Before I get into this I just want to say I’m a massive Star Wars fan; so, when EA released a new installment in one of my favorite game series I was naturally hyped and bought the game on Day 1.
I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed it, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that something was missing, and I was right to assume this, as there were only 4 environments with a lack of any real variety, and every game just felt a bit too like the previous one…I admit I was disappointed, but it still has its’ merits in how it captures that Star Wars feel, with the amazing visuals and compelling sound effects. In December, the final piece of DLC for the game released in the form of Rogue One: Scarif, so I went ahead to pick up the season pass and give the current, full version of the game a go. This review will start by looking at all of the content that the season pass gives to improve to the core experience, I’ll then talk about the game’s components and visuals.
The season pass grants the user access to 4 new environments respective to their DLC, you can explore the Outer Rim, Bespin, the Death Star and Scarif. Each DLC pack adds a new environment each with their own types of map to fit certain game modes, as well as a new special Hero and Villain character for selection in new and existing game modes. While the environments and heroes are a big welcome to a game starving for something new, the first two expansions (Outer Rim and Bespin) feel like they don’t add much to the pool of maps available, you feel this more in Outer Rim as it essentially plays as Tatooine V2. You also can’t deny the feeling that most of these DLC’s feel like they could have just shipped with the vanilla game in the first place; as soon as we get to the Death Star, however, we start to feel the sense of something new and exciting with gigantic game modes that span over the course of 3 different maps with multiple objectives. These modes add in that Star Wars feel and makes the scale of the game feel much larger. This idea continued into the Rogue One pack, essentially starting you off in Space, with one team fighting to push the game to the next maps where they continue to play as the attacking team. I would even go out of my way to call these maps more like ‘large missions’, just with a team as you feel like the objective you must complete sounds like a thought-out plan that the team must work towards to impact the universe, unlike the casual Team Deathmatch style modes from the vanilla experience.
I’m not saying that the Bespin and Outer Rim packs are bad, Bespin adds in some great fun modes like Sabotage, and with it some exciting space battle areas for those who like it. I just find myself playing Rogue One and Death Star much more; Rogue One certainly taking the mantle of the best addition to the game – Allowing players to take part in the battle from the movie and explore the beautiful looking beaches of Scarif. The maps and game modes available in this expansion make it the most fun and best looking out of the 4, when looking with a critical eye.
That’s not to say that you need to fork out £40 for some additional experiences to the vanilla game. Since the game’s release, EA have released free content in the form of updates, including different variations of maps like the Twilight Hoth pictured above, and the Survivors of Endor maps which shows us a version of the luscious forest in a dramatic, giant inferno. Each update also brought with it more customization options for the soldiers, higher level caps, Hutt Contracts as well as more survival maps to try complete alone or with friends. While you don’t get the mass amount of content from the season pass expected, it is still welcome to get some of that somewhat exclusive pie.
Looking at the game now, we find ourselves now where we have a good set of DLC map packs to enhance the game into a supposedly great game to play if you have a full squad or if you just want to pass the time for 20 minutes. But that’s also the biggest flaw here, it’s a good set of DLC…But you’ve paid £40 for the vanilla game only to get 4 environments, no single player and a limited number of weapons. Then if you paid for the season pass that’s another £40 to get the experience you wish you only had to pay for once, which puts me in quite an odd position; I would personally recommend the game in this complete state, it’s classic Star Wars fun with a range of maps, heroes, weapons and extras to do when not online…But EA REALLY need to learn what can pass as DLC content and what should have been the game on release. Despite all my issues with the original price of the game and season pass, the complete (ultimate) edition can be purchased for £29.99 which is certainly a great price to pick up the game for first time players with the amount of content present.
While I’ve been talking a lot about the season pass content and how it makes the game better for players who bought the base game I just want to explain the game for people who gave the game a miss as it they won’t feel the pain of paying £80 for the experience today. Coming into this new, you must know that Star Wars Battlefront is the best-looking Star Wars game to date, and most certainly one of the most realistic-looking PC games available on the current market. The colours are bright and sharp, all the maps stand out against each other and you feel yourself getting more immersed the longer you play. The same can be said about the sound mixing as well, the classic John Williams score keeps the player tense for plenty of hours and the familiar pew pews and unleashing noises of the lightsabers are all reminiscent of the Star Wars feel. By purchasing the Ultimate Edition, you can expect 8 different Star Wars environments with plenty of game modes and variation to keep things fresh, including Space Battles, which was introduced with the Death Star DLC. While Battlefront is a multiplayer experience there are some offline missions and survival modes that you can play alone or with a friend. There is no reason not to get this game at the current price with the amount of content available, especially if it happens to go on sale any time soon – For any fans of recent Battlefield games, the game will feel familiar and easy enough to pick up as it they were developed by DICE. Battlefront is certainly complete at this point in time as DICE have taken in feedback during the DLC releases, which will hopefully feed into a much better Season Pass for Battlefront 2 (Or 4, if you want to be picky).
I’ve presented the best way to view battlefront, as a complete game. If you ignore for a moment any price issues or early investments and simply look at the game now you have a great shooter experience in the Star Wars universe. With a sequel on the way this year coming packaged with a single player story and multiple eras, it’s worth picking up the original/season pass for cheap to get yourself excited and back into Star Wars spirit.
Overall I give the complete Battlefront experience an 8.5/10 compared to my original 6/10 impressions for the vanilla game on release.