By Griffin Rucker
June 29th was a long day for the Star Wars Battlefront community. After fears that the much-anticipated roadmap might get delayed, Community Manager Ben Walke saved the day and revealed what the future holds for the game.
The long-awaited Clone Wars season that was revealed at EA Play a few weeks back, will officially begin this fall and conclude in the winter. While it’s nice to know when the Clone Wars will begin, it is disappointing that fans will have to wait until December at the earliest to play on Geonosis (over a year since the game’s initial launch). Still, there’s a lot to look forward to in the upcoming months.
July will bring a new 4v4 hero starfighter mode that will finally give users the opportunity to play as hero ships for an entire game mode. My guess is that it will work similar to the current Heroes vs Villains game mode but with ships. In addition to the new mode, the roadmap promises to add multiple quality of life changes that include the ability to turn lightsabers on and off, heroes will now lose stamina while blocking with a lightsaber (thank god), and the ability to change the appearance of characters before the start of a match (no more Hoth Luke on Tatooine). Ben revealed that more details about July’s update will come next week, so stay tuned.
August appears to be a much smaller month for the game, with the only new content being the first of three waves of clone trooper skins. There have been multiple leaks about the skins on Reddit and YouTube since November, so I’m shocked it’s taken this long to be implemented into the game. From what’s been datamined so far, fans should expect to see the addition of several clone trooper legion skins that include the 41st, 91st, 104th, 212th, and the 501st. August will also finally bring the option to purchase character emotes with credits and crystals.
Fall will kick-off the first half of the Clone Wars season that includes Obi-Wan Kenobi, General Grievous, the new (or should I say old) Conquest mode from the original Pandemic Battlefront games, and a much-needed improvement to the squad system. While September is the earliest the update could drop, my guess would be October. The Last Jedi season started in December (same month the film came out), the Han Solo season started in May (again, same month as the film’s release), and with October marking the 10th anniversary of the Clone Wars TV show, it would make sense that the release would follow a similar cadence. While Obi-Wan and Grievous will delight the community, the season being split up into two parts is very disappointing.
Fans will have to wait until the winter for Anakin Skywalker, Count Dooku, and Geonosis. Geonosis will be the first large-scale map added to the game since Crait, which was released the previous winter. Part two will come in December at the earliest or February at the latest (I’d bet on December), which means fans will have to wait at least six months for a new map of any size.
If I’m being realistic, it makes sense that it will take this long. The overwhelming backlash over the loot box fiasco at launch forced Dice to put future DLC on hold and focus on completely revamping the progression system. Then they had to put their efforts into the Han Solo season which just wrapped up earlier this month. Still, that doesn’t mean fans don’t have a right to be frustrated. Potentially having to wait an entire year since the game’s release for more prequel content is a tough pill to swallow.
On the bright side, it’s nice to have a roadmap. Gone are the days of pure speculation when future content will arrive. Dice is communicating with us and I think that’s a great thing. And while the major updates are already outlined, Ben confirmed that the roadmap will change as they release additional updates. That likely includes smaller content like patches, skins, old maps from the previous game, etc, but it’s still something. It’s a bummer how long we’ll have to wait, but there’s no doubt in my mind that the upcoming content will be great. Besides, Red Dead Redemption 2 comes out in October, so it’s not like you’ll be playing Battlefront again until December anyway.