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Battlefield 1: How to level up, earn war bonds and unlock weapons

The new weapon unlock system, explained.

battlefield 1 sniper

Experience. Classes. Levels. War Bonds... how the hell do you unlock that one big gun you want in Battlefield 1? We've got you covered. Remain calm.

It's all a little bit complicated and a little bit different to the 'reach a certain level and unlock the gun' system you find in most other games, but it's actually not as complicated as it first sounds despite the fact that every class in the game has its own individual level and there's a completely separate currency that has to be used to buy weapons once you've earned the right to use them via your class ranking.

Read on - we explain how to level up, how the class ranks work, how to get war bonds and how to target a specific gun you're after to unlock it.

Remember that for even more help with Battlefield 1 you can hit up our definitive guide hub page, which has just about everything you need to know in one place.


Battlefield 1: All about Class Ranks & Weapon Unlocks

Battlefield 1 has a different player rank/level for each class in the game on top of your overall player rank. This offers a little incentive for players to really learn and specialize in a role, since doing well with that role will level it up and naturally unlock some more goodies for that class to use.

If you head to the Class Customization screen for any given class in the game, you'll be able to see your current class rank in the top left corner as well as a bar that shows your progress towards the next level.

Class ranks are gained by simply doing things that assist your team in matches: kills, assists, reviving team mates, dropping ammo or medical packs, and other actions that progress your objectives and so on.

Each class will have a small smattering of weapons that are available from minute one and then some that become available when you hit certain ranks. Once weapons become available, they're not immediately yours - you must then spend the necessary amount of War Bonds to buy them. All you initially earn from your rank is the right to have that weapon at all.

Most of the weapons in the game are unlocked by the time you hit rank 3 or so, but some of the high-end show-off guns are reserved for players who have climbed up to the whopping rank of 10.

Some guns are available for more than one class, particularly in the case of side arms. An interesting wrinkle in this is that some guns are usable by one class but only unlockable in another: So there are side arms that one class can use that must be first unlocked and bought via another class - then they'll unlock for other classes.

Be aware that vehicles like tanks, planes and even horses have their own unique ranks. This means that if as a scout you hop into a tank and rack up a bunch of kills these kills will not count towards your scout rank.

All the weapons you unlock through class leveling then have to be unlocked with War Bonds. Let's talk about that next.


Battlefield 1: All about Warbonds - how to get them, how to spend them

Once you've got your hands on a decent number of them, War Bonds are used to purchase weapons, gadgets, grenades and even extra melee weapons in the class customization screen after you've ranked up sufficiently.

You earn war bonds simply by ranking up, so the act of leveling up enough to get access to Battlefield 1's more impressive weapons will by its very nature help you to then buy those weapons. You can see how many you have on the top right of the customization screen.

Even with that said, war bonds are fairly scarce early on and so Battlefield developers DICE are forcing you to make some hard choices about where and how you want to spend your hard-earned bonds. Think carefully before blowing them all!

In order to spend your war bonds you'll want to get to the correct screen by hitting the customize screen for a given class and then clicking one of their weapon, sidearm, grenade, gadget or melee slots.

That'll bring up a list of all the weapons this class can use in the game, and next to those you're a high enough level to have will be a War Bonds symbol - say, that a new sniper rifle for the scout will cost 200 War Bonds. If you've enough, you can buy the gun.

Don't forget that as well as the Assault, Support, Medic and Scout classes the vehicle-based Tanker, Pilot and Cavalry classes have some war bonds based unlocks of their own, though they are more limited.

About the Author

Alex Donaldson avatar

Alex Donaldson

Assistant Editor

Alex started out his career in the games media as an over-eager kid working on fan sites, and now has decades of experience. He's the resident expert on esoteric matters such as Pokemon Go, gaming hardware, and genres like RPGs, fighters, and strategy games. Outside of VG247 he's the co-founder of genre-dedicated website RPG Site. He also collects original arcade machines, Lego, and considers himself a whiskey buff.

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