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A recent update to Battlefield V adjusted the game's time to kill (TTK) values, but it didn't go over too well with the community. As a result, DICE has already reverted back to the game's original values and will continue to research new ways to address lingering issues with the game's online firefights.
One of the trickiest balancing acts for an online shooter is nailing down the time to kill so that players old and new feel like they're having a rewarding experience. According to DICE, Battlefield vets were happy with the latest incarnation's TTK, but that wasn't the case with newer players. In an effort to make the game a little more inviting to those newcomers, the TTK values in the game were boosted, meaning it would take a bit longer to bring an opponent down.
The community's response wasn't too positive, if I'm putting it lightly, and players let DICE know loud and clear that they were not happy with the changes. In a recent letter to the community, DICE announced that the game would be reverted back to the original TTK figures, an update that should have rolled out as of this writing.
Based on the chain of updates from DICE over the past week or so, as well as the comments accompanying those updates, it looks like clear communication with the community was a key factor in this most recent update receiving such backlash. For starters, DICE notes that a change was being made to something veteran players never asked for and, on top of that, the reasoning for those changes were not fully explained.
The TTK changes were initially made to address a problem pretty much every online game faces: Making the game rewarding to veterans and inviting to newcomers at the same time. If you've played a Battlefield game, you know that the TTK is pretty quick due to the fact the series takes a more realistic approach to combat. Players aren't space marines wearing loads of armor, they're average men and women with a bit of protection strapped to their fragile bodies. While veteran players liked the more realistic and fast TTK, DICE notes that churn with newcomers was discouraging. In other words, a new player might load into a Battlefield V competitive match, have a terrible time dying instantly and then never return.
DICE timed the TTK change so that it would coincide with the holidays, which is when many new folks will be hopping onto the servers after discovering Battlefield V under the Christmas tree. The plan was to have a more inviting experience to retain those players longer but, in doing so, DICE alienated its veteran players.
They created a special playlist with old TTK stats to accommodate those players, but the problem was clearly bigger than that. Following plenty of outcry, the game is back to playing the way it did at launch and now DICE is reevaluating the situation to figure out a way to keep all players, new and old, happy.