Players may join a squad upon entering a server or beginning a round. Otherwise, players must be alive to join a squad. A player can leave or start a squad at any time.
A special set of icons and in-game indicators help squad members identify each other and their objective.
In-game voice chat occurs only between squad members (and between the commander and squad leaders). The squad also receives its own text chat channel, colored differently from the rest of the team and their enemy. In certain games, squads and their members are shown on the spawn screen, along with the map's spawn points. Players who are not in a squad are considered lone wolves.
The player earns more points for doing a support action (heal, resupply, repair, etc.) on a squad member than he does on someone outside the squad.
A player may start a squad at any time (provided a limit on the number of squads hasn't been reached), becoming its squad leader (SL). Squad leaders can invite other players on his team to join the squad, kick members out of the squad (but not out of the game). SLs can also lock a squad, preventing others from joining except by invite.
The squad leader receives the following abilities:
- Issue orders to the squad
- A special spawn point for squad members
- Earn points related to squad leading
- Use a separate command channel in voice chat
- Use special gadgets available only to squad leaders
In many games, the SL can give their squad a special name. Otherwise, squads are assigned NATO phonetic alphabet letters as their squad designation.
In certain games, squads and their members are shown on the spawn screen, along with the map's spawn points.
Squads in Battlefield gamesEdit
Battlefield 2 introduces the squad feature, with up to nine squads of six players each at a time.
Squad leaders can also request and receive orders from the commander, and can place requests for commander assets on the commander's view.
Battlefield 2142 gives players a special set of useful squad leader gadgets:
- Squad Leader Spawn Beacon for setting a static squad spawn point
- RD-4 Otus recon drone
- SD-8 Accipiter sentry drone
- Reinforcement Prioritization Unit for quicker respawn times.
The squad must be of a certain size in order for the squad leader to use a specific gadget. Any player can still equip a SL gadget, potentially allowing a squad leader to use different or multiple gadgets at once.
Squad mechanics are otherwise the same as BF2.
Battlefield: Bad CompanyEdit
In Battlefield: Bad Company and later games, the maximum squad size is four. Bad Company also adds an HUD element showing the squad the player belongs to. As well, the commander of the army the player is playing in will notify the player if he is the only member of his squad that has not been killed yet.
Battlefield: Bad Company 2Edit
In Battlefield: Bad Company 2, squads have become much more important. The game allows players to squad up in the main menu before joining a game to make playing together easier. Also, unlike other Battlefield games, any squad member can give orders even if they aren't the leader though the leader does have the sole option of making the squad private or public to other players. In the PC version of the game, the player will be notified of when he is the last surviving member of his squad until another squad member respawns.
Four-man squads return in Battlefield 3. Like other games, players can spawn on other squad members so long as they are not dead, climbing a ladder, operating a parachute, in a full vehicle, in a tight area, or too far away from a Rush objective. Unlike Bad Company 2 however, only the squad leader can give orders along with making their squad private or public to others. The leader and squad member can receive order bonuses. This is obtained when killing an enemy in proximity of the marked objective depending on the order. To identify the leader, a star marker has been added next to their name and can be seen by everyone including regular team mates and enemies. The game also added a squad menu to make it even easier to "squad up".
Players can receive a 10 point bonus for killing the last surviving member(s) of a squad and a Squad Wipe Ribbon for earning the bonus twice.
- In early stages of Battlefield 2, squads consisted of 8 players.
- Sometimes the squad system will glitch and players may find themselves in a squad with more than four members. In certain games (such as Battlefield 2142), it is then impossible for the squadmates to join other squads or spawn on their squad leader.
- A glitch in Battlefield 3 has allowed for two squad leaders in a squad with all the leader's benefits.