The first Battlefield V trailer from last week's big reveal now has more than 320,000 "dislikes," which is far more than how many "likes" it has, and many viewers are expressing their opinions in some harsh ways in the video's comments section. It's a similar situation to the dislike campaign against Call of Duty's Infinite Warfare reveal two years earlier, but helps further show how underwhelming EA and developer DICE's reveal event was.
The game's reveal trailer (which is available to watch HERE) depicts a chaotic battle scene set during World War II. The player, who is playing as a resistance fighter, rushes through the battlefield, mowing down enemies as allies drop left and right. Soldiers are shot, crushed, and blown up. An enemy seems to have gotten the better of the player, at one point, as an ally swoops in and kills the enemy right in front of the camera. There is no shortage of blood and bullets. But the violence isn't what gamers are up in arms about.
Most YouTube commenters have taken to mocking the game for its poor depiction of World War II. Many have pointed out the anachronistic use of katanas and prosthetics. Some have accused EA of extorting money out of players by providing them with unwanted weapons and characters and forcing them to pay for better items. The overall reaction to the trailer has been largely unfavorable, with the clip earning over 324,000 "dislikes" as opposed to 279,000 "likes," as of the time of this writing.
Battlefield V has already seen its fair share of backlash before the trailer's debut. The marketing campaign for this installment focuses on female characters, even going so far as to feature a woman on the cover art. Some gamers were upset with this inclusion, threatening to abandon the series if the female players were included. A hashtag was inspired by the backlash entitled "#NotMyBattlefield." DICE general manager Oskar Gabrielson responded with a promise that the female characters would, under no circumstances, be removed from play. He pointed out the series was always meant to be an outlet for creativity, allowing gamers to play how they want. This now includes choice of character.
Furthermore, Battlefield V is focusing on WWII's resistance fighters - many of whom were women - not necessarily the traditional militaries. (In fact, approximately 20% of the French Resistance were women, and Battlefield V's titular female protagonist appears to have been partially inspired by Norwegian resistance commander Anne-Sofie Østvedt.)
EA itself has come under fire lately for the company's controversial dealings with gun manufacturers. Barrett, a manufacturer of sniper rifles, revealed that they had product placement deals with various game companies, including EA, in 2013. This didn't sit right with many fans, prompting EA to drop such endorsements for future titles. The company has begun airing a notice claiming no product placement was used in the making of Battlefield V before the trailer. This stance is well-timed, as it comes close on the heels of the White House's "Violence in Video Games" film reel, which was intended to partially blame gun violence on the video game industry.
Battlefield V releases on Xbox One, PS4, and PC on October 19.