On Thursday, July 22, we learned about a new mode coming soon Battlefield 2042: Battlefield Portal. This mode will allow players to make their own custom games, giving them control over everything from when to kill to which vehicles appear on the map. What’s more, Battlefield Portal is incorporating several older Battlefield titles, including Battlefield 1942, Battlefield: Bad Company 2and Battlefield 3.
While Thursday’s presentation shines on the Battlefield Portal, we still have a lot of questions after it’s over. To answer some of those questions – such as how getting XP will work in the Battlefield Portal and whether the included maps from older games go to 2042of All-Out Warfare – I spoke with Rob Donovan, a senior game designer at Ripple Effect.
What do you want to do with Battlefield Portal’s player experience? Is this something for players to joke about or something that takes up more of their time like Halo 3Custom game of?
I won’t talk to Halo 3They’re custom games, but we, as a studio, have been developing Battlefield Portal in secret for quite some time, and we talked about it, we played it, we played it. I discussed it. We think we’re on to something really special and we really hope that the community takes it warmly and it becomes something really popular.
We don’t want to take it away 2042, but we think there’s a big enough Battlefield ecosystem that players can experience everything from All-Out Warfare to the Battlefield Portal type of experience daily or in the same session.
Is the Battlefield Portal something that will exist in future Battlefield titles in the past 2042?
I mean, it’s a bit speculative here. Unfortunately, I have to go home from this interview and go back to shipping this thing, because we only have a few months left. We’ve focused on what we’ll have at launch, what we’ll be able to ship when 2042 come out all at once. So the long-term plans are definitely the ones we’re talking about, the things that we’re thinking about, but as for what’s going to happen in the future, definitely the next Battlefield title, I don’t know. what. it is or when it’s coming out, so that’s a bit too far.
Will players be able to edit the number of vehicles present in a match? In a match with 128 players, can I put them all in a tank or helicopter?
You can not. There are a lot of technical hurdles around the vehicle and the players associated with the vehicle. What we offer at launch is that you get the full range of vehicles for the team you’re playing on, whatever it looks like. Battlefield 3 there are many means, but 2042 even more than that. So you can definitely restrict any of those vehicles if you don’t like them.
If you only want one side with the tank, you can turn off everything else and just have the tank. If you want the other side to have the helicopter, you can turn off everything else and give the helicopter to them. But the unfortunate thing that you can’t do is add more media on it. No, you can’t have 128 cars.
How will XP boost work? During the presentation I saw an XP restriction and a reward progression restriction, so what would make a game ineligible for either of those?
Yeah, I cringe every time that part of the presentation comes up. That is not what is happening today; it was something that we anticipated we would need to build in some protection, so we went a little ahead to try to put that in place.
Right now, XP is unified across all 2042. The XP you get in the Battlefield Portal… will contribute to your rank and it will allow you to use that progression system 2042 are designed.
XP is something that we think is very important. We wanted to make sure that the Battlefield Portal wasn’t seen as a whim, like something you start a round with and then return to the real game. We consider ourselves a real game, a selective game, a variety of games. We certainly don’t want to be forgotten children.
Are you worried about players abusing the Battlefield Portal, using it to create their own experiences or modes where they can easily bypass XP?
Yes, I am terrified of that. It keeps me awake at night. I mean, that’s the opposite of the problem I just raised, isn’t it? We don’t want to seem like this dark side of the game isn’t serious, it’s not real. But similarly, we don’t want to distort anyone’s progress. We don’t want those lousy servers.
You know, there are some multiplayer games with these kinds of custom experiences and I was there when you go to the server browser and everything says “achievement” and “server idle” or “mining”, “glitch” and we don’t want that either. It’s not a good experience for players trying to find a fun game. It’s just, you know, who wants to see that trash if you’re trying to experience Battlefield in a new way.
We don’t want to distort anyone’s progress. We don’t want those lousy servers.
So that’s definitely something we’ve been thinking about a lot, we’ve talked about it a lot. We think it will be a real challenge to keep up with that progress precisely. We make sure we build some leverage after the fact to try and work it out if it starts to go too far one way or another, we’ll keep a close eye on it… Cross your fingers and hope for the best, sure, when it comes to debut.
Will PC players be able to import their assets into the Battlefield Portal or is it all just Battlefield assets?
It’s a Battlefield asset, which is the map we’re shipping. PC players will not be able to enter. I know there are also some copyright issues there. But we also don’t focus on creating map editors or level editors. Our focus is definitely on creating these experiences. Adjusted the rules of Battlefield, tweaked the gameplay, used soldiers and vehicles, and all this incredible content that we’ve reimagined and brought back in really fun ways. That’s our focus on some of the other things that let you create your own maps, say.
However, I will add, we are adding a lot of different types of play spaces. Arenas, for example, have arena play spaces in the 2042 The All-Out Warfare map focuses on a specific point of interest there. It adds an interesting kind of wrinkle and of course, you can’t add your own, but it will be a very different experience to play, say Kaleidoscope in an arena compared to Valparaiso in an arena. … We’ we hope to provide a variety of play spaces for players to create their own experiences in without opening the door to this kind of 3D space thing that’s really not the purpose. ours.
You’re bringing in six maps from older Battlefield games, and it was previously reported that 2042 will feature maps from older Battlefield games. Is this what they are talking about or will these maps also come to All-Out Warfare and other game modes outside of the portal?
I’m pretty sure that’s what they’re talking about. I would say these won’t be in All-Out Warfare at launch. These maps really aren’t big enough for the full All-Out Warfare experience. Like we said in the Q&A, you can put 128 players on a map designed for 64, it gets crowded. After playing it I can tell you that people steal vehicles much faster because there are twice as many of them [players]. That is a real challenge.
I would say these won’t be in All-Out Warfare at launch.
We don’t want to double the size of the maps, we don’t want to add new sections to maps that weren’t originally there. So these Battlefield Portal classic maps you will be able to use them in Portal, but they are not very suitable for All-Out Warfare for 2042. The All-Out Warfare side has its own plans for direct service in its seasons. I know they specifically said “new locations”, so whatever they release in their seasonal content pack, we put it on the Portal so you can use it. But going the other way, there are no plans for that at launch.
I’ve been following around a bit and see that you’ve been using the Ripple Effect since DICE worked on Battlefield Hardline. Will that game or previous Battlefield games get their own maps and weapon systems ported to the Portal?
Certainly, these discussions have come up. Someone on the team tried to build a kind of low-rent version of the Hotwire game mode from Battlefield Hardline using a logic editor and it’s not completely terrible! They grasp its basic rules. I don’t know if someone will try it in the community after we launch and make it really good, I don’t know. We’re making all these blocks and these and some of them that we’ve never even tried to put together in that particular way. I hope someone manages to make it better than I can.
But about the classic content, the classic games, we can’t say anything at the moment. We’re looking for the community to guide us because there are so many different ways we can go, right? Whether it’s more than that or spending more time in the logic editor, or into our many community governance tools… There’s a lot we can do and we won’t commit in any of those ways today. We’re looking to see what the community has to say, and we know there are a lot of potential options. Hopefully, we’ll find things that people like.
Battlefield 2042 will be released on October 22 for PlayStation 4, PS5, PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X | S.