Everything worth caring about in today’s Battlefield 5 Lightning Strikes patch

By Sherif Saed, Tuesday, 15 January 2019 10:15 GMT

Battlefield 5’s big new patch is out today, kicking off the second Tides of War chapter.

Before the Lightning Strikes chapter itself goes live later this week, Battlefield 5 players everywhere are getting a major new patch, the game’s first in 2019.

The update is out today, with zero server downtime. It goes live first on PC, at 1am PT, 4am ET, 9am UK. PS4 is up next with a 2am PT, 5am ET, 10am UK launch. Finally, Xbox One players receive the update at 3am PT, 6am ET, 11am UK. The update is around 5GB.

DICE published an eight-page document [PDF] containing the full set of changes, tweaks, fixes, and everything else coming to the game today.

Like we did with Battlefield 5’s Overture patch in December, we’ve rounded up the biggest, most impactful changes most players will see after taking the patch. The comprehensive list can be found at the link above, but for those of you short on time, read on below.

First, a few major highlights. The Lightning Strikes update is buffing SMG performance at range to better allow Medics to compete at medium ranges. This is a blanket change, and it means SMGs will generally be easier to control at range without loosing their hip fire advantages.

On the subject of balance, the Panzerfaust is now less powerful against armour. Tank shells should now also do slightly more damage to infantry, especially when destroying their cover in the process.

The time-to-death experience (TTD) is being improved in a few key ways. Outside of several bug fixes with inaccurate hit indicators and damage stacking, the update should make it easier to understand how you died, and more clearly see your killer.

Vaulting animations in many situations have been made less wonky, and more consistent. Finally, the update makes it so the size of the scope glint varies depending on the power of the scope equipped.

TTD, death experience fixes

  • The name of the enemy that has killed a player is now shown in the game world when the player has died.
  • Improved the death experience with the addition of a camera that now follows and zooms towards the killer.
  • Improved accuracy of the visual representation of incoming bullets for other players. Tracers should now properly appear to consistently appear from the shooter, and should be clearer when the victim is looking directly at the shooter.
  • Fixed an issue with the UI directional damage indicator that delayed the indication of damage to the victim.
  • Made tweaks to the UI directional damage indicator to more accurately point towards the enemy damaging the player.

Soldier fixes and tweaks

  • Improved vaulting so that it no longer incorrectly triggers against steep hills and slopes.
  • Improved vaulting detection when trying to vault through a window that’s already broken.
  • Fixed an issue where players could receive fall damage from vaulting over a wall.
  • Fixed an issue where players would pick up a weapon while reviving on console.
  • Improved sliding activation consistency from double-tap by reducing the impact of turning while sprinting.

Vehicle fixes and tweaks

  • Increased the damage of the Stuka BK37 cannons against all targets, while also reducing the splash range.
  • Fixed so that all tank cannons one-hit kill all types of airplanes, even those equipped with Specializations that reduce damage from Flak.
  • Increased the ammo capacity of all airplane cannons from 150 rounds to 200 rounds.
  • Reduced the damage reduction of explosions on players in prone.
  • Resupply Station locations for vehicles are now pinned to the edge of the screen when ammo resupply is available.

Weapon and gadget fixes and tweaks

  • Removed the Extended Magazine Specialization for the M1907 SF and made the extended magazine equipped by default. Recoil Buffer has been added as a replacement.
  • Decreased the effectiveness of the Ported Barrel Specialization on the M1928A1 to better balance the weapon in the SMG class.
  • Fixed an issue where some weapons were inaccurate for too long when going from sprinting to firing when aiming down the sights (ADS)
  • The Panzerfaust no longer has a long delay before being able to fire after switching to the weapon.
  • Reduced the damage of the Panzerfaust.
  • Adjusted parameters for explosive damage when behind cover so that players behind cover properly receive reduced damage when cover is destroyed.
  • Adjusted damage multipliers for grenades and Panzerfaust versus various barricades so that multiple grenades are required to tear down a sandbag Fortification
  • Adjusted the size and intensity of the glints for medium powered scope and high powered scopes (medium scopes now have smaller glint).
  • Pushed the visible distance for scope glints a bit further, making them more visible at longer distances.
  • Scope Glint for medium scope visibility falls off over longer distances

General gameplay fixes and tweaks

  • Fixed an issue where the gamepad vibrations would not work on Grand Operations.
  • Players are now able to scroll through the map list from the server info screen in-game.
  • Voiceovers are now played when notifying players in the man down state that you are coming to revive them.
  • Footstep audio has been improved making walking and sprinting louder for a better gameplay experience, while crouching and crawling generates less sound to enable sneaking and stealth gameplay.
  • Added a Zoom Transition Sensitivity Smoothing option (off by default). When enabled, this option allows players to smooth out the sensitivity transition when aiming down sight instead of instantly transitioning to the zoomed sensitivity. This option only affects legacy aiming users as it’s already automatically enabled when using Uniform Soldier Aiming.
  • Increased the density of the fields on Arras when playing on lower settings, to not give a visual advantage to those playing on low-spec PCs.

Weapon balance

  • Improved SMG sustained fire when hip firing.
  • Reduced SMG base dispersion to 0.15 from 0.2 to make SMGS more controllable and increase the effectiveness of the low ROF SMGs at range.
  • Increased M1A1 vertical recoil to 0.6 from 0.55.
  • Increased M1907 SF vertical recoil to 0.82 from 0.68.
  • Reduced the vertical recoil reduction when crouching to 25% from 30% and when prone to 40% (previously 50%), and it no longer stacks with bipod bonuses.

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