Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection dev Aspyr responds to launch backlash amid "Mostly Negative" reviews, server issues: "We will continue our efforts" [UPDATED]

Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection
(Image credit: Aspyr Media)

What you need to know

  • Update: Developer Aspyr Media has responded to the backlash against Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection's tumultuous launch, explaining that "critical errors with our network infrastructure" led to the ongoing server issues and that it will continue working to improve it until it's "stabilized to prevent further outages."
  • The Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection, a bundle of updated versions of 2004's Star Wars: Battlefront and 2005's Star Wars: Battlefront II, launched late on March 13. It's available for $35 on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, PS5, PS4, and Nintendo Switch.
  • The collection has had a disastrous launch so far, with both of its games plagued by server issues and numerous other bugs.
  • As a consequence, it's fallen to a "Mostly Negative" rating on Steam, with only 20% of its reviews being positive at the time of writing. It has a 2.5/5 average review score on Xbox as well.
  • The disappointing re-release of these fan-favorite Star Wars games comes just a month after developer Aspyr launched the positively received Tomb Raider 1-3 remasters. 

Update 3/14/2024 at 6:35 p.m. PT / 9:35 p.m. ET: Developer Aspyr Media has responded to the backlash against the launch of the Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection, thanking players for their "support and feedback" while explaining that the ongoing issues are due to "critical errors" with its network, and that it "will continue our efforts" to stabilize it and resolve the problems it's causing. You can read the full statement below:

"We’d like to thank the Battlefront community for their overwhelming support and feedback for the Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection release. 

At launch, we experienced critical errors with our network infrastructure.  The result was incredibly high ping, matchmaking errors, crashes, and servers not appearing in the browser. 

Since launch, we’ve been working to address these issues and increase network stability, and we will continue our efforts until our network infrastructure is stabilized to prevent further outages.

Please continue to report bugs, errors, or unexpected behaviors to our support team via our Request Form.

The Aspyr Team"

What was supposed to be a celebratory re-release of some of the best Star Wars games of all time has become something of a disaster for developer Aspyr Media.

The Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection — a $35 bundle that includes updated versions of Pandemic Studios' Star Wars: Battlefront and Star Wars: Battlefront II from 2004 and 2005, respectively — launched late on Wednesday evening, but was immediately plagued by some severe issues. Only three official multiplayer servers on each of the game's platforms were available for its opening hours, and while more came soon after, they've proven to be very unreliable thus far. There are widespread reports of frequent disconnects, along with significant desync problems, instances of "rubber banding," and bugs preventing players from joining teams and/or spawning.

As a result, the collection has immediately fallen to the dark side, nosediving to a "Mostly Negative" Steam rating on PC with only 20% of its reviews being positive. Things are looking similar on Xbox with a 2.5/5 star review score average, though the PlayStation version seems to be faring better with an overall rating of 4.19/5 at the time of writing (it's also on Nintendo Switch, but Nintendo's store doesn't have user reviews).

A squad of clone troopers, supported by a TX-130 tank, defend a Command Post on Mygeeto. (Image credit: Aspyr Media)

"As of right now the multiplayer (otherwise known as the only reason to buy this product if you already own the original games) is entirely unplayable, making this game a waste of money until that issue is fixed. Disappointing," writes Steam user KitsuneKami. Other reviews, like this one from nightnight, echo the sentiment: "Currently, game is totally unplayable. Even if you manage to get into a server, players cannot spawn. Not sure if it's a cheater/denial thing, bugged gameplay or both."

User Dinkleberg asserts that this is "probably one of the worst launches of all time," while Kevin sums things up perfectly with their assessment: "This was not like the simulations." Thanks for the laugh, Kevin. May the Force be with you.

Aside from a handful of bonus maps and heroes and the ability to play Hero Assault (AKA Heroes VS Villains) on all maps instead of just Mos Eisley, the main draw of the Classic Collection is its support for 64-player servers. These have double the number of slots compared to the servers in the classic games, but as user Sean Penn says, with "multiplayer completely broken, [you] might as well play the original." And right now, I'm inclined to wholeheartedly agree.

I jumped into the collection myself to play a few matches and a campaign mission or two as I was writing this, and to put it lightly, things didn't go well. I experienced all of the issues listed above, as well as several crashes and missing textures on the Hoth map. Each team's ticket count drains significantly faster than it's supposed to, too, resulting in games that only last five minutes or so. Single player is better, though story levels are missing cutscenes.

Stormtroopers and Rebel soldiers exchanging fire on the Battlefront II Death Star map. (Image credit: Aspyr Media)

Overall, this launch has been a huge mess so far, and it's extremely disappointing to see after Aspyr's release of the excellent Tomb Raider remasters last month. And honestly, even if everything was working as intended, I'd hesitate to recommend the collection; sure, it's got 64-player servers, but there's no crossplay, its upscaled textures result in a 62.87GB file size requirement that surpasses Elden Ring despite the fact that the game doesn't really look any better, and it costs a whopping $35. The originals, meanwhile, are priced at $10 each and only take up 12.39GB combined.

For the time being, I definitely recommend holding off on the Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection. It may be worth picking up once Aspyr (hopefully) patches it up with some post-launch updates, though even then, I'd probably wait for a good sale — it's just not offering enough to justify that steep asking price. It's currently got a day one $3.50 discount on Xbox, but that's a very small markdown.

Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection | $34.99 $31.49 at Xbox

Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection | <a href="" data-link-merchant=""">$34.99 $31.49 at Xbox

This 2-in-1 bundle brings 64-player servers to the fan-favorite classic Star Wars: Battlefront games, and includes pieces of bonus content that were previously exclusive to specific versions. At launch, though, the multiplayer's performance has been disastrous thus far.

Also at: <a href="" data-link-merchant=""" data-link-merchant=""">GMG (Steam, PC, $35.01)

Brendan Lowry

Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.