Battlefront Singleplayer Ditched To Meet Ep VII Release

One of the enduring confusions around the new Star Wars Battlefront [official site] was the ditching of any kind of meaningful singleplayer mode. The adverts were so very geeky 30/40-something-focused, with all their misty-eyed pining for childhood X-Wing fantasies – the only logical next step for the marketing campaign would have been Kelly Kapowski wearing a Huttslayer Leia bikini. Then the reality was just getting shot in the back of the head by bug-eyed teenagers a thousand times over, and spaceships limited to sporadic icon pick-ups. Also, the original Battlefronts were known for having decent bot modes, while recent stablemates from the Battlefield series boasted campaign modes, no matter how dumb, so it was an odd break from tradition too.

Speaking about Battlefront’s future and plans to improve its reception, EA claim the lack of singleplayer was a “conscious decision” made in order to ship close to the Force Awakens.

“We made [the choice] due to time and being able to launch the game side-by-side with the movie that came out to get the strongest possible impact,” EA Studio head Patrick Söderlund told investors yesterday (as reported by Eurogamer). From a pure biz perspective it’s hard to argue with that: Star Wars fervour was at its peak then, and there was simply no better time to launch a Star Wars game. But that decision at least partially contributed to Battlefront’s 75% Metacritic average; a Metacrisis as far as a big publisher is concerned.

Soderland sought to defend this. “I think the team created a really good game based on the premise that we had. I would say the game has done very well for us and reached a very different demographic than a traditional EA game. So from that perspective, it’s a success. Are we happy with the 75 rating? No. Is that something we’re going to cure going forward? Absolutely.”

I’m presuming that “different demographic” is Parentsquad, who sorely missed their AT-AT toys. Hello! As for the proposed cure, he’s talking about the recently-announced Battlefront sequel, due in the next year and which will be at least partly based around the new movies. Whether that’s Force Awakens or Rogue One we don’t know yet – but I’m to bet a battered Wicket figure (h.b. headscarf missing) that it will feature some kind of singleplayer mode.

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32 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    Ridiculous Human says:

    These header pics are my favourite ongoing RPS gag

    • Lakshmi says:

      It’s familiar but I can’t place it. But yeah, loving these.

    • Jay Load says:

      I was like you once, Tim. Blonde hair, scraggly beard, child-like ears. Full of beans and spunk. I once punched a bloke in the face for saying Hawk the Slayer was rubbish… but that’s not the point, Tim. The point is, I was defending the fantasy genre with terminal intensity when what I should have said is “Dad, you’re right. But let’s give Krull a try, and we’ll discuss it later.”

      Krull.

  2. BobbyDylan says:

    The Lack of SP is why I didn’t buy this. The MP in the beta was dull as hell, so there’s nothing for me to want in this title.

  3. Lakshmi says:

    Dadsquad – really Alec. Plenty of women wanted our single player SW toys too.

  4. dreadguacamole says:

    Krull! One of those movies (and arcade games) I loved as a kid, but am absolutely not going to revisit as an adult.
    And the running gag is great.

    • dreadguacamole says:

      Reply fail!
      Also, I thought keeping it multiplayer-only was a nod to the previous SW Battlefront games, though cutting out the bots was a bit much. Good on them for coming out and admitting it was rushed.

    • Angel Dust says:

      It’s no masterpiece of course but I rewatched it last year and it’s got a certain goofy charm.

      The score is also fuckin’ fantastic.

      • thekelvingreen says:

        Yes indeed, a great score, and a weird and wonderful cast; where else would you see Robbie Coltrane and Liam Neeson alongside Mark off of Eastenders?

      • Jalan says:

        Definitely one of James Horner’s finest works. Every time I hear it, I just get depressed that the man is no longer around to deliver more like it.

      • The Great Wayne says:

        One may disagree. Krull is a masterpiece imho. The cyclops background in itself is pure poetry.

        And the whole noshame blend of over-the-top sci-fi/fantasy/shuriken is so 80s it brings a tear to my eye.

  5. James says:

    Remember folks, money is always more important than quality. That’s my take away from this. That and pizza.

    • Darth Gangrel says:

      This conjures up a picture of EA as Emperor Palpatine answering AND electricuting a dev that asks why there is no singleplayer. EA’s answer: Exposure! Unlimited EXPOSURE!!!!!

      I almost thought of getting this game in few years, but the lack of singleplayer killed it faster than Han did Greedo.

  6. TillEulenspiegel says:

    It’s true that Episode 7 is probably going to be the pinnacle of Star Wars hype for a good while, but we’re going to have very large events every damn year for the foreseeable future. And you get 18+ months notice of the exact date.

    So please plan ahead and make good Star Wars games because I need them kthx

  7. Angel Dust says:

    Aw, yiss. Muthafuckin Krull.

  8. Junkenstein says:

    It’s annoying because it’s got a bare bones glimpse at what a single player campaign could have been, with the stromtroopers with different abilities in survival mode and the training mission with the speeder chase etc.

    I would like to play that game.

  9. Premium User Badge

    magogjack says:

    Is it too much to ask for it to be third-person with actual, physical, vehicle models to jump inside.
    Please EA, I want to give you money for this quite badly but you keep slapping it out of my hands and into the dirt….

  10. raizhassan says:

    Made a “conscious decision” to keep the AAA price tag too I noted.

  11. DrollRemark says:

    As for the proposed cure, he’s talking about the recently-announced Battlefront sequel, due in the next year and which will be at least partly based around the new movies. Whether that’s Force Awakens or Rogue One we don’t know yet

    Isn’t that when episode 8 is due out? Late next year?

  12. Leonick says:

    That was a dumb move… I doubt releasing together with the movie really did a lot to increase sales of the game. It’s a Star Wars game and part of a loved series of Star Wars games at that.

    Maybe it could have helped the sales a bit, but I’m not convinced it’d help more than more content would have, be it a singleplayer campaign or more multiplayer.

  13. Salsa says:

    Could someone please explain the trend on these header pics for Star Wars related material?