Star Wars Battlefront 2 Progression System Receives Major Backlash

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 releases later this week but it has received a fair share of controversy in the days leading up to its launch. During the open beta period, EA listened to fan feedback and reworked the loot box  and progression system and many thought that would the end of it.

Here are the changes the team made then that were designed to help the game feel less like a pay-to-win system.

  • Epic Star Cards, the highest tier of Star Cards available at launch, have been removed from Crates. To help keep everyone on a level playing field, these Star Cards will primarily be available through crafting, with the exception of special Epic Star Cards available through pre-order, deluxe, and starter packs.
  • You’ll need to reach a certain rank to craft upgraded Star Cards. You won’t be able to buy a bunch of Crates, grind everything up into crafting materials, and immediately use them to get super powerful Star Cards. You can only upgrade the ability to craft higher tier Star Cards by ranking up through playing the game.
  • Weapons are locked behind specific milestones. While a select few will be found in Crates, the rest can only be attained by play. Want to unlock a new weapon for your Heavy? Play as a Heavy and you’ll gain access to the class’s new weapons.
  • Class-specific gear and items can be unlocked by playing as them. As you progress through your favorite class, you’ll hit milestones granting you class-specific Crates. These will include a mix of Star Cards and Crafting Parts to benefit your class’s development.

On the surface these changes don’t look all that bad. However, these issues stem from another blog post by EA that revealed all sorts of things that didn’t settle well with fans.

Your favorite stormtrooper-turned-hero Finn joins the fight for the Resistance and Captain Phasma steps on to the Battlefront for the First Order. They can be purchased with in-game Credits from that week. Whichever faction is victorious in completing the most challenges that week will net a reward as well: a special Crate of high-power upgrades for Finn or Captain Phasma.

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The DLC comes to the game as free content but players will still have to grind in-game to unlock it. Not only does this apply to DLC heroes but it seems like it also applies to the heroes included in the base game as well. One disgruntled Reddit user made a post about how Darth Vader cost and EA’s response sparked major criticism.

Here is the response by EA:

The intent is to provide players with a sense of pride and accomplishment for unlocking different heroes.

As for cost, we selected initial values based upon data from the Open Beta and other adjustments made to milestone rewards before launch. Among other things, we’re looking at average per-player credit earn rates on a daily basis, and we’ll be making constant adjustments to ensure that players have challenges that are compelling, rewarding, and of course attainable via gameplay.

We appreciate the candid feedback, and the passion the community has put forth around the current topics here on Reddit, our forums and across numerous social media outlets.

Our team will continue to make changes and monitor community feedback and update everyone as soon and as often as we can.

At the time of this writing that response has over 383,000 downvotes and the number is still growing larger. If EA listens to player feedback as much as they let on, they might end up needing a pretty large bandage to fix this wound.

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This progression system replaces the one found in the first Battlefront. Although it launched without it, Battlefront 1 added in Hutt Contracts that required players to do certain things in-game if they wanted to upgrade their weapons. This meant players had to the use the weapons and perform feats with them instead of just grinding for credits.

Grinding for credits wouldn’t be a terrible thing if they didn’t take so long to get. Another post courtesy of Reddit, a user recently did the math that shows the average number of credits a player obtains during a match is 275. Heroes such as Darth Vader cost tens of thousands of credits to unlock so you’ll be putting in a lot of hours just to unlock a single hero.

Here is what EA had to say about that post:

Our goal involves creating a compelling progression path for all of our players. There’s a lot of content at launch with even more coming via live service, and we’ll continuously adjust our progression mechanics to give players a sense of accomplishment as they explore all of Battlefront 2.

I posted this in another thread, but feel it would be good to post here as well.

Heroes earned through Credits: The intent is to provide players with a sense of pride and accomplishment for unlocking different heroes. We selected initial values based upon data from the Open Beta and other adjustments made to milestone rewards before launch. Among other things, we’re looking at average per-player credit earn rates on a daily basis, and we’ll be making constant adjustments to ensure that players have challenges that are compelling, rewarding, and of course attainable via gameplay.

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Credits Earned: We’re looking at the results daily and will be continuing to tune this to ensure that players feel a meaningful sense of reward for the time they spend with Battlefront 2.

We appreciate the conversation here, and our team is working to make the best choices possible for the game and the players. We will provide more details and updates as we can.

While the issue is a big one, sending death threats is not the way to get the point across. One of the developers has claimed to have received seven death threats and over 1600 personal attacks about the issue so far.

We still have a few more days until the launch of Star Wars Battlefront 2 but many players have already been playing through Origin and EA Access. It’s possible we might see another change with the system in the days before the official launch.

Star Wars Battlefront 2 launches on Xbox One, PS4 and PC through Origin on November 17. For more gaming coverage stay with us here at Heavy.

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