Battlefield 2042’s Hazard Zone provides high-stakes, squad-based mode

Grab your squad and prepare for battle.

Image via DICE

Hazard Zone, Battlefield 2042’s new intense game mode, will give fans an exciting experience in which four-player squads fight over Data Drives.

Battlefield 2042 releases next month and fans are looking forward to the latest iteration in the iconic series. Players have already seen the All-Out Warfare Battlefield is known for and are excited to get their hands on the Battlefield Portal, the community-driven platform that allows them to create unique experiences. And Battlefield 2042’s third game mode, Hazard Zone, will provide added intensity.

Hazard Zone puts players in the role of a No-Pat Task Force created to retrieve Data Drives from downed satellite capsules across the seven All-Out Warfare maps. In response to a worldwide blackout event in 2040, low orbit satellites are used to gather intel on enemy forces. The satellites are downed in U.S. or Russian-controlled territory, allowing each side to collect intel from the Data Drives. The No-Pat Task Force collects Data Drives for the “safety of all other non-combative No-Pats.”

Squads of four players, as part of the No-Pat Task Force, drop into each map to locate the Data Drives, but other players are after these valuable items. Occupying Forces also stand in your way. Players need to worry about the weather, too. Tornados can spawn at any time, creating another unique challenge. 

Players select their loadout before jumping into a game. These items can be purchased with Dark Market Credits, which are rewarded by successfully extracting the Data Drives. Escaping with Data Drives is the most important part of Hazard Zone. Killing isn’t the main objective and avoiding enemies is a viable strategy. 

Tactical Upgrades are also available for purchase, which add valuable bonuses like additional primary weapon magazines and throwables. Fifteen Tactical Upgrades will be available at launch, giving players the option to decide which are the most beneficial to their playstyle. 

Squads can’t have duplicate specialists, so teams will need to coordinate their choices to ensure they’re prepared for any challenge. For example, an aggressive squad can select Mackay to take advantage of the Grappling Hook and Nimble Trait, providing incredible mobility, while Falck can reapply health with the S21 Pistol. A defensive team can use Irish’s Fortification system and Boris’ SG-36 Sentry Gun to control an area. Mixing and matching specialists allows players to customize their Hazard Zone experience. 

Hazard Zone isn’t a place you want to make mistakes. Once you’re downed, you can crawl to safety, but you’ll be placed in the spectator screen if fully killed. Your squad can bring you back by using a Reinforcement Uplink, which are scattered around the map or available as a Tactical Upgrade. 

After selecting a loadout and Tactical Abilities, players select the point on the map where they want to drop in. Once on the ground, squads will use the Intel Scanner gadget to find the approximate locations of Data Drives. During the Hazard Zone mid-game, new satellites fall from the sky, containing several Data Drives. These fallen satellites are more valuable but also attract more attention. 

Players have two chances to extract during a Hazard Zone match. The first extraction is revealed a few minutes into the game and players have a couple of minutes to make it to the randomized location. The last extraction window opens 10 to 12 minutes into a match. The squads that didn’t extract during the first window will have to fight for this final chance to escape with their loot. 

Only one squad can escape in either extraction method, meaning only two teams can survive a match. Successfully extracting multiple times with a unique specialist grants an Extraction Streak, unlocking discounts for Tactical Upgrades and loadout items. But failing to extract resets the streak.

If you fail to extract, you lose everything you’ve gathered in the match. But if at least one member of your team makes it out, the entire squad gets rewarded. 

The Hazard Zone game mode supports 24 players on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 and 32 players on the Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 5, and PC. Battlefield 2042 will be released on Nov. 19.