Battle Grounds
Bzg front.jpg
Developers: Various
Release Date: September 1998
Latest Version: 1.1b

Battlezone: Battle Grounds, often shortened to Battle Grounds, Battlegrounds, BZGrounds, or BZG, was the first official expansion for to be released for Battlezone by Macmillan Digital Publishing. It consisted of a total of 98 new maps of varying quality spread across multiplayer and Instant Action, the Level Cataloger program to install and manage them, and the 1.4 Patch. Unlike the later expansion Battlezone: The Red Odyssey it does not include any new factions, nor does it include a significant number of new units.

History[edit | edit source]

The maps contained within Battle Grounds were developed at varying times following Battlezone's February release date, with most being released online some time before Battle Grounds' development. Macmillan gathered them through a variety of means, putting out a public request for submissions through Realm X,[2] while making direct requests to some authors that led to some maps being created by their designers specifically for Macmillan's use.[3] After Macmillan's enlisted designers Toni Chaffin and Jason L'Hirondelle sorted through the maps and selected the ones they wished to include, they then created a review and description for each for use in Level Cataloger's database.[4]

References to a Battlezone addon[5] titled Siege of the Super Powers are present within Battle Grounds' installer; this is most likely an earlier name for the addon, but it may also be an early title for The Red Odyssey or some other Battlezone project MacMillan had been working on.

Maps[edit | edit source]

Instant Action[edit | edit source]

Battle Grounds introduced 46 Instant Action maps to Battlezone, some of which provided new narrative and others which did not, on average of a higher difficulty than the campaign missions in the original. Several of the maps provided a connected narrative through their out-of-game briefings regardless, notably the Alternate and Enforcer & Slingshot series. As a result of an issue with Level Cataloger's database the Instant Action map Capture the Relic is inaccessible to the program; this caused most counts of the included maps to be one short.[6]

Multiplayer[edit | edit source]

Most of Battle Grounds' 52 multiplayer maps followed the already-existing formulas of the Deathmatch and Strategy gamemodes, with a few branching out into Sniper Deathmatch and Race, but Battle Grounds also included maps that had play similar to a rudimentary form of the Capture the Flag and Strategy Capture the Flag gamemodes that would later appear in Battlezone II.

Re-release[edit | edit source]

When the Battlezone Gold Pack was released in September 1999 to commemorate the launch of Battlezone II, it bundled Battle Grounds alongside Battlezone, its other Macmillan-published expansion Battlezone: The Red Odyssey, the Official Strategy Guide and the Battlezone II Demo. Battle Grounds gained much greater exposure through the Gold Pack than it ever did alone, and standalone copies of Battle Grounds are rare as a result.

1.1 Release[edit | edit source]

An unofficial 1.1 release of Battle Grounds was released in March 2015. This version updated the included maps for compatibility with the 1.5 Patch, added six new maps to complete series like Alternate and Enforcer & Slingshot, and included a completely re-written version of Level Cataloger that overcame the issues that prevented the original from running on modern systems.[7] Version 1.1b followed four months later.

Battlezone 98 Redux Version[edit | edit source]

In April 2016 the Heracles Brigade ported the maps from Battlezone: Battle Grounds to Battlezone 98 Redux and released them as day-one content on the game's Steam Workshop. With the release the group worked to improve the quality of the included maps and implement features such as lua scripting not supported by previous official versions of the game. Later patches meant the maps had to be removed and re-ported.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

Battlezone Series
Games Battlezone (Battle Grounds · The Red Odyssey · Rise of the Black Dogs · Gold Pack) · Battlezone II: Combat Commander
Remasters Battlezone 98 Redux (Battlezone 98 Redux: The Red Odyssey · Battlezone 98 Redux: Odyssey Edition)
Soundtracks Battlezone (The Red Odyssey · Rise of the Black Dogs · Early Test Soundtrack) · Battlezone II (Battlezone II Music Pack)
Demos Battlezone (Instant Action · The Red Odyssey) · Battlezone II
Strategy Guides Battlezone · Battlezone II
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