Star Wars Battlefront 2 and why I play it

I’ve bought Star Wars Battlefront 2. That’s not all… I’ve pre-ordered it. Did I know about the loot boxes? Yes. Do I care? Yes. So why am I still playing and didn’t get a refund like apparently the whole Reddit did? Because I like the game.

Battlefront 1

I’ve bought BF1 during some 50% sale on Origin. I’ve played it earlier on my cousin’s X-Box, but I’m nowhere near being a decent aimer on a controller. I generally liked the game but the paid DLCs made me ditch it after playing for just 37 hours. It was harder and harder to find games, as people were matched on new maps to which I didn’t have access.

The Alpha

I got invited to the alpha tests back in June but didn’t spend much time in the game, as my old laptop couldn’t keep up. I got killed more often than I even saw the enemy. At that point I felt like that will be the game that I won’t matter much, although all the information about it were very promising.

 The Beta

Between alpha and beta, I’ve upgraded my ‘battlestation’. I was now capable of comfortably playing any game, so when the open beta started I’ve hopped into the game as soon as it was possible, and man I got hauled in. Leveled up everything I could in the beta, all the classes at level 10, got all 3 stars in the Darth Maul arcade. At this point, I decided I’ll buy the game. Is it expensive? In Poland it is, but I don’t often by triple A titles at launch. I’m almost sure the only game I bought at launch was CS:GO to this day. And PUBG, but that’s a different story which I will address a bit later.

swbf2
source: https://www.ea.com/

The game

When I started playing BF2 I wasn’t aware of the whole thing going on around the game. I didn’t follow /r/StarWarsBattlefront since I stopped playing the previous game. So I just played. Started with the single player, because I was curious about the story they’ve put into the game. Also wanted to avoid the upcoming wave of spoilers. And I liked it. It could’ve been better written so that we can get to know the characters better, but overall it was ok. I’d give it an 8/10. The visuals are stunning, it almost feels like watching a movie. When we get to play, it’s nothing more than just shooting, very little stealth action, and the bots are barely hitting us even on the hardest difficulty (although in Air combat Husk managed to kill me). Nothing more or nothing less than I expected from a FPS campaign. At least I don’t hear ‘Daniels do this.., Daniels do that…’ all the time.

After I’ve finished the campaign I jumped into about 4 hours of multiplayer and as usual, I started bad. So bad that sometimes I couldn’t even get a kill and my initial confidence was kind of low. But as the time progressed, I’ve found my play style with each class and moved myself to the upper half of the score table. And I really do good in the aircrafts, in fact, I got my first MVP award, most points, and longest streak while playing an aircraft, but that’s mainly due to the fact that AI gives way too many points for a kill. After those 9 hours of gameplay, I had the loot boxes from the campaign and some credits from the games and milestones. I managed to unlock Iden, Luke, and Vader and I don’t feel like I need to unlock the others fast. Well maybe Leia, I feel better with shooting heroes than with lightsabers.

During my initial gameplay not once have I thought that somebody had an advantage over me because they had better cards. I rarely look at what cards had my enemy equipped, that may be one of the reasons, but I usually tried to justify my death with the things I did badly. And by pointing my own mistakes I feel like I’m getting better at the game. I do have some cards equipped, but those are mostly the ones given to everybody for finishing the campaign.

The drama

I found news about the most undervoted post on reddit in my Google app news. And I’m not joking that’s the first time I saw that there’re microtransactions in this game. I was so into the game itself that I didn’t check what the third icon in the top right corner was for. And don’t get me wrong I’m not an advocate of microtransactions in paid games. It’s just that I can’t say that this game is pay to win, like most of the guys are saying. Or that it’s worse than in mobile games. Really? Do you get limited to 5 deaths, and have to wait 20 minutes for a new life or buy yourself in into the game? Do you have to ask your friends to join you so that you can even play? No, you can just start playing, and the only limit is how many credits you get from playing arcade modes (which is fine because they can easily be abused). Do you constantly die because people bought their equipment? No, you’re in a team, even if 1 or two people actually spent their money and crafted their star cards, they still have to level up the class to get the purple (best ones), and on your team you can have 2 people who spent a lot of hours in game already and have those cards because they earned all their points while playing. Who do you think will do better? Someone who played 10 hours and bought green cards, or someone who played 40 hours and has the same card tiers?

I don’t want to justify EA. They did a bad thing with binding progression and crates. If the crates were only visual, the whole bad reputation will probably never exist. But saying I won’t buy the game because they screwed up and maybe they will learn for BF3 is also bad, because there might not be BF3.

The Q&A

Will crates be back? Yes, they probably will, and nobody will make you pay anything if you don’t want to. If you just play the game, by the time they’re back (even if the form doesn’t change) nobody will have an edge over you, and they will be just stupid to pay their money (or just quite wealthy, either way, won’t concern me).

Do you really need hundreds of hours to unlock everything without paying? Probably yes, the crafting materials are earned very slowly. But hey, isn’t LOL  a free game and you can earn your heroes by just playing? Guess how many hours would you need to unlock every single one of them assuming .5 winning ratio? Approximately 3,500 [1] and that’s just for champions, nothing else. In BF2 by playing you will unlock new weapons and modifications.

The verdict

Like I said I like the game. I’d feel like I miss out if I didn’t play it. I understand protesting against something that violates my rights, but not something that gives me some joy. I know there’re many people out there that feel exactly the same. There are also many people out there that don’t even know what’s going on around EA, they saw Star Wars and bought the game, maybe for them maybe for their children. Let the game progress, developers learn and fix, and publishers know their mistake, but don’t get miserable doing so.

[1] https://www.reddit.com/r/leagueoflegends/comments/212d2o/how_long_does_it_take_to_buy_all_champions_with_ip/

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