After months of talks about all-out combat and portals, we finally know what Battlefield 2042’s last of the big three modes are all about, and it’s vastly different from any Battlefield mode before it. Hazard Zone is a PvPvE elimination mode in which 4-player squads duke it out on multiplayer maps over the control of controversial data drives. According to a briefing sent out by EA, unlike Battle Royale, the goal of Hazard Zone is “not to kill, but to get out of the Hazard Zone with as many data drives as possible.”
Players must purchase guns and select specialists before the match using in-game Dark Market credits earned through the game. If the setup sounds familiar, Hazard Zone takes inspiration from raiding games like Hunt: Showdown and Escape from Tarkov. Like both of those games, players in the Hazard Zone run the risk of losing gear permanently if they end up in the designated exfiltration zone before being removed from the map.
On PC, PS5 and Xbox Series S/X, Hazard Zone will support up to 32 players (eight squads). PS4 and Xbox One will be limited to 24 players (or six squads). Hazard Zone will support all seven launch maps that will also be present in the standard Conquest mode.
In addition to weapons, players can use Dark Market credits on perks for their next run. Here’s a full list of the perks EA covered in its briefing:
- Starting Armor: Start with +20 armor
- Negotiated Bounty 1: 50% extra credit for kills on occupied forces
- Squad Reinforcement: Uplink reinforcement that can bring back killed squad mates. Can only be used once!
- QuickDraw Holster: Switch Weapons +15% faster
- Data Storage: +2 in data drive carrying capacity . increased by
- Loadout Insurance: Reimbursed 50% of loadout and tactical upgrade costs should you go to war
- Biometric Scanning: Spot enemies 50% longer
- Insider info: Reveal data capsule drop locations 30 seconds before they land
- Table deal: 100% extra credit reward for removed data drives
- Fast Healing 1: Heal 20% faster
- Fast Healing 2: Heal 50% faster
- Ammo Increase 1: Additional +1 magazine for the primary weapon
- Ammo Increase 2: Additional +2 Magazines for Primary Weapon
- Throwable Increment 1: Carrying Throwables +1 . increase from
- Throwable Increment 2: Carrying Throwables is increased by +2 . raise from
The emphasis on upgrades seems to be comparable to that of Hunt: Showdown’s perks that grant advantageous abilities to players who have previously survived a match with their chosen hunter. Judging by the trailer shown to the press, the squad will also fight over control of the vehicles on the map. All 10 launch specialists will be available to choose from, but only one of each will be allowed in the squad (so you probably won’t see hordes of Mackie running into each other like in the open beta of 2042).
A longstanding question about Hazard Zone is how much loot the mod will have. We know guns can be purchased and possibly outfitted with attachments before a match, but can players loot each other for guns and upgrades as they can in Tarkov or Hunt?
Hopefully we’ll hear more about the intriguing new mode before Battlefield 2042’s November 19 release.