Getting blown to pieces is part of Battlefield. It just is. But a lot of discussion is surrounding DICE’s newest update and how it changes grenades. It’s part of a new system the devs are calling Ammo 2.0. You can read all about it over at this forum post, or check out a screengrab of the most recent patch notes below.
Ok, every grenade now automatically resupplies based on the timers above. Being near an ammo crate makes each resupply three times faster. That means just 12 seconds for a Frag. Throw in two Anti-tank grenades from the Assault Class, and it’s easy to see where the complaints about grenade spam are coming from.
DICE does say the new system has resulted in a 7% decrease in grenade throws per second and grenade kills per minute across all base game maps since the They Shall Not Pass DLC was released. “Base game maps” is the key word here. And I think that’s where the disconnect between DICE and the community is right now.
They Shall Not Pass introduced a new game mode called Frontlines. Picture Conquest and Rush smashed together, and you’re on the right track. The action is laser focused compared to Battlefield’s signature mode, Conquest. One flag is open to capture at a time, and when one side’s map is taken, a pair of Rush objectives opens up.
That means the action is always funneled. Much like Operations, but in what feels like an even smaller area. And Operations was already a mess of grenades and mortars at choke points.
The new fixes introduce another problem. Smoke, Gas and Mini Grenades were reduced from 2 to 1. Why the hell would you even use Mini Grenades anymore? Sure, you can throw them farther – but the main upside to using them was you have two. I was playing the other day and switched to Gas and saw I only had one. You know what I did? I switched right back to Frags.
If you want to get rid of grenade spam, there needs to be incentive to use the other grenade types. Having more Gas and Smoke did that. Now? There’s little reason to use them. Yes, they resupply faster – but you’re not going to toss one smoke, wait 18 seconds and toss another one. The whole idea was to lay down enough smoke to cover your advance or retreat. Same goes for Gas grenades.
With the new changes, there’s no reason to use Gas and Smoke on a consistent basis.
Is grenade spam worse?
According to DICE, it isn’t. At least on base maps. Play a few matches of Frontlines, though, and you might have a different take on it. I sat on an ammo box the other night and threw a consistent stream of Anti-Tank grenades on one of the objectives. There was no way the other team was going to disarm it. And that was just me. Everyone else was tossing grenades too.
Grenade throws and kills might be down, but the newest mode won’t show it. When you have 32 people slamming into one objective on the map, you’re going to see a lot of explosives tossed about.
I haven’t played Conquest or base maps since They Shall Not Pass hit, so I can’t say how the changes work there. But you’re never going to get rid of grenade spam on Frontlines without some major changes.
Let’s fix it
Let’s assume there is a problem, which I think there is. I don’t think adding auto-resupplying grenades is the answer. Or tinkering with the timers on the resupply. DICE needs to take a hard look at the Anti-Tank grenades on the Assault class.
You’re essentially spawning with three grenades every life. Obviously, they work great against tanks and vehicles – but most of the time I’m using them as a regular grenade. Tossing them inside a building to clear it out. Or throwing them where I just got a hit marker on a previous grenade.
How about dropping the Anti-Tank grenade count to one when spawning with the potential for two or three when near resupply crates. It could help with some of the initial grenade spam while still making sure Support classes are viable. Now, this would require rebalancing the entire tank/infantry dynamic since Anti-Tank grenades are one of the primary tools used for destroying them. Maybe boost the damage the grenade does against armor slightly?
I’m not saying this is the best solution, but the problem right now is the number of grenades flying around. And the Assault Class is the main culprit due to the extra pair of Anti-Tank grenades.
We don’t have hard numbers on what classes are played the most in Battlefield 1. The only official data we have is from an infographic during the Battlefield 1 open beta. That showed Assault leading the way with 30% of deployments.
I would be shocked if Assault budged from its position since.
There does need to be some tweaking done to explosives for modes like Frontlines, Operations and Rush to not feel like grenade-fests. Tinkering with the Assault class is probably the best solution.
Or, maybe DICE is right. Maybe we are all overreacting. I wouldn’t mind seeing grenade kills per second data on Frontlines and how it compares to Conquest. I get the modes are vastly different, but the data could tell us something about the new Frontlines mode and map design in They Shall Not Pass.
What do you think? Is Ammo 2.0 a step in the wrong direction? Or, are we looking at it too closely as it pertains to the Frontlines mode? Let’s talk about it.