Embargo for full scored Star Wars Battlefront II reviews lifted today at 3:01 PM Pacific. While I had the pleasure of going to EA Redwood last week to get in two full days of multiplayer games, I wasn’t able to run through the campaign until this weekend, and the servers haven’t been populated enough to get a realistic feel for how the online plays in a real world scenario. We’d like to get a little bit more time with Battlefront II in a public setting before issuing our final comments and score for the game.
There’s also the dust-up around the loot boxes and unlock economy to address, and we’ll be seeing how quickly EA and DICE address this feedback (Edit: The feedback was addressed very quickly). Things are likely to change rather quickly given that EA has the most downvoted Reddit comment of all time regarding this situation, and we’d hate for our review to be an inaccurate reflection of the game. We’ll also be accounting for the future free content, as buying into the game gives access to all content that DICE is developing for future content seasons and events.
To be fair, outside of all the talk surrounding locked heroes and loot boxes, Battlefront II is actually a pretty great game. Here’s a sneak preview of some of our comments regarding the single-player campaign in Star Wars Battlefront II.
New to Battlefront II is a dedicated single-player narrative campaign. For all intents and purposes, the campaign is Star Wars Episode 6.5. Though it focuses on Iden Versio as an Imperial commander and what she goes through following the destruction of the second Death Star, her path crosses with many other familiar characters, occasionally providing a chance to play as them. I was expecting a lackluster side story that barely touched on the greater canon, but I was pleasantly surprised to find a compelling narrative arc, distinct characters, and a story that is wholly Star Wars through and through. One particular scene shows the exceptionally Nazi-like regime of the Empire from the inside and creates a pretty fascinating confrontation for the characters involved.
The campaign’s gameplay doesn’t diverge too heavily from what makes the multiplayer gameplay so much fun, but it also doesn’t ever feel like it was just cobbled together from scraps and pieces of the multiplayer component. There’s a cohesion making the single-player feel like a part of the complete package while also being entirely its own thing. Single-player also extends to a series of battle scenarios in arcade mode, eight for the light side and eight for the dark side, each with three tiers of difficulty. These arcade scenarios mimic the multiplayer gameplay and provide an opportunity to get used to the combat and characters before taking them onto the live servers.
We’ll be paying close attention to DICE and EA this week and spending some significant time with the game in live servers in order to bring you an accurate and fair Star Wars Battlefront II review later this week.