DICE has announced the upcoming World War II shooter Battlefield V is being delayed and will release on November 20th rather than October 19th as initially planned.
In a post published on the EA Battlefield portal, DICE GM Oskar Gabrielson cited the need to make ‘meaningful improvements to the core gameplay experience, including adjusting the gameplay tempo, improving soldier visibility and reducing player friction’.
The post also hints at the ambitions of the game – with a multitude of modes such as Tides of War, Battle Royale, and War Stories – having an impact on the decision. Gabrielson says the time will be used ‘to ensure we really deliver on the potential of Tides of War’, though the scant news around Battlefield V’s Battle Royale mode suggests the focus could be on what is expected to cement the title’s lifespan.
Feedback from successive Battlefield V conference-based alpha test-a-thons further nudged DICE to take the decision, though rumors of below expectation pre-order numbers may have had equal sway in the matter. The original release date slotted in uncomfortably between the release of Battlefield’s biggest competitor, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, and Rockstar’s surefire stratospheric hit Red Dead Redemption 2. With consumer spending shared across these three titles, Battlefield V would not have sold as well. The delay should give EA a bit more space to breath in terms of the commercial returns on what is unquestionably a colossal investment.
The Battlefield V Open Beta, scheduled to start from September 6th, is going ahead as planned and is unaffected by the release window shift. DICE are eager to release the current build of the shooter to the gaming community at large to gather a wider cross section of feedback, which we imagine the studio will now have sufficient time to action thanks to the delay.
Interested parties are having to wait a month longer than anticipated, which is of course disappointing. Yet, the short delay is readily put into perspective when we consider Red Dead Redemption 2 was originally penciled in for release last Autumn. In comparison, a month is a reasonable amount of time for players to wait for an improved gaming experience.