(Pocket-lint) - Battlefield is one of the grand old dames of the online shooter scene - it's been wowing fans with its huge-scale battles and adrenaline-pumping blend of vehicular and infantry combat for years and years now.
It's also jumped happily around into different time settings, from its origins in the Second World War, back to the First World War, and of course into both modern combat scenarios and even futuristic science fiction.
Now, developer DICE is hard at work on Battlefield 6, the next entrant in the series. We've rounded up everything we know about the next Battlefield game, right here, so that you can stay on top of things. Keep checking back, as we'll update this story whenever new details come out.
Battlefield 6 release date
It's key to stress that, for now, there's not a lot of official information to go on when it comes to the next Battlefield game, including when it comes to its release date. We know a few concrete facts, though - DICE is definitely working on the game, and has been putting more and more of its resources into the project in recent months.
In fact, in mid-2020 both Battlefield V and Star Wars Battlefront II, the studio's two big existing multiplayer shooters, saw end-of-life updates released, which confirmed that content will no longer be produced for either title going forward.
This is, according to those familiar with the studio, partly in order to free up those staff members who were working on the games' content calendars, letting them move over to Battlefield 6 to accelerate matters on the new project. On the one hand, that means it's a work in progress, but on the other, we've had no formal announcement about the game, or any sort of release window indicated.
At the moment, that means that we'd assume the game won't appear before mid-to-late 2021, to give DICE and EA the time to finish it and indeed market it. EA, in fact, indicated on a recent earnings call that it'll launch in the fiscal year 2022, which runs from April 2021 to March 2022, so that's apprently its window for now.
Battlefield 6 setting and gameplay
With each Battlefield game comes a key question - when and where is it set? Given that previous entries have had seriously diverse settings, a lot is up in the air on this front.
However, most of the rumours we've seen point toward a more modern setting. With Battlefield 1 and Battlefield V, DICE went back to both World Wars to explore an earlier form of combat, but the likes of Battlefield 3 and 4 showed years ago that it can excel at modern combat scenarios, too.
Either way, this is a detail that DICE will be guarding closely until it's ready to fully unveil Battlefield 6 - a huge amount of the hype surrounding the game will likely be triggered by when and where it's principally set. We'll keep our ears to the ground on that front.
However, when it comes to gameplay we can make a few more leaps. We know that Battlefield's core formula is unlikely to change, so you can expect big maps, big player counts and vehicles aplenty.
The manner in which the likes of Call of Duty: Warzone have upped the player count to highs of 150 and 200 in recent times also makes us hopeful that we could see some truly huge battles unfold in Battlefield 6, and the extremely limited test footage DICE showed at this year's EA Play looks like it promises just that.
Featuring a huge building collapsing, and whitebox footage of hundreds of soldiers on-screen at once, it's an exciting glimpse of things to come for Battlefield fans.
Since then, we've again heard that increasing the player-count for gamers is a priority at Dice right now, from a leaker who's been proved right a few times before.
Battlefield news; Maps have been designed with 128+ players in mind. But 32 vs 32 will also be a standard playlist.— Tom Henderson (@_TomHenderson_) August 13, 2020
That's an encouraging idea, and Henderson also went on to say that Dice could be considering whether to add a free-to-play Battle Royale portion to the game, mirroring the successful tactics Activision has used with Call of Duty: Warzone.
Battlefield 6 platforms
Interestingly, at a time like this with the next generation of consoles just around the corner, the question of which platforms something like Battlefield 6 will support doesn't so much concern the new consoles, but the existing ones.
DICE has confirmed that it's making the next Battlefield game with next-gen in mind, which is obvious from the fact that it will definitely release once the PS5 and Xbox Series X are out in the wild. However, it hasn't gone so far as to confirm that this definitely means we won't see Battlefield 6 on current-generation hardware.
That question aside, we know that we'll see Battlefield 6 on PS5 and Xbox Series X, and we'd expect it to take full advantage of the new graphical capabilities of those consoles. DICE has long been a specialist in ekeing out spectacular graphical fidelity from consoles, so Battlefield 6 is likely to be an envelope-pusher on the graphics side of things, and indeed in the realm of sound design too.