Tomorrow is the first day of the open beta for Star Wars Battlefront II and this is something that I’ve been looking forward to since I pre-ordered it back in May. Those of us that pre-ordered it were given early access to the beta so I’ve been playing quite a bit over the last day and of course I’ve got opinions on it.
First and foremost, if you aren’t aware of how betas work, a beta is a select part of a game that is released prior to release that allows for developers to get feedback on their product and allows gamers to get an idea of what the game is going to be like so they can decide if they’d like to purchase it or not. It’s a modern version of a demo and this is only the second or third one that I’ve participated in but I’ve enjoyed it immensely.
The first Battlefront was something of a polarizing experience for a lot of people. It’s graphics and sound design were lauded by many while the lack of game modes, few planets and the fact that it was only empire vs. rebels era made it feel like only half a game. Fast forward a little bit to Star Wars Celebration 2017 and EA came out with a trailer for the sequel which basically showed us that everything we loved was back with a large amount of extra features and content that we all wanted to see including more planets, a complete class system overhaul and of course, all three eras from the films. Watch this video real quick and then we’ll talk about the actual beta itself :
Now as for the beta itself it basically plays like a superior version of it’s predecessor, sound design and graphics are still top notch with three brand new locations for everyone to try out and explore. It showcases two new game modes and one that’s been completely redone from the previous game. These descriptions are just for the beta cause most of these objectives will likely change from map to map in the main game.
- Galactic Assault (Clone Wars) [20 V. 20] – This looks to be the primary game mode and it’s clear to see why, it broken up into three stages which all play out in the beta on Naboo. Stage 1 starts out with the droids escorting an MTT to the palace of Theed with the clones trying to use Ion disruptors to damage it. If the clones can’t destroy it in a certain period of time then it moves on to stage 2 which is the droids trying to lower the blast doors and the clones trying to destroy a certain amount of them before they can hijack the blast door controls. If the droids get the doors down then they move on to stage 3 which is just a traditional throne room defense for the clones with the clones attacking.
- Strike (First Order VS. Resistance) [8 V. 8] – This one is a bit more straight forward, it’s on Takodana(Maz Kanata’s Castle.) and there’s a Jedi Artifact inside the castle that the Resistance is defending and The First Order is trying to steal it and take it to their transport.
- Starfighter Assault (Galactic Civil War) [12 V. 12] – This is similar to the Starfighter mode from the last game but it’s been improved in a few different ways. First and foremost, it’s a space battle over Fondor which is great cause the last game didn’t include space combat until a DLC pack. It also adds objective based gameplay which gives you more to do than just dogfights and I think it works really well in here.
There’s also Blast, which is just a team deathmatch mode, and Heroes Vs. Villains which were both modes that we had in the last game so I’m actually glad they weren’t in the beta but will be in the main game.
I loved this beta and really look forward to the main game. The Class system of the troops has been completely overhauled and it makes the game much more balanced. Gone is the grind for a single star card to make your character better and it has been replaced with 4 classes that each have their own utilities for different situations. You can still get different star cards and abilities for each different though so there is still a good amount of customization. The only issue I had with this throughout the beta is that while the Assault class and Heavy class are both pretty solid from the start, the Officer and Specialist classes need to level up a bit before they’re useful to a squad. This isn’t a huge issue cause their first upgrades are really all they need and those become available after you play a match with them.
The only other issues I had were a glitch that made it so I didn’t get any credits or experience points for two matches but it worked itself out quickly and it’s difficult to get enough battle points to play as a hero during the match but that’s primarily on my skills as player.
Overall, this beta gave me everything I could want from it and more. Check out the Beta for free sometime this weekend, I’ve loved everything about it and I can’t wait for the main game.