It’s been a little quiet around here lately. I had planned to fill the gaps with reviews for the last two seasons of Game of Thrones, but by the time I got round to writing the season six review, I’d forgotten what exactly had happened in that season (like, I remember the events, but where did the lines between seasons five and seven end?) and so now I’m in the process of rewatching that.
But never fear, because Battlefront II has come to save the day, as the long-awaited new game mode has rounded out the second half of The Clone Wars updates.
So with three new updates since the arrival of Obi-Wan Kenobi in Battlefront II, there’s a lot of new content to unpack.
A while back, I did a follow-up post to my review of Spider-Man on PS4, once I finally earned the Platinum Trophy. On that ‘Being Greater’ post, one of the comments by KissTheMovies stated how ‘more games should have a follow up like this’.
Well, after a lot of toiling away, I’ve managed to get that Platinum Trophy on Star Wars Battlefront II, so I’m going to talk a little bit more about the experience of ‘completing’ the game.
Unlike Spider-Man, getting that Platinum Trophy on Battlefront II was not an easy task. Not because the tasks were especially hard, but just because they were time-consuming.
In the past year or so, I’ve started listening to Collider‘s various podcasts and videos alongside my usual intake of The Weekly Planet and Mr. Sunday Movies. I will often listen to Collider Live, am an avid listener of Jedi Council and have also become a big fan of the Rule of Two spin-off podcast.
During last week’s episode, Mark Reilly and Marc Fernandez counted down their top ten favourite Star Wars moments and encouraged listeners to do the same. And after listening to the podcast yesterday, I’ve opted to do just that.
Like Reilly and Fernandez, I’m also just going to be sticking to the movies, otherwise, this list could become overwhelmed with Kanan Jarrus moments.
A year on from the game’s release, and the excitement in the fanbase has been restored somewhat. At EA’s conference earlier in the year, it was revealed that Battlefront was to get several new content drops around the years end. These new additions would include the planet of Geonosis, the heroes Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker and the villains General Grievous and Count Dooku, as well as a new game mode (Conquest).
In the lead up to these drops, EA continued to show seeming incompetence at the handling of the property, as the drops were continually pushed back, despite the fact Grievous, for one, had been being worked on since launch. As you can see from the ‘released’ section at the start of this DLC review, ‘Winter’ was the timeframe of release, with Anakin Skywalker later revealed to be being released in February of 2019. Many were contemplating taping out, as it seemed that after this final, drawn out push, the game would finally die.
And that may still be the case. But the first two updates of this ‘season’ have been released as of the time of writing, and so far, they are enjoyable enough to warrant sticking around to see how things play out.
General Grievous is a menacing force in the game, and very popular, I’ve noticed, despite the fact that on release his abilities didn’t all work (this is a common reoccurring theme with this game – new content or fixes are released, and two other things break as a result). But his fix came around quickly, along with Obi-Wan Kenobi, who may be my new personal favourite hero; the perfect mix of Jedi defensive powers and offensive force attacks.
Similarly, Geonosis, like Crait before it, is a welcome addition to the game. It’s vast, expansive and has another unique take on the Battlefront experience. The addition of free roaming AT-TE’s is very cool, and the fact that the battlefield is essentially just open plains makes it feel more like an actual war and less like an awkward tactical strike on a city.
I’m excited to see Anakin and Dooku enter the game, and from the way the developers are talking about things currently, the various new content drops that are to be released next year. I won’t hold out too much hope though, just in case this really is the end.
All-in-all, as of November 2018, I give Battlefront II + the Clone Wars ‘Season’:
Half a year after release, while there had been some content drops, such as bug fixes, an overhauled progression system and the ‘Night on Endor’ update that introduced Ewok Hunt into the game, Battlefront II was starting to feel rather lacking. Crait had been introduced so close to the original release date that it may as well have been part of the base game, and since then there had been no new maps or heroes.
Part of that changed with the Solo Season. While there were still no new heroes, the Solo Season pushed forward with new skins and the map Kessel, as featured in Solo: A Star Wars Story. Kessel was a fun map, but unfortunately only worked on three modes, the newly introduced Hero Deathmatch (one of my favourite modes at the time), Heroes vs. Villains and Extraction. Extraction had the opportunity to breathe new life into the game, but unfortunately was only available on Kessel and Jabba’s Palace, which had been ported over from Battelfront ’15. As such, that mode, like the rest of the game, quickly became quite stale, especially since the main game mode, Galactic Assault, was still not being catered to.
On the plus side, the new skins were a welcome addition in this otherwise sparse content drop. It was fun, fresh off of seeing Solo: A Star Wars Story to play as the Alden Ehrenreich and Donald Glover variants of Han Solo and Lando Calrissian. To my mind, even though Han and Lando’s prequel adventures take place ten years after the events of Revenge of the Sith, my headcanon in the game allowed them to be substitutes for the missing prequel-era heroes.
It was thoughts like that that made it obvious how disappointing Battlefront had become by this point. Ten years ago, LucasArts would drop two or three games a year, and under EA’s reign, we’ve had two games total. That will change next year, but it showed atrocious management of the property and made a lot of the remaining fanbase quite bitter. The remainers, like myself, were still playing, but my passion for the game was definitely starting to peter out, and I could easily go weeks at a time without picking up my controller.
All-in-all, as of May 2018, I give Battlefront II + The Solo Season:
Having only been released just under a month after launch, The Last Jedi Season of Star Wars Battlefront came out at a time when there was still hope for the game in it’s initial year.
The Season introduced new player characters Finn and Captain Phasma to Battlefront, both of whom feature some pretty good abilities. Finn is able to lock on to targets with his blaster rifle while boosting the stats of other players, while Phasma has a powerful rapid-firing rifle that can bring down even heroes in seconds. Add to that a sentry droid that can shock nearby enemies, and you’ve got two heroes here who are great for playing defence or rallying the troops.
Alongside the heroes came the planet Crait, as featured in The Last Jedi. To this day, I think Crait may be one of my favourite maps, due to its uniqueness. It’s flat, open plains make for a Battlefront experience that you can’t really get on many other maps, and being able to zip around in the Resistance’s speeders is a lot of fun.
The Last Jedi Season also came with three new missions for the story of Iden Versio. Now accompanied by her daughter, Zay, the new missions take place concurrently to the events of The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi. Plot-wise, it’s more of the same, just continuing your Rebel adventures, now aided by a character who I frankly could not care less about. And then…
…Iden dies at the end. So fuck that. Fifteen missions, only three of which involve any Imperial antics, and now her story’s over. While the gambling has obviously upset a lot of people, to me, the worst part of this game was the campaign. Dull and uninspired.
But overall, The Last Jedi Season was a hopeful time for Battlefront II. The game was still in its infancy and already getting updates full of content. On top of that, there were challenges that encouraged players to pick a side, and compete for points and prizes.
All-in-all, as of December 2017, I give Battlefront II +The Last Jedi Season:
I clocked a lot of hours in both Star Wars Battlefront I and II, before finally taking a break when I swapped consoles. But when the Black Friday sales popped up, and with the ‘Clone Wars Season’ imminent, I’ve jumped back on to the Battlefront.
RELEASED: November 17th 2017 DEVELOPED BY: EA DICE PUBLISHED BY: Electronic Arts
It’s been a year since Star Wars Battlefront II came out, and since then I’ve put a silly amount of hours into playing this game. I remember, back when the game was announced, how excited both I and the community as a whole were for the game. The first Battlefront of the modern era, while fun, was very much lacking when the base game was announced. By the time the four DLCs had been released, the game had been sufficiently bulked up, but it was a bit ridiculous that you had to essentially pay £90 or so for what should have been offered at the original price.
The sequel promised to do away with all of that. It would feature a ton of content from the beginning, and then be treated as a ‘live-service’ game, wherein you would continue to get updates at no extra cost.