An Ode to the Original Star Wars : Battlefront II

To paraphrase my good friend Rhonna O’Lykos, in Call of Duty I’m a color blind liability with a horrible K/D. In Halo, I’m decent. In Star Wars: Battlefront II, I’m a full metal god.

Listen, I’m not here to tell you anything you don’t already know. Star Wars: Battlefront II is far from a perfect game, yet all the same it is entirely a perfect game. Star Wars: Battlefront II is perhaps the greatest game of all time.

I’m not going to pretend I’m some huge gamer, and I’m generally absolutely awful at shooting games, going against the computer, going against the elderly, or small children, I’m trash. Yet, with the exception of perhaps NCAA 14, there is no game I’ve played more, or better than Star Wars: Battlefront II. And don’t just take my word for it, the game has an 82/100 on Metacritic (which seems awfully low).

Star Wars: Battlefront II is a sequel (shocker) to 2004’s Star Wars: Battlefront. The first game granted you the ability to take part in notable battles from the Star Wars story.

You were able to fight droids on Geonosis, or battle the Empire and their Imperial Walkers on Hoth. You could be a clone in the Grand Army of the Republic, a droid soldier fighting for the Confederacy of Independent Systems, a member of the the Rebel alliance, or even a Storm Trooper. Besides that, you could control ground vehicles from each of these factions as well.

That couldn’t possibly be topped right? WRONG!

Star Wars: Battlefront II introduced space battles, and even more importantly the ability to control Jedi, Sith and other important characters from the first six Star Wars movies. Now, I could wade through legions of clones as General Greivous, lay waste to droids as Mace Windu, wreak havoc upon the Empire as Luke Skywalker, or force choke rebel scum as Darth Vader himself.

In addition, they even added new game modes as well. Whereas in the first Star Wars: Battlefront you could only play a conquest based Instant Action modes (think team death match) or galactic conquest (think team death match but you have to wipe the enemy out of map after map), in Star Wars: Battlefront II we gained capture the flag, hunt mode (where you got to fight as or against the indigenous species of a planet), and hero assault (fighting as good or bad heroes vs a team of the others heroes).

Most importantly, Star Wars: Battlefront II introduced a campaign mode telling the story of Darth Vader’s 501st legion. As part of this legion you take part in some of the most difficult battles of the Clone Wars including the battle of Kashyyyk, and conquering the Jedi Temple after order 66.

The campaign goes a long way towards establishing the clones as people three years before The Clone Wars would come to really drive this point home. You can feel the heartbreak of the clones killing leaders who they’ve followed for years during the war.

While Battlefront II may not have the best map of the two games (that honor belongs to Bespin Platforms from the first game) the ability to use a Jedi or Sith greatly outweighs that.

Where else can you get the thrill of mowing down a pack of Luke Skwalkers Obi Wans, Han Solos, and Aayla Securas, as General Greivous, and the emotional heft of transitioning from the protector of democracy to the enforcer of empire?

“It’s over Aayla, I have four lightsabers”

There have been plenty of Star Wars games through the years, but none could ever top Star Wars: Battlefront II.

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