China Rising map previews [Video]

bf4-dlc-china-risingGamespot has posted some video previews from a DICE Xbox One press event of the four China Rising maps for the upcoming DLC.  Unfortunately, by posting these videos, Gamespot was breaking their NDA, as these were not supposed to be released until December 3 (November 26 was the original date, but that was pushed back by EA/DICE).  Because of this, the videos have been set to private.  However, a reddit user downloaded the videos and has reposted them because they are not personally under an NDA.  Note that these may not remain up for long if EA/DICE asks YouTube to remove them.  Keep an eye on this reddit thread for possible repostings if they are taken down before you get a chance to see them, as well as for suggestions on how one might download the videos from YouTube to watch at your leisure.

The first is Silk Road.  This is a map set in the desert with rolling sand dunes and mesas that provide cover in an otherwise open landscape.  Set within the map is a small military encampment consisting of lots of concrete and Quonset huts.  Based on the video, the encampment is the setting for the Domination (and one would assume, TDM) game modes.  I would agree with the commentators that this may become a grinding map for these modes.  Obliteration expands the maps out into the sand, which appears to feature a terrain surprisingly ripe with ambush opportunities.  However, this map does not appear to be as vertical as the vanilla maps, unless conquest would feature some sort of tunnels beneath the sand.  This map has gratuitous use of dirt bikes in Obliteration mode.

The next map previewed is Guilin Peaks.  This is a jungle map with a central mountain.  Players can go either through or around the mountain.  Through the mountain appears to feature a significant choke point.  Choppers appear to have plenty of cover as they circle the mountain.  However, the mountain appears to be at the chopper ceiling, so flying over it is not an option.  There is significant foliage and the map appearance feels a bit like some BC2 Vietnam maps.  From the deploy screen, we can see the larger map borders a large body of water and is surrounded by what appears to be a multitude of rice paddies.

The third map previewed is Altai Range.  Set in a mountain range, split by a river-created valley, this map is reminiscent of Heavy Metal from BC2.  I can already see the number of snipers finding the most obscure points within the mountains to fire at the other snipers across the valley.  This map features an objective set near a radar tower like we had in Alborz Mountains, which is the capture point enabling the commander’s bomber asset (as opposed to the gunship).  This appears to be a very large map, and will feature a multitude of vehicles.

The last map previewed is Dragon Pass.  This map appears to be set very close to Guilin Peaks, featuring a similar mountain jungle landscape.  This map, however, features a river (too deep for a tank, apparently) and rice paddies in a somewhat marshy looking landscape. The video is of a Rush round, so we are only seeing a relatively narrow section of the map. However, the screenshots linked above include a shot of the deployment screen, which shows more than just the playable rush area.  The map contains a large waterway along the edge with a couple tributaries cutting through the map.

During these previews, we do not see any of the forms of Levolution offered on these maps.  In fact, the commentator suggests these maps may not have any, although that is tough to believe considered the focus it has in Battlefield 4.  However, he also refers to it as though Levolution is only the central set piece, so there may be more subtle events, such as rubble drops in the cave on Guilin Peaks.  Some reddit users noted that, at the end of the Altai Range video, we can see the partly cloudy sky getting darker, and the end of round screen includes some flurries, so they are speculating this indicates a blizzard will blow in, like the storm on Paracel Storm.  We will know more soon enough.

China Rising releases December 3 for Premium members, who have two weeks early access.  I believe that means it will release December 17 for non-premium members that purchase the DLC.