The day before launch day usually means a flood of reviews of the latest game. That's not quite the case with "Star Wars Battlefront" as Electronic Arts looked to gamers, not professional reviewers, early acess through its EA Access membership program.
EA provided 10 hours of access -- based on active game time -- to Xbox One users who paid the $4.99 monthly, or $29.99 yearly, subscription fee. Reviewers were also provided access as part of controlled press events set up by EA, but those reviews won't hit until Tuesday, according to Polygon. Rather than provide readers with a review ahead of the game's release, outlets would have to wait until after "Star Wars Battlefront" was in the hands of gamers.
While full reviews may be scarce, there are plenty of "Star Wars Battlefront" first impressions from gamers and a few reviewers. For "Star Wars" fans, there is a lot to love about the game, GameSpot reports. There are plenty of nods to the original trilogy along with Easter eggs that will charm even the most jaded gamer. Developer DICE, makers of the "Battlefield" series, have delivered vibrant worlds with equally impressive sound design.
The worlds are faithful to the "Star Wars" universe, but the scope could affect the fast-paced action that was a trademark of the original "Battlefront" games released a decade ago. "When I did run into an opponent during these solitary treks, there wasn't much weight to it. We exchanged blaster fire, and one of us went on our way," Mike Mahardy wrote of his experience as he worked his way across one of the game's maps.
Eurogamer expresses a similar sentiment. The game captures the sense of innocent adventure that has made "Star Wars" an endearing franchise for four decades. "Star Wars Battlefront" is a simpler than what gamers have come to expect from modern shooters, but it's desire to reach every marketable demographic does have its drawbacks. "The simplicity of Battlefront sits less easily with the appetites of a modern shooter audience, where the pared-down gunplay and systems are chewed up and spat out without providing much in the way of satisfaction," Martin Robinson wrote for Eurogamer.
Another reviewer, Forbes contributor Jason Evangelho, said "Star Wars Battlefront" was not worth $60. On one NeoGaf thread, some gamers have expressed concerns about the lack of customization and maps while others love the simple pick-up-and-play style.
EA has a lofty sales goal of 13 million, according to the Wall Street Journal. DICE is trying to minimize any launch day problems by having a dedicated team of 20 people to ensure the public servers are running smoothly. "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" seems like a sure bet to break box office records, but that future is less certain for "Star Wars Battlefront."
A "Star Wars Battlefront" Digital Foundry analysis of the PS4 frame rate can be viewed below.