World War II definitely isn't new territory for Swedish developer DICE, but Battlefield V won't be treading the same familiar ground. They're well aware that players have stormed the beaches of Normandy dozens of times and have fought in the bunkers of France. They want to do something fresh, and the studio plans to do that by focusing on three major aspects in the first-person shooter: unseen locations, untold stories, and unplayed gameplay moments.
DICE has tackled World War II several times before. In fact, the Battlefield series all began with Battlefield 1942, which was set during the great conflict and featured locations such as Wake Island and El Alamein as maps. They most recently featured the Pacific Theater events in 2009's Battlefield 1943. More recent games in the Battlefield series have been more modern, with the exception of 2016's Battlefield 1, which showcased the First World War.
As far as unseen locations go, DICE revealed to us earlier this week that players will go north of the Arctic Circle in order to battle in the snowy mountains of Norway. Another map will take place in the devastated city of Rotterdam after it was attacked. Other confirmed locations include the rugged North African desert and the French countryside.
DICE aims to use these unique settings to tell new stories rather than rehashing old ones. The studio said that the in-game stories will be "inspired by" events rather than be bound to strict historical accuracy, and instead want to portray stories that get across the challenges that people were facing. For example, one of the game's single-player campaign War Stories (there are 10 in total) is called Nordlys (Norwegian for "northern lights") will feature a young resistance fighter as she attempts to save her family, not the world, and must make the ultimate sacrifice. The idea is that these are real people fighting very real things, not saving the world.
There was understandably some trepidation going into the Battlefield V unveil as World War II is a familiar setting for games, and was the subject of last year's Call of Duty. That said, DICE is clearly aware of this fact and have done their best to provide a new experience. After all, there's so many sides and nuances to explore within one of the biggest events in history. This is a great step to use a familiar backdrop to tell new stories and teach players more about the Second World War.
Battlefield V releases on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on October 19. A play first trial will launch October 11, and the deluxe edition of the shooter will release three days early on October 16.