by William Thompson
reviewed on PC
“I suggest a new strategy, R2” (cntd)
Supremacy, Drop Zone and Droid Run are somewhat similar - being capture the flag variants - requiring teams to capture and hold points on the map. In Drop Zone, the control point are escape pods that fall from space, setting teams the task to locate, capture and the defend them. In Droid Run, the control points are three droids that move around the map. Again, teams must find and hold onto the droids. Supremacy mode pits two teams of twenty against each other on what are probably the largest maps in the game. The teams must capture and hold five control points. I actually found this to be the most enjoyable of all the modes as it there are plenty of areas to snipe from. Yes, I’m generally a camper, so it does suit my game style.
Walker Assault is one of the unique modes to Battlefront. It requires the Rebels to destroy an AT-AT whilst The Imperials must guide and protect it to the end goal. Along the way there are a number of relay stations that, if held by the Rebels, will enable an aerial attack on the Walker. Another unique mode is Fighter Squadron. I found that the mouse controls when flying an X-Wing or Tie Fighter were a little sensitive early on, but I eventually got the hang of it. Fighter Squadron plays out much like the LucasArts X-Wing and Tie Fighter games of the early 1990’s, placing players into the cockpit of one of the iconic spacecraft as they dogfight in the skies above the various planets.
Hero Hunt allows gamers to play as one of the six Star Wars heroes (Luke, Han, Leia for the Rebels and Boba Fett, Vader and the Emperor for the Imperials) as they attempt to stay alive against seven players all out to kill the hero and then gain hero status themselves. In a way, it is similar to Evolve with one player taking on all the others.
Although all the multiplayer modes require a certain amount of teamwork, some such as Walker Assault seem to require a more concerted team effort. Matchmaking could use a bit of work, as you could be pitted against players of any skill level. As you improve, this isn’t an issue, but early on gamers (especially those Star Wars fans who rarely play multiplayer shooters) could get a little discouraged that they’re getting beaten by gamers who have access to better weapons and abilities.
I find the lack of a campaign...disturbing
Disappointingly, Star Wars Battlefront does not have a single player campaign, but it does have a couple of modes that enable single player (or co-op) play. Survival mode has you taking on waves of Imperial soldiers of varying types and AT-ST Walkers. It is definitely a rewarding experience whenever you take down one of the lumbering metal giants on your own. You can also complete single player Battle Missions, allowing you to live out your fantasies as a Star Wars hero (or villain, if you so choose).
Star Wars fans will enjoy all the locations that DICE have brought to life in digital form. Fly over Beggar’s Canyon on Tatooine in an X-Wing, with the deep canyons being just as dangerous as the enemy Tie Fighters, or traipse across the snow of Hoth in attempt to bring down at AT-AT like a young Luke Skywalker. The locations have all been stunningly brought to life. The artists have done a wonderful job of duplicating the famous locations from the movies, ensuring that every detail is authentic from the ferns in the forest on Endor to the volcanic rocks on Sullust.
The audio too feels authentic, with a musical score which includes both John Williams original score as well as some new tunes that gives Star Wars Battlefront a fresh perspective. The spoken dialogue is more than adequate too, although some of the famous characters have been voiced by unfamiliar voice actors. In-game voice acting work, which lets teams know how they are faring does a decent job, with the clear and precise information being audibly presented.
As a multiplayer game, Star Wars Battlefront works really well, making it simpler to get into than the grittier Battlefield series. There are plenty of modes to play and gamers will find a favourite. I did notice that it was more difficult to find players in some of the lesser modes at times, so it may well be that gamers have already found their favourite. Although there are single player challenges and missions which are enjoyable, I am still disappointed by the lack of a single player campaign. Hopefully it comes down the track in the form of a free DLC pack. But as a Star Wars fan, I am enjoying spending my time with the Star Wars Universe that the team at DICE has delivered despite that fact that I often shoot like a Stormtrooper and rarely hit a target. The visuals are lovely and superbly detailed, and combined with the audio give Star Wars Battlefront an authentic Star Wars experience.
Visually stunning, putting gamers well and truly within the Star Wars Universe
Lack of a single player campaign