brought the battlefield to life. However, at its core, the game was still “Battlefield” and brought with it some past issues as well as some new ones that players didn’t particularly like.

“Battlefield 1” featured a marked improvement in terms of immersion factor when compared to “Battlefield 4.” Guns would get caked in mud as players crawled through trenches, officer whistles would ring through the air at the beginning of a massive push and the battle cries of soldiers would fill the atmosphere with the sounds of triumph and defeat. Weapons felt and sounded powerful, and every fight felt like a desperate struggle for survival.

From a gameplay perspective, “Battlefield 1” plays much like the rest of the games in the series.

There are four player classes (and the new Sentry kits) that can adopt different roles and there are a multitude of vehicles at a team’s disposal, ranging from very early tank models to Behemoth-class vehicles that come in the form of armored trains, air ships, dreadnaughts and super heavy tanks. These Behemoths were great for turning a battle around, but they also proved to be a little unfair.

Battlefield 1 featured mounted cavalry armed with melee weapons, carbine rifles and anti-tank grenades Battlefield 1 featured mounted cavalry armed with melee weapons, carbine rifles and anti-tank grenades Photo: Electronic Arts

Some players also noted that the prevalence of automatic and semi-automatic weapons broke the game’s realism as the standard-issue bolt-action rifles were mostly relegated to only the Scout class.

As far as player counts are concerned, “Battlefield 1” still has a healthy playerbase across most regions, at least for PC. The Asian regions in particular have dozens of active servers, but much like in “Battlefield V,” official servers tend to have hacker problems.

Overall, “Battlefield 1” is well worth playing in 2021. It’s an incredibly immersive game that gets every aspect of “Battlefield” correctly, but some will argue that running-and-gunning isn’t exactly a playstyle that suits the World War 1 era. Also, with the encroaching release of “Battlefield 2042,” some players may want to wait for that game instead.