PREVIEW – Let’s be honest, we have been waiting for a Star Wars title that is better than the average. It seems that DICE has finally broken the silence and is releasing such a shooter that is based on the beta and many of us will remember for a long time. Some will remember it fondly, and some will hate it.
I will try to be frank as possible, but the last ten hours of the Beta that allowed me to stay in a galaxy in a long time ago was pretty great. When I saw the E3 gameplay I was skeptical. As every time I see a movie based game I get cautious about it. However this feeling of cautiousness is starting to change in me, in to optimism. I’ll be talking about mostly about the matches I had, and will not really talk about how much weapons and grenades I got to use.
Do, or do not… there is no try!
When I first signed in I was in total catharsis. The location is a currently unknown volcanic planet called Sollust. The level is full of small craters that you can fall into, and the player can lose health on those occasions. There are downed X-Wings, TIE Fighters, lasers, and explosions all over the place. If I looked up into the sky I did not see clear skies, but rather giant ships battling between each other.
The objective was none other than to capture escape pods, in the 8vs8. This is the Drop Zone mode. I know it is not a big leap, or revolutionary, but the atmosphere is unbelievably great. It is a tense game mode with fun moments.
Still it was annoying that I would be shredded to pieces by players who are on the other side of the map. It did not happen because of my lack of skills, but rather because of the weapons having an unrealistic range. This happened to me four times at least in one match which resulted in some very annoying, and game breaking matches for me.
There are downed X-Wings, TIE Fighters, lasers, and explosions all over the place.
One thing I did notice in the game as a storm trooper is that there is constant radio communication. Not just empty words, but the communications which fit into the situations on the battlefield: “The rebels have captured an Escape Pod!” “Lord Vader will not be pleased about this. – Yes, he definitely will not be.”
That time when the Millenium Falcon barely wanted to start
The location is the snow covered Hoth. Walker Assault mode, where 20 rebels clash with 20 imperials. As the level is huge I feared that there would not be a lot of action, but I realized really quickly that I was wrong. There is no part of the level where there wasn’t any action going.
Everybody starts as an infantry unit, but thanks to the power ups you can get into the vehicles on the maps. While the AT-AT and AT-ST vehicles are on rails, we still get to control their weaponry. I loved burning the lone Rambo rebels with these vehicles. Still the most fun I had was controlling the X-Wings or TIE fighters, the beginners will have fun and will get used to the controls really quickly. We can even also visit the famous hangar from The Empire Strikes Back.
At first the entire objective felt too complicated, but then I realized that you only need a bit of more tactical thinking. A lot of people will probably hate me saying this but I did not find anything special in activating the Heroes. I will not be awed by two Skywalkers with lightsabers running around. Furthermore the Imperials start with way too much advantages. I understand that they are the attackers, but when playing the game it is not really fair.
As the name implies, in Survival mode, alone or with a co-op partner we have to destroy the wave of enemies that are advancing on our position. It is too early to comment the significance of this mode, as it only contains the normal mode, and five waves out of the fifteen. Luckily there will be tougher difficulties as I easily dispatched Vader’s lackeys. If anyone is tired of the gigantic clashes, this mode will be a breath of fresh air. Maybe this is for those who caused an uproar that there will be no campaign mode. I am one of those, as I cannot believe they could not stich together a 10 hour single player mode.
Nagu, agu, tak-tak
What I cannot complain about though is the graphics, which was nothing short of staggering. This is what I call Next-Gen. The Frostbite 3 engine is astonishing (Jesus! Mass Effect Andromeda you are still too far away!). They really did upheld their promises, when we saw in this year’s Star Wars celebration convention, that the footage was all ingame. The game is 60 FPS, the effects are lifelike, and the weapons are well represented in Battlefront. There were times when I could not see properly as the sun was shining too bright.
What also heightens the ambiance is the music and the sounds. The music is straight from the original trilogy, at the very heart of the action, while all the lasers and grenades are going right by me. I could actually be in one of the movie’s epic battle, and was thinking: what would have I done as a Rebel or Imperial? DICE did a great job, and if the final version will have more than three maps we will have a few sleepless nights after the 20th of November.
The Force will be with you?:
+ Star Wars ambiance
+ Pretty fast, adrenalin rushin action
+ You can be with Star Wars heroes
The Dark Side will be stronger?:
– If you don’t care about Star Wars heroes
– Game balance is still pretty dire
– Not much tactics to had
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Developer: EA DICE
Genres: Multi FPS
Publication: Q1 2016