3 ways EA could save Star Wars Battlefront II
All hope is not lost: Star Wars Battlefront II has a chance to recover from all the recent controversy. Here are three changes that would help it do so.
It's no secret by now that Star Wars Battlefront II was heavily damaged by its microtransaction fiasco. Selling only 882,000 units in its opening month, the game missed the projected 1,720,000 sales estimate by a large margin. Though the game has managed to gain some traction in the last few weeks (possibly due to the hype surrounding Star Wars with the launch of the new film, The Last Jedi) things still aren't looking great for the galaxy far, far away.
Battlefront II likely won't fully recover from the backlash it received, but the developers might be able to mend the wound somewhat by implementing changes. Here are three things that would improve Battlefront II and bring it some positive attention.
Read: Star Wars Battlefront II review
Ditch microtransactions permanently
Electronic Arts (EA) took a step in the right direction before Battlefront II's launch to remove the microtransactions from the game entirely. However, this came with a catch: they planned to reintroduce them at a later date once they were tuned.
This has ultimately led many to believe that EA was simply waiting for the anger surrounding Battlefront II to die down before trying to sneak in the microtransaction system again. I think it's fully possible that they plan to genuinely try and improve it. Regardless, just keeping them gone would please many gamers and show them that EA is listening. Of course, permanent tweaks will need to be made to the loot boxes and in-game credit earning rates to compensate for the absence of the micropayments. But that's worth the effort if it means salvaging the game's long-term future.
Add era preference
One of the major selling points of Battlefront II was the return to all the Star Wars eras being available to play in. This was a feature present in the original Battlefront games, but noticeably lacking in EA's reboot of the series in 2015. Unlike the old games, though, there is currently no way to choose which era you want to play in on Battlefront II's multiplayer. If you're in the mood to blast battle droids as a clone trooper, you'll have to either hope that you get lucky enough to be placed in a prequel era match or play against bots in an offline session.
By adding a system in which you can tell the matchmaker which era you'd like to participate in, you could reliably play matches in your favorite timeline of the Star Wars universe. This would be a beneficial change for everyone, as it would make everything feel less random and make playing against other players in your preferred era a simple process. The only downside to this would be some longer queue times, but I don't think anyone would mind waiting a bit longer to reap the benefits of a customizable experience.
Implement cosmetic customization
After Reddit users mined the files of a PC copy of Battlefront II to see if they could find anything, they discovered that, at one point, the game had some form of personal customization for every soldier, from clones to rebels. Each option altered an aspect of the soldier you chose to play as. For the clones, it was paint schemes; for rebel soldiers, it was their skin color, facial hair, and gender.
EA should truly add these into the full game because, quite frankly, Battlefront II is completely devoid of cosmetic customization. There is no way to personalize your troopers aside from the gameplay-altering Star Cards, which are tied to the random number generator-driven loot boxes. Speaking of those, I think it would be a terrible idea to put these skins into those boxes, as it makes the player have to hope that they'll get the one they want from the "slot machine". Instead, EA should make them directly purchasable by credits earned through gameplay.
What do you think of these suggestions? Do you think that they would help bring Battlefront II to a more healthy state? Let us know what you think in the comments.
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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.