Fri. Feb 3rd, 2023
Be ready to die on the ground and suddenly be transported to a firefight from the sky.

Be ready to die on the ground and suddenly be transported to a firefight from the sky.

Editor’s Note: This review is based on experience with a full version of the game that was available through EA Access before its official release. The rating may be updated if server performance varies significantly after release.

The marketing for Star Wars: Battlefront want to remind you that you love Star Wars. At one point we’ve all wanted to escape to a galaxy far, far away, and this is essentially a game that aims to give you that simple escapism.

Front looks and sounds great authentic for that Star Wars nostalgia. There are movie-accurate hails of sparks and fumes in every explosion, an epic John Williams-style score (by composer Gordy Haab), and signature TIE fighter screams and blaster fire squawks. The one exception is the voice acting, as hilariously bad stand-ins take the place of James Earl Jones, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford (the latter of which sounds like he should go on about “da Bears,” not like he intends). to take on Darth Vader with a blaster pistol). The sights and sounds of Star Wars are so relatable that the series finds itself in the uncanny valley of popular culture, making even this minor inaccuracy a big one.

Simplicity in the stars

How you feel about Front depends less on the superficial details of the Star Wars simulacra, and more with how you feel about Electronic Arts’ other multiplayer shooter, Battlefield.

Both games are developed by DICE and both emphasize large clashes between human players (usually 64 at a time in Battlefieldbut “only” 40 inches Front). Where Front differs mainly in the lack of complexity. Front seems less aimed at veteran shooter fans and more at casual Star Wars fans. That’s a broad enough audience that a lot of complexity had to be extracted from it this year Battlefield stand-in.

The first two Battle fronts focused more on non-player characters fighting independently; you cut through the flesh in a clash that raged whether you were there or not. In this latest adaptation, the combat is more direct. It’s you against them, and them against your X-Wings, TIE Fighters, AT-STs and anything else you can load into the laser-filled slaughterhouse.

The new Front also has a much less sophisticated upgrade system than shooter stalwarts are used to. There’s no weapon customization: no scopes, grips, or stock to play with and get exactly right for whatever distance you want to shoot. You can switch to secondary weapons, but they operate with a strict cooldown that usually leaves you stuck with your primary weapon. Whatever minor customization options there are you slowly unlock through play, over 50 levels of progression that unlock new weapons, items or cosmetics.

This is a more inclusive time for Star Wars, those cosmetics also mean you can choose to be a black woman in full stormtrooper regalia or an Asian rebel ally if you choose. Oddly enough, most of those racial choices are encapsulated behind in-game purchases on the Empire side – in the same way as, say, a new blaster or haircut – but not for the Rebel Alliance.

Even in matches with fewer players than usual Front However, the game takes place at medium to long distances away from you Battlefield series. You regularly get picked off from a distance by one-shot-one-kill Pulse Cannon, and if you’re good, you’ll do the same on the other side. You’ll travel great distances only to be blown away by AT-AT fire, and if you want to keep playing you’ll learn to like it (as you may have learned after ten years of similar Battlefield spell).

Other Battlefield Games allow you to make more acute weapon modifications to alleviate this problem and make your warrior smaller to fit the dimensions you want to fight around. from the battlefield stricter arsenal means you die where and how the game wants, and that limited mindset permeates the entire game.

Droids, drops and death match

As a multiplayer shooter in 2015, Front comes with most modes the genre comes to mind. Supremacy, Drop Zone and Droid Run are fantastic stretched canvases Battlefield swamp default Conquest mode. In each, you run around shooting the other side, capturing points that either move (Droid Run), pop out of alien skies (Drop Zone), or just sit waiting to be taken (Supremacy).

Supremacy you could see as from the battlefield neutral state. It is based on the way of notation of its modern military cousin, and it contains an amalgam of everything the game has to offer. Vehicles, power-ups, starfighters, heroes and villains are showcased as well as anywhere else in the game.

Walker Assault is like Supremacy, but with hulking aluminum horses trying to step on you. The mode is still heavily weighted towards the Empire’s AT-ATs, just like it was in the beta. However, now the game shows the Rebels glowing, red weak points when the walkers are vulnerable. It’s enough to send the hamsters running in their wheels – a deceptive assurance that victory is possible for those courageous traitors, when in reality the Empire still has a huge advantage in this mode. The Rebels’ asymmetrical desperation remains one of the game’s strongest points and something unique Front.

Blast is the game’s deathmatch mode, which still feels out of place in a game operating at this scale. Heroes vs. Villains and Hero Hunt forgo pretensions and simply throw Luke, Leia, Han, Boba Fett, Vader, and the Emperor at each other and/or unlucky mortals (rather than these characters being collectible power-ups for normal matches). Playing as a regular trooper in these stages is an impressive way to die quickly, while playing as the stars themselves doesn’t carry nearly the same meaning.

Above the battlefield

Finally, there is the Fighter Squadron mode. Ironically, this is the mode that feels most faithful to the Front brand, pitting two squads of human players against each other against the backdrop of an AI battle. Oh, and it takes place entirely in the air. The collectible heroes and villains are replaced by the Millennium Falcon and Slave I, and may the Force be with everyone in a standard TIE fighter or A-Wing that tries to greet them.

Your options in the atmosphere, as on the ground, are insignificant. You shoot, roll and (if you’re an Imperial) boost through a frenzy of weaponized starlight. Keeping your distance isn’t easy, and you’ll probably die just as often, if not more often, than on the surface. Just like on the ground, you can switch between first and third person at any time.

Peering out through the soot-stained cockpit of an X-Wing at any fraction of the speed of light you reach feels great, but this also makes it hard to see most of your surroundings. You’ll want to keep your view out of the ship to keep the game playable. It’s another one of those details, like the wrong voices, that blocks the nostalgia signal to your brain. However you play it, the aerial ballet is exciting despite its limited arsenal.

New in Box

While there is some charisma to be found in it Star Wars: Battlefront, it is always borrowed, never built from the ground up. Whether it’s the well-known pulling Star Wars license or the known Battlefield spine, it always feels like a stripped-down imitation of something else.

There are not enough ways for players to communicate with each other. Factor in ships and vehicles being handed out as power-ups – wiping you out of the trenches and stowing you away in the heavens seconds later – and matches tend to feel superficial after just a little play.

Of FrontEA has chiseled an exquisite playset of virtual Star Wars toys in addition to a company-approved manual on how to enjoy them. The game even goes so far as to include a digital diorama where sculpted figures can be unlocked through achievements. Like much of the game, it’s fun to look at, but there’s not much you can do with it.

The good

  • The game definitely nails the sights and sounds of Star Wars
  • Shooting is satisfying, even if firing a blaster takes some getting used to
  • Wonderfully easy to get into
  • Walker Assault is still delightfully desperate

The bad

  • Combat and progression are too simple to be interesting
  • Somewhat lackluster use of the Star Wars and Front licenses
  • Some modes are too similar while others are not worth your time
  • Secondary weapons that are often unusable due to a strict cooldown

The ugly one

  • Getting shot at from 300 yards just as you got the drop on another opponent

Verdict: Front scratches that itch for Star Wars wish fulfillment, but once the twinkle leaves your eye, there’s not much left to discover. Try it.

By akfire1

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