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How playing Commander Iden Versio makes for a unique story campaign in Star Wars Battlefront II

Hands-on with the opening hours of single player hints at the humanity behind the Empire

The story of Star Wars Battlefront II opens with an interrogation. Commander Iden Versio, disarmed and bound, glares at the Rebel soldier holding her captive. The slow, steady tension of the scene runs contrary to the often bombastic, spectacular battles that Star Wars is known for. But Iden’s story is one of military precision, political motivation, loyalty, and betrayal. And also bombastic, spectacular battles.

Iden serves as a humanizing element to the Empire — a force we have spent decades fighting in the Star Wars universe. She and the other agents of Inferno Squad represent the discipline and devotion that the Imperials glorify. But the most striking quality of her wonderful character impacts the entire narrative: her courtesy.

The single-player campaign of Star Wars Battlefront II takes place in the moments before and immediately after the conclusion in Return of the Jedi. The prologue mission follows Iden as she deftly escapes Rebel capture, then assists Imperial forces on Endor following the destruction of the second Death Star. But as she stealthily creeps behind enemy lines and uses her tactical droid to survey soldier positions, her whispered command spoke volumes. “Scan, please.”

Iden address both her fellow agents and her droid with an alarmingly calm politeness. It is immediately endearing, and a small detail among many that make the beginning moments of the campaign so enjoyable. It showcases that Iden and her team are not inherently evil. They are soldiers fighting on the opposing side. But even Iden has misgivings about the Empire’s plans, and those eventually boil over…

Battlefront II

Few games look quite as good as Star Wars Battlefront II. The motion capture and texture work employed here brings Iden (Janina Gavankar) and her fellow squadmates to life. This superb detail extends into the nigh overwhelming environments, from the debris-littered reaches of space to the lush, leafy moon of Endor. These environments make for fantastic stages to all the action, which Iden anchors.

While on foot, Iden has access to standard Imperial weaponry, as well as rechargeable skills including an Impact Grenade, the aforementioned Scan, a tactical Shock, and a Pulse Cannon built on DLT-20A framework. These abilities add a welcome wrinkle to the running, gunning, and sneaking of each mission. The Pulse Cannon, especially, gives Iden a powerful long-range tool for dealing with officer units that enhance the prowess of soldiers around them. Targeting these officers from a hidden position before starting the battle in earnest was a useful tactic during the introductory missions.

 

Early in the campaign Iden takes to the sky (or space, more accurately) and pilots a TIE fighter against Rebel forces. These ship battles are delightfully chaotic, with the ship itself having its own suite of abilities from rapid-fire bursts of laser fire to tracking torpedos. Making sense of enemy positioning, and avoiding dangerous debris, are challenges in and of themselves.

Battlefront II

If the beginning hour of Star Wars Battlefront II is any indication, players can expect a cacophonous ride filled with action and tense, quiet moments of story. And at the centre of it all is Commander Iden Versio, who still has the sense to thank her droid for a Scan well done.

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Loved the last one, super hyped for this game. I had no problem with the content of the last game, but from what was experience from the BETA and the feedback EA have mentioned since… it looks like this game is going to keep me busy for sometime. More X-Wing VR please, as that was amazing.

2

“Hands-on with the opening hours of single player hints at the humanity behind the Empire”

Its a DICE campaign mode in a game where the multiplayer is the main focus. The “opening hours”, as you call it, even includes the end credits when its a mere 3 hour long campaign.

And what a shame the story has to be told with those exact same looking human character models yet again that we are used to seeing in every single Frostbite game since it was upgraded to Frostbite 2.0.

2.1

Well you won’t see aliens in the Empire. They were very discriminatory towards them.

Empire descriminatory against aliens? They accepted aliens in their ranks. We have two alien stormtroopers in canon. The Grand Visier of the Empire, Mas Amedda(that blue guy that walks with Sidious), was the political second in command. We have Grand Admiral Thrawn. We also have the inquisitors who were tasked with probably the most important mission: Kill Jedi. They were all aliens!

2.3

Who are the two stormtroopers?

Mas Amedda was already in place at the Chancellor’s side and conspired with Palpatine. I’m on about aliens in ranks, not political hierarchy.

Palpatine was hesitant about Thrawn, but only took him on because he came from beyond the Unknown Regions, and needed his vast knowledge of it to help with his Contingency, the Regions of which would hide the Imperial remnants led by Brendol Hux and Grand Admiral Rae Sloane, forging the creation of the First Order.

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1

The level design in this game is far worse than the last Battlefront, the microtransactions are wholly unnecessary and the way which you gain weapons/heroes/skills via a card system is pathetic.

This game can pucker up and kiss my posterior.

3.1

/nods I found the beta a total turn-off with the loot crates and trash-fire maps. Starfighter mode was fine but otherwise nope. Add in intermittent variable rewards tied to real money (AKA gambling) and you have a game that uses predatory psychological techniques to exploit fans. No thanks. While I’d like to play the campaign, I don’t want it enough to have loot boxes in my life.

I was going to get this purely for the campaign, but I might forget it now.

Lose the pathetic loot crate system and return the original Star Card format where we choose our own.

4.1

You were actually up for getting it for the inevitable 3 hour DICE campaign? I never was. I don’t play online games at all but I think they should have just stuck to making a good online only game………… and even then they didn’t do that with the first game and its sparse content.

jason-bridges 19 October, 2017 @ 20:18
5

I hope it’s not a short campaign and gives us some good difficulty options – I want a challenge!

Pay-to-win

6.1

It’s Not – EA have clearly stated after the BETA, only cosmetic Items can be purchased additionally with Micro Transactions. Star Cards that effect your performance are only issued within crates after individual player achievements are made within the game. Therefore the it is not Pay To WIN. !!!

Jeff-Andrew-NL 21 October, 2017 @ 09:18
7

At first I was super stoked to play this. But all the micro-transaction p2w stuff put a mega stink on it. No thanks.

Really seems to be the theme this year. Pay to win and loot boxes..

Makes me want to dust off my GameCube and just have fun, with full games!

Full games.. Those were the days :P

7.1

It’s not play to win…. The BETA highlighted that this could of been the case. But EA address this, and issued a statement that “only cosmetic Items can be purchased additionally with Micro Transactions. Star Cards that effect your performance are only issued within crates after individual player achievements are made within the game. ” It’s one of the reasons why companies have a beta. If you play the game, then there is no need to buy any additional crates. Never needed to pay for extra credits for GTA V, although no one seemed to have an issue the money system within that game.

8

Can the Frostbite engine EVER try to make new looking character models? The main character of this looks practically the same as the side character Fiona in Army of Two III with obviously a better looking character in a current gen game https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/armyoftwo/images/3/3c/Fiona.png/revision/latest?cb=20130521075746 and https://i.ytimg.com/vi/uv7HMdWgemA/maxresdefault.jpg

What is up with Frostbite and its samey looking character models across every single game?

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