Star Wars Battlefront II Impressions – A Much More Enjoyable Star Wars Experience but Not Yet Quite Up to True Potential
Star Wars is one of the biggest franchise in media history, with award-winning movies, hundreds of spin-offs, several books around its universe, and yet we still haven’t gotten the game such a franchise deserves. 2015’s Star Wars Battlefront left a lot to be desired, especially its lack of a single-player campaign, relatively low replayability value due to limited content and repetitive combat style. EA DICE addressed some of the major issues raised in the sequel, Star Wars Battlefront II, but there is still room for improvement, a lot of room.
Unlike its predecessor, Star Wars Battlefront II features a single-player campaign. The campaign takes around 5-7 hours on average for players to completely finish, but what happens during those 5-7 hours is what matters. I will do my best to avoid spoiling major plot points and leave players to experience it themselves. Player follow the story of Commander Iden Versio, daughter of Admiral Garrick Versio and commander of The Imperial Special Forces commando unit Inferno Squad.
EA DICE did a wonderful job in creating an interesting character in Iden Versio, not only that, the moments featuring interactions between her and other members in the Inferno Squad included a lot of Star Wars-like moments with funny one-liners and sarcastic and witty dialogue. However, that wonderful and interesting character is never fully explored, leaving players with a mere glimpse of a promising character that could have been expanded upon much further. Not only her, several side characters weren’t fully fleshed, mainly due to Versio taking too much screen time and leaving little for other characters to be presented properly. Star Wars Battlefront II’s campaign is definitely a nice addition, considering its complete absence in the previous instalment, but it leaves a lot to be desired especially for hardcore Star Wars fans.
Star Wars Battlefront II’s multiplayer mode is miles better than 2015’s Star Wars Battlefront, and that in itself is an accomplishment because there were few major flaws to fix. Instead of customizing your loadout from scratch, EA DICE implemented four different specialised classes for players to choose from; Assault, Heavy, Officer and Specialist. The previous game’s Call of Duty-like system of customizing your loadout from scratch was rather tedious and complicated for some people. Picking the right gun, assigning the complementary star and boost cards and finding the most suitable loadout takes time and players aren’t always capable of finding the perfect loadout that suits their style. The four readily available classes allows for smoother gameplay and easier decision making depending on the situation you are team is in.
The new maps, modes, characters and improved visuals all add up to create one of the most enjoyable multiplayer experiences I ever had playing a video game, add to that the fact that it’s Star Wars and I get to play as Darth Maul, Master Yoda, Luke Skywalker and a slew of my favourite characters and you have a masterpiece. As far as gameplay, content and visuals, EA DICE have definitely outdone themselves, but in true EA fashion, the game’s progression system is tied up to its loot box system. Players can only acquire characters, star cards and further develop their multiplayer experience through purchasing loot boxes, something an EA representative got flamed for when replying to a commentator on Reddit, making it the most disliked comment in the site’s history. As of the time of writing, EA has suspended micro-transactions from Battlefront II with no date on when it will be implemented again.
Overall, Star Wars Battlefront II is definitely a step up from 2015’s iteration, with improved visuals for an already stunning game, a new single-player campaign, a revamped class system and more Star Wars universe for players to sink hours into. However, the package doesn’t come without its flaws, with the most glaring ones being the repetitiveness combat and unfulfilled potential of the single-player campaign and tying the multiplayer’s progression system to loot boxes and giving people who pay real money an advantage, which eventually leads to an unbalanced playing field.