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1/ The "story" of #BattlefieldV is complex. While it is obvious #EA & #DICE no longer see significant long term profit potential (vs opportunity cost) for #BFV, how we got to today is worth revisiting. My experience tells me this...
2/ From the beginning, it *appears* the long term goal of #BattlefieldV was to follow the "beats" of the war, from the early European conflict zones to the end, and at the same time, make #BFV something more personal & "customizable" that previous titles.
3/ It's not hard to pull this from the structure we got, and it makes sense for a long running service title. #WW2 is a near perfect scenario (it's a war for God's sake) environment for a #Battlefield title that need updated over a 3-5 year period.
4/ Those early, somewhat awkward trailers for #BattlefieldV, show what the #developers originally envisioned: A "customizable" #Battlefield, with consistently updated cosmetic options, skins, etc. This also meant all genders, races, self identifying options for everyone.
5/ And I'm going to say right now that I don't think there's anything wrong with that. I support that pivot. I'm a #WW2 history buff myself, and if #DICE & #EA wanted #BattlefieldV to be inclusive, there's a path to do that. But...
6/ It wasn't "woke" #EA that hurt #BattlefieldV out the gate, it was the awkward & inconsistent marketing. The first trailer for #BFV was *not* exciting, and it did not showcase the game properly. The first trailer for BFV felt more like a WW2 anime feature than game.
7/ And since that trailer, and *strange* marketing with Trevor Noah ("BFV the Talk Show"), the market was confused as to what #BFV was trying to be. Go back and watch that stuff now, it hasn't aged well, and clearly was the wrong way to announce the game...
8/ I believe there was an immediate pivot away from the "stylistic" WW2 that was showcased in the trailers, after #EA & #DICE sat down and looked at the market response. This is the first of many issues - and likely a major setback to the monetization plans.
9/ #EA & #DICE produced some additional marketing material after that, mostly it appeared to walk back the more extreme & stylized customization options and remind people: "HEY THIS IS #BATTLEFIELDV, you remember BF right?" Now, the release product:
10/ I enjoyed the release of #BattlefieldV and I'm not ashamed to admit that, but I agree with many that it felt like something was wrong, as if the launch version was smaller (in content) than it should be. There was a solid game there, but there was an *identity problem*.
11/ I suspect that #DICE was behind the curve in what they wanted ready for release. It sure as heck appears that much of the customization was stripped out (a response to the marketing), and furthermore, the game didn't pay homage to anything that most people know of #WW2.
12/ #BattlefieldV felt, and played, like a game that didn't know what it wanted to be. Was it supposed to be a stylistic take on WW2? Gritty and real? Why were true war stories altered to be something else? Where are all the tanks & planes? Why is this game 95% infantry?
13/ The potential answer to those questions - #DICE fixed up the game for launch, but the vision was clearly lacking. A consistent and clear vision is critical to any piece of art, especially a game, and #BFV didn't have a clear & consistent vision. It was fractured, so to speak.
14/ The internal pivot after the awkward marketing only made things worse. #BattlefieldV didn't include anything iconic that the market could identify with #WW2, and the decision to start at the very beginning of the war ultimately hurt it in the long term.
15/ #BFV launched weaker than expected, about 1 million down (7 million vs. 8 million expected). It included design decisions (weekly challenges) that felt more akin to an MMO (or BR) than a BF game. Then when it came to content...
16/ Content updates were slow. I am the biggest proponent of #developers, and I cannot stand entitled "#gamers" who constantly complain, but #BFV lacked many "things" that make a BF game: vehicles, iconic scenarios, variety. It took months just to get a single vehicle-based map.
17/ Some of this is a result of the decision to start the "war" at the beginning. The devs couldn't include everything, as it wasn't in the war yet, but ultimately, I don't know if this was the right decision. It's harder to sell a #WW2 game without iconic scenarios. #BFV
18/ After launch, it's apparent that #BattlefieldV saw a lot of churn, and #DICE attributed much of this to...weapon balance. Over the course of BFV's lifetime we've seen two attempts by DICE to "soften" weapons in an attempt to lower churn. I think these efforts were misguided.
19/ The only significant, game-altering content came to #BattlefieldV in the form of the American & Japanese forces (and maps) included in version 6.0. (Oddly enough, for about a month, BFV was in a great place [for me, personally].)
20/ Through all this, I almost forgot to touch on the time & money spent on the #battleroyale mode, #firestorm. Firestorm wasn't bad, and the I think the devs had a VERY interesting concept on their hands (tanks included), but ultimately consumers didn't spend their time there.
21/ Did #BattlefieldV really need a #battleroyale mode? Maybe. I don't think it was the wrong decision, but the time spent there could have been spent on BFV's core experience and I'm not sure the trade-off was worth it, especially if it didn't result in any revenue benefit.
22/ The announcement today (regarding end of new content) isn't surprising. #EA has a new #Battlefield game on the horizon, Vince Zampella is now also overseeing #DICE, and the opportunity cost to create new content for #BFV has become too large to make financial sense.
23/ Let me be clear, I enjoyed #BattlefieldV. I thought the gun mechanics were excellent and the limited vehicles that we got were powerful & fun to deploy. But as a product, #BFV felt lost in itself and I believe it went through an identity crisis that hurt its long term health.
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