Battlefield Report - A Long, Long Time Ago
Any decent stalker would know that I'm a huge fan of the Star Wars Battlefront series. Well, maybe not the recent PSP titles quite as much...but the original two titles that Pandemic cranked out for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox were genre definers for me, even at that late stage in the consoles' lives. What I wouldn't give for another proper Battlefront... The rumors that keep floating around are killing me!
And despite being two of the most successful Star Wars games ever, LucasArts keeps throwing crumbs our way in the form of PSP-only morsels. They're fun, but they don't last long in the ring with PSP hackers and a lack of ongoing technical support.
So why do I - and other hopeless Battlefront fans - keep punishing myself with rumors and half-hearted portable versions? Like the movies that predecessed them, the original Star Wars Battlefront I and II were a mish-mash of what made other games so much fun.
The Feature: Control Points
The Function: LucasArts was actually sued by EA for so blatantly copying the play style - and title - from the Battlefield series. Control Points were lifted straight from Battlefield 1942, as was the Conquest mode (called Galactic Conquest).
The Future: Conquest-style modes have made it into countless multiplayer games, althought they're sometimes called "multiple flag" or some other moniker of distinction. The Call of Duty series has adopted this mode, as have the Halo games. Due to its multiple objective format, it's not going away anytime soon.
The Feature: Vehicles
The Function: Another cannibalization from EA's Battlefield 1942, being able to use vehicles seamlessly on the same map as footsoldiers was almost unheard of in multiplayer before the Battlefield series, Halo: Combat Evolved, and Joint Operations: Typhoon Rising came on the scene. Star Wars Battlefront was the first Star Wars game to feature this funcitonality, and it worked really well.
The Future: Certain franchises don't seem to welcome the inclusion of multiplayer vehicles as well as others. Army of Two featured a vehicle segment but ultimately scrapped multiplayer vehicles for both the first game and the sequel. The SOCOM series dabbled with vehicles for two titles, and reverted back to the basics when the fanbase had a fit. Call of Duty: World at War also allowed players to drive tanks on select online maps...but once again the fans resisted. Despite these specific examples, though, there seems to be a genuine desire for vehicles to remain in shooter games, even if they become genre-specific (i.e. Grand Theft Auto IV).