Nanocrystalline gold films were prepared by advanced gas deposition. Electric field induced effects on the film structure during and after deposition was investigated. A dc electric field in the range 2 ≤U
a ≤ 8 V/cm, was applied parallel to the substrate surface and led to changes of film microstructure and resistivity. In another set of experiments, films deposited at U
a = 0 were exposed to electric fields of similar strength after deposition. Film degradation could be understood from a mechanism consistent with a biased-percolation effect. Our results show that it is possible to control the film structure by varying the strength of an applied electric field.