What Star Wars Battlefront II means for movie fans

STAR WARS Battlefront II
STAR WARS Battlefront II (Image credit: Electronic Arts)

Later this month Electronic Arts is set to debut the second entry in its Star Wars Battlefront shooter franchise. Following up on the authentic but equally flawed refresh of the Star Wars Battlefront series back in 2015, it successor ups both the quality and scale of the experience. With more content at launch, further depth to progression and even a full-fledged single-player campaign, Star Wars Battlefront II is shaping up to be one of this year's biggest releases.

And with this expansion in content, Star Wars Battlefront II attempts to not only capture hardcore gamers – moviegoers too. Jumping on the launch of the next major entry to the Star Wars saga, "Episode VIII: The Last Jedi," the game encompasses the full spectrum of the Star Wars universe in a single package. Here's everything you need to know going into Star Wars Battlefront II as a fan of the theatrical releases.

Through the eyes of the Empire

Star Wars Battlefront II marks an important shift for Star Wars video games, with the first story marked as official canon. Following a partnership between Disney and Electronic Arts, the game's developers have worked closely crafting a new tale, which feeds directly into the events of the films. With the single-player campaign expected to last between five and seven hours, you'll be getting a narrative rich experience packed with both action-packed gameplay and cinematic cutscenes.

The story of Battlefront II centers around Iden Versio – a member of an Empire special forces unit known as "Inferno Squad." Departing from the established perspective of the movies, the game is able to explore the universe from the viewpoint of the Empire. This makes for an interesting take on an already deep universe, examining the motivators and morals behind the regime, and the foundations of the First Order.

Battlefront II's narrative kicks off during the timeline of Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, with Commander Iden Versio, captured on a rebel security cruiser known as the "Invincible Faith." Escaping the ship with the help of her ID10 seeker droid and returning to her three-man squad, the team is deployed onto the moon of Endor. After the destruction of the Death Star II while still on the planet, the majority of Battlefront II explores the events that follow the Emperor's death.

By bridging the gap between Return of the Jedi and 2015's The Force Awakens, Iden Versio's journey provides greater context for the two movies. Furthermore, touching on these two timelines, the game crosses over with locations and events already established in Star Wars lore.

For any fans invested in the Star Wars movies, Battlefront II's single-player campaign may provide more than enough value on its own. With what's shaping up to be a narrative-rich experience, you'll be getting an immersive dive back into the world, with some interesting new angles.

Multiplayer across the eras

While the single-player campaign is shaping up to be an important pillar of Star Wars Battlefront II, the franchise's roots lie with its multiplayer. With input from the studio behind the Battlefield video game series, Battlefront II serves up wide-scale battles across all eras of the Star Wars universe. Unlike the original Battlefront which thrived on the nostalgia of Episodes IV through VI, this latest entry leverages a full spectrum of lore.

Star Wars Battlefront II features multiplayer maps spanning a range of varied locations, from the streets of Naboo, the forest of Endor or deserts of Jakku. Each of these maps is paired with corresponding playable forces from the period, such as Clones and Droid forces. Iconic heroes and villains from these eras also return to reward skilled players, with the debut of Darth Maul, Kylo Ren, Yoda and much more.

While multiplayer won't deliver the same immersive narrative seen in the single-player, multiplayer still carries its own charms. The scale of 40-player Galactic Assault remains unbeaten, delivering intense battles across all corners of the galaxy.

Star Wars Battlefront 2 multiplayer improves on the original in 5 big ways

Over to you

Star Wars Battlefront II is shaping up to be a feature-rich experience, with content for all kinds of Star Wars fans. What excites you most? Make sure to drop your thoughts in the comments section below.

Matt Brown

Matt Brown was formerly a Windows Central's Senior Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.