Update, 12/13/2016, 9:28 am PST: The full update details are now available on the game's forum site.
As early as tomorrow, Battlefield 1 players will get some new content as part of the latest free update, which includes a new map, gadget, viewing mode, and multiple balances to the overall gameplay.
The main attraction is the new map called “Giant’s Shadow,” which DICE said is based on the 1918 Battle of Selle in France. The map’s namesake refers to the looming background of a crashed airship. The area also includes a small town and rail yard for urban warfare as well as some open space for vehicles to traverse. In terms of weapons, a new gadget is available for the Support class called the Grenade Crossbow, which is the game’s World War I equivalent of a grenade launcher.
For custom games, DICE added a new option that restricts each class and faction to their specific standard issue rifle. Not only does this add some challenge to the game, but it also makes the experience more authentic.
If you want to take a break from the action, you can watch other matches in the new Spectator Mode. “Table Top” view allows you to watch the battle unfold from above, and you can glimpse through the perspective of a specific player with a first- or third-person camera. There’s also a free camera option that lets yyou view the game at any angle, which is ideal for those who want to capture game footage. You’ll also have some visual tools as well, such as the ability to add depth of field to a shot, move the third-person camera, or just add a specific filter.
Just like previous updates, there are also numerous balance changes to gameplay. This time around, DICE highlighted some changes to the syringe cooldown time, sprinting, and spawning inside a Landship vehicle. However, the studio made some major changes to the game’s many shotguns. Many players, including myself, found that shotguns were still highly effective at long distances, which made it an easy weapon of choice. With this update, the developers will reduce the range of one-shot kills from the M97 Trench Gun, Model 10-A, and Sawed-Off Shotgun. These weapons are still powerful, but you’ll have to get closer to the enemy if you want to make each shot count.
Most of these are included in tomorrow’s update, but if you pre-ordered the game or are a Premium Pass player, you’ll get a seven-day preview of the Giant’s Shadow map before the rest of the community gets it for free on December 20. This is the third update for DICE’s latest game, and it certainly won’t be the last. The first paid content, titled “They Shall Not Pass,” doesn’t arrive until March 2017, and in the meantime, the studio will continue to listen to player feedback so it can fine-tune multiple gameplay aspects of Battlefield 1.