Battlefield 4 will reward squad play with "Field Upgrades"

Battlefield games are, on the whole, quite good at fostering teamwork. Mostly, it's because they bribe players to work together. The average thought process: "You mean I get more points for working with these chumps. Well, okay, I guess." If DICE started awarding points for not spamming the chat channel with spam and barely coherent rage, it'd be almost ideal. Instead, Battlefield 4 will attempt to further foster the squad bond with the introduction of "Field Upgrades".

"If you're a long term fan that played Battlefield 2142, you will already have an idea what these are," writes lead multiplayer designer Thomas Andersson , explaining this newly tweaked version. "In short, Field Upgrades are chained boosts that can affect a number of gameplay mechanics for your player. Similar to the specializations in Battlefield 3, these can for example provide you with faster sprint speed, stronger personal armor, or expanded ammo capacity.

"The idea behind Field Upgrades is to give individual rewards for squad based team play performance. You earn them through squad scoring such as squad healing, completing objectives with your squad members, squad resupplies, squad repairs, and other squad actions. Instead of one single specialization like in Battlefield 3, you can now pick from different upgrades paths, each containing four specializations. Keep the squad alive, and you will move through the accumulative upgrade path. But watch out! If your entire squad is eliminated, you will lose some of your progress."

Essentially, players who can effectively work together will become more efficient be further rewarded - making strong teams a more powerful, and dangerous force. That philosophy is planned to permeate throughout multiplayer. "Showing you how team play gives you the edge in the bigger battle is paramount for us, and it involves all elements of the game: audiovisual feedback, user interface, gameplay mechanics, and the way the entire persistence system is designed. When we tie all of these elements together with the tweaked team-based scoring, we have a game where I think everyone will find it satisfying and deeply engrossing to truly be part of a team."

DICE's 'Team Play' blog post also teases that players will be able "strongly specialize" the four returning classes. And, of course, it wouldn't be Battlefield 4 if they didn't dedicate a few paragraphs to "Levolution".

Battlefield 4 is due out October 29th in North America, and November 1st in Europe.

Thanks, MP1st .

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.