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kuhla

Star Wars: Battlefront (2015)

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Yea I'll bandwagon this game, but I expect it to have slightly less staying power than a traditional battlefield game.

 

Mini-Review:

 

I think the infantry controls are tight and responsive, while also providing a more "arcade" feel. I'm glad mantling is gone, and that they increased the jump height. I think the weapons handle pretty well, and the unlimited ammo seems perfectly fine. The active reload is nifty, and I like the fact that it gets progressively harder the more times you do it. The cooldown style weapons/abilities are a great way to limit grenade spam and provide diversity without needing to specialize into classes. I don't mind that all vehicles take damage from small arms, especially considering there are upgrades that boost damage to vehicles/shields if you wanted to be more dedicated anti-vehicle. The only weird thing I've found so far are the collectable powerups, the personal shield seems very strong but it's gated by the fact that you are only given a set number of charges and the only way to refill them is to pick them up around maps. That seemed a little weird, I'd prefer if it just had a much longer cooldown.

The Squad system is retarded and serves almost no purpose since it's 2 man squads only. I honestly just smashed space bar to spawn in normally every time. Luckily you're never more than 10-15 seconds from the action, which allieviates any sense of downtime.

 

The pickup weapons/items seem fun, the thermal imploder looks and sounds amazing. The AT-STs handle decently and feel powerful but not godly. The AT-AT powerup seems like an amazing upgrade over the AC130 from previous battlefield games. That powerup can put you at the top of the scoreboard in 35 seconds.

The flying vehicles handle like shit, it reminds me of trying to fly a cross between a jet and the attack helicopter. The evasive manuevers are janky, and sometimes you get put in a loop of evasive manuevers and need to spam the button to get it to stop. I actually like the fact that the air vehicles have a decent bit of aim assist against ground targets and some major aim assist when locking on to other air. It makes me feel like less of a shitty pilot and I find it more fun.

Heroes are hilarious and fun, I love deflecting blaster shots back at enemies and getting kills. They remind me of the jedi acadamy games.

 

The overall look of the game is very crisp and clean, I really like it. The sound is absolutely fantastic and I think even Dice outdid themselves on this one. The only complaint I have is every time you spawn and your characater "has a bad feeling about this" I think they could either tone down that spawning voice over. Also the voice over for Darth Vader and Luke is laughable because it's nowhere near what their original voices sound like, I totally understand the limitation though.

 

Overall I think it's a solid game. I'm worried about replayability more than anything, but I think it will be a great tie-in with the new Star Wars movies and will definitely have a decent population playing for the next 3-6 months. I think this game is far better than Hardline.

 

Above all else, I found it super fun last night to hop on with you guys and shoot some stuff. If nothing else I'd be willing to drop $60 so we could keep doing that more often.

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Notes:

  1. The mechanics of movement, aiming, shooting all feel sufficiently tight.
  2. The game looks good.
  3. Loading times (both to launch the game, join a friend and map load) are short.
  4. Interface is generally acceptable.
  5. Alt-Tabs nicely.
  6. I have a mix of settings, mostly ultra, SSAA,etc. but performance was fine.
  7. Map design funnels the action effectively so you are rarely spending a lot of time running to the action.

As a whole though I feel the game is pretty shallow. A couple more maps, a couple more weapons, a couple more vehicles...... and? There isn't that much true variety. I'm worried the "staying power" of this game in my catalog would be abysmal.

 

In regards to other games that we own that we have not played much past the initial purchase time period, if we want to fire-up CoDAW or TitanFall, I'm down for that.

 

That being said, if a couple of you buy it, I probably will too so I can play alongside. It's decent enough for that. I just won't be the first one to buy it.

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Okay.... I bought it too... here is to hoping this lasts for a bit.... also took advantage of our southern neighbors....

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I don't know if it's just me but those stats seem all kinds of screwy. I'm not sure what the game designers plans were in balancing it that way. I can't access symthic at work but I hope there are some other functions that better differentiate the weapons.

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Yea the issues I have is that the rebel blaster A280 has a stupid dropoff all the way to 12 damage. While something like the DLT-19 has a small damage range and virtually no drop off. I think they would need to adjust repeating blasters to have a lower minimum damage to prevent them from being used at range, and increasing their role as a close/mid range weapon. The pistol DH-17 has a drop off all the way to 5 damage which is a huge joke, I personally think they should buff that and possibly increase it's up close damage numbers to provide it some sort of advantages over the other weapons.

 

We'll see what the balance looks like at launch, I expect many of these numbers will change and that symthic might even need to update how they scrape data since because of certain changes Dice has made to the frostbite engine.

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Played it yesterday somewhat and got raped at first (1-7). By the 3rd round though I figured things out and got top kills (30-7). Game feels very simple but very different at the same time. I'm still unsure about staying power. If tino is buying then so am I.

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This game does look pretty amzing without the HUD. I sometimes wish more games had cutomizable or semi-customizable HUDs, it's one of the features I loved about the original Guild Wars.

I would almost consider trying this out because my monitor has an option to overlay a crosshair on your screen. I would probably never manage to quick reload though, and I'd have no idea about any cooldowns.

 

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More heroes announced. A great deal of this was actually data-mined earlier from various beta files.

http://blog.us.playstation.com/2015/10/20/star-wars-battlefront-leia-han-and-palpatine-join-the-battle/

 

Here's the data-mine document, note that all content not in the beta is spoilered:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1GLIU0KTIqI1Z-LaIDRwN8h9dUiul_GdVRmBa7IhVUU0/preview?pli=1

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Some news. EA Access, a monthly subscription that provides various perks, is allowing their users to play Battlefront for 10 hours, even if they did not purchase the game. Additionally their progress is carried over to the live launch. It's console exclusive to the XBONE. That means a few people have been streaming/playing battlefront this week, the launch is still next week on the 17th.

 

The fun/cool part I saw was that Dice has added a minigame you can play while the game is installing:

 

I remember hearing about this around a year or so ago. The reason more companies haven't done this is because the patent just expired. Namco was sitting on it all this time, and now devs can actually put minigames on loading screens. I think that's kind of neat especially because the console download/install time is probably pretty lengthy. Of course for anyone on a decent internet connection with an SSD these little minigames won't really matter. I wonder if we'll start seeing this tech popping up in other games to cover various loading times (like Mass Effects elevators).

 

It also reaffirms my view that most software patents are bullshit, and that our patent system needs desperate reform. When people are allowed to sit on unused patents for years while preventing the licensing of their technology to other companies, how does that possibly benefit innovation?

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Pulse Cannon is a star card, it's a charged laser sniper rifle. You can charge up the cannon and at maximum charge it will 1 shot body shot people, it will hold at maximum charge for approximate 3-5 seconds afterwards it will discharge automatically. You can cancel the shot by switching back to primary weapon or using melee. It's very good on some maps, it's worth unlocking at least if you have any interest in sniping.

 

Also keep in mind all star cards can be upgraded to black versions for 7000 credits. This often reduces the cooldown on using them and sometimes provides other benefits.

 

The jawa blaster is hilariously strong at close range and can easily 1 shot people, at mid range it's closer to 2 shots and long range you'll be lucky if you even get hit indicators.

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I wanted to also post some stats for the number of players:

 

PS4 has some absolutely gigantic peak numbers for Battlefront at 187,000

PC is currently around 55,000

 

I post the Hardline stats just to show how dead that game is.

 

Battlefront (2015): http://swbstats.com/

BF4: http://bf4stats.com/

Hardline: http://bfhstats.com/

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New Maps/Modes coming with their next patch in another week. The Battle of Jakku DLC is free and also contains a new game mode called "Turning Point."

Dice/EA are also announcing that new star cards, maps and other content will also be made free in the future, in addition to the season pass content that will release over the next year or so.

 

http://starwars.ea.com/starwars/battlefront/news/start-of-your-star-wars-adventure

http://starwars.ea.com/starwars/battlefront/features/battle-of-jakku

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2015-11-24-star-wars-battlefronts-battle-of-jakku-dlc-introduces-turning-point-mode

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....Battle of Jakku....

 

Played a bit of this. The map design is decent but the game mode seems really difficult for Imperials to win. Played multiple rounds and Rebels won everytime.

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