The tactical specifics of Rogue One’s climax are now 99% clear. An expansion to the action-adventure video game Star Wars: Battlefront has revealed a classic Star Wars multi-front battle scenario taking place both on and above the planet Scarif, and it’s very reminiscent of Return of the Jedi. The only thing missing here is a lightsaber duel.
The purpose the “Shield Gate,” the explosion on the surface of the planet, even the utility of the Rebel U-wings has all be made totally clear. Possible spoilers below.
Based on some gameplay of the Scarif expansion of Battlefront, it can now be inferred what the Rebels are specifically doing on the planet Scarif and what the Empire is definitely protecting. A base called the “uplink” figures prominently to the Scarif mission in Battlefront, and it looks exactly like the same base which blows up in most of the trailers for Rogue One.
Here’s the deal: The uplink has the Death Star plans. The Uplink is on the surface of Scarif. The entirety of Scarif is protected by an energy shield. The way to get through the energy shield is not to have the entire shield lowered (as in previous Star Wars movies) but instead, to fly through the “gate” part: one small area of the shield that gets deactivated. Meaning, the “Shield Gate” is literally a gate.
The Rebels want to fly their U-wings through the shield gate, land on Scarif, fight their way to the uplink, get the “datatapes” containing the Death Star plans out of the Uplink, and fly away again in their U-wings. Battlefront outlines all of these tactics and stakes fairly clearly. So, with this much space battle action and ground battle action combined, it feels like this entire operation totally must to be the finale of Rogue One.
Even a catwalk area on the “uplink” is clearly depicted in Battlefront, which looks just like the one Jyn Erso traverses in the trailers. When the Rebels steal the datatapes in the game, the object looks exactly like the hardrive-esque thing Jyn is running with in footage from the movie.
For what it’s worth, Orson Krennic even calls Jyn Erso a “known troublemaker,” in the game, which sort of undersells her badassery. Nobody called Luke a “Rebel Rouser,” after all.
The Scarif expansion for Battlefront is available now. Rogue One debuts on December 16.