DICE have released details on their new upcoming expansion, They Shall Not Pass for Battlefield 1, and it looks exciting!
The expansion will include four new maps, the French Army, a new game mode, a new Elite Class, two new tanks and a new stationary weapon. Let’s take a closer look.
The first map, Verdun Heights, is based on the iconic Battle of Verdun between the German and French armies – an intense uphill battle towards the massive Verdun fortress. The map will feature big forest fires caused by the first fusillade of the battle, which means that there will most likely be parts of the battlefield with flames that you’ll want to avoid. We can also expect from the concept art, that cover will be a vital part of the battle, especially when – as stated on the page on the Battlefield 1 website – “the artillery never stops”.
Fort Vaux is the second map released in the expansion, featuring another iconic French location where a battle took place in World War I. Described as a “maze of dark galleries and wet stone corridors”, it sounds – and looks – like it’ll be an intense battle featuring a lot of close quarter combat.
Using the new tanks (more information on them later), this battle takes place in the French commune Soissons. By the looks of it, as there are very open hills outside of the town, planes and tanks will dominate the battlefield. The last sentence in this map’s section on the announcement states that “only the thunderstorm is louder than the war”, hopefully implying new dynamic weather will be added to the fight.
Last but not least in regards to new maps, Rupture will feature more trench-based warfare around the Aisne river, including bridges that the paragraph suggests might be capture points for Conquest and Rush (or at least that’s what I got from it). It seems that there will be plenty of cover such as broken, rusty old tanks to hide behind and a variety of locations to prepare an ambush. “As the sun sets over Fontenoy, the battle wakes up.”
Of course, because these battles were fought mostly with French soldiers, we’ll be playing as the long-awaited French army!
They Shall Not Pass will also introduce a new game mode – Frontlines! This addition is best explained in the original page:
“Experience a mix of Conquest and Rush as you fight for chained control points in a tug-of-war frontline. Both teams fight for one flag at a time and when this objective is captured the action moves on to the next. Capture the enemy’s HQ control point and the game turns into a Rush-style section where telegraph posts need to be attacked or defended.”
The Char 2C super-heavy tank (left) and the St. Chamond tank (right)
Just like the old Behemoths, the new Char 2C super-heavy tank will spawn for the losing side, to give them a chance to change the course of the battle. While there is no information on how many players it will be able to hold, some speculate that there will be one driver with control of the 75mm cannon on top and four gunners who control the 8mm machine guns (just speculations, though). It’s big, it’s bad, and it’ll take a hell of a lot of bullets to destroy.
The St. Chamond tank, also brought with the new expansion, was one of, if not the most heavily armed tank of World War I controlled by the Allies. In the actual war, this tank had the same firepower as the Char C2, though we can expect that to change for the sake of gameplay balance.
The Trench Raider
The new Elite Class, the “Trench Raider”, will be devastating in close quarters thanks to its Raider Club and its “impressive grenade arsenal”. One thing I’m concerned about are those metal shades – will we be able to see through them or will there be black lines all across the screen? Please don’t do that to us, please don’t do that to us. I’m looking forward to seeing how this one plays, and whether it’ll be more armoured and take less damage to shotguns (because I can’t get close to someone who has a shotgun).
The new Siege Howitzer
Last on the list of cool additions, the Siege Howitzer will be the new stationary weapon included in They Shall Not Pass, fired similarly to mortars and artillery weapons in vehicles.
I’m looking forward to seeing how well all of this new content will be executed and added into the game, and how much these new weapons and tanks will impact the battles. Something I’ve been interested in finding out about is any new weapons, but they haven’t been teased yet. We’ll have to wait until sometime in March, which is all we’ve been given in regards to a release date (with Premium Pass owners granted early access to it). Exciting!