I’m not a big multiplayer gamer, so I really can’t explain why I bought the 2015 “Star Wars: Battlefront”, an almost-entirely-multiplayer game. I fell into the trap of “no, really, we added single-player content!” without realizing that the single-player content consisted of exactly one type of mission in a scant handful of settings AND didn’t actually contribute towards increasing your level or unlocking anything in the game.
That was bad enough, but then I bought it a second time because they marked down the “Ultimate Edition” to practically nothing during a PSN sale.
When the sequel was announced, with an honest-to-goodness campaign mode, I was all aflutter with anticipation… and then came the Great Lootbox Kerfluffle Of 2017, and I figured that I could be perfectly happy just waiting a couple of months and renting it.
So, I did that this weekend. I am happy to report that there is a single-player campaign, it’s pretty decent now that they added the three missions they held back until after the release of The Last Jedi, and it is definitely worth the three dollars it will cost you at your local Redbox to play through. If nothing else, the level where you play as Lando is absolutely hilarious.
But, after finishing the campaign, I realized that I still had the disc for a few hours and that it couldn’t hurt to try out the multiplayer.
Indulge me for a moment, here, while I rave about the indisputably-most-awesome ship to ever come out of the Star Wars movies, the BTL Y-Wing Starfighter, a vehicle my wife describes as “oh, the ugly one”.
It’s not an unfair description, really.
Basically, the Y-Wing is the A-10 of the Star Wars universe, a thing that looks like the designers slapped a few guns and a pair of oversized engines on to a cockpit, realized they were late for lunch, and figured they could just stop there and maybe come back later and make it pretty.
They never did.
The Y-Wing does not get a ton of respect, especially when set next to the more famous X-Wing and the annoyingly-twee A-Wing, a starfighter best known for its practical use as a kaiten during the Battle of Endor. It’s possibly best-known on screen for flying directly down a trench and getting blown up, though it was shown in a little more respectful light during its appearance in Rogue One.
But, I love the thing, warts and all, and I’m pretty sure that it hasn’t been flyable in any Star Wars video games made this century. So, you may imagine that I was very gleeful to see THIS in Battlefront II:
I pretty much spent the next several hours sucked blissfully into the multiplayer, and wound up driving the disc back to the rental kiosk with scant minutes to spare.
Now, blissful fun times aside, I’m not fond of the way that Battlefront II pushes its loot boxes on the player – particularly as the game shows you all of the AWESOME GEAR the guy who just killed you had equipped at the point where he killed you, with a not-at-all-subtle-hint that if YOU just had the awesome gear, YOU would be the triumphant victor. EA fully deserves all of the bad press and push-back they got when they decided to tack loot boxes on to a full-price retail game.
Anyway, after I got back from returning the disc, I decided that I’d had a lot of fun with the multiplayer in Battlefront II and maybe I’d take a go at the game I actually owned. People had to still be playing it, right?
Get used to this screen. It turns out that, no, people mostly aren’t still playing it.
Also the ship selection is terrible:
…so, as much as I may grumble about it, I will probably give EA some money for Battlefront II: The You Can Fly A Goddamned Y-Wing And It’s Amazing Edition.
You know, when it’s on sale.