Remember when every year it was a fight between Battlefield and Call of Duty? Fanboys would assemble and battle it out to see which FPS franchise would win for the year. Those days are pretty much over, in part because so many other great shooters have flooded the market, and in part because Battlefield has, in many ways, lost the battle. But will Battlefront help EA and the Battlefield franchise regain relevancy or is it just another example of the decline?
The awesome guys over at Super Data have done some interesting analysis about the upcoming Battlefront game. While Battlefront 4 eventually proved successful, its server issues at the start caused some major issues and might have been the beginning of the end.
Difficulties during the months following its release played a significant role in this—in
particular, the absence of a server browser for its multiplayer component. Rather than being able to
peruse and select servers on their own, players are expected to wait in a lobby before being
matched with other players. EA’s recent confirmation that “Star Wars Battlefront will not offer a
server browser,” will hinder the game from reaching a critical mass of online players quickly and
lessen its appeal. Instead, the publisher is promising “a new skill-based matchmaking system,” but
has yet to explain what that means exactly.
That certainly doesn’t sound favourable for a successful launch of the game if the lobby system and server browser isn’t in place. Sure, they might be using a new system, but most people will just want to team up with friends and be able to find a game quickly and easily. But beyond the possible game and server issues, it’s intriguing to see just how much money the game might bring in as compared to previous EA launches, even with the movie tie-in timing.
While the Star Wars IP is powerful, Super Data is skeptical about how much Battlefront can really do for EA at this point. The mechanics and server systems are still largely based on experiences with Battlefield, and with the decline of that franchise, it doesn’t sound like even the force will be able to save EA when it comes to FPS.
Then again, analysts have been proven wrong time and again, so who knows what the future might hold. I’m sure Battlefront will do well among existing fans of the franchise, but I think Disney Infinity might pull in the more casual Star Wars fans instead.
Last Updated: October 1, 2015