Is Star Wars Battlefront 2 a “screw you” from EA & DICE?

I really like Star Wars Battlefront, despite its flaws… and it has many flaws.

The offline content is poor. The Fighter Squadron mode is grossly imbalanced. The UI has notable bugs (half of which got fixed recently). Matchmaking is terrible (if existent at all). Content is a little thin on the ground for “out of the box” gameplay. Some 6 months after release I don’t think it has hit the quality levels for a “release candidate”.

But it has real potential. Its core gameplay is great fun and I really wanted to believe that it would be worked on, fixed and build a great experience before in a few years bringing out a new Star Wars game. Its really annoying that the full priced game feels like a Beta, but its fun and when they finish the game, it will be awesome!

Alas they’ve announced a sequel in 2017. My initial reaction was disappointment as this seems like a strong indication that the current enjoyable yet broken Star Wars Battlefront won’t be receiving full attention to bring it up to scratch. Instead it felt a bit like the news that “surprise” – we’ve paid to beta test Star Wars Battlefront 2.

Perhaps that initial reaction was wrong. The news of a 2017 release does mean the Season Pass was without a doubt a waste of money (offers little value, if any) but does that mean DICE are abandoning the game relatively early on, therefore players should too? I’m not so sure.

The new game is unlikely to be fundamentally different. In fact I’d be surprised if it is much more than a reskin with new heroes, levels etc but the same code base. As a result the things that they still *really* do need to fix for both games, should be relatively straight forward to fix in both (assuming they have a decent version control setup).

Of course if it is to be dumped for a newer game, that is hardly something “out there” and new to the industry. Call of Duty is much worse. However unlike Call of Duty and also other DICE titles, this series is heavily driven by Star Wars branding. My understanding is that the Star Wars films are expected until 2019 or 2020. It makes sense to launch games at the time of the films, so a late 2017 release of a new Star Wars game seems a very good idea. However a question to ask here is whether it should be another Battlefront game? Perhaps it would be more preferable to see a different type of game coincide with the movie’s release. A single player FPS would of course work (think Dark Forces)or maybe something more expansive, like an adventure game or even a flight sim.

I’ll shut up now.

Leave a Reply