Star Wars: Squadrons officially unveiled

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nasher27

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#1  Edited By nasher27

So they finally dropped the first trailer and some details for the rumored Star Wars: Squadrons. Trailer embedded below, and here is EA's overview page. Game is set shortly after Return of the Jedi, and it will include a single-player campaign where you play on both sides, but the focus seems to be on 5v5 multiplayer. Trailer confirms game will be using Frostbite engine, I'm assuming it's just using the flight mechanics from Battlefront II (which were great), and Motive has experience with this engine since they did the campaign for Battlefront II. Launching for $39.99 on PC/PS4/XB1 on October 2nd, 2020 with cross-play confirmed, PC version will be on Origin, Steam, and EGS. Also of note, full VR support is confirmed on PC and PS4, and the press release makes it seem like the game is first-person only. The press release also seems to hint at two multiplayer modes, a Fleet Battles mode with capital ships, and a Dogfights mode. Old X-Wing/TIE Fighter fans will recognize a lot of the HUD elements from the trailer, and the details confirm that the game will allow you to divert power between different systems. Gameplay footage will be unveiled in a few days at EA Play (6/18).

What do you guys think? I was excited before-hand because BF II's space combat was great and under-utilized, but I'm walking away even more positive with the focus on first person and diverting power.

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conmulligan

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It sounds cool conceptually. Hopefully it's closer to X-Wing than Rogue Squadron, but I suspect not. I'm glad they're supporting VR, though, even if it does end up being more of an arcady kind of thing.

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BrainScratch

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#3  Edited By BrainScratch

I usually have absolutely no problem with CGI trailers or "in-engine" trailers with no gameplay since I'm a sucker for cool cinematic visuals, but this trailer is just a waste of time. It reveals pretty much nothing and it has around the same amount of info as the announcement picture (the one on the thumbnail). Or maybe it works for fans of the old Star Wars flight games and has tons of things I missed?

Also, it seems that people still look weird on games run on Frostbite. There's something about their faces that always look off.

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nasher27

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#4  Edited By nasher27

@brainscratch: Normally I'm with you, but the trailer really emphasized different cockpit elements that are callbacks to the X-Wing/TIE Fighter games. Specifically, having the character say "diverting power to engines," and then showing the 3 power meters for engines, weapons, and shields (with weapons and shields meters decreasing and engines increasing). Also, the radar seems to be unified showing front/back (unlike the old games, which had 2 radars for front and back), this system was used in Star Wars Galaxies: Jump to Lightspeed (seen as the spiritual successor to the old games).

Overall I think it showed a dedication to bringing back elements of the old games, which is exciting for fans since they were never remade (with SWG:JTL being the most recent iteration, but even that was dumbed down and is no longer playable officially).

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Panfoot

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I know not to get my hopes up but I do really hope the single player is more than just a tacked on short and simple campaign. I miss Rogue Squadron so much...

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ToughShed

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Both X-Wing/Tie Fighter series and Rogue Squadron are great so I'm happy either way if they pull it off.

But details and the presentation of the trailer certainly look more like the Sim angle, which is exciting.

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nasher27

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@panfoot: The rumor was that the multiplayer is the focus of the game, so I wouldn't expect a long fleshed-out campaign. My prediction is that it'll function more as a multiplayer tutorial, with you bouncing between factions (this is confirmed) and ship-types across the handful of maps, all linked by a light narrative.

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BladeOfCreation

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I remember playing the X-Wing and TIE Fighter games on my family's first PC. Much like CRPGs, this is a genre that I love in concept but struggle with playing (for different reasons). Still, for $40 I think I may get this.

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TheRealTurk

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To quote Admiral Ackbar - "IT'S A TRAP!!"

It's too bad EA is the one making this and that they insist everything be all mutliplayer all the time. The flight stuff in Battlefront was really, really good. It's crying out for a meaty single-player experience like the old X-Wing/TIE Fighter games.

Unfortunately, this is almost certainly going to be 95% multiplayer. The solo mode will be there solely to get you into multiplayer so you can spend money on microtransactions to make your shields recharge faster or something.

Although, I will admit, a competitive mutliplayer game would be very on brand for the IP these days. Nothing says "Star Wars" these days like a bunch of emotionally stunted trolls screaming swear words at each other over the internet.

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conmulligan

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#10  Edited By conmulligan

I wish I was as optimistic as some of you that this'll be more of a sim in the X-Wing/Tie Fighter tradition but I just don't see EA making a game like that. I'll be very surprised if it's much more than a fleshed out version of Starfighter Assault from Battlefront 2. That was an enjoyable enough mode so it's not necessarily a bad foundation to build on, but not really what I'm looking for in a dedicated Star Wars dogfighting game.

@therealturk said:

The solo mode will be there solely to get you into multiplayer so you can spend money on microtransactions to make your shields recharge faster or something.

EA have said it won't have microtransactions, so there's that.

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nasher27

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#11  Edited By nasher27

@conmulligan: With the inclusion of power management, it’s at least a little more complex than BFII’s starfighter assault.

But you’re right, they’re never going to make a dedicated complex starfighter game as it stands currently. However, going forward that can change if this game performs well and demonstrates there’s significant demand for something like that.

Seems to me like the best way to show our desire for a more complex game of this nature would be to support this title so that EA realizes the demand is there.

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mellotronrules

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going purely off the trailer (the only promo material i've consumed):

-i'm realizing the setting and aesthetics of star wars no longer engender affection or enthusiasm from me...they certainly don't detract, but it being a 'star wars' game doesn't move the needle one way or another (this is just a personal aside). so all the little details involving the individual ships and lore- looks fine? it being star wars just isn't a draw like it used to be.

-i'm also realizing i've been dying for a dogfighting game since my wing commander days. so if they produce a mechanically satisfying sim that doesn't lean on the 'star wars' to make up for other shortcomings- i'm totally in.

no but seriously- somebody make me a wing commander game that isn't star citizen that involves me hanging out on a capital ship that unexpectedly needs to scramble fighters.

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BladeOfCreation

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@mellotronrules: Those scenes are so cheesy, but I love that stuff. Action stations! Set Condition One throughout the ship!

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mellotronrules

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conmulligan

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Humanity

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#16  Edited By Humanity

@mellotronrules said:

@bladeofcreation: absolutely- i still get a contact high off of watching this scene,

I was about to link the exact same scene. That was the most badass thing I saw on TV at the time - and thats back when you used to actually watch TV shows on TV.

(The rest of that season was kind of miserable though)

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The games that EA has delivered in the Star Wars universe have been incredibly underwhelming. Granted, I have yet to play Fallen Order which I heard is good. Did they ever patch the performance issues in that game? I heard it ran poorly across all platforms. That's one reason why I have yet to pick it up. I don't have any experience with X-Wing/Tie Fighter but I did play the Rogue Squadron games when I was little and I enjoyed them. I kinda just wish a developer/publisher other than EA would handle Star Wars now. The trailer was flashy and I enjoyed it, but color me skeptical based on EA's track record. I won't be picking this up at launch.

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nasher27

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#18  Edited By nasher27

@thehende92: The PC version was always the best-performing of them all. Only issue I had at launch was that it didn't like me overclocking my GPU (GTX 970), other than that I had no issues and it ran fine. The big issue around launch was frame drops/stuttering on high-end PCs specifically, which is apparently tied to the Max FPS setting after some brief googling. But most threads were from 5+ months ago, and the game has been updated since then. I would think the PC version of Fallen Order is pretty safe to buy at this point.

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@conmulligan: http://diaspora.hard-light.net/ There's a Freespace total conversion that looks faithful to the show.

PSVR support for Squadrons? I'm in! I was always hoping the X-wing VR demo would be more than a dead end.

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I can't say I am super excited about it, but I love the Rogue Squadron games, so hopefully, this will be akin to that, just with new, next-gen beautiful visuals, and hopefully a compelling story.

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#21  Edited By BaneFireLord

@thehende92: I just started the PC version and it's still pretty janky, alas. Not unplayabley so, but definitely annoying...lots of hitches and cutscene lag and that sort of thing that don't seem related to any hardware deficiencies on my part. Apart from that, the game's still really fun!

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Zelyre

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I grew up on X-Wing and TIE Fighter. Cut my teeth on XvT. Played way too much Freespace 2.

I'm putting this in my not hyped bucket. When it comes out and has a demo I can play, we'll see then.

Lots of promising looking stuff here, but the last time I drew any conclusions from non-gameplay video, I thought the PS2 was going to render unlimited old man Spirit Within heads and do FF8 level cutscenes in real time. This video tells me the same amount about Squadrons' gameplay than this trailer did.

Loading Video...

I excitedly bought a Game Cube just for Rogue Squadron. I knew it was going to be more action oriented - I had my expectations set on Ace Combat levels of complexity and it ended up being a huge swing and a miss for me.

@mellotronrules: Man, now I just want a BSG dogfighting game.

Someone already mentioned Diaspora. It's not long, just six missions but yeah.

Repeat, action stations, action stations. Set condition one throughout the ship, this is not a drill.

Loading Video...
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csl316

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The world needs more vehicular combat, so I'm in.

I loved the dogfighting in Warhawk on the PS3. Hoping this can be as fun as that was, at least. Star Wars space battles will always be neat so I can't wait to see gameplay.

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SethMode

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#24  Edited By SethMode

This game is absolutely going to force my wife to leave the room or just sit with her eyes closed due to motion sickness, but I'm excited for it (or at least what it could be -- as with all of these EA games, their focus on largely multiplayer usually makes me lose interest quickly).

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Hayt

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#25  Edited By Hayt

I fully expected it just to be the BF2 dogfight as a standalone game but the fact it has first person view and power management makes me pretty excited. I'm a Star Wars sucker and the ships have been my favourite bit so it will have to make a lot of mistakes for me to bounce off it. Plot wise its neat that its set post RotJ. Hera being in the trailer reminds me a lot of Alphabet Squadron which is easily my favourite Star Wars novel in ages.

Edit: Diaspora rules. I thought I was the only person to play it.

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Humanity

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I was thinking how cool this would be if they built it out. Battlefield used to have this Commander mode where you looked down the map and could order artillery strikes and supply drops. How neat would it be if one player could control a Star Destroyer and coordinate the other squadrons. You would have a ton of AI fighters flying around and the human controller pilots would have to defend the Star Destroyer while also engaging in dogfights with other players. You could have the commander send out resupply ships into strategic locations and monitor the health of your fighters, aiding them with repair drones and such. Players could go back into the hanger to re-arm and get patched up.

I know this is pretty ambitious for modern day EA but man, it could be a cool thing.

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spiketail

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I stand with my fellow PC brethren whom have grown up with the joys of X-Wing, Tie Fighter, and Wing Commander. I hope for a flight sim that will at least equal the nostalgia and have a great single player campaign. With this coming under the EA umbrella, that seems like an astronomical long shot.

All in all, I'll wait for the gameplay reveal. This early, even the $40 price tag is pretty compelling.

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Whitestripes09

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I'm already kind of disappointed with the 5v5 multiplayer. Just doesn't really seem right? I know the recent Battlefront added different NPC ships, but space battles in Star Wars have always been big and chaotic.

5v5 just seems... meh? I suppose with the first person perspective they don't want to make the player feel completely overwhelmed.

Really hoping for some cool single player content out of this. If its anything at all like the VR mission they made for the original Battlefront, that'd be enough to get my interest.

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A bit weird that the least popular mode from the recent Battlefronts is being spun off into it's own thing, but being first person only, without AI, small scale with power management seems to suggest it'll have more depth than you would expect from a Star Wars title.

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Toxin066

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5v5 just seems... meh? I suppose with the first person perspective they don't want to make the player feel completely overwhelmed.

Yeah, dude. I can see their thinking on not wanting to make the player feel overwhelmed. But on the other hand, it's a battlefield in space between two armies. I think you're supposed to be overwhelmed. I'd prefer larger scale battles (but I can see people saying, if you prefer larger scale star wars battles...we have a game for you - BFII!)

The 4v4 dogfights in Ace Combat 7 felt intimate. At the end of a sortie, you knew the guys on the other team - what they fly, how they fly, etc.

But I feel like that scale is way too small for STAR WARS.

Admittedly, I never did play BFII. I have no idea what the flight is like in the game.

I WANT to be excited about this. This teaser didn't really tease me any more than the announcement poster did.

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wollywoo

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I'm kinda sick of Star Wars, but I am excited for this. I loved the Rogue Squadron and X-Wing games. And this is one franchise that I think could really make use of next-gen power. I'm curious just how many damn ships they could pile on-screen at a time. Imagine getting to play through a battle that looks anything like the one at the beginning of Episode III.

Really just hoping for a solid single-player story. I don't care about multiplayer.

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We will find out if devs did their homework. Soooon. Soon.

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nasher27

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They unveiled the gameplay today at EA Play (video is embedded in OP), and I have to say that it settled almost all of my doubts and got me super excited.

My biggest concern was that the flight mechanics would just be ported from BFII, and I'm very happy to be proven wrong. You seem to have much more control and finesse than you ever could in that game, which is exactly what I was hoping for (but not expecting). The game's flight model seems to occupy good middle zone between the super-arcadey BFII and an overly-complex sim experience. I think it was a great decision to not include any HUD elements, with everything being represented by your cockpit in-game. And the commitment to 1st-person means each of these cockpits is super-detailed.

My only (minor) gripe is regarding the structure of the fleet battles mode. I understand the decision to divide the battle into phases that can go back and forth, keeping all the players in the same area. But unfortunately this means we won't get to see any actual large ship-to-ship combat with two huge capital ships unleashing full broadsides on each other, as they seem to act more like static objects on the edges of the map.

Overall, I'm super positive walking away from the gameplay reveal. It really seems like they set out to make a modern version of the X-Wing/TIE Fighter games, and everything they've shown makes it look like they're going to do a pretty good job of achieving that goal.

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conmulligan

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I'm a little more bullish on it now that they've shown off some gameplay. Still looks quite a bit more action-y than X-Wing/TIE Fighter, but that might just be the footage they chose to show. The cockpits looks gorgeous; can't wait to see them in VR. For me, a lot is going to come to down to how the ships control, especially with a flight stick, and what kind of binding options they allow.

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Between this and Vader Immortal, this might be the year I get a psvr.

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mellotronrules

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I'm a little more bullish on it now that they've shown off some gameplay.

yeah i agree- the gameplay trailer seems solid enough. consider me cautiously optimistic.

i suppose for me it comes down to- 1) does it really feel like i'm in complete control (some of the sequences in the gameplay trailer seemed a little too cinematic, which makes me a touch skeptical); and 2) is 5v5 enough to get a true frenetic feel.

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csl316

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Star Wars flying games are neat, so looking forward to it.