Stensgaard Brink posted an update 1 month, 1 week ago
The equilibrium between enjoying both the New Republic and Empire, between arcade and also simulation-style controls, also involving fun and flashy activity and blunt exposition dumps. It is filled with excellent references for fans and charming (if ill-used) new characters equally, all crammed into a string of cockpits that are accessible to leap in and pilot without dogfights feeling mindless.
2048 Star Wars
Squadrons has found a sweet spot between the point-and-shoot simplicity of the classic Rogue Squadron show and the insanely thorough simulation of Elite: Dangerous. You can, for the most part, simply pick up a controller and get started chasing down enemy boats — but there’s also a nuance to adjusting your controller for much improved rotation, swapping power between engines, weapons, and protects in the type of the expansive older X-Wing games, along with countering missile locks. Things like that make flight more participating and give good pilots a opportunity to shine without needing you to literally learn to fly a spaceship so as to play.
The Empire Strikes Back
The way it illuminates the tales of two rival squadrons together sets up clever scenarios, occasionally letting you spring ambushes on your other half just to have another assignment swap viewpoints so it is possible to deal with the wake of your own actions. It’s very trendy, and developer Motive Studios continues to establish it knows how to create a match fit into the Star Wars universe.
Part of that comes down to the cast of interesting characters, chiefly composed of your squads on each side of this conflict. When it’s the war-torn Imperial Shen with a battle-scarred helmet that he never takes off or the somewhat Force-sensitive prior racer Keo on the Rebel side, each one is different and well-designed enough to stand out in their very own manner — a lot so I could see any one of them because a Knights of the Old Republic or Mass Impact Companion without them feeling out of place in any respect.
Actually, I expect that they do look in an RPG some day, because they aren’t utilized very well here. Learning about these and their backstories is almost completely restricted to optional talks on your hangar involving missions, which often feels ham-fisted for a getting-to-know-you exposition-filled info dump. Those stories are well written and acted, but they’re just kind of inconsequential in the course of all Squadrons’ events. I always enjoyed listening to these, but it’s unfortunate that you could bypass every single person and it wouldn’t influence your experience of the main story in any respect.
That story is a fun one however, based across the New Republic’s creation of a new kind of warship and the Empire’s hunt to stop that weapon from joining the struggle. It’s undoubtedly amusing the whole way through, however, it doesn’t strike me as particularly memorable. Neither side really makes much of a point about the increased conflict, you aren’t requested to make any choices or perhaps really question anything that they do, and your two rival squads never directly clash like I hoped that they would — that could have been fascinating. It just sounds like a missed opportunity not to do something much more interesting with this exceptional campaign structure, in which we have perspectives from both sides of the conflict.
Nevertheless, it will provide more than sufficient reason to hop into the cockpit and fly some really fun missions. Most objectives do boil down to"you’re in space and you will need to shoot X item," (which is the entire premise) but the narrative’s set up for each one makes them feel more varied than this — especially when you’re hopping between good guy and bad guy every point or 2. One assignment sees you hijacking a Star Destroyer, while another has you weaving in and out of ship debris while utilizing old power cores as a triggerable mine field. The dogfighting itself is so great that it got boring, even if I did sometimes wish there was a bit more objective selection here — for example, it would have been cool to see scenarios based around moving through tight spaces or maybe set closer to the surface of a planet (or moon-sized space station, though the galaxy is brief on people within this time period).
Fortunately, the areas you do move consistently show off how amazingly gorgeous Squadrons is. Even if objectives begin to feel like, weaving through muddy nebulas or round shattered moons distinguishes them in magnificent fashion. Missions are action-packed, but most strategically start slow and give you an opportunity to take in a few of the many sights they have to offer prior to the turbolasers start flying. That spectacle exists in cutscenes also, which often upstage those optional hangar discussions and allow them to feel like an afterthought by comparison.
Star Wars: Squadrons’ single-player effort assignments are a feast for Star Wars lovers’ eyes and ears, particularly in VR. Its participating space combat is a great balance of approachable arcade control with the added nuance of simulation-like systems, which unite with surprisingly comprehensive ships and cockpits for its most authentic-feeling ride since LucasArts’ mythical X-Wing and TIE Fighter games back into the’90s. Star Wars: Squadrons doesn’t wind up doing something too memorable with its charming characters or interesting rival squadron setup, yet this effort still informs an entertaining Star Wars narrative I loved no matter which cockpit I was in.