We take a look at the new campaign mode in Star Wars Battlefront II to see if it’s worth your time.
The most requested feature following the 2015 release of Star Wars Battlefront was a dedicated single player campaign. Sure, you could take on a horde mode, or jump into a few (hundred) games of multiplayer skirmishes, but what was lacking was a story-focused campaign that players could really sink their teeth into.
In response, EA, DICE and Motive came together to craft a campaign mode for Star Wars Battlefront II. It’s set in-between the events of the sixth and seventh films – Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. Considering that’s a 30-year gap, that’s a bit of time to fill. You play as Iden Versio, an Imperial special forces spy who has been the catalyst for some heavy losses on the side of the rebels. Her team – Inferno Squad – is one of the most fearsome at the Empire’s command, and her father is a well respected General – that’s a lot to live up to.
The beginning of the campaign plays out towards the end of Return of the Jedi, and we see the Death Star being destroyed from a different perspective. What happens to the Empire when their ultimate weapon is destroyed? Versio’s faith – as well as that of the other two members of her team, Agents Hask and Meeko – will be pushed to its limits, and she’ll be forced to question which way her moral compass truly points.
Star Wars Battlefront II‘s campaign is, ultimately, enjoyable, if a bit short. Controlling Versio through a number of typical ‘spy’ missions (find the data, bring the data back), you’ll have the option to use her companion droid to stun and neutralise enemies, as well as one of a number of blasters and different kinds of grenades at her disposal. The implementation of the Star Cards you’ll no doubt have heard about also starts in the campaign. These Star Cards give Iden her choice of loadout in three different slots, and can affect everything from the kinds of grenades she’s using, to how fast her health regens. She seems to be quite the versatile soldier, though you’ll often find that hiding behind cover and regenerating some health is a better bet than seeing how long you can stick out a firefight by sheer willpower alone.
Over the course of the campaign, you’ll have the option to also play as a few different ‘Heroes’ that you’ll later be able to unlock and play as in the multiplayer. These include Luke Skywalker and Han Solo, and a couple of nice surprises too, but their inclusion in the campaign is more for fan service than practicality, as most of these missions don’t seem to serve the main plot at all.
You’ll also get the chance to take on the pilot role of a few famous Star Wars vehicles. AT-STs, X-Wings, and even TIE Fighters are at your disposal. There’s also no disconnect between walking around and piloting machines – no load screens, you just jump in and wreak havoc. Your inner Star Wars nerd won’t be able to keep the smile off your face.
Those playing through the campaign that are fans of the Star Wars saga will undoubtedly notice a few Easter eggs and familiar faces along the way. It’s worth noting, too, that the developers have crafted a truly beautiful world. I mean come on – just look at this:
It’s truly a gorgeous game. The dogfights over planets in particular look spectacular, with the red and green lasers beaming past you and the Star Destroyers giving a picturesque backdrop coming together to provide an immersive Star Wars experience.
Your Inferno squadmates are likeable, as are some of the additional characters you meet down the track, but don’t expect to be forming any lasting emotional bonds with them – this is a short campaign, after all.
The addition of a dedicated, standalone single player campaign was exactly what the Battlefront series needed in its second instalment. The story is space opera through and through, but it’s nonetheless fun, and if this game doesn’t get you hyped for The Last Jedi then who knows what will.
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