We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

Battlefield 5’s battle royale isn’t made by DICE and might not arrive at launch

Burnout devs Criterion are making Battlefield's battle royale, Firestorm, and so far there's no word on the mode's release date

Battlefield V

Criterion Games, a company best known as the creator of the explosive Burnout racing series, is making Firestorm, which in itself is better known as Battlefield V’s battle royale. The news comes from an EA announcement last night, which answers a lot of questions about the game’s  new mode.

The suggestion seems to be that Criterion have more or less handled Firestorm by themselves, as EA says the mode has been “developed by Criterion Games in partnership with DICE.” It’s a potentially surprising choice, given Criterion’s high-octane heritage, but it’s worth pointing out that the company helped out with the development of Star Wars: Battlefront 2 – again, however, there they dealt primarily with space and vehicle combat.

The announcement, however, does imply that Firestorm will feature plenty of vehicles. For one thing, it’s based around squads – 64 players in 16 groups of four – but EA mentions “the game-changing addition of Battlefield vehicles.” Both tanks and transport vehicles are referenced specifically, meaning Firestorm could have a very heavy focus on vehicles and vehicle combat.

As well as dealing with other players, you’ll also have to contend with Objectives. EA says that “these will operate similar to those found in the iconic Conquest mode,” and while some will be found at specific locations, others will spawn in at random. Completing an objective will offer supplies, weapons, and vehicles, but it’s likely that they’ll be highly contested.

Elsewhere, there are boasts of Firestorm being Battlefield’s biggest-ever map, and a few mentions of destruction and the game’s ever-closing ring of fire. What there isn’t, however, is any closer look at the game, or any mention of when we’ll actually be able to play Firestorm.

The Battlefield 5 release date is November 20, and while there are discussions about cosmetics and weapons for Battlefield 1 that you’ll get for pre-ordering, as well as a mention of early access to the base game, nowhere does it say that Firestorm will be available on launch. Nor does it say anywhere that Firestorm will be accessible during any early access to the game for those with pre-order bonuses. The implication is sort of there, but I think you could be waiting a few weeks longer to get your hands on Battlefield royale.