In a Best Buy, Far Far Away... no really, unless you've been living under a rock, one the biggest game launches in history has taken place. George Lucas is finally out of the picture (Thank the Lord!) and Disney has taken over the Empire as we know it. EA and DICE have taken on the latest iteration that is surely to divide fans and gamers alike, make no mistake about it. Also, those details have made reviewing and scoring this game a very different task. For every Darth Maul (sadly not in the game) type of awesomeness of the game, there is a Jar Jar Binks (luckily not in the game) waiting right around the corner. Now that we have that out of the way, onto the show!
So, this feels like a Battlefield game in the Star Wars universe but.. stripped down. Is that a good thing? Maybe, maybe not depending on your preferences. It feels like Battlefield, but it also feels a lot more old school and "twitchy" in a lot of ways. Honestly, I felt it was an awesome mix of old school and new. What I absolutely detest is it feels like the game is incomplete with no single player campaign and no dedicated vehicle spawns. WHY?! No clear answer but instead, it's all based on drops. Also, despite having a huge array of co-op and multiplayer modes, I am guessing that PC players will gravitate towards the 40 player Walker Assault and Supremacy mode. Good luck finding full servers for Supremacy. A huge, gaping hole of no dedicate servers and not being able to start a round without an almost full server is blasphemy for a DICE game in 2015. 'Nuff said.
Graphics & Sound
The strongest point of this game by far? The technical and artistically driven graphic powerhouse that DICE has created here is absolutely unbelievable. Don't believe me? Check out the screenshots. It's absolutely unreal on my 4K display and many a nerdgasm was had by myself and those watching me play. If there is one thing that the game absolutely nails, it's the atmosphere and beauty of the universe of Star Wars. I can't wait to see what's next in future modes and maps. Effects, level design, and overall presentation is absolutely phenomenal in every regard. I was even able to run it on a 750 Ti graphics card and it still looked fantastic on medium settings. At 4K on Ultra, it's jaw dropping.
You think the graphics look great? The audio portion meets or exceeds them in spades. Sound effects, voice acting, and music from John Williams is all there, and it is ear candy at the highest level. Hearing the haunting echo/roar of a Speeder bust through the forest of Endor is as glorious as you remember and the swing of lightsabers is spot on. I love the presentation overall of this game and I guarantee you will not be let down.
Fun & Value
Here comes the toughest part for a reviewer, gamer and major Star Wars fan like myself. Is this game that I dreamed about when I was a five year old boy, sitting in the dark, dingy theater watching Return of the Jedi on opening day so many years ago? For sure. Is this the game a grumpy, balding gamer dreams about playing for weeks and months on end, leveling up and getting all the perks and unlocks? Not really. The biggest part of that is the huge middle finger to PC gamers with no dedicated servers, zero control of teammates, lack of squads and the worst, a $60 game with a $50 Season Pass. Sorry, this is a fun game but the value proposition is poor at best. I have had quite a bit of fun with the game but I feel like to truly enjoy it, gamers will have to pay $110 or so to get the full game.
So, if you are fine with current gaming economics, go get the game and the Season Pass. Play it, love it, enjoy it. If you absolutely detest the current economics and tactics of AAA releases, skip it. Vote with your wallet. I would have loved to give this game a higher score but the issues mentioned dropped it quite a bit. Either way, if you need a solid dose of Star Wars FPS, it doesn't get any prettier than this.
An absolute masterpiece in atmosphere, graphics and audio goodness while shortchanging gamers in features, especially PC centric servers, controls, and value. A very difficult game to score but if you are fine with the price and a huge Star Wars fan, you shouldn't miss it.