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Confirmed: EA has removed all microtransactions from Star Wars Battlefront II (update)

Update November 17, 2017: We've updated this article with official confirmation from EA.

Battlefront II's systems are inextricably tied to an annoying credits system, which rewards players for participation across the game's various modes. Multiplayer drip feeds small amounts of credits to players, while completing various challenges (often for activities you might not want to participate in) can boost the accrual. Credits can be spend on loot crates or hero characters like Darth Vader, forcing players to choose where they want to progress. Of course, you can circumvent all of this by giving EA piles of cash, using its premium currency "Crystals."

Or at least, that used to be the case.

Star Wars Battlefront II was subject to a huge backlash over these systems, earning itself the most downvoted comment in reddit history, and sparking a huge wave of negative coverage in even large mainstream news outlets, including the BBC.

EA has caved to the immeasurable negativity surrounding its "pay to earn" systems, scrubbing premium currency from the game ahead of its full global launch on November 17, 2017.

Premium currency "Crystals" are gone from Battlefront II's main menu.

Premium currency "Crystals" are gone from Battlefront II's main menu.

Issuing a statement on the Battlefront II website, DICE had this to say:

Our goal has always been to create the best possible game for all of you – devoted Star Wars fans and game players alike. We've also had an ongoing commitment to constantly listen, tune and evolve the experience as it grows. You've seen this with both the major adjustments, and polish, we have made over the past several weeks. But as we approach the worldwide launch, it's clear that many of you feel there are still challenges in the design. We've heard the concerns about potentially giving players unfair advantages. And we've heard that this is overshadowing an otherwise great game. This was never our intention. Sorry we didn't get this right.We hear you loud and clear, so we're turning off all in-game purchases. We will now spend more time listening, adjusting, balancing and tuning. This means that the option to purchase crystals in the game is now offline, and all progression will be earned through gameplay. The ability to purchase crystals in-game will become available at a later date, only after we've made changes to the game. We'll share more details as we work through this.We have created a game that is built on your input, and it will continue to evolve and grow. Star Wars Battlefront II is three times the size of the previous game, bringing to life a brand new Star Wars story, space battles, epic new multiplayer experiences across all three Star Wars eras, with more free content to come. We want you to enjoy it, so please keep your thoughts coming. And we will keep you updated on our progress.

As of writing, the Crystal premium currency can be purchased directly from Xbox Live, but it no longer appears in Battlefront II's main menu, and I've seen reports that they have been removed from Sony's PlayStation Network already.

If it wasn't for these horrible progression systems, Battlefront II could have been candidate for game of the year 2017 in my view for its amazing visuals, tight gunplay, and authentic Star Wars experiences. Sadly, they threw it all away in an aggressive, anti-gamer pursuit of micropayment bucks. Will EA learn its lesson? Probably not, but at least for the time being, Battlefront II might become a far fairer game. Hopefully the next incarnation of crystals errs on the side of cosmetics, rather than providing an advantage over other players.

Jez Corden is a Senior Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!

56 Comments
  • Perhaps not everyone gets a chance to milk the franchise.
  • Okay, so now it has less micro transactions than COD WW2 - Does that mean that people can just play the game now...
  • Good riddance
  • for now...
  • Yay! :) Am still playing the campaign however...
  • So you supported these practices by buying the game; well done;
  • People should go out and buy this game now to show that if you take micro transactions out of your game you will sell more copies
  • That's my plan. I'm guessing they come back as cosmetic, but I'm ok with that. Have to offset the "free" DLC somehow. Games cost money to make.
  • They do cost money to make but that's why they cost $60....
  • Games are getting bigger and more complex but the prices are not changing. There's a good reason for micro-transactions, provided they don't affect a game's balance.
  • Witcher did well without this BS and their "dlc" was like regular AAA game so where is that good reason?
  • Games like this make HUUUGE profits by merely selling them. They could go without microtransactions and still make a good pile of money.
  • Stop with this BS argument; well made AAA games are one of the most profitable entertainment mediums, earning publishers way more then music and movies for studios and music labels;
  • Any figure to share? I work in game industry... I do hear many stories from senpais or people from other companies (the big C, former k... etc sometimes I just ask to confirm rumors, it's fun to know their perspective, from a Japanese eye) I cannot really share my stories in the public, but here's one, old news tho.
    http://www.zaikei.co.jp/article/20120629/107045.html
    A game from 38 Studios (capital $50m dollar, and then there are loans, investments & things after that I think) sold more than 1.2m in 90 days went bankrupt.
    Balance point was 3m copies.
    Studio was created in 2006, game released in FEB 2012, June 2012 went bankrupt. Combat system look pretty badass... shame I didn't know this game even exist.
    Someone please buy the rights and BC it pls... Game development certainly won't go cheaper and cheaper & gamers expect big names to pump out bigger & better gamers.
  • @Nik Rolls That is the same bs they want you to believe. It's funny because it's mostly the BIGGER companies who are doing it.   The very fact that other company make successful games without using this bs proves you wrong. These company spend a LOT on marketing. They can just cut that instead of making gamers pay by introducing frustrating gameplay... Also it's been a long time that a full game from these company is not 60 bucks. With DLC, season pass, special edition, silver/gold/complete edition, "get the game late if you don't pay",... the price of a full game actually changed. At this stage microtransactions/loot box/pay2win in a full price game is just greed. Risking to kill this industry for short term profit... Unforgivable...
  • Just charge a reasonable amount for DLC. That's how expansions have worked for years and everyone's fine with that. Breaking your game in the pursuit of cash is idiotic.
  • "The ability to purchase crystals in-game will become available at a later date" So easily manipulated.
  • This is actually a fairly honest move on their part. They know the current micro transaction model will impact the games appeal at launch so they remove it. They also know that certain models have been profitable without negatively impacting on the player base, so they plan to bring a new model back. To rejig their model will not only take time, but they also don't want any new system taking the oxygen out of their launch window.
  • I was thinking that but they have said they intend to put micro transactions back it at a later. After the farce that was the first games lack of content it's not great for the franchise. I was also looking forward to Forza 7 and shadow of mordor 2 but I've skipped them for being loot box heavy.
  • They will put it back. They only figure out some cosmetics to put in the shop. I am disgusted by their approach. How many chances are players willing to give to EA? They need some compete failires to lean the lesson
  • You most definitely should not; EA needs to be sent a clear message that if you try to milk your customers and screw them over you will get no sales no matter how hard you then try to backtrack your idiotic decisions;  
  • I'm actually thinking I may do that now. Might even tweet the devs that that's the reason why I did it. Even though I doubt they would read it.
  • They said it´s not definitive, so at least I´m not buying the game until I´m sure.
  • The ability to purchase in game currency is coming at a later date.....after EA has collected your money by you buying the game. Everything was sounding good up until that point. Sounds like a classic bait and switch move to me.
  • I'm going err on the side of caution just incase this is a bat and switch move. Never the less will be following this pretty closely. If it does turn out it is genuine then I will be buying a copy.
  • I hear you... I really want to just buy the game now in support of the move, but I don't want to get burned. I may just buy the game now and enjoy it, then sell it as soon as they try to f**k everyone if that's what happens.
  • Well, call me a sucker I guess. I pulled the trigger on it. I was already on the fence as it is, but this has pushed me over.
  • And that is why these publishers will continue to screw us, because of naive people who throw money at them regardless; well done for supporting this practice;
  • If you have to play it, wait until the game is in the bargain bin and then buy it, don't give EA any profit for the crap they pulled;    
  • From their actions they have prooved to me at least they do want gamers and SW fans to enjoy the game. I will give them a little support myself and buy the game to show that this was a good move on their side and it just needs further discussion on the public forums etc to continue to make sure they stick with cosmetics for these MT's. Recently I heard them say that the free DLCs coming are going to be free (so that MP maps are available to all), however I'd be more than happy to pay for campaign expansions (which they said there will be).
  • "they do want gamers and SW fans to BUY the game, before introducing microtransactions again..." There I corrected it for you...
  • They will add it back after the protesters who canceled buy it. If they were smart they would do cosmetics first then gear as a catch up down the road a few weeks or months for people joining late or those who don't have as much time as they do money. I would also like tokens for buying battlefront 1 as an apology. ; )
  • They did have a discount for Battlefront 1 Ultimate edition for a week in September and then for a week in October, you could get it for just 4,99€
  • Dice be smart and make cosmetics the only thing you can purchase.
  • Just yesterday read news about possible problem with that in Belgium. And coz its Europe possible this market can be close to all micro transactions games, not only EA.
    Good move
  • I don't see how this solves the issue that players who have grinded will be immensely more powerful than those who haven't: that's the core of the design. The possibility to pay in addition to grinding was aggravating the problem, but the system was designed with unfairness in its core and I don't see how suddenly now the multiplayer will become fair.
  • The grinding to level up wasn't the issue. Those who play the game SHOULD be rewarded. It's the system that allows people to pay to bypass playing and the encourages it as much as possible is the problem.
  • Why should those who play more get rewarded for that? Their reward should be they are better at the game. Why is it when I pay $60 for a game all the items in the game aren't unlocked? Why have any locking in multiplayer? I think that is stupid. 
  • Well it's not like the game will just put a complete newcomer in a match against someone who has played for hours. That's what matchmaking systems are for and how many other level-based multiplayer games work.
  • If you think a match making session will choose a lesser ranked player with high latency over a bought and paid up player with lower latency to add to session made up of lesser players you are wrong.
  • You see everyone, people don't even know what they're supposed to be mad at. Smh...
  • Which is why what EA did with transactions in the first place has now affected the sales of the game... Lol
  • Now I will buy this game.... So far, I had no intentions of doing it...
  • Hopefully lots of publishers will start to learn that if you charge a customer £50-£90 for a game then there is no way anyone should be expected to pay more on top for actual game content.  I have no issue in expansion packs costing more money as I then have the option to if I want to purchase them and play the expanded content.  Micropayments within Preium games is a complete Joke, and people should stop buying the games. If publishers want to carry on with the Micropayment system, bring down the cost of the games to £Free - £10 for the base game, then its up to me how much I want to spend to play the whole game.
  • EA = Evil Arts. EA have been dead for me for years when they first asked to be online to play one player games just to make sure you didn't pirate the game...
  • SIMCITY
  •  
    The ability to purchase crystals in-game will become available at a later date
      Ummm, yeah, no thanks I'm not going to get suckered EA, you can still eat a bag of d on this one.
  • Games have been $60 for about a decade now, yet costs to produce, market, and support have gone up. The microtransaction thing was a way to keep the game cost to $60. If we all want this nickle and diming to go away we need to be ok with paying 10-20 more per game, unfortunately.
  • Nope. But go ahead and raise the price and see how they sell then.
  • That is the same bs they want you to believe. It's funny because it's mostly the BIGGER companies who are doing it.   The very fact that other company make successful games without using this bs proves you wrong. These company spend a LOT on marketing. They can just cut that instead of making gamers pay by introducing frustrating gameplay... Also it's been a long time that a full game from these company is not 60 bucks. With DLC, season pass, special edition, silver/gold/complete edition, "get the game late if you don't pay",... the price of a full game actually changed. At this stage microtransactions/loot box/pay2win in a full price game is just greed. Risking to kill this industry for short term profit... Unforgivable...
  • It must be nice to live in a fantasy land like you guys, thinking costs to produce games and other media haven't gone up over the past 15-20 years.
  • "The ability to purchase crystals in-game will become available at a later date" That says it all really. Buy our game the grinding mechanism stays. Once enough people buy this will put it back...   
  • It's a trap! They' flat-out saying that they are removing it until you have forked over the cash and can no longer speak with your wallet, then they're bringing back a system. They aren't promising something better, not even promising it won't be worse. You're basically paying $60 towards a microtransaction Kickstarter from a company that just spent the last 2 months fighting to implement pay-to-win. Don't be suckers, Star Wars fans.
  • Until I´m not sure if microtransactions will be removed for ever or that it won´t be a Payforwin game, I´m not buying this title. It´s like Need for Speed Payback, I was going to buy it, but EA did the same, microtransactions also, so not buying it either.
  • EA has been doing this for years. I hate it but I'm surprised by the outcry now. BF1 has this with battlepacks. You can spend $30 and get all the battlepacks to unlock all the best weapons or you can grind it out for weeks and get it. And the weapons you unlock are better. I am glad people are finally seeing this but I don't know how much people care. I remember when you bought a game and just had everything unlocked from the start in multiplayer. Why is that not a thing now? 
  • There is a big difference between the battlepacks in the Battlefield games and loot crates in Battlefront II. In Battlefield, the unlocks bypass the time progression. Instead of grinding to unlock the guns and accessories, you pay and get them instantly.You don't get anything that is different, you just get the same items sooner. The difference between a starting character and a fully unlocked one is not hugely significant. In Battlefield II, the loot crates you pay for have powerups that are extremely difficult to get by grinding. Grinding progression is also hampered by time locks. Completing challenges will boost your progression, but once you complete the challenges for the day, you must wait 14 hours for more challenges. Continuing to grind during that time period yields minimal gains. In Battlefield, the difference between a beggining class and an unlocked and super buffed character is tremendous. All of this makes for a very unbalanced game for those who can't or won't pay to progress.