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Star Wars: Squadrons (Review)


Developer: Motive Studios

Publisher: EA Games

Reviewed on: PC

Also available on: PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

Release: 2 October 2020

Rating: M

Price: A$49.95


Are you looking for space battles, crazy manoeuvres, and engaging dogfights? Then Star Wars: Squadrons is for you! Star wars: Squadrons brings an action-packed 5v5 multiplayer experience and a Star Wars story set after the destruction of the Death Star: II, and the beginning of the New Republic.

Want to relive your days as an ace pilot? Squadrons is worth a try! This Star Wars title can be an experience that gives the player freedom in the way they play. Squadrons can be played in many ways, Controller, Virtual reality, and Keyboard & mouse to suit your playstyle. The virtual reality experience is a new addition to the Star Wars games, and in Squadrons, it makes it a much more immersive that one can't refuse to invest their credits.

Experience life as a pilot in Star Wars: Squadrons

Star Wars: Squadrons takes Star Wars space battles to a whole new level! Take control of many ships that each has their uses, design, and skills. Teamwork is essential in Squadrons as all of the ships provide support for each other to defeat the opposition, and defeating your enemies is a task that should not be taken lightly as every decision you make will change the outcome of the match.

This Sci-fi flight simulator is a simplistic multiplayer experience that turns down a lot of excitement for the game that's due to unfair matchmaking that does not balance skill to match players with similar skill sets. This can be a real downside to the matchmaking. During battle you have to consider your priorities, this is due to different playstyles of other players, you can choose to divert your power to engine power which enhances your speed, front power which strengthens your cannons, and you rebalance it to function of all your systems. Every battle in multiplayer will force you to make some tough decisions, so diverting your power to certain ship functions is critical to survival. When engaging in fast-paced dogfights I felt the need amp up the throttle when being chased, strengthen the cannons when on the tail of an enemy fighter and rebalance my powers when necessary.

Communication is very scarce in Star Wars: Squadrons, but Motive Studios makes up for this with the use of a wheel of necessary callouts, but this doesn't suffice as players can't access the communication wheel when getting tailed by an enemy player. Having Discord or the use of a microphone in the game can bypass any communicative problems. The lack of communication accessibility in Squadrons makes it hard for players to communicate during battle.

Star Wars: Squadrons has a cross-play feature which is a way to connect all pilots in one place, but it does contribute to one of the game's significant flaws: the matchmaking, which has proven to be a concerning factor when engaging in multiplayer battles. I have found the point of view of Star Wars pilot to be a very engaging experience even without the use of a virtual reality set to feel like I'm there. This first-person simulation of a cockpit does have a detailed layout of the controls, displays, and gauges that are all interactive, this an experience that has no dark side.

Choose your side! Defeat the real enemy.

Want to fight as an imperial or rebel pilot? Squadrons have you covered. In Star Wars: Squadrons the player is allowed the freedom of choosing the side you play as in the campaign, and your character is customizable from your name to your facial features, this gave me an RPG vibe, and I like the freedom of customization so I can craft my own Star Wars persona. Set after the destruction of Alderaan, the galactic empire has to intercept a transport which is suspected rebels on board. The empire squadron discovers one of your own is planning to help the rebels escape. I think this was an engaging prologue for the story that introduces some okay characters. The rest of the story will make sense to the player after playing the opening prologue. The character personalities are pretty lack-luster and have no real place in the story, this is something that can be a downside if you're looking for a Star Wars game with a decently crafted story.

The Star Wars: Squadrons campaign also serves as a decent learning curve for players who are new to this sci-fi flight sim. The campaign features tutorial-based tasks before most missions to show you the basics of the game, mission tutorials will help you prepare for the online modes if you decide to try it out. When you progress through the story you will eventually learn which ships are suited for each mission, these ships range from standard fighters to bombers that have their purposes. Communication is key in story mode, the communications feel very star wars like, and they serve their purpose by helping the player avoid danger and give the advice to help the player turn the tables in battle.

The campaign also pays homage to Star Wars: Rebels and a few Star Wars films set around the time during the empire's reign, this is a nice addition for the game that can make players invest their time in this game, but the characters aren't given proper backstories, this is what characters are lacking. The player that you craft is given little dialogue that is a disappointment. You can choose the voice for your character, and the lack of dialogue also excludes decision-based dialogue that would make the characters feel alive rather than being lifeless anti-social characters with little dialogue to fill their place as an interesting Star Wars pilot that the Star Wars films have.

Star Wars: Squadrons makes its promise to give fans decent first-person space battle gameplay, even when the story doesn't quite live up to the story quality that fans love.

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