EA and DICE have shed some light on their plans for cross-play in Battlefield 2042. While the feature is still in development, there likely won't be a way for all players to join the same lobbies.
During an upcoming invite-only technical playtest, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S and PC players will be able to hop into games together. DICE is planning to split the player pool between gamers on those platforms and those on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. PC and console players can opt out from playing against each other, which might soothe concerns about the disparity between controllers and mouse and keyboard.
Dividing players between console generations might come as a disappointment to some, especially for those with friends who don't have a decent gaming rig or haven’t been able to snag a PS5 or Xbox Series X/S. However, it makes sense. The PS4 and Xbox One versions will have smaller lobbies than on PC and current consoles, with 64 players instead of 128, as well as slightly condensed maps. Gameplay will otherwise be the same on all platforms, including weather events like tornados.
Cross-progression is in the works too. Your progress and items (including ones you buy) will carry over from one platform to another, so if you hop between PC and PlayStation or Xbox, you’ll have access to all of your gear.
Elsewhere, DICE plans to use bots to fill out lobbies when needed to improve matchmaking and perhaps get you into matches faster. You can't opt out from using the bots, though players will always have priority over AI soldiers. If a player leaves mid-game, a bot will take over until someone else joins.
The bots should act in a similar way to human players, though they won't be able to use wingsuits or class-based abilities. The AI soldiers can carry out other tasks, like reviving teammates, calling in vehicles and capturing objectives. You’ll be able to battle bots in solo and co-op modes too.
In a blog post covering these tidbits, DICE and EA spilled the beans about some other features, including vehicles, fully customizable loadouts and how different modes focus on certain areas of maps. Meanwhile, DICE said you won't be able to fight on every floor of a skyscraper, only the lobby and rooftop. More details about Battlefield 2042 will be revealed at the EA Play Live event on July 22nd.