Star Wars Battlefront Teaser Unveils Fighter Squadron Mode


Early on in Star Wars Battlefront‘s development, there was plenty of outcry over the fact that the game would not allow players to re-enact the famous space battle scenes from the movies. Although driveable vehicles are still part of the gameplay on Battlefront‘s main campaign levels, many players lamented the lack of what they feel is part of the appeal of a Star Wars game.

But now it appears Electronic Arts and DICE have taken steps to assuage those concerns, unveiling a trailer for the new Fighter Squadron mode.

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According to EA:

"“Fighter Squadron is designed for all fans who ever wanted to dogfight in the skies with their favorite ships from the Star Wars universe.”"

In this mode, players can pilot X-Wings and A-Wings for the Rebel Alliance or TIE Fighters and TIE Interceptors for the Empire. Fighter Squadron pits up to 20 human players and plenty of AI-controlled ships in aerial dogfights, with the objective to reach 200 kills or have more kills than the other team before time runs out.

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But EA and DICE have introduced a few wrinkles to this mode to make it stand out. Both sides will have transport shuttles show up in the battle that they must protect or attack to gain bonus points. They can use their ship’s lasers or guided missiles to attack any targets, but there is a cooldown period required to let the weapons regenerate.

Meanwhile, Rebel ships are equipped with a powered shield, while Imperial aircraft are much faster and more maneuverable. There are also powerups scattered around the maps in difficult spots that offer perks like reducing the cooldown period.

Finally, similar to the main campaign levels, special powerups will unlock Hero ships that are more powerful. For the Rebels, players can unlock Han Solo’s Millennium Falcon, while Imperial sympathizers will get to pilot Slave I, Jango Fett’s ship.

The trailer above depicts a game of Fighter Squadron on the rocky, lava-covered planet Sullust, switching back and forth between both Rebel and Imperial fighters. The gameplay and fluidity looks gorgeous, and I liked how unintrusive yet intuitive the heads-up display looked. While we don’t get to see the Slave I in action, there are plenty of shots of the Millennium Falcon kicking butt in the fight.

I’m glad that EA and DICE realized that they can’t exclude aerial combat from a definitive Star Wars game, although I wish there more ships available to choose from. Perhaps a DLC will resolve that soon enough.

Battlefront is out on Nov. 17 for Xbox One, Playstation 4 and PC.

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