Anyone with a passing familiarity with the Battlefield franchise knows about its class system. But Battlefield V’s classes go a step further than previous games with the introduction of Combat Roles. Each of the four classes gets two Combat Roles to choose from. And you can pick between the two during matches at the deploy overview screen.
EA published a series of blog posts covering each class, but I’ll be touching on the Combat Roles only and my thoughts on them.
Assault Class is split between infantry focused, and vehicle focused Combat Roles. First up is Light Infantry. Here’s the description for each trait.
Scavenger – Find more ammo on defeated enemies and fallen comrades.
Battle Hardened – Regenerate a higher amount of Health than other Combat Roles.
Picking up ammo from dead teammates seems new. I don’t remember that being in the beta. Details on the amount of ammo scavenged aren’t here, but DICE does say folks playing in the Light Infantry Combat Role “will always find more than others.” Cross your fingers “more” means you won’t have to resort to using your pistol after a couple of firefights.
DICE explains their thought process with the Light Infantry in the blog post. It’s all about giving this role a little more freedom as they push objectives. You shouldn’t need constant help from Support and Medic classes as you push towards and through the enemy lines. Sounds good, but some specific details would be nice.
Tank Buster is the second Combat Role and is unlocked as you keep playing the Assault Class. Here are the traits.
Tank Painter – Vehicles that you damage become spotted.
Tank Scrapper – Vehicles that you destroy yield additional Requisition.
I like these traits. Both encourage folks to challenge tanks; not just move around them. With the traditional spotting thrown out the window, the Tank Painter trait becomes handy. Plus, Tank Scrapper means Reinforcements like tanks and V-1 rockets can be earned quicker.
I do wonder how this might impact vehicle/infantry balance. With a greater incentive towards destroying vehicles (earn Reinforcements quicker), tanks are going to have a tougher time making a difference in matches. It’ll be interesting to watch how DICE deals with the infantry/vehicle dynamic as the game launches and beyond.
Support Class’ Combat Roles goes from fixer to suppressive fire expert. Support picks up the Engineer slack from Battlefield 4 with the Engineer Role.
Vehicle Fixer – You repair vehicles and build Fortifications significantly faster than other Support Class Combat Roles.
Heavy Weapons Expert – Fire static weapons and mounted weapons for a longer duration before they overheat.
While the Assault Class is traditionally built for rushing forward, I can see Engineer Combat Role being a popular pick at the start of matches. Being able to slap together fortifications in a hurry will be huge for contesting the second tier of objective points on Conquest during the initial push.
Heavy Weapons Expert also makes them a must for teams jumping in tanks together.
The second Combat Role is called Machine Gunner. Let’s take a look.
Bullet Storm – Increased suppression ability.
Focused Fire – Automatically spot enemies when you fully suppress them.
I like how DICE is approaching spotting like this. I’m just picturing machine gunners unleashing hell as they use this trait to spot enemies. It could help give Battlefield V that Battlefield feeling you get watching older Battlefield trailers where it was pure chaos. Again, the devil’s in the details. How quickly will enemies be suppressed? How long does the spotting last for?
Recon Class opens up where you spawn. The second Combat role is called Pathfinder and is the one I want to focus on first.
Advance Scouting – You can spawn on friendly Squad Leaders and Spawn Beacons from outside your own squad.
Vanguard – Gain additional Requisition Points when someone spawns on your Spawn Beacon gadget.
Advance Scouting is a fantastic addition to the Recon’s toolset. It’s too bad DICE won’t let them use SMGs. Being able to focus on close combat while also giving your team a place to spawn would be great. Plus, it would give the class two distinct playstyles. The snipers can still do their thing while other players could be more aggressive.
The other Combat Role is called Sniper and does about what you would expect.
Steady Hands – Steady your scope for a longer duration while holding your breath.
Expert Marksman – Steady duration is partially replenished with each headshot kill.
Medic Class will be rewarded for staying near the frontlines. The Medic Class is crucial in every Battlefield game. Let’s look at how DICE is treating them in Battlefield V. First up, Field Medic.
Healer – You gain additional Requisition points when you supply medkits to teammates.
Swift Effort – You sprint faster when calling out to a downed friendly soldier.
Both sound good. I like the sprint faster mechanic as you move up to revive teammates.
Now, let’s look at Combat Medic.
Melee Expert – All your melee attacks automatically takedown enemies.
Emergency Retreat – You sprint faster when at critical health.
Emergency Retreat? More like a perk for closing the distance as you knife folks. I like mixing up how Medics will play, but we’ll see how it looks in action. I can see them being a blast to play. Throw smoke and rush in for instant melee kills.
DICE’s decision to go with only SMGs for Medics does seem odd. Medics already have it tough as they move around the frontlines reviving folks. But leaving them with no mid-range option for guns? Hopefully, it’s something DICE ends up changing.
Let me know what you think of all the Combat Roles in the comments.