Star Wars Battlefront II‘s Battle of Scarif update is out and we have reached the end of DICE’s support for the game. A game that was released in a frankly embarrassing state is now a very good game but there was so much more that could have been done with the game, but if the companies aren’t making money, the fans don’t matter and it’s on to the next game.
With this game coming to an end, the hope would be that a sequel will be in the works in the near future, but to be honest I doubt that is the case right now given we are entering a period where new Star Wars content will be limited to Disney+ series rather than movies. I think it will be a couple of years until we hear of a Star Wars Battlefront 3… if at all!
But what would we love to see from that game when (if) it comes? I give my thought on what I would love to see from a future game. Now I admit straight away that this will sound like a LOT of content, and it is! But a game these days needs to have a significant amount of content to start with and then can add to this with more content every month or so to keep the game fresh.
Get rid of EA
Just a minor request to start with. Take the Star Wars licence away from EA as soon as possible. Star Wars Battlefront II got the wrong kind of attention when it was released due to EA’s pathetic focus on pay-to-win content, which completely overshadowed anything good about the game and resulted in much of the first year of support being about putting the game in the state it should have been at release rather than providing us new content. On top of that, though Jedi: Fallen Order was a very impressive game, it does not have a high repeatability, while a number of other Star Wars games have been cancelled under EA’s watch.
You just have to look at the release of Star Wars Battlefront II and the way they treated Mass Effect: Andromeda to see that EA only care about the $$$$, not the fans. Star Wars games can still be incredibly profitable but also made for the fans, because it is an IP that will entice gamers who wouldn’t usually try that genre of game (you’ll never see me on COD or Battlefield but Star Wars Battlefront II is probably my most-played game!), the key is finding the right company to trust with the licence.
One great way to immediately bring in more gamers is to make sure there is something for everyone. I am not someone to regularly enjoy online multiplayer games, especially shooters, and the lack of a single player story meant that I never looked at 2015’s Star Wars Battlefront. What initially drew me into the sequel was the announcement of a single-player story to play alongside the option of the multiplayer modes.
I liked the story of Inferno Squad, but it was disappointingly short and definitely felt like it was added just to get some more players rather than for love of the story. In a future version of the game, I would love to see a much more hefty story mode, something that covered all 3 eras and also felt more varied – imagine having to capture/defend bases or eliminate certain enemies within a battle (similar to the original Pandemic games) as well as some of the objectives from the current game.
Now I can see a couple of ways to cover all eras. One would be to have the story focus on a family or a squad of soldiers that changes over time, allowing us to follow through the Clone Wars, Civil War and Cold War. Another option though, would be to have individual stories for each faction withing the game. This would allow for people to play as whatever faction they want rather than having to fight through a story as the Rebels if that doesn’t interest them. Yes, it would probably be more work, but it would also allow for slightly shorter stories, while the game could start with a couple of factions’ stories available and have more added in future content.
Why just 6 factions?
So if we’re doing this game right,there are obviously 6 factions that have to be there: the Galactic Republic, the CIS, the Empire, the Rebel Alliance, the First Order and the Resistance… but why stop there?
There are other amazing battles within Star Wars that would be missed by only having these 6 factions – you just need to look at the ongoing finale to The Clone Wars and The Mandalorian‘s references to the Empire’s Great Purge on Mandalore!
How great would it be to see other factions brought into the game, to feature instead of some of the stock 6 factions on some battlegrounds. Imagine getting the chance to send fight back against the Empire as part of an army of Mandalorians, or trying to crush the Resistance as a trooper for the Sith Eternal’s Final Order! Straight away, it adds more variety to the game even if you are still just playing as one of the original 6 factions, as you have to find a way to cope with a slightly different type of army, which could fight you in a different way.
Again, the game could easily start with just the classic 6 factions, but have the extra ones added over the next few months. This could also tie in with my idea of single player story mode having individual stories for each faction, as we could then get a Mandalorian faction story as that faction is added to the game.
Represent all the stories
Obviously, the movies will be the main focus, but Star Wars Battlefront II went a little further by adding skins and some locations that were more associated with Rebels and The Clone Wars. A future game could take this even further, with ground maps like Umbara, Mandalore, Ryloth and space battles like the Battle of Atollon and the Battle of Lola Sayu. Not only that, but characters from the series like Ahsoka Tano, Asajj Ventress, Rex, Thrawn, Sabine Wren and Commander Pyre could be brought in as playable heroes, with the Ghost, the Fireball and the TIEs of Major Vonreg and Vult Skerris could be added to starfighter modes.
Even The Mandalorian could be represented by having playable heroes like Moff Gideon for the Empire and Cara Dune for the Rebels, while having extra factions like the Mandalorians and Scum & Villainy could also allow for characters like Din Djarin, IG-11 and Greef Karga. Likewise, with upcoming series like the untitled Cassian Andor and Obi_Wan Kenobi series, it would be easy to add them as playable characters (Obi-Wan almost certainly would be anyway). Heck, Cal Kestis and the Seventh Sister could feature to tie in Jedi: Fallen Order.
Even starfighter modes could represent all the stories by having multiple options available under each starfighter class, such as Y-wings and B-wings both being available as bombers.
Just because we aren’t getting any new movies for a while, it doesn’t mean that we aren’t getting any new Star Wars content, and it deserves to be represented. Even if it just introducing some new character skins that have only been seen in the comics or including battles from some of the stories and moments in the story mode(s) linking back to the books and comics.
Era-specific heroes & villains
As you can see from above, I’m suggesting a LOT of content to be in this game. What this would then allow is for is such a large number of heroes and villains that they can be separated to only feature for factions that would make sense. I’m not being overly strict, so would allow someone to play for the Rebels with a young Obi-Wan skin as long as the Old Ben skin was an option, while Ahsoka and Rex could feature for the Republic and Rebels (and maybe even the Mandalorians following this recent arc of The Clone Wars.
What this would mean is that each battle feels more individual, as you would find that playing as or against different factions feels different due to the different heroes and villains available.
More weapon options
We spent forever asking for more weapons in the current game and eventually got one more weapon for each of the main trooper classes in one of the final releases. For the new game, I would want this to be part of the plan from an early stage. I can see this being done one of two ways:
Either keeping the weapons class-specific, starting the game with 3 or 4 per class in the base game (though needing to unlock the later ones as per this game), then after a couple of months beginning to add new blasters that also require unlocking. This means that there is a reward for more regular players as they would find themselves getting the new content quicker than more casual gamers, but it is also continuing to keep the game fresh.
The other option is a little more drastic, having the weapons available for all classes, and having the trooper’s base stats be the difference (eg a heavy doing more base damage, an assault being an average all-round) and potentially giving slight buffs to certain types of weapons, so that in theory a heavy could use a sniper rifle but not as well as a specialist. It would allow the game to feel much more fresh due to the wider variety of class/weapon combinations, but I think it would be harder to get the balance right.
Keep the content balanced
This is key, as we want to keep people interested in the game long-term. And one of these is to keep all game modes available, so that people can continue playing their favourite game modes. Starfighter Assault and Galactic Assault were completely abandoned as time went on, which limited my interest in playing as they were the modes I loved to play but I could not enjoy the new maps on them. Any time a new map is added, it needs to be available for ALL game modes. Likewise, starfighter modes need to be given regular updates as well as the ground-based games.
Also with new content like skins or new troopers/heroes, the amount of content needs to be kept as balanced as possible. Yes we will get circumstances where some factions are able to have more skins, but as long as each faction is regularly getting something fresh, that is key. This could either be done by adding a little for each faction per month, or by doing a rotation of content to make sure that content is added int he same order each time.
Let me play with my friends
One of the most fun things parts of multiplayer gaming is being able to play with your friends. How great would it be for you and a friend to team up in multiplayer on the same team or take each other on (depending what kind of friendship you have), with the ability to hear and speak to each other to work more effective as a squad or talk trash to each other (Star Wars quotes are obligatory).
It’s such a simple request, it feels crazy to not have it in the game.
Aside from the story mode, this was without a doubt the mode of the original Star Wars: Battlefront II.
You pick your faction and attempt to take over the galaxy. Every planet is on the galaxy map, linked to a few nearby ones and blank spaces and you start with 1 “fleet” (imagine the galaxy map as your game board and the fleet as your counter) while your opponent – this could be either the AI or a friend in 2-player – starts wit the same. You take turns to move your fleet around the map. If you land on an uncontrolled planet, you take control of it. If you land on a enemy-controlled planet, you fight a ground battle with a win seeing you take control of the planet and a loss seeing your fleet destroyed. If you land on the same location as an enemy fleet, you fight a space battle, in which the losing fleet is destroyed and if this spot contains a planet, the winning team takes control of the planet. When the game starts, you can only have the most basic trooper/starfighter available (so in the case of the latest game, the assault and the starfighter). After each round, you gain rewards based on the number of planets you control, which can be used to create extra fleets (as long as you have a planet under your control) or unlock more troopers/heroes/starfighters. The game is won by taking control of all the planets and destroying all the enemy fleets.
This was always such a great game mode and an updated version would be incredible. Being able to choose your faction and your enemy’s faction would give a great variation, while having a couple of different battle scenarios for each planet and space battle would give an unbelieveable amount of replayability – imagine the ground battles being an option of capturing all the command posts, a larger version of Blast or one involving more phased play.
Both as single player or 2-player, this would be such a fun game mode and I would be ecstatic to see it in the next game.
Would you want a Star Wars Battlefront III? What would you want in the game?
Thanks for reading. May the Force be with you…