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Battlefield 1 adding women soldiers in Russian DLC

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It's not only French and Russian soldiers who were left out of World War 1 in Battlefield 1 [official site] for later appearances in paid expansions: women are coming in DLC too. Soldiers from the 1st Russian Women's Battalion of Death will serve as the multiplayer Scout class for the Russian forces coming later this year in the expansion In the Name of the Tsar, DICE have revealed. They look pret-ty gnarly all right but it's such a shame they're limited to paid DLC.

DICE don't have much more to say for now, instead pointing people towards EA's big E3 livestream presentation EA Play on June 10th. Okey cokey.

Supposedly DICE did originally plan to include women soldiers in Battlefield 1 then changed their minds. Bedouin rebel Zara Ghufran is playable in part of the game's singleplayer campaign but the plan was to have female soldiers in multiplayer too.

As VG247 reported in June 2016, former DICE programmer Amandine Coget has claimed DICE chucked a uey on women soldiers and eventually conceded it was because their presence would not, as Coget phrased it, be believable "to the core audience of boys."

Women were rare on the frontlines but heaven forbid anything be less than wholly realistic in a wakka-wacky World War 1 with cartoon armies respawning endlessly and charging gleefully to their cartoon deaths, cartoon physics, and giant sharks leaping out of trench puddles.

I'll not quote Coget's entire tweet chain but here's the outline:

A few months later, Coget says, an internal e-mail thread mentioned they'd been canned.

Neat as they are, the Women's Battalion of Death arriving in a £12 expansion is little consolation. Activision's rival arcadey warfest, Call of Duty, introduced multiplayer female soldiers in 2013 and yup, plans to have them in World War 2 too.

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Alice O'Connor avatar

Alice O'Connor

Associate Editor

Alice has been playing video games since SkiFree and writing about them since 2009, with nine years at RPS. She enjoys immersive sims, roguelikelikes, chunky revolvers, weird little spooky indies, mods, walking simulators, and finding joy in details. Alice lives, swims, and cycles in Scotland.

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