Star Wars: Battlefront hands-on preview: The Force is strong with this one

What has easily been one of the most requested games ever will make its way onto consoles later this year. Star Wars: Battlefront has finally revealed itself to all, here at E3 2015 and boy is it special. The game is a reimagining of the hit title of the same name that was available for Xbox and PlayStation 2. Let's take a look at my time with the new game and the lasting impression it has on me.

The battle begins

First, let me start off by saying that what I played of Star Wars: Battlefront was a 15 minute 20v20 game of Walker Assault on Hoth. Unfortunately, it was played on a PS4 but that didn't take away from the experience in any way.

I should also note that coming into this demo, I had no anticipation for this game whatsoever. This lack of expectation was because it is missing a campaign. I'm afraid that it will only hold my attention for a short time like Titanfall did. This effect is due to no back story as well as feeling that sense of accomplishment you get when you finally beat a game.

Back to the matter at hand. I joined the Imperial side, and our job was to infiltrate the Rebel base by escorting our AT-AT onto their base. The Rebel's jobs are simple, destroy our AT-AT or hold him off long enough to let time expire.

Once the game booted up, and I put my boots on the ground, the first thing I realized is how familiar it felt. Not familiar in the sense of the past games but in the sense that I've done this recently. That's when a lightbulb went off in my head, but I'll explain more on that later. But, boy was this map was huge! I felt like I was in a real war zone with 19 guys by my side trying to push through enemy forces.

I can't remember the last time a shooter made me feel like I was a part of something bigger as if every small battle was important. Charging into the enemy lines with the familiar sound of blaster rifles going off nearby and TIE fighters zooming above was so atmospheric. I seriously couldn't help but smile as if I was an easy impressionable 10-year-old.

So here I am, an Imperial soldier infiltrating the Rebels base. I'm equipped with a battle rifle that doesn't need to be reloaded, but it does overheat. Many of you may be familiar with this mechanic from the Halo series with their plasma rifles, and it is no different here. Once you fire your weapon for too long, it begins to burn your hand, and you have to press and hold the X button to cool it down.

I'm also equipped with a grenade launcher that shoots 3 spread shot grenades as well as a jump pack that allows me to jump quickly out of any dilemma. Both become vital to use and can be used for different reasons. I found myself using the grenade launcher to help push enemies back and my jump pack to avoid death at the last second. I was able to use both limitlessly, but both had a cool-down time of around 45-60 seconds until it could be used again.

Me and my team took control of the match early and never looked back. We used lots of teamwork to get the job done while the other team took an 'every man for themselves' approach. We ended up obtaining the victory within 15 minutes. I ended the match with 41 kills and six deaths #HumbleBrag.

The lightbulb in my head

So here's the origin of that earlier sense of familiarity. I soon realized that Star Wars: Battlefront is essentially Battlefield with a Star Wars skin on it. With DICE being the developer of both games, it was bound to feel somewhat close. I'm hoping that this doesn't come across as negative, because it isn't. When I sat down and thought about it, I couldn't think of anyone that could pull this game off as easily as DICE could.

It's almost as if every Battlefield that DICE developed was to prepare them for this moment. They're the only studio that I can think of that does large scale objective-based multiplayer game modes and can do them well. Not only that, they are also the best at having flight battles going on during the same time as the regular combat.

As for the Walker Assault mode, it was a Star Wars version of Rush which you can find in recent Battlefield games. Like in Rush, the infiltrating team's objective is to get to the defending team's communications systems and destroy them which causes the defending team to push back to their next camp. This scenario has to happen three times for the attacking team to win.

My impressions

As someone that was resisting the excitement surrounded by this game, I can proudly admit that I've joined the hype train. Fans of the past Battlefront installments, Battlefield, or Star Wars fan, in general, will love this game. It ultimately feels like a modern Battlefront, which isn't bad at all.

I can't help but wonder though if the game would be as good as it is if it weren't a Star Wars title. The novelty is surely there, but how would this game be without it. Would it lose my interest as soon as Titanfall did due to there not being a campaign? Maybe, but the fact of the matter is that this is the Star Wars title we've been waiting on (especially since Star Wars: 1313 was canned).

That emotional investment that we all have in Star Wars fuels this game's fun. But just like the most recent Battlefield titles (except Hardline), this game is just as solid as those gameplay-wise. However, for many of us this game is simply better due to the Star Wars legacy being such a huge force in our culture.

Stars Wars: Battlefront is slated to hit Xbox One and PlayStation 4 this fall on November 17.

65 Comments
  • Nice..
  • I really liked the different campaign modes in battlefront II :(. Oh well
  • Looks friggin great
  • It friggin is!
  • I've already pre-ordered my Xbox One copy.
  • I preordered my PC copy as well.
  • Definitely getting this on PC and not my XB1. It will deserve maximum performance and eye candy! Super massively hyped, as is the rest of my Battlefield squad! ;) #nerds
  • Creepy wink tho
  • I too am still skeptical due to the lack of a campaign. But it does look super fun nonetheless!
  • Doesn't bother me one single bit! I always think campaigns are a waste of time. I suppose that's why after a year, I still play Titanfall! It's the gameplay and multiplayer that are important, not a campaign.  
  • The teaser before the gameplay footage was much more impressive. This is a reskinned BF4. Not a bad thing but nothing like the speeder bike footage they showed.
  • That's because it wasn't gameplay lol
  • No galactic conquest, campaign, space battles or clone wars. EA(DICE) ruined everything for me.
  • DLC
  • Welcome to EA!
  • "Unfortunately, it was played on a PS4 but that didn't take away from the experience in any way." Why would you think it would?
  • Not representative of what the platforms covered by this site may be like
  • I imagine its EXACTLY like the Xbox One version just with slightly improved visuals that could only be discerned when displaying the two formats side by side, much like every other multiplatform game.
  • Yeah, I thought that was an odd comment too.
  • Because I'm being transparent instead of leading our readers into thinking it was played in an Xbox One. If I just said it was simply played on PS4 they would complain. I have a PS4 and I love it so this wasn't a job or anything like that.
  • Battlefield with Star Wars skin is exactly what all the biggest battlefront fans DIDN'T WANT! So much for a true Battlefront sequel, I hated Battlefield, CoD, and all those other modern military garbage games :( Dang man.... So much for a 501st part 2 campaign, galactic conquest, ground to space battles/transitions (like the psp editions), clone wars and all that other good stuff... Some people will buy it, but will likely tank worse than Destiny. Man :(
  • Pandemic with both SW Battlefront and SW Battlefront II did a great job. Even the third chapter, before the company's death, was going even greater than the 2 games put toghether.
    But I'm afraid that even after years, Battlefront will never come back. This game will have "Battlefront" written on the cover, but it wont be Battlefront.
  • Amen Capo... Amen.
  • Care to explain why?
  • So disappointed. This is not battlefront; this is a star wars skin for BF4. This industry is falling apart. Stuff is feeling more and more derivative.
  • It's amazing though. I loved it. But I have a complete understanding of why I loved it.
  • How does this look like battlefield? I dont understand. I played battlefield and i dont see any resemblence.... Theres way more things going on than just shooting at someone. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • It's the Rush gametype, plays just like Battlefield, controls just like Battlefield. Simply put, it's a Star Wars version of Battlefield
  • A campaignless reskin I am sure they are going to charge full price for, plus DLC
  • They're already considering DLC before the game even releases, absolutely pathetic.
  • And why wouldn't they? That is the model these days. People want more and more content. There is nothing wrong with DLC unless you're concerned about paid versus free. Then it makes a little more sense depending on what this title fetches and what it ships with.
  • Just because something is a trend doesn't make it good.
  • DLC is like when operating systems get minor updates. Nothing wrong with that
  • You don't have to pay 39.99 for OS minor updates though
  • No, but some OS's has certain upgrades you can buy, like the Media Server Pack for Windows 8.
  • Game looks pretty, but content looks poor, like some cash grab Battlefield add-on.
  • Can't wait to fire this bad boy up on my One. This is probably my 2nd most anticipated game, behind Halo 5 right now.
  • No campaign...meaning no offline single player?
  • Cant believe some of the hate. I've now read several hands on that say its amazing. Simply breathtaking. It looks phenomenol.
  • Yeah but I learned my lesson w Titanfall. Granted this will be better but still very narrow in focus. I want something besides multiplayer. And just releasing new maps to run around on as DLC isn't innovative at all.
  • People here want a 5 hour campaign with no multiplayer. Most are stuck in the past.
  • People on here want all multiplayer and loads of expensive dlc. Most are blindly buying whatever.
  • I'm not hating. Like I said below, the truth is if this was a battle on snowy white planet game most would dismiss it. But because it's a star wars game, it's epic due to the back story we already have and what not. I loved it and I can't wait to buy it! But I understand that it's the Star Wars lore that allowed me to love it. Otherwise it would be another fps in an already over saturated genre.
  • No hate @Richard, just disappointment for how this great series was killed brutally, and then raped and turned into a plain commercial one.
  • But every hands on I've read says its the best battlefront yet. None of us have played it so I tend to listen to the unanimous hands on that its amazing.
  • People who dont have hours to spend perfecting their form don't want to drop into a multiplayer situation where they are killed immediately after spawning over and over by some 12 year old, and they certainly don't want to have to pay a lot for that experience . Games like Halo that offer both quality campaign and multiplayer experiences are going to have a broader appeal, simple as that.
  • Halo is an exception. Cod, battlefield, killzone etc all have ok single player and ok multiplayer. I love both single player and multiplayer. After titanfall I def prefer them in seperate games. Titanfall was a better multiplayer game for its sole focus. Imo.
  • I'm with you... I can't stand it! A bunch of cry babies .... I'm so glad Dice got the nod to recreate this game... See u boys on the battlefront!
  • I never gave a shit about the campaign. It was all about online and big war type scenarios. AI running around with real players making it feel massive. Can't wait. Also keep in mind he only played one game mode. Pretty sure there will be conquest along with other modes.
  • I didn't say I didn't enjoy it. I'm just saying the truth is if this was a battle on snowy white planet game most would dismiss it. But because it's a star wars game it's epic due to the back story we already have and what not.
  • Battlefield in star wars skin? Sold!
  • So, there wont be space battles in spaceships? 
  • There will be "spaceships" (as shown in the video), but not in space
  • Stopped at PS4.
  • ^_^
  • Yeah not picking up this game at all need my campaigns even if it's the same ones
  • Shocked that there is no campaign, I was not aware of that. I had hoped it would nit be like a re-skin, but, I do love Battlefield. Are you able to get in any vehicles?
  • Yes vehicles galore!
  • I will wait for SW Battlefront II. (as I did in old times with the other Battlefront series on PC)
  • I will be passing on this.  I own almost every Star Wars Game released since X-Wing. My only issue is no Storyline or Campaign.  TitanFall is already in the EA Vault, Desitney has had people dropping like crazy, I lasted 4 months.  People want more if you want them to stick around and play the game.
  • Single player is single player. Titanfall is the best multiplayer game I played. Because the dev focused on that. Instead of an ok single player and oj multi like cod. I prefer a dev not to include half arsed modes of both.
  • Star wars nuts are gona go fruity pebbles on this shit. I see it being a huge deal for a while. Def a great thing for EA (watched the video).
  • Does it have 2 player spilt screen? Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I wonder what Visceral is working on. Dark Forces 3, maybe?
  • Hopefully it's star wars 3131 ;)