While it was a truly wonderful experience to pick up a blaster and dive into the numerous conflicts of the Star Wars universe with Battlefront back in 2015, there’s no questioning DICE’s take on the classic series had a few serious shortcomings lying within. Even though the development team paid a phenomenal amount of attention to the small details and the authenticity of each respective sound from the original movies fans would appreciate seeing in-game, Battlefront lacked many of the core concepts which made both Star Wars: Battlefront and Star Wars: Battlefront 2 feel like an epic Star Wars experience over a decade ago.
Now, with the official reveal of Star Wars: Battlefront 2 just around the corner at Star Wars Celebration, we thought it a good opportunity to look back at some of the major improvements DICE needs to bring for Battlefront’s sequel to let the revived franchise soar to new heights.
In 2015’s Battlefront, DICE opted to create a set of mechanics which allowed players to remain involved in the combat on the ground with enemy infantry and seamlessly swap into vehicle combat as they picked up one of several designated tokens laying around the map. Naturally, this design choice was largely successful in keeping both infantry and vehicle combat intertwined, but it often caused most of Battlefront’s players to group up around token locations waiting to pilot a powerful vehicle instead of capturing the objective to win the match.
By removing this token system entirely in favor of a system which allows players to just spawn into an air or ground vehicle once it’s available, DICE could reduce the competitive clutter for picking up a token and make sure players interested in infantry would instead be focused on the enemy in front of them rather than the token behind them.
One of the best game modes available in the original Battlefront games, Galactic Conquest was a single-player experience which allowed you to conquer the galaxy planet by planet, continuing to fight against the opposing faction until you held every planet available on the galactic map. Every planet you defended or attacked had a few battles for you to win before you could take it over, and would then reward you for your efforts with new unit types, more powerful soldiers, and additional equipment to use throughout your campaign.
The concept of building up the power of your own faction while working to conquer the entire galaxy fit all too well with the Star Wars universe, especially when epic space battles kicked up as you encountered enemy fleets pushing your positions while navigating the galaxy. Bringing Galactic Conquest back would be a great move for Battlefront 2, provided that both a single-player and multiplayer element were available for fans to dive into while playing the game as their favorite faction.
Whether you enjoyed the relatively simple, streamlined approach DICE took with Battlefront’s playable characters, weapon types, vehicle engagements, and pieces of equipment or not, it was a design choice which severely limited the strategic element present in the original games. Essentially every aspect of 2015’s Battlefront was built to be highly accessible to newcomers and veterans alike but at the expense of the depth that many players hope for in the game’s sequel.
By adding back in many of the more complex elements from the original games such as classes, squads of more than just two, additional locations with more varied environments, and less linear-driven map designs across the board, DICE would effectively bring strategic gameplay to Battlefront like they have in Battlefield, adding a much-needed layer of depth to keep long-term players engaged well past release.
Seamless Space Battles
If there’s one thing many fans took away from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story last December, it’s that space battles intermixed with large-scale engagements on a planet’s surface make for one hell of an experience, one which truly lives up to the epic scale we’ve come to expect from entries in the Star Wars franchise. Originally Battlefront really lacked any sort of larger engagements in space or on the ground, but by working to combine the two with a seamless transition between space and a planet’s surface, DICE could create something which felt like a next-generation experience in video games with a Star Wars backdrop to work with.
The key here would be to build intricate scenarios like those in the original Battlefront games where players would be able to participate in space battles, board enemy starships, and then eliminate them before heading down to a planet’s surface to help their friends finish off the resistance. By having both space battles and planet battles happening at the same time, Battlefront 2 would bring the massive engagements at the core of Star Wars to life for players to experience firsthand.Photos via Electronic Arts