The launch of Battlefront 2 with its loot box progression was PR nightmare that I’m sure none of us have forgotten, least of all EA. They finally pushed the community just a little bit too far, and the blowback was enormous; a response from an EA employee became the most downvoted Reddit post in history, the launch of the game was a mess as EA hacked away, disabled and removed things from the game in a panic to stem the hatred flowing their way, and there are rumors Disney even stepped in and knocked EA about the head for fucking with perception of their brand.
Battlefront 2 should have been an easy sell; it was Star Wars, and fundamentally, it was a better game than its predecessor, which sold 16 million copies in its fiscal launch year. In the end, Battlefront 2 fell short of its projected sales numbers, and gamers in general had stated loud and clear they’d finally had enough of EA’s bullshit.
Which is why it’s so delicious to not only see that we are getting a new Star Wars story game (after constantly hearing about single player games in development that EA canned in order to focus on multiplayer games they could monetize post-launch), but part of their reveal marketing strategy this weekend was to emphatically stress that the game would have no loot boxes or microtransactions.
Obviously I don’t believe EA is “born again” or any such bullshit. But I certainly have to imagine they’re still smarting from the public lashing they took over Battlefront 2, and that plays into this sort “Fine, we’ll do it your way” contrition on display here. If the game sells well, EA still wins, but at least they’re smart enough to know not to make their next Star Wars game another loot-box filled cash grab.
And with that said, Jedi: Fallen Order looks pretty damned cool. In fact, Star Wars fans got a lot of great announcements from Celebration this past weekend. Rise of Skywalker looks interesting, The Mandalorian looks and sounds amazing, Oculus owners are getting a neat-looking Star Wars VR series…
So what do you think… with no microtransactions in sight, are you willing to give EA a chance with a single-player Star Wars game (keeping in mind that its success may send a strong message that people want more and will support that avenue), or have they permanantly burned their last bridge?