The "In the Name of the Tsar" expansion won’t be available to the general public for another two weeks, but those who own the Battlefield 1 Revolution Edition or the Premium Pass can try it out today. In addition, DICE provided a preview of the new content and also revealed numerous fixes to the base game and its expansions.
As its title suggests, "In the Name of the Tsar" relates to Russia’s involvement in World War I. You’ll get to play as one of two Russian factions: the Russian Empire’s White Guard, or the revolutionary troops of the Red Army. There are five new maps for you to explore, such as the mountain village of Brusilov Keep, the streets of Tsaritsyn, and the Volga River. Those who love the multi-round Operations mode also get new Russian-themed conflicts—the “Brusilov Offensive” and “Red Tide”—where you will fight foreign invaders on the Eastern Front or engage in civil war with your countrymen, respectively. You’ll get to try a plethora of additional vehicles and weapons.
In terms of gameplay, the studio added a new feature called “Specializations.” These are new perks that you can attach to your current soldier to help them survive in combat. For instance, the Flak specialization reduces damage from explosions by 15%, while Bayonet Training lets you charge for one second longer and recovers the ability one second quicker. You’ll get a basic set of these perks, which you can use on any soldier class. There are also specific Specializations for each class, but you need to unlock them by completing the new Service Assignment challenges.
Even if you don’t plan on picking up the expansion, you need to download an update that corresponds to the new content. It lets those who don’t own the expansion watch the expansion’s offerings through Spectator Mode and, if you have a friend who owns "In The Name of the Tsar," they can give you a hands-on preview through the game’s Premium Trials feature. In terms of visuals, the update also adds high dynamic range (HDR) support, so you should see improved contrast between dark and light areas. In order to use the feature, you’ll need a monitor that has HDR capabilities. Just like previous updates to the game, there are numerous changes and fixes to the gameplay, which you can find on the Battlefield 1 website.