This year's EA Play Press Conference wasn't particularly exciting, but compared to EA's performance during previous years, it was noteworthy. Although the announcement of A Way Out was the biggest game reveal, Star Wars Battlefront 2 was the star of the presentation.
Several minutes of gameplay was shown toward the end of the 90 minute conference, indicating that like the previous Star Wars Battlefront it'll be visually spectacular. However, it's how EA has taken gamer feedback into consideration during its development that has gamers talking.
Star Wars Battlefront 2 won't have a season pass, or any community-splitting DLC for that matter. Despite this, it will receive free maps as post-launch support just like its predecessor.
This move is similar to what EA did with Titanfall 2, which many attributed to the game's potential commercial failure as the result of a competitive release window. Nonetheless, Titanfall 2 has been the recipient of substantial improvements over the past eight months at no additional cost.
But this wouldn't mean much if Star Wars Battlefront 2 turns out not to be a good game. Thankfully, what was demonstrated today was remarkable.
The demonstration in question was in multiplayer, with the highlights being saber combat, playable droids, and wrist rockets, all within an environment that felt much more like a fully-fleshed out Battlefield game rather than the simplicity of its predecessor. The maps appeared expansive with much more detail than the base Star Wars Battlefront maps. Gameplay variety was diverse, with a larger number of class and weapon choices. Additionally, there was more Star Wars goodness put on display.
The key here is that the game is true to the Star Wars IP, including elements both big (major characters) and small (movie-inspired sound effects), without compromising the long-term play value that players look for from a EA DICE first-person shooter.
At this point, Star Wars Battlefront 2 is the game to beat at E3 2017. But with Microsoft, Bethesda, Ubisoft, Sony, and Nintendo all ready to present what they've been working on, that might not hold for long.