Battlefield 5 Companies and combat roles detailed in a new trailer

A new Battlefield 5 trailer dives into the intricacies of The Company, the collection of soldiers, weapons, and vehicles that you'll accumulate and customize as you play. Individual Companies can be assembled for each multiplayer faction, beginning with the British and Germans, each with its own unique soldiers and vehicles. 

As usual, four classes of soldiers will be available—Recon, Support, Assault, and Medic—and each can be further customized with Combat Roles, a system previously known as Archetypes. Each class will have two Combat Roles available to choose from at launch, with more coming in post-release Tides of War updates. Combat Roles can be swapped in and out on the fly: EA gave as an example an Assault class soldier switching to a vehicle-focused Combat Role in order to deal with a sudden onrush of enemy tanks in the midst of a battle. 

"In Battlefield 5, we want Combat Roles to communicate a clear play style for players. Each Combat Role will be equipped with weapons, gear, and traits to make them the best for a particular play style or situation. Combat Roles can be exotic or specialized with less flexibility but breaking out from some of the restrictive rule sets we’ve had in previous titles. Simply, it gives new players a much clearer direction with new ways to play," development director Ryan McArthur explained

"The new system is also beneficial for seasoned players. Veterans have more specialized roles to create focused squads and will get to experiment with squad composition to find new, creative ways to attack a certain map or mode. As a pro, experiment and refine, and adjust to how you want to play today, what you’re best at, or what traits fit your playstyle and squad." 

Equipment loadouts will enable further fine-tuning. Each soldier will begin with a standard class-based loadout, which will grow through unlocks or purchases using in-game currency. (Details on the Battlefield 5 economy will be revealed in a later update.) Using weapons in battle will unlock additional customization options, including receivers, stocks, barrels, and more. Vehicles will work in a similar fashion: Each Company starts with one tank and one aircraft, more can be earned or purchased, and play will unlock upgrades and customization options. 

Battlefield 5 comes out on October 11 for Origin Access subscribers, and October 19 for the rest of us. An open beta will kick off on September 6. 

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.