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Battlefield 5's battle royale mode won't be live until spring 2019

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Electronic Arts said today that Battlefield 5's "Firestorm" battle royale mode won't be available until the spring of 2019, several months after the game is released. 

EA revealed the wait in an update that lays out Battlefield 5's "live service journey through the Second World War," which will begin in December with Overture. The first chapter in the game's Tides of War updates will feature a new tank-focused map called Panzerstorm, The Last Tiger single-player mission, and the addition of a practice range.   

In January comes Lightning Strikes, "with a focus on vehicle warfare and rapid infantry movement." It will bring two new modes to the game and Combined Arms, a series of co-op missions across multiple maps. Then in March, EA will roll out Trial By Fire, adding a map set in Greece and—finally—the Firestorm mode. 

A date for Firestorm hasn't actually been set, however: The update says only that the battle royale mode will become available "during spring." 

We knew that Firestorm wouldn't be live when Battlefield 5 launched, but the multi-month wait is a little surprising. For all the noise that EA is making about War Stories and new multiplayer modes, battle royale is what's hot right now, and launching a multiplayer shooter without it has, in a very short amount of time, become a risky move. Then again, Battlefield has gotten along fine with its usual modes for some time, and maybe the change of pace will draw players who are burnt out on Blackout and PUBG.

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.