Despite the naming convention, Battlefield 1 is the fifteenth installment of the long-running Battlefield series. It brings the series back to the early 20th century, this time during World War I (the first AAA first-person shooter to do so).
Unlike previous entries in the series, the game's single-player story is not focused on a particular character or squad and, like early Call of Duty games, puts the player into the role of several different Allied soldiers throughout the world.
It runs on an updated version of the Frostbite 3 engine.
The campaign in Battlefield 1 is broken up into six different War Stories. Each of these war stories tells a story of a different soldier or situation in the war. Each of these war stories are broken into even smaller chapters. The War Stories in the campaign are:
- Storm of Steel
- Through Mud and Blood
- Friends in High Places
- Avanti Savoia!
- The Runner
- Nothing is Written
The standard 64 player multiplayer returns in Battlefield 1 with several new features in and out of combat. These include the following:
- Downed players can now choose to wait for a revive or skip to the deploy screen
- Tank shells and rockets can ricochet off of vehicles if impacting at an angle, dealing decreased damage
- Sniper rifles have a "sweet spot," or a designated range at which shots to the upper chest are one-hit kills
- Powerful vehicles known as Behemoths enter the battle on the losing team's side if the score gap is wide enough
- Elite kits can be found on the map, equipping the player with a powerful weapon like a heavy machine gun or flamethrower and granting increased health
- Land and air vehicles can now self-repair
- The deploy screen is an actual overhead view of the map, rather than a static screen
Also new to the series is the Operations mode, a more narrative-driven experience that takes place across several maps. Operations campaigns are based on real battles of World War I, and task an attacking team with capturing every sector on every map in the campaign. The defenders must exhaust all of the attackers' reinforcements to win the match. In each campaign the attacking team has three batallions, or attempts, to win the match.
There are 11 factions in Battlefield 1's multiplayer:
Maps: Achi Baba, Amiens, Cape Helles, Fao Fortress, Giant's Shadow, Passchendaele, River Somme, Sinai Desert, St. Quentin Scar, Suez
The British Empire committed millions of men to the war, including many from British colonies. As a dominant naval power and Germany's primary opponent in the air, the British played a significant role in all aspects of the Great War and were the first nation to use tanks in battle.
Early in the war, in September 1914, the British Expeditionary Force played a key role in assisting the French in counterattacking against the Germans in the First Battle of the Marne, an Allied victory that led to the creation of the long-lasting stalemate. A few months later they would launch the disastrous Gallipoli Campaign against the Ottoman Empire.
British Royal Marines
Maps: Heligoland Bight, Zeebrugge
The British Royal Marines took part in the naval campaigns of the war, orchestrating the daring Zeebrugge Raid and the amphibious landings against the Ottomans at Gallipoli.
Maps: Albion, Amiens, Argonne Forest, Ballroom Blitz, Fort De Vaux, Giant's Shadow, Nivelle Nights, Passchendaele, Prise de Tahure, River Somme, Rupture, Soissons, St. Quentin Scar, Verdun Heights, Zeebrugge
Germany, as it would again in World War II, fought a two front war against the Allies. As one of the nations at the forefront of the Western Front, Germany took part in iconic battles, including the Battle of Verdun and the Battle of the Somme. Germany pioneered many technologies and strategies during the war, including the first full-scale deployment of chemical weapons and unrestricted submarine warfare.
Germany's opening move in the war hinged on a controversial plan to sweep through Belgium and attack northern France with a decisive blow. Despite encountering unexpected resistance from the Belgians, the Germans managed to reach France and came within striking distance of Paris. Changes in troop movement and strategy then inadvertently created an opportunity for the French and British to counterattack, a successful series of battles known collectively as the First Battle of the Marne.
The Germans nearly won the war again in 1918 with a massive Spring Offensive, but fatigue and strained supply lines put a stop to the push. The German population suffered greatly in the later stages of the war as a result of a British blockade that continued into the summer of 1919.
United States of America
Maps: Argonne Forest, Ballroom Blitz
For two and a half years the United States remained militarily neutral in the Great War while contributing supplies to the Allies.
In 1917, as the British and French struggled to continue the war after two years of brutal fighting and the Russian Empire began collapsing into civil war, the Americans were finally brought into the conflict when Germany's submarine warfare began hitting American ships. This boost in fresh manpower gave the Allies an edge in the final months of the war.
Maps: Fort de Vaux, Nivelle Nights, Prise de Tahure, Rupture, Soissons, Verdun Heights
France suffered the second highest Allied casualty rate in the war, after Russia. The French were instrumental in holding the Germans along the Western Front, though by 1917 were beginning to experience mutinies as a result of tremendous war weariness.
However, their victory in the Second Battle of the Marne in 1918 would kick off the string of victories that led to an Allied victory.
Maps: Achi Baba, Cape Helles, Fao Fortress, Sinai Desert, Suez
The Ottoman Empire achieved early victories in the war, winning important battles against the Russians and the British.
It was during the Great War that the Ottoman government orchestrated the Armenian genocide, and the Central Powers' defeat in 1918 directly led to the collapse of the Ottoman Empire in 1921. This would have long-lasting impacts on the the future of the Middle East, many of which are still felt today.
Kingdom of Italy
Maps: Caporetto, Empire's Edge, Monte Grappa
Italy occupied a unique space during the war, doing battle against the Austro-Hungarians in the mountainous terrain of the Alps and the surrounding region.
The Italians suffered defeats after Russia ducked out of the war and the Central Powers consolidated its Eastern Front forces against them, but were able to regroup and win the decisive Battle of Vittoria Veneto in 1918.
Maps: Brusilov Keep, Caporetto, Empire's Edge, Galicia, Monte Grappa, Łupkow Pass
Austria-Hungary in the Great War represented the final stage of life for the centuries-old Habsburg Empire, which saw its official end at the conclusion of the conflict.
Austria-Hungary was the first state to declare war, doing so against Serbia after Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated. The Austro-Hungarians fought the Italians in the mountains and the Russians along the Eastern Front.
Maps: Albion, Brusilov Keep, Galicia, Łupkow Pass
The Russian Empire suffered the greatest number of casualties in the war and were so badly affected by the conflict that the nation was knocked out of the war by a civil war in 1917. They achieved early victories in 1914 by surprising the Germans with their quick mobilization.
One of the most storied aspects involves Tsar Nicholas II and his family's dealings with Grigori Rasputin. Nicholas II and his family were assassinated on July 17, 1918 by Bolshevik revolutionaries.
Maps: Tsaritsyn, Volga River
The White Army were loyalist imperial forces that fought against the Bolsheviks in the Russian Civil War.
Maps: Tsaritsyn, Volga River
The Red Army successfully overthrew the monarchy in the Russian Civil War, a victory which led to the founding of the Soviet Union.
|Beyond the Marne||Soissons, Rupture||The French Army attacks German positions with a fleet of tanks during the Second Battle of the Marne in 1918.|
|Brusilov Offensive||Galicia, Brusilov Keep||The Russian Army brings the fight to the Austro-Hungarian Empire during the titular offensive in 1916.|
|Conquer Hell||Ballroom Blitz, Argonne Forest||The United States enters the war and launches an offensive against the Germans in the Meuse-Argonne region.|
|Devil's Anvil||Verdun Heights, Fort de Vaux||The German Empire attempts to crush French morale in the Battle of Verdun in 1916.|
|Gallipoli||Cape Helles, Achi Baba||The British Empire launches the ill-fated Gallipoli Campaign against the Ottoman Empire.|
|Iron Walls||Monte Grappa, Empire's Edge||The Kingdom of Italy attemps to defeat the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the mountains and hills of the Italian Front.|
|Kaiserschlacht||St. Quentin Scar, Amiens||The German Empire launches the massive Spring Offensive of 1918 against the British.|
|Oil of Empires||Fao Fortress, Suez, Sinai Desert||The longest Operation, based on the British quest for oil in the Middle East.|
|Red Tide||Volga River, Tsaritsyn||The Russian Civil War pits the new communist Red Army against the imperial White Army in a battle for the future of Russia.|
They Shall Not Pass
The first expansion introduces the French Army to Battlefield 1, with six new maps based on the fighting between the French and the Germans along the Western Front. It also brings with it six new weapons, three new vehicles, and six new melee weapons.
- Fort de Vaux: a famous German assault on the French fort during the Battle of Verdun
- Nivelle Nights: a nighttime battle between German and French trenches during the Nivelle Offensive
- Prise de Tahure: a nighttime battle between German and French forces in a crumbling urban center
- Rupture: a battle over worn territory, with old trenches and tank carcasses scattered around
- Soissons: a hilly, vibrant French countryside town
- Verdun Heights: the famous German attack on the French at Verdun
- Chauchat: a French light machine gun mass produced to meet demand
- Lebel Model 1886: a revolutionary French rifle that popularized the concept of smokeless powder
- Mle 1903 Extended: a version of the Belgian-manufactured sidearm for tank drivers and pilots
- Ribeyrolles 1918: an experimental assault rifle designed by the French
- RSC 1917: a French semi-automatic rifle
- Sjögren Inertial: a Swedish semi-automatic shotgun that can fire regular ammunition or slug rounds
- Char 2C: a massive French tank that serves as the Behemoth on the expansion's maps
- Saint-Chamond: an assault tank with a forward-facing cannon designed by the French
- BL 9.2 Siege Gun: a large stationary artillery piece
- Cogwheel Club
- Nail Knife
- Trench Fleur
In the Name of the Tsar
The second expansion introduces the Russians to Battlefield 1, with six maps focusing on their battles against the German and Austro-Hungarian Empires, as well as the Russian Civil War. The expansion also includes eleven new weapons, four new vehicles, and three new melee weapons.
- Albion: a German amphibious assault against Russian positions along the coastline of Estonia
- Brusilov Keep: a fight between the Russians and the Austro-Hungarian Empire in a mountainside town
- Galicia: an open field battle between the Russians and Austro-Hungarians
- Lupków Pass: a fight between the Russians and Austro-Hungarians deep within the mountains
- Tsaritsyn: an attempt by the communist Red Army to take control of the city of Tsaritsyn--later renamed Stalingrad--during the Russian Civil War
- Volga River: a battle between the Red and White Armies along the titular river
- C93 Carbine: a version of the C93 sidearm for tankers and pilots
- Federov Avtomat: an early assault rifle developed by the Russians
- General Liu Rifle: a Chinese semi-automatic rifle
- Model 1900: a classic double-barrel shotgun
- Mosin-Nagant M91: the famous Russian bolt-action rifle
- Nagant Revolver: a Russian revolver that utilizes a unique gas seal system to increase muzzle velocity
- Obrez Pistol: a sawed-off Mosin Nagant rifle that serves as a sidearm, used by Russian revolutionaries in the Russian Civil War
- Parabellum MG14/17: a fast-firing German machine gun intended to be used in aircraft
- Perino Model 1908: a large Italian machine gun that fires from a mounted box of 20 round feed strips
- SMG 08/18: an experimental German submachine gun based on the MG 08 heavy machine gun
- Coastal Gun: a massive artillery piece found on some maps
- Ilya-Muromets: a Russian heavy bomber
- Putilov-Garford: an assault truck featuring an unusual rear-facing turret design
- Y-Lighter: a landing craft used for beach landings
- Cavalry Lance
- Cossack Dagger
- Dud Club
The third expansion brings new naval-focused battles to Battlefield 1 as well as the Gallipoli Campaign. There are four new maps, six new weapons, two new vehicles, and four new melee weapons.
- Achi Baba: a battle between the British and Ottoman Empires on rugged inland terrain
- Cape Helles: a beach landing by the British to push inland against the Ottoman Empire as part of the Gallipoli Campaign
- Heligoland Bight: a British naval assault on German positions along a rocky island in the North Atlantic
- Zeebrugge: a nighttime raid by the British Royal Marines against a Belgian port held by the Germans
- Carcano M91: the famous Italian bolt action rifle
- Farquhar-Hill: a British rifle featuring an unusual drum magazine and foregrip
- Maschinenpistole M1912/P.16: a fully-automatic version of the Austrian sidearm
- M1917 MG: an American machine gun with a large ammo capacity and steady rate of fire
- M1917 Trench Carbine: a version of the German C96 sidearm with a stock and extended magazine
- Type 38 Arisaka: the famous Japanese bolt action rifle
- C-Class Airship: a small airship used to combat ships and submarines
- L-Class Destroyer: a highly-equipped destroyed designed by the British, capable of engaging land, sea, and air targets
- Grappling Hook
- Naval Cutlass
- Ottoman Flanged Mace
The final expansion for Battlefield 1 sees the Italian Campaign to its conclusion and brings in two of the most famous battles of the war. The expansion features three new maps, seven new weapons, two new vehicles, and three new melee weapons. In addition, the expansion adds a new AA rocket gun to the Assault class and sees the return of the dogfighting mode from previous games, with two maps exclusive to the mode.
- Caporetto: the end of the war for the Italians, pitting them against the Austro-Hungarians in the mountainous Isonzo river valley
- Passchendaele: the famous, muddy battle between the British and the Germans amongst craters, fire, and gas
- River Somme: a desperate attack by the British against a maze of German trenchlines, based on the worst day in the history of the British military
- London Calling (Air Assault): a dogfight above the city of London
- Razor's Edge: a dogfight above the Alps mountain range
- Howell Automatic: an unusual conversion of the Lee Enfield to a semi-automatic rifle
- IMG 08/18: an air-cooled version of the heavier MG 08/18
- Livens Projector: a series of mortar launchers connected to a plunger that fire gas canisters when activated. These are found on the three infantry maps of the expansion.
- M1917 Enfield: a bolt action rifle that was the most widely used rifle by the Americans in the war
- Revolver Mk VI: a reliable standard issue sidearm used by the British
- Ross MkIII: a Canadian bolt action rifle that struggled mightily in the conditions of the war
- RSC SMG: an experimental French submachine gun based on the RSC 1917
- Airco DH.10: a British bomber with a unique feature allowing the rear gunner to fire towards the front of the aircraft
- Hansa-Brandenburg G.I: an Austro-Hungarian bomber produced late in the war