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Battlefront

The amount of e-mails I received while I was away number in the hundreds, and after sorting, the majority of them were either spam, or Battlefront news. There's a wealth of information about that game we rumored about a while back, so lets try and sort it all out and give you the skivvy. First off Battlefront is for the XBox, PS2, and PC and is expected in the Fall of 2004. It is single player or multiplayer.

The Classes²


Scout- These crackshots come with a sniper rifle, plus a pocket-sized probe droid they can send ahead to spy, blast baddies with a wee lasre or explode like gernades 'When you're guiding the droids,' Lucasarts' Tso says 'you can't control your Scout, so you'll want to crouch in the foliage or you'll be a sitting duck'
Infantry- Your basic have-gun-will-travel intergalactic frunt. Think stormtrooper, battledroid, or those Rebels who fought in the trenches on Hoth.
Assault Trooper- A soldier with guns peppy enough to punch holes in craft.
Pilot- Although all player types can drive vehicles, only grease-monkey Pilots can repair damaged aircraft
Special Unit- Each faction gets a unique class: The Rebels have a spy who impersonates enemies. Imperial officers supply ammo and Health. Seperatists field the heavy-duty Droideka droid. And the Republic's specialist has a jetpack.
You can choose from four different factions, Sepratists, Rebels, Imperials, and Repulic(ans?). Currently ten different planets have been green-lighted spanning 15 different locales. including Hoth, Tatooine, Yavin, Genosis, Naboo, Kashyyyk, and a planet from Episode III (which being spoiler-free wouldn't know anything about).

The thing that everyone's so excited about is the ability to hop on your Star Wars vehicle of choice and fly, drive, rubble, or chick-walk your way into battle. So far all the vehicles that have been confirmed are X-Wings, snowspeeders, speederbikes, TIE Fighters, Y-Wings, Jedi starfighters, Imperial Shuttles, tauntauns, Republic Gunships, AT-AT's and AT-ST's. Whew, that's a mouthful. It's also 4 less than Lucasarts says will be in the game, so we'll have to see what else we get. The majority of the vehicles will have multiple seating positions too. So you and your best friend can aspire be the best snowspeeder pilot/gunner in the Galaxy. "The Republic Gunship is the mother of all transports, with room for a pilot, 4 guys manning the wing ball turrets and a rear gunner, for a total six positions in all."²

And Jedi? "There will not be a traditional Jedi class as they really don't have many weaknesses. We wanted to focus the game about being in the trenches, the grunts, the soldiers. Not on being the über-powerful characters from the films. That being said, there will be Jedi in the game along with lightsabers and force powers."

You'll be able to play a campaign mode, called "Conquest", by yourself or with your buddy split-screen, which introduces Special Attacks like Death Star attack, or Luke himself coming into the field to slice and dice... everything in his way. Official XBox Magazine also says that more traditional game modes like Deathmatch and Capture the Flag will be included. OXM continues "Add to that 20 different soldier types, an absurd number of weapons (including turret guns), and you have yourself the most important Star Wars experience on XBox yet." (See also "Classes" Sidebar above left) There are actually 24 different classes spread through the four factions but not evenly. "Nor are these combatants carbon copies of each other; the designers promise they are striving to avoid cookie-cutter syndrome."³

Multiplayer on the consoles will support up to 32 players in a LAN, although only 16 over the internet. PC Gamers will get 32 over the Internet, and a whopping 64 over LAN. EGM alos quotes "an additional 48 computer-cotrolled drones".

Voice chat for all three flavors is planned too, with XBox using XBox Live! Headset, PS2 using the SOCOM Headset. The PS2 will support the upcoming PS2 Hard Drive, and downloadable content is, of course, planned. PS2/PC inter-playability is not yet decided upon, but would be a very interesting development.

BF1942 is a really good way to describe the game, as far as we know. In one of the screens (#4 on LucasArts) we see a Rebel Soldier standing next to a hologram-esque projector with the Rebel Sign. Tat plus EGM's quote that "Each team's goal is to overrun command posts littered across the battlefield".

Here's hoping we get another KOTOR, and not another Force Commander.

Thanks to Caligula, Lorn Pavan, Darth LeBeau and all the rest who e-mailed in news items
¹ Quoted verbatim from Gamespy's Battlefront Interview
² Quoted verbatim from Electronic Gaming Monthly, February 2004
³ Quoted verbatim from GameSpy's preview

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