The single most common complaint about the release of the “Star Wars: Battlefront” video game last year was the lack of content, specifically the lack of a single player campaign mode and the small number of multiplayer maps.
Subsequent (and expensive) DLC has resolved the last problem, but not that of the missing campaign. At the time there were various reasons cited for EA going in the direction of a multiplayer only game, but finally it looks like the truth has come out and it appears to be due to that most basic of motivations – money.
During an investor broadcast this week, EA’s Patrick Soderlund addressed the criticisms of ‘Battlefront’ saying it was a ‘conscious decision’ to forego a campaign feature (and likely hold back the DLC) in the game in order to meet a release date close to the theatrical premiere of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”. Kotaku reveals:
“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 has previously been known for rushing to meet a specific date to maximize sales rather than taking the time to ensure a high quality final product. It worked in terms of sales, the game surpassing expectations, however the disappointing 75/100 Metacritic score and the backlash has subsequently seen the game’s long-term viability squandered – even with EA continuing to add more offline content in an attempt to enhance things.
A “Battlefront” sequel is currently planned for a 2017 release, one that will feature connections to the new movies, and one that should this time feature a campaign. Soderlund says: “Are we happy with the 75 rating? No. Is that something we’re going to cure going forward? Absolutely. The depth and breadth is something that’s proving to be more and more important.”