Electronic Arts and developer Visceral Games announced on Thursday that the open beta for Battlefield Hardline will take place on February 3 to February 8 for Windows PC (Origin), the two Xbox consoles, and the two PlayStation consoles. The full version of the game is expected to hit retail shelves on March 17 in North America, March 19 in Europe and March 20 in the UK.
According to Electronic Arts, the open beta will include three maps – Downtown, Dust Bowl and Bank Job – as well as three multiplayer game modes: Hotwire, Conquest and Heist. The Hotwire mode will be playable on the Downtown and Dust Bowl maps and will pit a team of cops against a team of crooks who set out to steal a number of marked cars.
The company also revealed that the popular Conquest mode will only be playable on the Dust Bowl map and enable battles consisting of up to 64 players. As for Heist, this will only be playable on the Bank Job map and will see a team of crooks trying to break into a bank vault while a team of cops tries the thwart their thieving campaign.
In addition to the new modes and maps, the open beta will also enable one player on each team to be a hacker in all three open beta gameplay modes. This player can tap into security cameras, examine the playing field and direct the team to areas that need attacking or defending.
So what will PC gamers need to run the Battlefield Hardline open beta? "We haven't announced detailed PC specs yet but if your PC can run BF4 it shouldn't have a problem with Hardline," Visceral Games revealed on Twitter.
Not familiar with what Battlefield 4 requires? The minimum system requirements include an AMD Athlon X2 (2.8 GHz) or an Intel Core 2 Duo (2.4 GHz) CPU at the least, 4 GB of RAM, 30 GB of free hard drive space, and a 32-bit version of Windows Vista SP2. The GPU requirements include an AMD Radeon HD 3840 or an Nvidia GeForce GT 8800 at the very least, both packed with 512 MB of graphics memory.
As for the recommended requirements, PC gamers will need a 64-bit version of Windows 8. On the CPU front, they will also need a six-core AMD chip or a quad-core Intel processor. The GPU requirements include an AMD Radeon HD 7870 or an Nvidia GeForce GTX 660, both with 3 GB of video memory. Other ingredients include 8 GB of RAM and 30 GB of hard drive space.
Again, these specs are for Battlefield 4. If PC players can run that particular game without a hitch, the same should apply to the Hardline beta, according to the developer.
"There's nothing more valuable to our team than the relationship we have with our community. Their passion feeds our passion and their feedback has definitely helped make Hardline a better game," said Steve Papoutsis, General Manager of Visceral Games and Executive Producer of Battlefield Hardline. "We want them to play the hell out of the beta next week and trust that they'll keep that feedback coming so we can continue to fine tune the game."
The small print on EA's announcement stated that the 64-player Conquest mode will only be available for Windows PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 customers; on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, the mode will have a cap of 32 players. Additionally, Japanese gamers will have access to the beta only on the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3.