Battlefield V is the latest entry to EA's most successful online FPS franchise. With Battlefield V, the franchise comes full-circle to World War II, the set piece of the very first Battlefield title. Although mostly an online shooter with a common gameplay mechanic and objective, all games in the Battlefield franchise are part of a common mythology that's more or less aligned with real events over the past 100 years. The original Battlefield 1942 was set in World War II, followed by Battlefield 2142 in some dystopian cyberpunk future. Battlefield 2 gave the series critical mass as it came out in the mid-2000s in a geopolitical backdrop that was somewhat relevant to the time. Battlefield 3 and 4 have fictional premises relevant to the 2010s. After these, Battlefield 1 re-traced its storylines back to World War 1, a conflict seldom depicted in games. Part of the same quasi-historic timeline is Battlefield V.
Much like Battlefield 1, Battlefield V's single-player campaign is split across "War Stories"; episodes, each following a different hero in a different theater of war on a specific mission. World War II was a collection of thousands of events that took place within 10-or-so years, some interconnected, some not. Battlefield's creators are trying to show exactly that. When the first trailers came out, Battlefield V kicked up quite some controversy, especially with its in-game cutscenes that depicted a female hero charging men into battle, with some even calling it "historically inaccurate." If you're one of them, grow up. Some 300 million people were involved in World War II. To claim that not one of them could be a female soldier would be preposterous.
The objective of the multiplayer is still the same - you play game modes the Battlefield Series mastered, such as "Campaign" and "Assault," besides "Rush" and Death Matches." Bending to pressure from the likes of PUBG and Fortnite Battle Royale some time in 2019, Battlefield will include a "Firestorm" mode in which you - either solo or as part of a squad - battle to survive as the size of the arena shrinks. As always, mechanized warfare is the cornerstone of Battlefield, and in addition to a vast array of weapons and modifications, you get to drive various armored war machines from the 1940s.
As with every Battlefield title ever released, the creators of Battlefield V have invested heavily in the production design and technical advancement of the game. It uses DICE's latest Frostbite 3 game engine and can take advantage of DirectX 12. The game also fully supports a DirectX 11 fallback, and contrary to rumors, does run fine in Windows 7. Battlefield V does not have support for NVIDIA RTX Raytracing at launch. This capability will be added in a future patch. In its pre-launch commentary, DICE mentioned that the game is also optimized for six-core processors as it can deploy up to six worker threads, although quad-core and dual-core processors are still very much supported. It's good to see the gaming industry finally take advantage of more than four CPU cores.
In this review, we take a performance deep-dive into Battlefield V on our VGA bench, which is powered by an Intel six-core processor and Windows 10, across a selection of NVIDIA and AMD graphics cards that are most relevant these days. We are using the DirectX 12 renderer in our testing, with Ultra settings.