Star Wars Battlefront II

This is the Xbox box art for Star Wars Battlefront II.

Star Wars Battlefront II is a game released in 2005 as the sequel to the highly successful Star Wars Battlefront, but with new missions, vehicles, and gameplay functions. This game features a different version of historical campaign in that it shows the Rise of the Galactic Empire as opposed to chronicling the movies. This game also features the ability to play as Jedi and other major characters under certain pre-set conditions.

Star Wars Battlefront is one of my favorite games ever, so when I saw this game on TV, I knew I had to at least try it. At first I was a bit discontented with the game, but once I eased into it more, and then bought it, of course, I realized that this is a stunningly excellent game.

The Instant Action is this game has the ability to alter factors such as reinforcements, AI, etc., and certain levels have different functions. Conquest is the basic fight-it-out mode, but there are other modes life Capture the Flag and Assault that lend a very dynamic element to the gameplay, and I like that, because while the Conquest mode was great, it could feel unilateral. I really enjoy the modifications they've made to Instant Action in this game, all-in-all.

So what about Galactic Conquest? Has that been carried on? Yes. And it's been carried forward. At first, I didn't like the Galactic Conquest because I felt it was overly complicated compared to the last game. However, I focused on the explanations and just decided to play through it on an easy difficulty. Once you get used to it, it's a very interesting process. In this mode, you pick a faction and you and the enemy start out in respective spots on the map. You and the enemy take turns in movement and wither fleet can engage an opposing planet in battle, or alternatively, if the fleets are in the same spot, a space battle ensues. If a single fleet can take over the entire map, it wins the game. You can also buy bonuses to keep in storage, and you can buy extra units in the battle. This makes the game a strategic beast as opposed to a straightforward function of pick a planet and destroy it. As someone who has always been a fan of strategic gameplay, this is a treat among treats for me.

That's another thing: the space battles. You could use ships in a good few levels in the old title, which is gone in this game, but now you can play CTF or Assault (where you accumulate points by picking away at the enemy resources, like ships or fighters) battles in large or small areas of space, and you can choose from all different ships in the battle to choose your role in it; you can go in and attack the ship's systems, you can gun at the outer attachments, or you can pick off enemy fighters. I grew into this function and now enjoy it immensely, since I have an affinity for the flying vehicles in Battlefront I. This was an enormous step up, but I kind of wish there were still flying vehicles in ground levels.

So what about the Jedi and such? They're pretty awesome. After meeting certain custom conditions in each ground level, you can access the hero (or villain) for that level and give yourself an edge in the battle. I do wish the character designs met those of the last game, but I'm not complaining because the controls and combat are fantastic for all the characters, except for Darth Vader, who is really weirdly controlled. Overall, these special characters are excellent improvements to the series.

In the end, this game is extraordinary, a worthy sequel to the epic first game. If you love Star Wars, this game will make your list of favorites, and if you like shooters, strategic games, battle games, or just science fiction in general, you must try this game. I find it to be more than worth a buy.