Battlefield V's new Rotterdam map is the star of its multiplayer

The new location offers claustrophobic combat in a setting that crumbles around you.

The landscape of shooter video games has been altered dramatically in the last year, thanks to the rise of the cultural phenomenon that is Fortnite.

The free-to-play, multi-platform and device-supporting title has opened up new players to the world of multiplayer shooting games and its light-hearted approach and success has left heavyweight names such as Battlefield and Call Of Duty wondering if they need to adapt to a new reality.

EA Dice’s Battlefield is choosing an approach that mixes evolution with revolution – it will implement a battle royale mode in this year’s Battlefield V as well as some single player options – but it is also looking to strengthen what it has to create a more appealing package for gamers.

At Gamescom, Battlefield showed off one of this year’s new maps – the Dutch city of Rotterdam – under siege during the war and the setting for close quarters and intense multiplayer battles.

The tight-knit structures also offer a good opportunity for the game to show off its dynamic environment destruction, where buildings and other elements of the world are impacted by gunfire, explosions and impact from vehicles.

In the midst of a 64-player battle, having the shop front you’re hiding in be blown apart by the enemy, this is an intense experience.

The demo on display at Gamescom for the Rotterdam map was the game’s Conquest mode, where two teams fight to gain control of several different key areas of the map. Earning and keeping control of those key locations earns points, and this ultimately moves a squad towards victory.

(EA Dice)
(EA Dice)

It’s a game mode where momentum can change very quickly, and through the tight streets of the city it feels as though this has been placed on fast-forward, when gaining control of one narrow alleyway or over-running a bottleneck and wiping out most of the enemy squad in one go.

The claustrophobic setting pushes players together, and keeps the action coming in sharp bursts – as an individual map it is likely to prove popular with Battlefield fans.

(EA Dice)
(EA Dice)

Visually the game looks very impressive too – something that is only likely to improve with the announcement that Battlefield will be one of first games to support Nvidia’s new RTX technology in its graphics cards, which makes light, reflections and shadows behave more naturally in-game.

The overall game’s place in the pantheon of shooter titles is still up in the air – there have been reports of fewer than expected pre-sales so far, and the battle royale mode is still to be seen – but there is no question that at least in its Rotterdam setting, Battlefield V is a fine addition to 2018’s gaming line-up.

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