Battlefield 2042 Voice Chat Won't Be Available At Launch
The newest entry in DICE's huge-scale warfare FPS series, Battlefield 2042, is currently in the middle of an early access trial period, with the release date of November 19 on the horizon. However, according to Electronic Arts, a vital multiplayer feature won't even be present at launch, as players will be unable to use VOIP in-game.
Why Won't Battlefield 2042 Have Voice Chat At Launch?
DICE and EA haven't exactly clarified why it won't be in game at launch, but they've said they're planning to add the feature 'ASAP.' They did release a blog post on the Battlefield 2042 section of the EA website that stated: "For many of you, we know that you’ll prefer to use VOIP to keep the lines of communication open during gameplay, and a heads up that this is presently set to come in after launch."
It seems for now they're assuming that players will coordinate via external VOIP applications like Discord or Teamspeak, but for solo players this is a potentially big handicap.
Gaming chats are pretty infamous for being toxic wastelands, and any of the Xbox 360 Live old-guard can attest to how horrific they could get. It's been a long time since then, though, and companies have begun to wise up to the idea of improving their chat environments. This means chat has become rather vital in multiplayer gaming, especially when talking tactics and strategy with teammates, or just making important call-outs.
It's possible they're still working on moderation elements for voice chat, as toxic behaviour can easily drive players away, which EA will want to avoid for a game that is going to rely on a large population to stay alive. It's been confirmed that voice chat abuse will be reportable, which is a standard feature, but then again so is VOIP to begin with - and obviously they haven't implemented that.
How Will The Lack Of Voice Chat Affect The Game?
For the main big modes that will feature 64-128 players, the lack of VOIP at launch may not be the biggest hurdle to enjoyment. Most players who are playing with friends will most likely utilise services like Discord, but it's still a kick in the face for solo players - especially in the Hazard Zone game mode.
For those who are unaware, the Hazard Zone is a new game mode inspired by hardcore shooters like Escape From Tarkov, where squads are dropped into a map to face one another, collect important loot, and escape. Having friends who frequently play EFT, I understand the level of concentration and communication that is vital for the mode. Meaning the lack of voice chat could kill it on launch for solo players, or those who don't use external VOIP services.
Battlefield 2042 is set to hit stores on November 19, for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and select PC storefronts. New generation consoles will allow for up to 128 players in multiplayer, while the old generation can only handle 64.