Battlefront: Over a Decade of Gameplay

Battlefront: Over a Decade of Gameplay

The original Battlefront games are still being actively played and modded. Why?
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I will begin by saying that I have not played the recent EA Star Wars: Battefront games. Not ut of boycott or just stubborness, but because I don't have a system that can play them – which from what I hear, is probably a good thing. However, that does not mean I don't play the original Battefront games on a regular basis. Even as I write this, the 2005 Battlefront II is in my Xbox and ready to rock. Not many games in the shooter genre still have this big of a following, especially not ones that haven't had a full release in over a decade. Of course it may have something to do with the fact that they're Star Wars games, but there is something about the original two that keep players coming back for more.

The first Battlefront, released in 2004, was far ahead of its time. The game put you right in the action of large-scale battles across the Star Wars galaxy, including a new planet that was developed for the game itself. At the time, if you were playing a game based on the series, you either were playing one where you were on the ground or flying a ship, and the handful that allowed both had one mode that didn't work as well. Battlefront's developers put just as much effort into both modes, allowing for seamless in-game transitions from ground combat to a bombing run over the enemy in an X-Wing. Unlike many games in the Star Wars library, this put you in as a nameless soldier, with different classes and abilities to choose from. While the game lacked a full story mode, you could play through the maps in order, beginning during the Clone Wars and ending at the end of the Galactic Civil War. It was an instant hit, topping many lists of games of the year. The multiplayer was praised, the concept was new and fresh, the maps varied and well-designed. Several planets had two maps, with different layouts and features that made them different from each other. Production immediately began on a sequel, one that would improve on the system and be worthy of the original.

The following year, after the release of Revenge of the Sith in theaters, the sequel to Battlefront was released. This did everything a video game sequel should do. It expanded on the gameplay, giving us an actual campaign story about the 501st Legion of Clone Troopers, and as the game went on, Stormtroopers. We also were given the ability to play as the iconic heroes and villains of the saga, each one linked to a specific map that suited the character (Obi-Wan Kenobi and General Grevious on Utapau, Darth Vader and Princess Leia on Tantive IV, etc.) - which unlike the 2017 remake, you earned by gaining an amount of points during the battle, then had to regain after the hero was defeated. The game even expanded on the ship combat, removing the ability to fly around the battlefields – but replacing it with space ship-to-ship combat, once again putting players inside an X-Wing or a TIE Fighter, only this time miles above a planet's surface. The map selection was increased, though the planets that had two maps on the first game are now only given one – all to make room for more variety among the battlefields. The developer, LucasArts, openly supported mods to the PC version, creating a community still active today (yes, you can download a Scarif or Jakku mod, in time there will be a Crait map as well).

Since then, the shooter genre has been pushed further and further, with new games and takes coming in regularly. The Halo franchise continues to thrive, as does Gears of War and the old mainstay, Call of Duty. But why does these two games from two console generations and over a decade ago still have such a big following? I think there are several reasons. It's because unlike the big titles in the genre, Battlefront is easily played again and again without ever having to pay extra or go online. I've never played Battlefront II online, and only recently did they reactivate the old PC servers – which means for years it was still a major community enough for them to do that. Perhaps it's that the games don't make you a big hero to the Republic or the Rebels, rather just a nameless trooper fighting the wars we've grown up watching on screen, thus allowing the player to give their own story to the battle. Going from playing as a simple Scout Trooper to Darth Vader is still a great moment, and let's be real, recreating the Rouge One ending is awesome.

Again, I haven't played any of the new games to compare them. EA made them pay-to-win, until there was enough movement to change that, which might have saved the franchise altogether. But there is something about the originals that keep people coming back. The community of players and modders is still very active and producing new content, the gameplay is just as good as a recent shooter like Call of Duty WWII, and it's just a straight up Star Wars game. No big story, no major characters they'll never mention in the movies, just a regular battle with the player being right there in the middle of it. It was to a point where, until EA heard about it and stopped the development, an independent group was going to make a free Battlefront III using the abandoned game's codes and designs – a major feature being the ability to climb in a Y-Wing on the ground, fly into space, and join in a space battle going on at the same time as one on the surface. The game has been renamed and the assets changed, but the spirit is still there. The first two installments of Battlefront will always be at the top of lists of best Star Wars games, and will continue to be played for longer than the remakes will.

Cover Image Credit: LucasArts

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When God Gives A Girl A Brother

He gives her a best friend.
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My brother is only 18 months younger than I am, but he's also at least a foot taller than me. Growing up with someone so close to my age has been one of the biggest blessings in my life. Yes, there was a time when I thought every single little thing he did was annoying and his feelings towards me were mutual. Yes, we still get into arguments and disagreements. But for the most part, we enjoy each others company. When God gives a girl a brother, He gives her...

1. A listener

I always have someone to talk to. No matter what, when, or where. Some of my favorite moments are spent chatting my brother's ears off while he absent-mindedly nods and continues to play x-box. Sometimes he just listens and doesn't say anything. Sometimes he gives me long replies. He always knows just how to react to what I am saying to him, which is why I tell him almost everything.

2. A protector

When I think about the man that my brother has become, it seriously brings tears to my eyes. He's so big!! How did this happen? I can remember when I was little and could boss him around and he would actually do whatever I said. Now I'm scared that if he hugs me too hard, I might break in half. My brother cares about me, and lets me know it. I'm so thankful to know that he is there for me no matter what and would do anything to keep me from harm.

3. A dance partner

Another favorite memory is dancing to Juju on that beat in the kitchen while mom is cooking dinner (or dancing with us). Or any other time any other song is on... in any other place... LOL. My brother and I are different in a lot of ways, but we both have no problem busting a move together.

4. A Sonic date

"Hey, wanna go get a sonic drink?" "Yeah, if you're buying!" This is a typical conversation for us, and he actually really does usually buy my food! (With mom's credit card sometimes, does that still count?)

5. An example

Being the older sister, I sometimes feel like I have let my brother down in a lot of ways in that he is probably an example to me more than I am to him. He is incredibly smart, talented, and hard working. Kids FLOCK to this guy, and he has the most creative mind ever. Seriously, I'm so nervous that my future kids are going to like their funny uncle more than me. He's way cooler than I am, and I want to be just like him when I grow up.

6. Comic relief

If you've never heard a "Lane Prevett story," pull up a chair. I will be glad to make you cry from laughing so hard. There's no way you can spend time with him and not laugh. And that, to me, is the best kind of person to be.

7. A best friend

My brother is a lot of things, but my favorite thing about him is that he is my best friend. Yes, we aggravate each other. Sometimes he plays his music too loud, and sometimes I take up all the internet so that he can't play video games. But I know that he would do anything for me, and he knows the same goes for him.

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Sorry, Bella Thorne, But Whoopi Goldberg Has A Point

Nude photos leaked, a scandal on the rise

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It all started with nude photos. Bella Thorne decided to release photos of herself naked after revealing that someone had hacked her things and was threatening to post them. She took it upon herself and said "It's MY DECISION NOW U DON'T GET TO TAKE YET ANOTHER THING FROM ME. I can sleep tonight better, knowing that I took my power back."

Let me make this clear from the very beginning. Bella has taken private, nude photos of herself for a reason we don't know (Probably to send to her boyfriend). She then gets hacked and threatened but decides to show photos anyway of herself naked to show that she has control over the hacker. Phew, I'm already not understand this choice.

Many celebrities and other women have praised her decision to do so, but I'm not one of them, and neither is Whoopi Goldberg from The View. While talking about the situation on the show, she was quoted saying, "Listen, if you're famous, I don't care how old you are, you don't take nude pictures of yourself. When they're hacking you, they're hacking all of your stuff. So, whether it's one picture or a million pictures, once you take that picture, it goes into the cloud, and it's available to any hacker who wants it. If you don't know that in 2019, that this is an issue ... you don't get to do that."

Now correct me if I'm wrong but isn't she making a valid point? Technology now has the ability to do whatever it wants, and hackers can get a hold of anything and everything. Whatever photos you take and send through text or even Snapchat can and will be saved to phones or shared among other people. How many celebrities getting texts, photos, or even calls leaked to the media?

In response to Whoopi, Bella is stating that she should be ashamed of her views, that she is putting the blame on girls for taking photos and is sick and disgusting. Can I make this clear again, she is not shaming you! She is simply saying that people (Not just girls, guys as well) should be smarter with what photos they take, who they send them to and know where they could possibly end up. It's not shaming; it's not a lie; it is the exact truth.

In one of her quotes, Bella says, "So what a girl can't send her boyfriend that she misses photos of her that are sexy? Things he's already seen?". I'm sorry, but I find this sentence very problematic. No one is saying that you can't be sexy for your boyfriend, just be smart about it. Sure, he's seen you naked, sure you've had sex, but the rest of the world hasn't. Just because one person gets the right to see it doesn't mean everyone else does as well. Hackers are out there, they are real, and they are real for celebrities and Hollywood.

Now yet again, Bella is twisting this story into something that it isn't. Now in videos that she has made explaining her view, she suggests that Whoopi is victim-blaming and would say the same thing to someone who survived sexual assault. On Instagram, she said, "So, if I go out to a party drinking and I wanna dance on the dance floor, do I deserve to be raped too?". Now I'm sorry yet again, don't start going on a parade by throwing this into the mix.

You got hacked and someone was going to leak naked photos of you. You decide to leak them yourself because you are not letting a man control your life. Then you compared it to drinking at a party, wanting to dance and asking if you deserved to be raped by doing that? Okay, how are these two even being compared? I'm not going to get too into this but think about it. Taking private photos are risky now with hackers, anyone can get into it without a problem. It's 2019, this has been going on for years. You say a man can't control your life so you release them anyway. A woman being raped at a party where she has no control is different. You chose to take pictures with the risk of them being leaked. A woman does not chose to be raped just because she is dancing at a party. Sorry, there's a difference.

Sorry Bella Thorne, but Whoopi Goldberg is not shaming you, she is not victim blaming. She is simply saying the truth.

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