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The Attrition System in Battlefield V

Here’s how a limited ammo and health system makes Battlefield V more tactical.

Less is more. In Battlefield V, you’ll experience new tactical options and unique, varied situations where ammo and health can be obtained and shared in different ways.

We call this system Attrition. We introduced Attrition to Battlefield V to make the game deeper, more strategic, and more satisfying for players who work together as a team. Attrition is built on a series of small changes that add up to have a big impact. Like many changes, it takes some getting used to.

In this article, we’ll share why we created Attrition, how we think it makes the game better, and tips from the game developers to use it to turn the battlefield to your advantage.

How Does Attrition Change Battlefield?
We’ve designed this system of Attrition to give squad play and team work even more meaning – but that’s not all. Scarcity of bullets and medical supplies also makes the game more dynamic, encourages you to think on your feet, assess risks, and make choices in whatever situation you’re in.

After each encounter in previous Battlefield™ games, you were always quickly back at status quo with restored health and ammo. Now, situations will be special after each encounter. You may not have full health or ammo, so you need to act accordingly. Simply rushing for the next flag may not be enough – you need to change your tactic. Say you’re down to your last mag, should you play it safe or engage those two enemies you have a clear shot on?

More Depth – Not Higher Difficulty
Does the Attrition system make Battlefield V harder than earlier games? No – but it makes it deeper. Attrition gives more agency to you, letting you manage health and ammo through short-term and long-term methods. You can still regenerate up to max health, but you need an item and to press a button to do it. Your choice of Class and Combat Role can also affect Attrition; deploy as the Assault’s Light Infantry Combat Role, for instance, and you’ll regenerate a higher amount of health than other Combat Roles. Self-healing used to be unconscious; now, it will be in your mind more. It’s a matter of learning the system – which everyone can do.

Health and the Medic
Limited health regeneration is not something unheard of in the genre. But you need to be more mindful and tactical with your choices around health and ammo. You’ll find that there are more actions to be taken beyond just spawn-run-shoot-die.

Health management is a big part of Attrition. You’re now somewhat in charge of your own health, thanks to the Medical Pouch which will get you back to full health. Though you might guess otherwise, this emphasizes team play. Medics are not just there to heal you, but also to supply you with Medical Pouches. This provides more weight and purpose to the Class.

Learn more about the Medic Class and its Combat Roles

We’re improving in-game communication tools to make sure it’s clear when people are low on ammo and health, and when they don’t have a Health Pouch. This will be achieved through icons and the CommoRose, your in-game way of making your soldier shout info to other players. In the Open Beta, Medics couldn’t see if a player needed a Health Pouch, but we’ve already started addressing this.

Attrition Creates More Movement, Less Camping
The scavenging aspect is also something we hope you’ll find interesting. Downed enemies have much more purpose now, and loot is yet another reward for taking someone out. This also gives possibilities to players who aren’t as focused on team play; you can be a lone wolf who finds ammo for yourself, staying afloat and being self-sustained.

Attrition is a camping anti-dote, too. With tanks having limited ammo, you won’t see them staying put on hills, endlessly shelling your squad. The same goes for snipers: Recon Class players can’t just camp on a hill forever without eventually having to move away to feed their rifles.

Play the Objective
Does the Attrition system equal looking for ammo all the time? No – if you focus on playing the objective and playing smart, you won’t have a problem. Playing the objective means capturing flags, which means new Resupply Stations and team mates spawning in, ready to assist you. There’s not really less ammo in Battlefield V compared with older titles; it’s just spread out, and if you master the battlefield you will get ahold of it.

Finding the Right Balance
It’s worth noting that the Attrition system has been dialed down compared to how it was in the Open Beta, where some players were concerned about tedious ammo hunts. For the final game, we’re increasing your amount of ammunition when you spawn in, the max amount of ammo will be larger, and you’ll start with a Medical Pouch. See our other learnings from the Open Beta in this article.

In fact, if you’re new to Battlefield, you might not even notice the Attrition system; chances are you’ll die before you run out of ammo. New players won’t be punished by the Attrition system, but advanced players need to apply some additional tactical thinking with the slightly raised skill ceiling.

Beginner Tips to Adapt to the Attrition System
To finish, let’s go through some gameplay tips, straight from the DICE developers, on how to adapt to this system. We’ll start with some tips for newcomers:

  • Remember to loot defeated players when it’s safe to do so. Get the looting in to your routine, and the extra ammo and health can keep you going for quite a while. Be aware of the risk and your surroundings.
  • If there are no Resupply Stations at the flag you’re at, bring out your build tool and build it! This is something all Classes can do.
  • When it comes to ammo, keep your weapon type in mind. If you see a target quite far away, and you’re, for instance, carrying a SMG, you can probably get the kill, but at the cost of a lot of bullets. Use weapons for the ranges they are meant for.
  • If you’re playing as a Medic or Support, people will need you. In previous games, you got points for just handing out ammo, even to well-stocked players, which made resupplying somewhat selfish at times. There’s a satisfaction to being needed, and you’ll feel this much more often in Battlefield V.
  • When you’re starting out with Battlefield V, stay close to your squad – they will keep you safe and resupplied. Eventually, you’ll learn where to get ammo and health on your own, but a well-balanced team will always keep you on track.

Pro Tips to Adapt to the Attrition System

  • Even if you’re a veteran Battlefield player, there are tips to help keep you dominating in Battlefield V. If you just want to wander off to improve your K/D Ratio, that’s still possible, but make PTFO your mantra and lean in to the fresh tactical approaches.
  • If you’re playing on larger maps with greater distance between flags, don’t forget to call in the Supply Cannister Drop, if you have the points for this Reinforcement. These replenish both health and ammo and will benefit both you and your team.
  • Playing a vehicle? Remember that Resupply Stations also will heal your vehicle. If you’re in an airplane, make use of the Attrition mechanics by destroying enemy Resupply Stations, then fly through skyhooks to give your kite some love in the form of ammo and repairs.

– Jonas Elfving

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Enter mankind’s greatest conflict on Xbox One, PlayStation®4, and PC. On November 9, play the full game with Origin Access Premier or try it as part of the EA Access and Origin Access Play First Trials**. Or, join the fight on November 15 with Battlefield V Deluxe Edition early enlister access, or November 20 with the Battlefield™ V Standard Edition.

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Note that game content, gameplay mechanics, and other Battlefield V aspects covered in this article may change between now and the launch of the game.


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