Star Wars Battlefront II: EA Strikes Back
By David Stonecipher
I don’t know if anyone has ever actually wondered who would win in a fight between Lando Calrissian and Darth Maul, but if The Simpsons character you most identify with is “Comic Book Guy” then you can finally put this geek debate to rest. Thanks to Star Wars Battlefront II, fans can now step into the boots of more iconic Star Wars characters than ever before giving users the ability to witness all kinds of battles that never actually played out in the movies. For most game modes, however, don’t expect to be living out your childhood fantasy of becoming Han Solo or Darth Vader until you’ve paid your dues as an expendable rebel trooper or stormtrooper. You’ll have to play a bit to earn the right to be one of the famous heroes or villains.
In an apparent effort to confuse people as much as possible, this is actually the second time a game titled Star Wars Battlefront II has been released. The newest entry in the franchise is a direct follow-up to DICE’s 2015 title, which in turn was a reboot of the similarly named series that ended in 2005 with, you guessed it, the first release of Star Wars: Battlefront 2.
Naming originality aside, Battlefront II serves as Electronic Arts’ newest attempt to deliver the typical Star Wars fan’s wet dream. Overall, the game manages to do a decent job of fulfilling that promise as the sights and sounds are all incredibly authentic to the source material. Like all Battlefront games that came before it, the latest installment once again focuses on recreating large-scale battles set within the Star Wars universe via individual match-based sessions.
Top New Game Features
Expanding on their first Battlefront game, the developer has tweaked the formula a bit to make way for some general improvements. Basic stormtroopers and soldier units now all have classes that serve specific roles such as front-line combatant or support specialist. Responding to feedback from the first game, DICE also included a single-player campaign with Star Wars Battlefront II.
The intent of the story mode was to give users the option to play the game however they like but, in reality, Battlefront II is still ultimately a PvP-focused title. The campaign is nice but it won’t keep fans coming back to play and, while the game also includes various co-op modes, they are treated as secondary training sessions with limited daily rewards. Apparently, the answer to the question, “War. What is it good for?” is selling video games since EA clearly believes that competitive conflict is more lucrative than modes that encourage players to work together.
After everything is said and done, perhaps the single most notable takeaway from Star Wars Battlefront II is how amazing it looks. The visuals really help the game stand out from the crowd. The animations and shooting mechanics are also top-notch when playing with either the first or third person camera.
However, there is still a constant reminder that the original Battlefront games managed to do many things better than the current reboot. It gave fans the option to play any map with full bots rather than only allowing users to experience a few select modes if they want to fight against the AI. While technological improvements keep pushing the franchise forward, Battlefront II is still far far away from giving players the sense of choice that was already established within the same series a long time ago.
In the end, the Star Wars brand is pretty much guaranteed to make money and EA knows this. It really doesn’t matter what is in the game, but thankfully it’s clear that DICE actually put some care into Battlefront II as the game has plenty of good points and is sure to show fans a decent time. That’s good, because they could have just phoned it in and let the Star Wars license do all the work and then we’d all be stuck playing “Jawa Kart Racing” or something.
7 out of 10 Wookies celebrated this game by ripping the arms off droids.
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