Star Wars: Battlefront Articles RSS Feed | Star Wars: Battlefront RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Witness The Power of the Fully Operational Battlefront 2 Celebration Edition Wed, 04 Dec 2019 14:42:20 -0500 Josh Broadwell

Star Wars Battlefront 2 is getting a digital Celebration Edition on December 5. It will release on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

The Celebration Edition will include the Battlefront 2 base game plus all past and future paid content. It will retail for $39.99. This is all ahead of The Rise of Skywalker content coming in Battlefront 2 over the next month.

Hard to see, EA's intentions are. Once upon a time, Star Wars Battlefront 2 was basically dead in the cold of space, hobbled by EA's inscrutable decision to lock important content behind paywalls. After sizeable backlash, EA changed its mind on paid content and made Appearances and Poses the only paid material.

Having said that, there is still a sizeable audience for BF2 more two years after release, with thousands of players still battling it out in a galaxy far, far away. 

Battlefront 2 Celebration Edition Content

The Celebration Edition lumps two years of content in a bargain-priced package. The caveat is that you need PlayStation Plus or Xbox Live Gold to update the game and receive the new content.

Here's everything Battlefront 2 Celebration Edition will include:

  • Base Game
    • Including all past and upcoming free game updates as they release
  • More than 25 Hero Appearances
    • Including six Legendary Appearances, plus one Appearance each for Rey, Finn, and Kylo Ren inspired by Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, coming December 17
  • More than 125 Trooper and Reinforcement Appearances
  • More than 100 Hero and Trooper Emotes and Voice Lines
  • More than 70 Hero and Trooper Victory Poses.

Those who already have the base game can upgrade to the Celebration Edition for $24.99.

Battlefront 2 Rise of Skywalker Content

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker content is also coming to Battlefront 2, bringing Jakku and the film's new jungle planet to the Co-Op Rotation. There will also be four reinforcements from the sequel trilogy era and new Hero Appearances from TRoS.

In January, Jakku and the jungle planet join Capital Resistance, featuring the Resurgent-Class Star Destroyer and the Resistance's MC85 as massive targets to take on. More importantly, BB-8 and BB-9 will be new playable Heroes.


It's safe to say Battlefront 2 has moved a bit beyond the original state we found it in after it launched. Whether the Force stays strong with it or EA turns back to the Dark Side remains to be seen, so stay tuned to GameSkinny for more Star Wars Battlefront 2 news as it develops.

EA's Xbox Sale Offers Deals on FIFA, The Sims, Apex Legends, and More Tue, 20 Aug 2019 11:33:52 -0400 Josh Broadwell

EA is currently offering a number of discounts for Xbox One on the Microsoft Store until August 25. While this might not be the same as the Gamescom sale our European counterparts are getting right now, there are still a number of good bargains to be had, from The Sims and Apex Legends to Dragon Age, Unravel, DLC, and more.

Here are some of the highlights.

Game Sale price
Apex Legends Founder's Pack $20.09
Battlefield V (Deluxe) $23.99
Battlefield World War Bundle $29.99
Burnout Paradise Remastered $4.99
Dragon Age: Inquisition (GOTY) $9.99
FIFA The Journey Trilogy $13.99
Mass Effect: Andromeda (Standard) $8.99
Mass Effect: Andromeda (Deluxe) $11.99
Star Wars Battlefront Hoth Bundle $9.89
The Sims 4 $7.99
Titanfall 2 (Ultimate) $4.49
Unravel: Yarny Bundle $9.89

Most of The Sims 4's expansions are on sale for 25% to 50% off as well.

Of course, this is just a sampling of what EA has on offer this week, and the full sale list can be found here.

Summer sales are starting to wind down across the board, so if there's something on this list that grabs your interest, it's best to take advantage of the offer while it lasts. If you're looking for deals on PC games, specifically Ubisoft titles, be sure to head over and check out Green Man Gaming's publisher sale

Classic Galactic Conquest Could Revitalize EA's Modern Battlefront Series Wed, 17 Apr 2019 17:11:18 -0400 Miles T

One of the defining features of 2004's Star Wars: Battlefront and 2005's Star Wars: Battlefront II was Galactic Conquest, a turn-based strategy mode that thrust players into the heart of an expansive conflict. In the mode, players sought to systematically gain an edge against the A.I. to dominate planets on both the ground and in space. 

For many, Galactic Conquest allowed players to create their own narrative campaigns that could have circumvented the relative dearth of single-player content in both the modern Battlefront and Battlefront 2. Like many of my friends at the time, I spent many hours role-playing, tinkering with the various classes and options that the mode provided.

It came as a surprise — and a mighty disappointment — for me and many other fans when 2015’s Battlefront reboot was released with nary a hint of the beloved mode. 2017's Battlefront 2 featured a mode with a similar name, Galactic Assault, but one that reflected very little about what made the original mode so strong. 

The Loss of Individual Tales

While 2015’s Battlefront launched without a single-player campaign and 2017’s outing was bland, uninspired, and short, the freedom afforded in Galactic Conquest allowed players to build their own Star Wars stories and narratives to enhance the gameplay experience, creating moments of nostalgia that many still reminisce about today.

I still remember the first time I throttled into an opposing capital ship in a troop transport filled with my allies, storming the control room, sabotaging the shield generator, and destroying the engines before being mowed down by defending pilots.

It was invigorating stuff. 

The inclusion of multiple planets and expansive lore from the movies allowed the gameplay to feel as though real stakes were involved. Battling on Hoth and Kamino felt awesome because it felt like something was being won or lost. These would be the rebels' or the clones' last stronghold, the last line of defense keeping you from fully realizing your stranglehold on the galaxy.

Even innocuous planets like Utapau or Mygeeto made battles feel intense if you had just started your campaign as a particular side, up against the enemy force which controlled the majority of the planets you hoped to liberate.

The newer Battlefront games feel distinctly lacking in comparison. When online matches are contested, there isn’t an overarching conflict driving you forward — something to make victory more rewarding or defeat more devastating.

In the newest games, battles are simply maps that host tug of war gameplay, with little purpose outside of servicing that small lobby of players. 

A Galaxy In Battle, But Not At War

In its design, Galactic Conquest allowed for variety in gameplay options, something that simply isn’t available in traditional linear campaigns or multiplayer modes, and which is largely absent in modern Battlefront’s single-player offerings.

The skirmishes in the original Battlefront featured ebbs and flows which would change based on bonuses that could be purchased with credits. Strategic use of these bonuses could swing battles wildly in favor of one side or the other.

Couple this with opportunities to purchase new classes of troopers during your conquest, as well as being able to call upon a faction hero (which would vary per map, adding even more variety), and there was a wealth of opportunity in Galactic Conquest on a large scale. 

The offerings in the modern Battlefront series could have expanded on this RTS-lite mechanic. 

Increasing options for attacking and defending, placing more emphasis on the use of building and managing space fleets, utilizing modern class customization, all of it could have gone a long way to creating engaging content to which players could continuously return. 

For multiplayer, expanding the gameplay beyond the simple team deathmatch or planetary assault to a wider strategic element would have given the modern Battlefront games more scope. The recent addition of the Geonosis Galactic Assault to 2017's Battlefront 2 was a step in the right direction but had it been part of a wider Galactic Conquest mode, it could have captured the feeling from those previous games.

Faction Options Are Endless

Most disappointingly for me, however, was how DICE and EA failed to maximize the potential of the new factions introduced into Star Wars lore with the new Star Wars trilogy, namely The First Order and The Resistance.

The original titles made phenomenal use of the source material, with multiple scenarios for Galactic Conquest featuring various factions, the 501st battalion campaign, and a wealth of instant-action variables with which to tinker and experiment. With all-new planets, heroes, units, weapons, and story beats to work from, a Galactic Conquest mode would be ripe for development from the newest trilogy of movies.

Leading First Order troopers with Kylo Ren or Captain Phasma, resisting the onslaught of troopers as Rey or battling in space as Poe was a missed opportunity in the newest Battlefront games. DICE did well to replicate some of those nostalgic moments in 2017’s Battlefront 2, but it would have been all the more enthralling had those experiences played out across a series of battles, conflicts, and tugs-of-war to gain supremacy.

The Past Will Have To Do

The modern Battlefront games are fun. 

While they provided some solid gameplay experiences and multiplayer action, I feel the exclusion of the Galactic Conquest mode, and to a lesser extent the instant-action offering, proved to significantly depreciate the value of the titles, rendering much of their potential null.

Galactic Conquest helped fans establish their own stories, engage with unique gameplay mechanics, and develop their knowledge and understanding of the factions and overall lore. The mode's inclusion wouldn't have fixed everything "wrong" with EA's efforts, but it would have made things more exciting. 

I still revisit 2005’s Battlefront 2 on Steam, diving straight into a new galactic conquest readily. Despite its age and rust, it still provides the same undying thrill of being part of a large-scale conflict in a galaxy far, far away.

Perhaps there’s hope for the future, that EA and DICE may come to the light side and provide the long lost Galactic Conquest mode. Though it’s more likely it will be relegated to Boba Fett’s fate — lost to a Sarlaac Pit with little chance to escape.

EA 'Fully Committed' to Star Wars Despite Recent Pivot Thu, 17 Jan 2019 11:08:29 -0500 Jonathan Moore

The past 36 hours have been somewhat of a whirlwind for Star Wars video games. EA, who holds the exclusive rights to develop games within the Star Wars universe, has reportedly canceled one project and started another, albeit on a "smaller scale." 

Following a Kotaku report from January 15 detailing that EA had canceled project Orca at its Vancouver studio, a company spokesperson told Variety in a statement Wednesday that the company was "fully committed" to Star Wars.

There’s been speculation overnight about one of our Star Wars projects. As a natural part of the creative process, the great work by our team in Vancouver continues and will evolve into future Star Wars content and games.

We’re fully committed to making more Star Wars games, we’re very excited about Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order from Respawn, and we’ll share more about our new projects when the time is right.

While EA has yet to officially confirm the cancellation of project Orca, anonymous sources familiar with the situation have told Kotaku that the cancellation is all but certain, with the Vancouver team pivoting its resources to a new, smaller project. According to those reports, EA put the kibosh on Orca to meet a tighter release window, presumably one that sees a release within the next year or two. 

Orca, originally code-named Ragtag, was to be an action-adventure game similar to those in the Uncharted series. The game began development at Visceral Games but shifted to EA's Vancouver studio when Visceral was closed in late 2017, where it underwent significant changes. 

As stated by the sources that spoke with Kotaku, those changes shifted Orca to a more open-world design that consisted of both single-player and multiplayer elements. Although it would contain both new elements and some of those found in Ragtag, not much else about the project is currently known. 

Since acquiring the exclusive rights to develop and publish Star Wars games in 2013, EA has done very little with the property, releasing only two Battlefront games in the past six years. While there are myriad factors that have contributed to EA's languid development pace, it's certainly disappointing that the company has not made better use of the storied IP. 

Notoriously, the Battlefront games have seen their fair share of controversy, from loot boxes to poorly implemented leveling systems. Despite how fun Battlefront 2's campaign was to play, many fans were displeased by its presentation — and that the first single-player Star Wars experience to be released after EA acquired sole rights to publish games under the IP came in a multiplayer-centric title. 

What's next for Star Wars games? EA-owned Respawn Entertainment is currently working on Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Set to release later this year, the title is "a brand-new action adventure game which tells an original Star Wars story around a surviving Padawan [sic] set shortly after the events of Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith."

Time will only tell if Fallen Order survives EA's stringent development gauntlet — and if it delivers the single-player experience fans have been craving for more than a decade. 

More details can be found on Kotaku and Variety

EA Doesn't Care About Star Wars, Another Canceled Game Proves It Wed, 16 Jan 2019 12:22:05 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Update 1/17/19: EA has released a statement saying it is "fully committed" to Star Wars games. The original story follows. 

In a move that is as unsurprising as it is painful, EA has, according to multiple sources familiar with the project, canceled yet another Star Wars title. As first reported by Kotaku yesterday, the unnamed, open-world game was being developed by EA Vancouver, which took over development of the title after Visceral Games was shuttered more than a year ago. 

Since the game changed hands in 2017, details on its characters, mechanics, and place in the Star Wars universe have been essentially non-existent. From various reports, it's evident that Vancouver had scrapped nearly all of Visceral's Ragtag, the code name by which the project was originally called, and started on something mostly new.

According to a 2017 statement on the EA news wire written by Patrick Soderlund, who was EA's chief design officer when the game shifted from Visceral to Vancouver, the developer decided the best course of action was to "reboot" the game after the Visceral episode. It would shift from "a story-based, linear adventure game" a la' Uncharted to a more open-world experience that would, in some ways, include multiplayer elements.

At the time, Soderlund said the "pivot" would allow "for more variety and player agency, leaning into the capabilities of our Frostbite engine and reimagining [sic] central elements of the game to give players a Star Wars adventure of greater depth and breadth to explore."

With everything we now know about Visceral's closing, from unhealthy working conditions to gross internal strife and unrealistic expectations, it's no wonder that Ragtag was in utter disarray when Vancouver finally took complete control of the project in late 2017.

The game was, in fact, due for a significant reboot. 

However, the way in which EA sought to re-frame Ragtag, which eventually became known internally as Orca, was never very clear, and what was conveyed to fans led many to believe that this new, open-world version of the game would be saddled with unnecessary multiplayer elements and plagued with microtransactions.

If EA's maladroit handling of Battlefront 2 loot boxes and its stubborn stance on microtransactions is any indication, fans' fears most certainly would have been realized; there's a high probability that the re-tooled project would have suffered from the same, or similar, afflictions as its predecessors.  

While all of that is currently pure speculation, what isn't supposition is that Star Wars fans have spent years begging for a gripping single-player Star Wars experience. For some of these fans, there was hope that Vancouver's now-canceled project would, in some way, deliver on what they had been asking for. 

Now, none of that matters. 

When Battlefront 2 released on November 17, 2017, we praised the narrative for keeping "enjoyment and entertainment front and center." Regardless of that adulation, it was painfully obvious that EA simply tacked single-player on to a multiplayer-centric title in an effort to appease disgruntled fans. Woefully short and stuffed with a few too many fan-servicey asides, BF2's campaign ultimately serves as an excruciating tease of what could be. 

And what we all hoped Orca would be.  

For a company so obsessed with fan feedback and market research, it's utterly mind-boggling that nearly six years after striking an exclusive deal with Disney, we still don't have a full-fledged single-player Star Wars experience. 

Instead, we're burdened with two mediocre Battlefield re-skins that have been plagued with problems from the start. Consider for a moment that both Battlefront titles were released within 730 days of each other, and it's easy to see that EA's primary concern is getting games out fast, not making them the best they can be. 

In an update to the original Kotaku report released yesterday regarding Orca's purported cancellation, sources familiar with Vancouver's project have said that the open-world title would have contained single-player, story-driven elements. All things considered, that is certainly a promising prospect, one that shows EA is, on some nanoscopic wavelength, listening to fans and attempting to give them what they want. 

However, those same sources also conveyed that Orca was canceled by EA because it wouldn't release "soon enough." Jason Schreier, who is the primary reporter on the alleged cancellation, relayed that this may have something to do with the rumored launch of next-generation consoles sometime around 2020. 

While that is certainly conjecture at this point, the fact remains: If EA is shooting for a 2020 or 2021 release window for a reportedly "smaller-scale" game it hasn't even begun work on, Star Wars fans can once again expect a haphazard, unfinished mess that's been rushed out the door to meet an arbitrary quota. 

When EA can't even get Battlefield 5 right, there's little hope they'll ever get Star Wars right, especially on such short timelines.

As more reports funnel in on project Orca, it's likely that a complicated picture of events will only get more so. However, from all of this fumbling, something certain emerges: EA does not truly respect the Star Wars brand. 

I'm not talking about the hard-working developers, artists, designers, writers, sound engineers, and myriad other employees toiling away on these projects in the trenches. Instead, I'm talking about the executives that obviously have little insight into the brand they've been entrusted with.

Star Wars was supposed to make EA "cool again" in the eyes of many gamers. EA was a company that would harness the power of the Force to rediscover itself, shedding the mantle of "Worst Company in America." Where, in a fever dream, we thought botched or incomplete releases would be a thing of the past for EA and Star Wars, it's now clear that nothing was further from the truth. 

Fans don't deserve this mess, and EA doesn't deserve Star Wars

Thankfully, it appears the upcoming Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order will dump multiplayer for a single-player focused campaign. But are we simply getting our hopes up to be let down yet again? 

Help us Respawn Entertainment, you're our only hope — and EA's last chance to turn away from the dark side. 

Just Because You Can Doesn't Mean You Should: DICE And Frostbite Sun, 04 Mar 2018 13:54:18 -0500 Alberto C.

To claim that graphics form an integral part of gaming would be an understatement. We can all agree that graphics are one of the most important aspects any video game can have. They are one of the easiest selling points of a game, and only those that are truly exceptional in other areas can afford to, to an extent, ignore or neglect the visuals that every player will experience when playing their game.

I can’t tell you exactly why graphics seem to play an important part, but I can speculate and guess. Perhaps it is because essentially every person who sees graphics seem to share the scale that judges what are good graphics and what are not. There are few out there that can objectively challenge the idea that back in 2007 when Crysis was released, the level of detail and visual richness the game had was simply amazing and until then unparalleled. Since we all live in reality, it makes sense that our assessment of how virtual machines represent it seems to be standardized and shared by the vast majority. Even people who aren’t gamers can easily make similar assessments and, will more likely than not, agree over what games look better than others.

It might not look like that much today, but Crysis is already a 10-year-old title.

But alas, graphics are not everything, and while games like Crysis definitely left a mark in the gaming industry, it certainly did not go beyond the eye-candy it provided. I’d even say that every other aspect of the game was average for the most part. DICE is now guilty of following this trend evermore since it started using its famous Frostbite engine.

Perhaps to even a greater extent than the CryEngine did, Frostbite seems to be easily one of the most recognizable engines out there and for a good reason: the level of details and effects is simply gorgeous. Much like Crysis, no matter how uninterested you might be in the Battlefield or Battlefront franchises themselves, there’s no denying they look pretty damn impressive. Perhaps too impressive.

Battlefield 1 is one of the latest titles to make use of Frostbite.

As stunning as the explosions, physics, shadows, and particle effects may be, the merit of the hard work put into some of these areas by creating a constant show-off of them on screen seems to undermine that work. If you’ve played any of the recent Battlefield or Battlefront titles, stating that “quite a few things are going on at the same time” would be selling it short. Maybe I’m just getting older, or maybe the Tranformers movie franchise took a heavier psychological toll than I initially thought, but the amount of incessant explosions, rocks, smoke, lasers and whatnot occurring at the same time with the Frostbite engine seems like a misuse. There are two reasons for which this seems like an abuse of the engine.


Battlefront 2 and Frostbite in action.

First, by constantly displaying what Frostbite is capable of, DICE reduces the “Wow” and shock factor each time. Much like real world appreciation, the more easily something becomes available, the less value it tends have. If diamonds or gold were as accessible as iron, chances are we wouldn’t have either on engagement rings that cost thousands of dollars.

DICE tends to cluster as much as possible what players see with nonstop effects. It reduces the impact and appreciation it has on the player. The first time we saw that sky scraper collapse in Battlefield 4, it was amazing. The 50th time was far less amusing. However, because such type of animations are so limited, they retain their awe longer. The same logic should be applied for some of animations that are used much more often.


When everything that can explode, will explode.

The second reason is it serves as a smokescreen for game design flaws that are only made evident once you’ve played the game enough time. These are aspects that are harder to notice tend to be perceived mostly by players who either put enough hours into the game and/or can easily compare them to other titles they’ve played.

Captivated by all that eye-candy, it distracts the player from noticing other flaws, and only after they have become more accustomed to all those visuals do they start to pick up on others aspects that are equally important to the overall experience. Level design, game modes, classes, balances, vehicles and whatnot each play their part in the player’s experience.

The flaws (or strengths) are only made obvious after the game has been sold, unlike the graphics area where it can be appreciated without ever touching the game. This hinders an effective patching process and whatever future titles the studio works on. Unless the game design flaws are so defective or outrageous that the prospective playerbase reacts to them. Usually by some combination of anonymous individuals who analyse the flaw, effectively explain it, and is picked up by the online community and gets enough traction. The clear example of this would be EA’s gambling scheme set up in Battlefront II (2017).

While making progress in the graphics department, game design improvement has been more neglected.

This piece is not advocating for a downgrade in graphics justified by more awareness put into the non-visual departments. Progress in visual development will be welcomed to the point we can’t tell the difference between what’s real and what isn’t. What it is advocating for is a more mindful approach to how graphics are used.

When every single building becomes destructible resulting in a cloud of dust, every shot impact results in an explosion of sparkles cluttering the screen or when lens flare is present at all times, it just ends up feeling like a Michael Bay movie. This doesn’t mean there isn’t a market or genre where such things can and should be over the top, but it doesn’t seem quite to fit the more serious tone that games like Battlefield or Battlefront seemingly attempt to achieve. Some effects and visual features can be more effective when used surgically than at every possible opportunity.

Michael Bay Paper Bags Inc.

Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment below.

14 Best Free Themes for PS4 Thu, 12 Oct 2017 10:15:49 -0400 Josh Broadwell


Dark Souls III: Transitory Lands


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


Here's on for the Dark Souls fan! Saying this theme is dynamic carries a double meaning, as it's probably the most dynamic of the lot. It features your hero walking across what looks like old linen (or maybe parchment). He comes across various environments as he progresses, all of which look like old engraved images, and their deep blackness throws their intricate details into sharp relief against the rest of the scenery. They vary, too, so it's almost entertainment in itself.






When it comes to PS4 themes, it's definitely not true that you get what you pay for. There is a wide variety of free themes just waiting to find their new home on your console, whether you're a fan of RPGs, platformers, sci-fi, or fantasy.


Let us know in the comments which ones you plan on downloading or which ones you'd like to see added to this list!


The Witcher 3: Geralt and Ciri


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


How is it possible to capture the essence of an entire trilogy and its themes in just one image? Like this. The Ciri and Geralt theme from The Witcher 3 manages to convey the folklore and high-fantasy elements of the entire series through two of the game's most important characters. This particular image from the theme emphasizes Ciri's determination and independence, which, in turn, helps make the game itself stand out. That determination is yours to shape through your in-game choices, an ambitious undertaking on the developer's part that works oh-so-well in action.


Van Helsing


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


This Van Helsing theme's not just for fans of vampire lore. The game itself combined a wide variety of concepts in an ambitious attempt to merge folklore with science -- adding a touch of RPG goodness to round it all out. The theme conveys those concepts very well.


Apart from the titular hero, you've got a rather bizarre, alien-looking creature and a sinister robot, while giant clockwork dominates the background. The parchment-themed icons add a nice touch too. It's another one that's especially suitable for a Halloween theme, but fans of what goes bump in the night and Diablo-style RPGs can enjoy it year-round.




Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


Here's another one for explorers to check out. The Poi dynamic theme brings with it the bright colors and cheerful cartoon aesthetic of the game itself. Each screen depicts one of the principal characters in a characteristic pose, set against a bright backdrop. It's an excellent way to page homage not just to the game itself, but to the genre it represents, one that -- for many -- formed an important part of our early gaming years. If you're in need of a break from the grittier side of gaming, or just want to be reminded of your platforming days of yesteryear, you could do far worse than this.




Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


That's not all on offer from Grey Box, though. The RiME dynamic theme comes close to one-upping its predecessor. It focuses on the beach from the game's opening scenes, but that's not all. You'll hear the sounds of the waves and gulls, along with being greeted by your ever-present, friendly fox guide. It does a fine job of transferring the game's sense of wonder and the urge to explore into just one scene, and you may be hard-pressed to actually navigate away from it to choose a game.


Dreadnought: Sinley Bay


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


Here's another theme to satisfy the sci-fi lover in you -- Sinley Bay from the tactical space game Dreadnought. This, too, is a dynamic theme.


Stare into the endless depths of space, and as you scroll through your menu options, you'll see ships cruising slowly by. Combined with the subtle space tones in the background, it really creates an atmosphere equal parts wonder and isolation. That feeling will resonate particularly well with fans of the game since Sinley Bay is where the war-weary renegades train their future leaders to ensure the solar system's freedom -- not a bad little motivator to get you started with whatever game you choose.


Star Wars Battlefront: Leia Organa


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


And one more Star Wars theme. We know it doesn't look like the "real" Leia Organa, but there's still quite a bit to love about this zooming dynamic theme. It forgoes the flashiness of the Jakku theme in favor of a toned-down approach that lets Leia's determination shine through. Plus, it hearkens back to one of the most memorable moments in the original Star Wars films, with the Imperial siege on Hoth.




Star Wars Battlefront: Battle of Jakku


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


Here's another one that's sure to please fantasy fans. It draws on the exclusive Battlefront packaging that explores the important lore behind The Force Awakens, connecting the original and new trilogies. Despite its connection to the latest films, it's got something for everyone to enjoy, from TIE Fighters and X-Wings for those faithful to the originals, to the raw fan appeal of such an awesome conflict between Empire and Republic that never could have happened in the first three films. (And, by far the best for some, there's nothing to connect it to the prequel trilogy).




The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


Tolkien fans rejoice! The Hobbit still has a free theme on the PlayStation store. And it's a darn good one, too. Azog the Defiler takes center stage -- well, right-center if you want to be technical - -in the depiction of the slow, tense build to the film's climactic final battle. However, in the background, you're also treated to the sight of Esgaroth on fire, with Smaugh above. Sure, it's not the happiest of scenes -- but it looks amazing.


Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensword


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


This Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensword theme offers up a more traditional look in more ways than one. As you can see, it focuses on a dragoon, which, apart from being an important class in FFXIV in general, is one of the series' oldest and most well-known character classes -- thanks in part to FFIV's Kain. More importantly, though, it gives you the chance to admire Akihiko Yoshida's fantastic artwork close up, bridging the gap between the olden days of Final Fantasy and the modern.


Nioh Yokai Theme


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


This Nioh theme might just essentially be the game's boxart plus a monster. But it's pretty good art, nonetheless. That's because it manages to give you a distinct impression of what the game's all about. The gear and coloration leave no doubt as to combat's central role in the game -- if you had doubts, given that it's a Koei game -- and the otherworldly glaze of Nioh's eyes suggesting that something out of the ordinary will play a significant role in plot and characterization. It provides a bit of intensity for your background and proves the old saying that simple is often best.


Everybody's Golf


Download this theme on the PlayStation Store


If you're looking for something a bit brighter, consider checking out this cheerful Everybody's Golf dynamic theme. It changes scenes depending on which menu you are working with at the time, from the primary one you see here -- complete with golf ball being driven right at you -- to a more urban scene, and a desert course as well. It's a good way to show off the game's cheerful colors and quirky characters juxtaposed in the realistic looking courses. Plus, it's just fun in general.


A Rose in the Twilight


Find this theme on the PlayStation Store


This free PS4 theme might be static, but that doesn't keep it from being wonderful to look at. It perfectly captures A Rose in the Twilight's unique art style - -which is more than enough to recommend it. However, it also manages to convey the game's key themes as well, from the main character's general vulnerability and her giant companion's impressive strength to the narrative importance of the color red streaking through the mysterious castle. It's fitting for a Halloween theme, but definitely worthwhile year round.


Dishonored 2: Karnaca


Find this theme on the PlayStation Store


This free dynamic PS4 theme showcases the natural beauty of Dishonored 2's main setting. It's not the view you normally see while playing, but it is one of the most iconic views of the game, nonetheless. Eschewing the touristy glitz of the main city, this theme focuses on the gently flowing water and the slowly turning windmills instead. It's a nice break from the intense action of the game itself, but the muted tones go far in setting a nice aura for whatever game you're about to play.


Alongside its vast software library, the PlayStation 4 offers a huge variety of themes for you to choose from. But say you don't really want to shell out for a new theme after buying some of the games from that library. Never fear! We've put together a list of the 14 best free PS4 themes to help you out of just such a dilemma. They do a fair job of representing that variety too, from platformers and


They do a fair job of representing the variety the platform has to offer, from platformers and exploration games to RPGs, sports, and otherworldly combat. You're sure to find something you like over the next several slides, so read on to discover your next favorite backdrop for your favorite console.

EA Star Wars announces Star Wars Battlefront II coming this year Wed, 29 Mar 2017 19:10:30 -0400 Jerline Justo

The force is with the fans as EA Star Wars publicizes confirmation that Star Wars Battlefront II will be coming this year on Twitter.

On their website, they shared that the first trailer will be shown during their “The Galaxywide Premiere of Star Wars Battlefront II” panel at the Star Wars Celebration. The developers of the game, DICE, Criterion, and Motive Studios, will also be attending as well.

Star Wars Battlefront was first released the first on November 17, 2015, in North America, and it brought fans back to the Stars Wars trio -- Luke, Han Solo, and Leia -- as well as the infamous villain, Darth Vader.

With the new Battlefront game, fans on Twitter express their reactions towards this announcement, showing mostly excitement.

Fans will be able to see the trailer on April 15 at 2:30 PM ET/11:30 AM PT. To find out where to watch the panel online, click on here.

May the force be with you, Jedis!

5 Star Wars Games That Need to Make a Comeback With The Last Jedi Thu, 02 Feb 2017 08:00:01 -0500 sknau002


There are plenty more Star Wars games that should make a comeback. But this was just a list of five that we thought really deserved it.


In fact, many of these games were made back before their potential could really be reached or appreciated. With the technological advances we've made since their initial releases, comebacks from these titles could really take the gaming community by storm.


So Disney, do us a favor. Get to work on bringing these amazing titles back, and we'll get to work buying them.


Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

By: BioWare/EA

Oh 2003, you hold a very special place in this writer's heart. It was the year we were blessed with the presence of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Set thousands of years before the prequel movies, BioWare was free to essentially do whatever they wanted with KOTOR.


The first game was about a hero that rose to become a Jedi and save the galaxy from Darth Revan. At least, that's the non-spoiler version. Knights of the Old Republic 2 was like the first one, but with better skills, more manageable gameplay, and an even better story. One of the stars, Kreia, will always have a place in my heart as one of the most philosophical characters in a video game.


Then EA had the wonderful idea of turning the franchise into an MMORPG. Truth be told, I couldn't care less about MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic. It's pretty, it's got that Star Wars look, it has great NPC characters that BioWare is known for... But it plays like an MMO and that's a no-go for many players.


Knights of the Old Republic needs a comeback. Enough TOR expansions. Bring the simple player tabletop-like adventure back! We haven't had one of these since before Mass Effect and if they applied any of their technology and know-how from the Mass Effect series, it would be an instant success.


Star Wars: Republic Commando

By: LucasArts/Magellan Interactive

Star Wars: Republic Commando was an awesome first-person shooter that went above and beyond the typical FPS model. First of all, you played as an elite squad of Clone Troopers called Delta Squad. You played as the leader, codenamed Boss, and you command a squad of specialists. Each squad member is good at specific things, and your role, aside from shoot the bad guys, is to command your squad to tactfully take out your enemies.


First of all, you played as an elite squad of Clone Troopers called Delta Squad. You played as the leader, codenamed Boss, and you command a squad of specialists. Each squad member is good at specific things, and your role, aside from shoot the bad guys, is to command your squad to tactfully take out your enemies.


First-person shooters today can't even achieve what this game did in 2005. It really did feel like a squad, as opposed to a one-man-army. Today, developers seem to take the shortcut of making a squad made of other players. While multiplayer may be a plus for some, others can immediately see the problems that would arise and would prefer an NPC squad with good AI that you have total control over.


Republic Commando takes place during the climax of the film Attack of the Clones, making the clones look much more fleshed out than they do in the movie series. It's a story, or at least a playstyle, that Star Wars and video game fans alike have been clamouring for from the FPS sector.


Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire

By: LucasArts

At first glance, this game may look bland. But remember, it was released back in the early days of the Nintendo 64 and boy was it ambitious for its day.  It takes place between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi as protagonist Dash Rendar.


He's a mercenary, AKA not a Jedi. Unlike Kyle Katarn, he remains not-a-Jedi. This seems pretty rare in Star Wars games, as Jedi are really popular. That's what the suggestion of a comeback focuses on; A Star Wars game that focuses on someone who isn't a Jedi.


Remember that game everyone was super hyped about, Star Wars 1313? It wasn't supposed to feature a Jedi. In fact, it followed Boba Fett in his younger years in sector 1313 of Coruscant. A real seedy underbelly tale of the grittier side of Star Wars. No high adventure and Force using in this title. But as many of us know, 1313 got canceled.


Shadows of the Empire, along with Dash Rendar, proved that a game NOT featuring a Jedi could work, and very well at that. Shadows of the Empire was the third top-selling Nintendo 64 game of 1997 next to 007 GoldenEye and Mario Kart 64.  Come on Disney, Rogue One showed that it doesn't need to always be a Jedi, it's time to let those wings out again.


Star Wars Battlefront

By: LucasArts

This one may seem too easy, as it's an easy target because DICE's Battlefront, but it wouldn't be talked about so often if it wasn't true. We want to see the true Star Wars Battlefront return.


What does that entail? A story. What made Star Wars Battlefront II so special was the story following the 501st Legion of Clone Troopers. After Order 66, you followed them as Stormtroopers. Each mission had objectives that made sense and every one of them felt different from the last.


In DICE's Battlefront, it just feels like Battlefield with a few changes. There are plenty of people who may say otherwise, but the point is there is no story to be invested in, just one deathmatch after another. Is the gameplay fun? Sure! But it's the characters and story that make Star Wars special.


Another thing to note: The old LucasArts Battlefront games had their own skirmish maps called Instant Action. These maps were more-or-less what DICE did, the difference being that it's merely one mode in the old games and the entire package in the new one. It does leave something to be desired. But if DICE insists on keeping the new Battlefront an online-only deathmatch-fest, then maybe the other games on this list can fill in the need for Star Wars lore.


Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast

By: Lucas Arts

First of all, this game stars Kyle Katarn. Next slide.


No, but really, many people debate whether Kyle is a bad ass straight out of whatever Star Wars people call hell or a literary Mary Sue. Not only was he a cool character, but the games were actually really fun to play. They may seem dated by today's standards, but this game was like The Force Unleashed for the early 2000's. 


Here's where the eureka moment happens. Combine the creativity of Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast with the fast-paced and pretty looks of The Force Unleashed and you can really give the Jedi Knight series the comeback it deserves.


In Jedi Outcast, players started off not being a Jedi and slowly learning the ways of the Force. This meant fighting with a blaster and other non-lightsaber weapons. As you progressed through the game, more force powers were achieved, giving a sense of accomplishment.


Now obviously, The Force Unleashed was a game about a fully unleashed Sith apprentice with overwhelming power from the get-go. That's fine, it's what it was. But applying the progression of Jedi Outcast to the mechanics of The Force Unleashed could be a big accomplishment. It could even be done from another angle, putting a Jedi in the driver's seat once again.


Star Wars is a precious topic to many pop culture fans. Many of these fans also happen to be gamers, and it's no surprise that over the years, we've had many top notch Star Wars games.


With the announcement of Star Wars 8 being subtitled The Last Jedi, discussion on the reemergence of Star Wars games has taken place. But what games would we like to see return? Some on this list may be obvious, but the details of "how" are what really make this list worth it.

The 15 Best Star Wars Games for All You Nostalgia Nerds Wed, 04 Jan 2017 03:00:02 -0500 Serhii Patskan

1. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (2003)

Just think about the fact that KOTOR won over 40 GOTY awards from almost every major video game publication. It is without a doubt one of the best games of all time.


This was the game that mixed the elements of the traditional Star Wars universe and the new approach to storytelling. You were given an opportunity to become either a good Jedi, or a cruel Sith, travel between the planets on your own spaceship, and perform multiple tasks that would decide the fate of many other characters.


If you’ve never played Knights of the Old Republic you are missing on one of the most incredible plot twists in video gaming history. So, if you decide to play one Star Wars game in your spare time -- KOTOR is the way to go.



Is there a Star Wars game that you thought was better? Let us know in the comments section below.

2. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II - The Sith Lords (2004)

The Knights of the Old Republic is undoubtedly the best series of games in the entire Star Wars franchise. The Sith Lords continued the story of the first KOTOR game and it was just as engaging. You couldn’t just sit and play for an hour or two, as the gameplay was so invigorating that you just had to finish it all at once.


Also, this sequel was the very first development project for Obsidian Entertainment -- a company that later worked on such projects like Fallout: New Vegas, South Park: The Stick of Truth, and Pillars of Eternity. It was a huge fit for a newcomer to follow in the steps of BioWare, but they managed to make The Sith Lords a worthy successor to the very best game in the series (see the next slide).


3. Star Wars: Battlefront II (2005)

While Battlefront from a year earlier had its foot in the multiplayer market, it had a pretty weak storyline for a single player campaign. So LucasArts decided to fix this in the sequel Battlefront II.


The story truly shined here with an engaging plot circling around the creation of the Death Star by Senator Palpatine and the emergence of Darth Vader and his own army. It wasn’t entirely a new concept, but the way it was executed had trumped everybody’s expectations.


4. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (2008)

The story of The Force Unleashed closed the gap between Episodes III and IV. More than that, it offered a truly engaging action-adventure gameplay in the best Star Wars fashion.


As the title suggests, it’s all about the force in this game. Your characters had incredible powers to destroy everything on their way just with the power of their mind. And, if you were looking for a classical combat, then you could use your lightsabers that hacked and slashed with more power than ever before.


The visual presentation and the graphical design of the game was the best you could ever see in any of the Star Wars games up to that point. The levels were inventive and really let you experience the beauty of alien landscapes in all their glory.


5. Star Wars: The Old Republic (2011)

The hopes have been extremely high for this MMORPG set in the Star Wars universe, as it was developed by none other than BioWare. Although The Old Republic didn’t revolutionize the MMO genre, it was a quality game with hundreds of hours of content.


Many MMORPGs struggled to deliver the story in a proper way, but BioWare fully committed in this department. The developers made the story ever more fascinating with the help of excellent cutscenes and dialogue choices.


It’s not a flawless game. There are some elements that could have been much better, such as more variation in the quest lines, but overall, the game had a blast at the launch and it deserves the spot in our top 5 of the best Star Wars games.


6. Star Wars: Jedi Knight II - Jedi Outcast (2002)

Here is another installment that focuses on the Jedi. This particular game was greatly praised for its lightsaber combat as being the best in the franchise.


The story element was much better here than in Jedi Academy, but it did take a bit of time for the plot to evolve into something truly great. It featured a set of unique abilities that the main protagonist could learn after each mission, and that made the game ever more enjoyable.


Jedi Outcast was a perfect choice for those who really wanted to feel the power of the force.


7. Star Wars: Jedi Knight - Jedi Academy (2003)

The problem with Republic Commando was that it didn’t feature Jedi, but here you had a game that was literally all about Jedi and their most elegant weapon -- lightsaber. On top of that, the game offered a full customization of your hero, including the design of the lightsaber and your fighting style.


It was a rare thing to see so many customizable features in an action-adventure game back in the days. Maybe at first Jedi Academy received a short burst of criticism for its lackluster story, but it really wasn’t a big deal, since the action completely made up for it.


8. Star Wars: Republic Commando (2005)

When you played Republic Commando the other game came to mind -- Halo. You could definitely notice many similarities, but it didn’t mean that the game was bad, on the contrary -- it was one of the best first-person shooters based on the Star Wars lore.


Although it had no Jedi represented in the game and the single player campaign was one of the shortest in the franchise, generally the audiences really liked the concept of Republic Commando. Despite a massive success, Republic Commando never got its highly-anticipated sequel.


Even after more than 10 years the game still holds up in both the graphics and sound departments. So, if you want to know what happened in between Episodes II and III, then check this game out.


9. Star Wars: Battlefront (2004)

Unlike the latest Battlefront reboot that was released in 2015, this one had both a multiplayer and a single-player campaign, which was required back when not everybody had access to unlimited internet connection.


Actually, Battlefront was the first Star Wars game, which had its main focus on the multiplayer component. The levels have been designed so well that they have been almost identically copied in the reboot. The only thing that got upgraded was the graphics, which wasn’t too bad in the original either.


It is no secret that Battlefront was inspired by the success of Battlefield 1942, and even today you can see that both of the franchises are still going incredibly strong on the market.


10. Lego Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy (2006)

Lego Star Wars returned with the original trilogy in 2006 after an enormous success of the first Lego game based on Star Wars prequels. It utilized the same gameplay mechanics as the first installment, so you didn’t need to learn any new tricks.


This time you could play as Luke Skywalker or Princess Leia. Also, all characters could use Lego blocks to solve the puzzles, unlike the first game, where only Jedi could use the parts with the help of the force.


There were a lot more vehicle-based levels than before as well. But other than that you wouldn't be able to find any differences -- it was the same high-quality gaming experience.


11. Lego Star Wars: The Video Game (2005)

You may have disliked the prequel movies of Star Wars (which this game was based on), but you would most likely enjoy the fluid team-based gameplay of this Lego-themed action adventure.


Lego Star Wars was designed in mind for two players, and even if you didn’t have anybody else to play with, the game had an AI player that helped you throughout the entirety of the campaign. But of course, it was much more fun to play along with a friend, since you could try out different things in this way.


The best part of Lego Star Wars: The Video Game was the pod-racing segment from Episode I. It was just as intense as it was in the movies, and would definitely keep you glued to your screen for many hours.


12. Star Wars: Jedi Knight - Dark Forces II (1997)

What Dark Forces did good Dark Forces II did better. The levels became bigger, the graphics improved greatly, and although the AI of the enemies didn’t improve too much, it never distracted you too much from the excellent old school gameplay.


Dark Forces II also introduced the first multiplayer maps to the series, which added a whole new dimension to an already great game.


13. Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire (1997)

The game that took place after the events of Empire Strikes Back hit you with action right from the very first mission. It combined the arcade style of Rogue Squadron and the 3D-action experience of Dark Forces, but this time from a 3rd person perspective.


However, unlike Rogue Squadron, you could change the view while piloting an aircraft and see everything from the cockpit, which added greatly to the sense of speed. You could also pilot other types of machinery, such as AT-STs and even huge starships in an outer space.


And, if you really wanted to challenge yourself, then Shadows of the Empire contained an option of a hard mode that had been praised by fans for its high level of difficulty.


14. Star Wars: Dark Forces (1996)

This was the first 3D-action game in the Star Wars series for PlayStation 1. It offered 14 huge and well varied missions that took you on the surface of the ice planets, inside the alien mansions, and onto the very bottom of the sewers.


You played as a Kyle Katarn -- a former Empire soldier who turned into a rebel. Dark Forces took you on a journey to find the plans of the Death Star and then destroy it. Apart from the great story, this early Star Wars game had a huge arsenal of weapons, such as laser shotguns, ion blasters, mortars, etc.


In the times when DOOM was the lord of all first-person shooters, Dark Forces managed to take all the best features of the genre and improve upon them. Even today many fans consider it superior to DOOM.


15. Star Wars: Rogue Squadron (1998)

Arcade-styled Star Wars game for Nintendo 64 was something new and risky back in 1998. It was the year of the announcement of the new movie trilogy by George Lucas, so the stakes had been high for this one.


In the game you take on a role of a pilot who controls an X-Wing (and other four possible aircrafts) for one and only job -- to destroy as many TIE-Fighters, TIE-Bombers, and AT-ATs as you can. The difficulty was moderately challenging, so you would have a lot of fun playing this on a lazy night.


Rogue Squadron turned out to be really good and was a huge success that spawned two more sequels -- Rogue Leader and Rebel Strike.



The last couple of years have been amazing for all Star Wars fans. The two new movies -- The Force Awakens and Rogue One -- and a video game reboot of the Battlefront series from Electronic Arts reinvigorated the interest of millions of people all over the world.


The Star Wars universe is so rich that it inspired the production of over a hundred games in the last 30 years. Most of them have been alright, but only a small fraction deserves to be mentioned when speaking of the video games set in the galaxy far, far away.


Here are 15 of the best Star Wars games ever released, covering the periods of the 90s, early 2000s and a few games from the recent years as well. So fasten your seatbelts and let’s get started!

Star Wars Gamers Honor Carrie Fisher Wed, 28 Dec 2016 10:00:01 -0500 Capt. Eliza Creststeel

In nearly 40 years since George Lucas' space fantasy first took audiences to another galaxy, video gamers have been trying to relive those big-screen moments on their own smaller screens. Indeed, the people and places of Star Wars captured the imagination of an entire generation. A generation that grew up playing video games.

When Carrie Fisher, whose inspirational Princess Leia, passed away Tuesday, the Star Wars Universe felt a loss greater than any tremor in the Force. So, it's no surprise that those in the gaming community would take time to honor the actress and author who brought the character of Leia Organa to life.

On A Diplomatic Mission

Tuesday night, players of Star Wars: The Old Republic gathered on the various servers at House Organa. In the MMORPG, several planets from the Star Wars films and books are represented as locations that players can visit.

On Leia's adopted home planet of Alderaan, the Organa family's home became the site of a memorial. Players assembled in the great hall to pay honor in their own way.

You can watch a video of one of the gatherings here:

As game avatars of all kinds stood or sat in the great hall, players listened as a eulogy was spoken. Such impromptu in-game events are not uncommon in various MMOs. Others have been held in games like World of Warcraft or EVE as gamers express themselves as a community.

Part of the Rebel Alliance

Many players of the Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes mobile app are honoring Carrie Fisher this week by placing Princess Leia in the Leader position of their teams.

The squad-based RPG pits teams of up to 5 various Star Wars characters against other units. Players can mix and match their teams as well as upgrade their characters.

Also on the EA Forums for Star Wars: Battlefront, several players indicated they would be playing Princess Leia in the PvP game this week to pay tribute.

The Star Wars: Battlefront series has been a popular shooter since the original was released in 2004. Princess Leia was added as a playable Hero character in Star Wars: Battlefront 2 a year later, and she's still part of the next generation of Star Wars: Battlefront. 

From Princess to General

Like Leia Organa, Carrie Fisher was royalty. Hollywood royalty. She grew up the daughter of entertainment legend Debbie Reynolds (Singing in the Rain, The Unsinkable Molly Brown) and pop singer Eddie Fisher.

Star Wars was only Carrie's second movie but it launched her to world-wide fame. She would go on to play dozens of roles, mostly in comedies like When Harry Met Sally, The Blues Brothers, and The Burbs.

She also wrote several novels, non-fiction books, plays and was a successful screenwriter; often going uncredited for scripts she rewrote or "fixed" for numerous feature films like Sister Act and The Wedding Singer.

But, Princess Leia Organa was her first big role that she'll always be remembered for. A character who flipped the damsel in distress trope on its head and inspired many more strong female characters that were to come. 

Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is Free-to-Play from Google Play and the iTunes App Store.

Star Wars: The Old Republic is Free-to-Play from BioWare, EA and LucasArts.

Star Wars: Battlefront is available for PS4, Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs.

EA Declares Not Making New Battlefield in the Next Few Years Thu, 01 Dec 2016 01:08:52 -0500 Nam T. Bui

EA's CFO Blake Jorgensen has officially stated that the popular first-person shooter series Battlefield won't make an appearance in the next couple of years.

During the Nasdaq 35th Investor Program, Jorgensen confirmed that the company will instead focus on making the sequel to Star Wars Battlefront, expected to have a 2017 release. As for the new Battlefront, he assured that the game will be more exciting and have larger scale when comparing to the first entry.

"We were very excited about how Star Wars [Battlefront] came out last year. It's a beautiful game, people loved it. I think if there was criticism they just wanted more. And so we're taking that criticism to heart as we build the next game and trying to address any of the issues that they had.

The other thing is, we were really working with the old canvas of Star Wars, the old trilogy, we weren't using any of the new materials that came out of [Episode 8] because our game actually came out slightly before the movie. Next year we'll have the opportunity to leverage more of that content from the new movies and we think that'll make the opportunity much larger."

EA and DICE's latest first-person shooter entry, Battlefield 1, released last month and has received lots of positive reviews from the critics. Taking the settings of World War I, the game features authentic weapons and vehicles of the era, as well as famous battlegrounds in the Great War. However, Battlefield 1 also generated controversy for the decision of not including the French or Russian factions in the base game -- you have to purchase additional DLCs.

Sciencing the Shit Out of the Star Wars Battlefront Death Star Fri, 21 Oct 2016 07:00:01 -0400 Larry Everett

By now you’ve played and replayed the iconic Battle of Yavin hundreds of times in the Battlefront DLC: Death Star, or you've certainly seen the first Star Wars movie, A New Hope, at least once. We know that eventually the famed Luke Skywalker navigates a trench in the surface of the Death Star and destroys the giant space station by firing a proton torpedo into a ventilation shaft causing a chain reaction that instantly destroyed the Imperial superweapon. In the upcoming movie Rogue One, we will get to learn more about the creation of this world destroyer and how the Rebel Alliance eventually gets its hands on the Death Star plans. But how does the weapon work in the first place?

In A New Hope, we see the Death Star fire its giant laser cannon to destroy the planet of Alderaan, the home of Princess Leia. But is that possible? Can a planet be destroyed in a single shot from a laser like that? What kind of power does the Death Star actually yield? I think those are very excellent questions begging to have the shit scienced out of them, so let’s takes a look, starting with the physics.

What does it take to blow up a planet?

For the most part, every planet is a sphere and Alderaan is certainly one of those spheres. It’s bound into this shape for a couple of reasons. First, we are working with a constant pull of mass to a center point. Although I’d love to talk about how matter starts spinning around other pieces of matter to eventually form planet, that will have to wait for another article. Secondly, we should know that when this happens one of two shapes form: a disc, like the rings of Saturn, or a sphere, like a planet. The gravity and spin of the mass is strong enough to smooth out its surface (from a macro perspective).

Since we are talking about a giant sphere floating in space, we can actually calculate how much energy it would take to counteract the binding energy of that type of object. This energy is usually measured in joules (J). Joules are notoriously difficult to put into practical terms because it’s a measure of work done, but I will attempt to help you out by using the banana constant. One banana weighs about .165 kg. Six bananas will weigh about a kilogram. A joule is about the same amount of energy that it takes to push six bananas one meter in one second. In more scientific terms, a joule is newtons (N) multiplied by meters (m) or watts (W) per second (s).

In order to break apart a sphere we have to create just as much outward energy as there is inward energy, this would cause the sphere to shatter instantly. This inward energy actually has a name; it’s called gravitational binding energy. And the calculation for this energy is U=3GM²/5R. G is equal to the gravitational constant. M is a mass of the sphere. And R is the radius of the sphere. Since we don’t have the all actual information for Alderaan, we will use Earth’s information for those. According to Wookieepedia, the planet was very much like Earth in a lots of ways. Its days are 24 hours and the surface is comprised of much of the same material. It's highly likely that Alderaan’s gravitational constant and mass are the same. Wookieepedia also tells us that the diameter is slightly different at 12,500 km. But, to be fair, that’s only a couple hundred km off from Earth.

When you plug those numbers into the gravitational binding energy formula you get 248,700,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (or 2.487 x 10³²) J. To give you some perspective, a nuclear bomb releases 4,184,000,000 J of energy. Even if you bound all the energy in all the nuclear bombs on Earth together (approximately 17,000 warheads), it would not even come close to the amount of energy that it would take to blow up Alderaan. It would be about 19 times less, to be precise. But there is another way.

Molten metal

An interesting fact about Earth is that the center of the planet is solid metal. Many other planets might have solid cores, but they aren’t always made of iron, like Earth. This allows for the planet to have a protective magnetic shield around it. We can assume that Alderaan is the same way since the surface and the life on Alderaan are so similar to Earth. This means that we know how to vaporize the core of the planet, and it might be simpler that you think.

The surface temperature that iron vaporizes is 3000 °C. However, in the center of Earth, we have a solid core sitting at about 5700 °C. The reason that it can sit at this temperature and not vaporize is because of the pressure that it’s under. Now imagine that the core is like a balloon. If we poke the balloon with a needle, releasing the pressure, the balloon explodes. Release the pressure of the core of Alderaan with... say... a giant laser, and then it will be as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

That’s the way I science the shit out of the Death Star laser, but science isn’t science unless it’s tested and retested. What are your thoughts on the matter? Do you think you have a more accurate way for the Death Star laser to work? Let me know your thoughts in the comments, and may the Force be with you.

Game Deals: Final Fantasy XIV, Star Wars Battlefront, Minecraft and More! Thu, 29 Sep 2016 07:08:59 -0400 Kat De Shields

Here's your chance to scoop up some older titles you want to add to your collection. Save 30 - 50% off with today's video game deals. 

Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward

The Final Fantasy franchise is self-explanatory. Save 50% when you order this title on Amazon. You can also save 50% off the online version for PS4. 

Dark Souls III

A can of whoop-ass for your console. Buy this game at 40% off for Xbox One and let the rage quitting commence. 

Star Wars: Battlefront 

Save 42% off list price when you purchase this game on Amazon. A must have title for any Star Wars fan. 

Mad Max 

The movie was totally bad ass. Now relive the Mad Max universe on your PS4 at 50% off. "Only the savage survive."


If you haven't tapped into the Minecraft craze yet, here's your chance to enter the block-building unvierse for 32% off. 

* * *

I’m always looking for new awesome products, so please send me your favorites at Also, sign up for our Launch Commerce newsletter to receive the best deals of the week right in your inbox. 

Star Wars Battlefront: Death Star Bossk Guide with Tips and Tricks Tue, 20 Sep 2016 06:34:45 -0400 Serhii Patskan

Alongside the glorious Chewbacca, the latest Death Star expansion for Star Wars: Battlefront introduces one of the most dangerous bounty hunters in the galaxy – Bossk.

This reptilian humanoid is armed with a Relby-v10 micro grenade launcher that is a modified blaster/mortar gun. He is much more mobile than Chewbacca and can be used for quick and precise stealth attacks.

Ability #1: Micro-Grenades

By default Bossk’s Relby-v10 works as a typical blaster, but with the help of Micro-Grenades ability it can be converted to a micro grenade launcher. You will be able to shoot small grenades at your enemies that explode at contact with any object.

Tips and tricks:
  • Switch to Micro-Grenades whenever you are countered by a pack of enemies – this ability will help you clear them all pretty quickly.
  • The grenades may bounce a bit before they explode, so you need to find the right time and spot for shooting them.

Ability #2: Predatory Instincts

This ability is really special, as it works best with Bossk’s trait -- Trandoshan Regeneration that allows him to regenerate health whenever he kills or damages an enemy. So, in order to survive longer you will be forced to constantly hunt your prey.

Predatory Instincts will help you trace the enemy troops and heroes with the help of snake-like heat vision, plus higher damage and speed.

Tips and tricks:
  • You will be able to use the rest of your Predatory Instincts only when your heat vision is on, which for some reason has no cooldown.
  • Bossk is practically unbeatable when enhanced, but there is one weak spot that you should be looking out for – Flash Grenades. These can really hurt him.

Ability #3: Toxic Escape

The developers of Star Wars: Battlefront gave Bossk a new and very dangerous weapon – the Dioxis Grenade. The Toxic Escape ability will allow him to drop the grenade and immediately escape the area of damage by jumping high and away.

Tips and tricks:
  • Use this ability to quickly get out of the danger zone and leave the enemy troops with some casualties, as well.
  • Dioxis Grenade is really powerful – even heroes may be lethally damaged, so keep out of the area of its effect.

Come back soon for more Star Wars: Battlefront guides at GameSkinny!

Star Wars Battlefront: Death Star Chewbacca Guide with Tips and Tricks Tue, 20 Sep 2016 06:30:07 -0400 Serhii Patskan

All owners of the Star Wars: Battlefront Season Pass can now download a new DLC, titled “Death Star”. It includes two new heroes that are very important to the lore of Star Wars – Chewbacca and Bossk.

This quick guide is dedicated to the famous wookie and his set of abilities. Chewbacca is a slower and heavier character with a huge health pool and a powerful bowcaster. You can be sure that he will be very effective at the uplink defense, a role that is much needed in Star Wars: Battlefront.

Ability #1: Multi-Bolts

This ability is tightly connected to Chewbacca’s bowcaster and his personal trait – Furious Firing. When combined, the wookie will be able to fire up to eight bolts in one shot, which is extremely powerful.

How does this work? Multi-Bolts doubles the number of bowcaster’s shots, and Furious Firing adds an extra bolt with each level. So, the maximum number you get with his trait is 4 bolts and then it gets doubled by this ability.

Tips and tricks:
  • Chewbacca’s weapon is the first in the game that allows you to modify the area of damage, so use it in combination with Multi-Bolts to control the periphery.
  • Multi-Bolts ability has a charge meter that makes things a bit slower, but if you can wait a bit and charge it to the maximum, you can be sure that it will deal enough damage to take down any type of enemy.

Ability #2: Mighty Roar

This is a morale boost ability that inspires Chewbacca’s companion heroes by giving them high armor, and all rebel soldiers will gain an extra Berserker effect, as well. The wookie himself will gain high armor and damage, too.

Tips and tricks:
  • This ability is most effective before you need to make one massive push towards the enemy lines. It will significantly increase your chances in clearing the frontline.
  • It can be a bit tricky to achieve the maximum effect of this ability (i.e. affecting the biggest number of companions), so you need to synchronize beforehand and work as a team when activating the Mighty Roar.

Ability #3: Ground Slam

This ability is as simple as it can get – Chewbacca shows his strength by pounding the ground and dealing an AOE damage to all enemies around him.

Tips and tricks:
  • Ground Slam is most effective when you can make Chewbacca jump from the top, thus catching the enemies by surprise and increasing the radius of damage.

Come back soon for more Star Wars: Battlefront guides at GameSkinny!

Star Wars: Battlefront gets new DLC announcement and trailer Fri, 16 Sep 2016 12:09:45 -0400 Sean Handler

Star Wars: Battlefront is about to get some new DLC content. Releasing on September 20, the "Death Star" DLC pack features new maps, a new game mode and two new characters -- one of which is none other than Chewbacca himself. 

Chewbacca, as pictured here, comes with his famous crossbow that features a multi-shot attack. He will also have a powerful roar attack that can buff nearby players. 

Along with the new characters and maps, the new game mode will show off a feature that many players have been clamoring for -- space battles. That's right, you can finally go toe to toe with other players in outer space, with the menacing Death Star itself as a backdrop. Some of the gameplay from this new mode is featured in the announcement trailer which shows off an intense dogfight between TIE Fighters and rebel ships. 

The DLC will release on Playstation 4, Xbox 1, and PC on September 20, which is within the two-week early access window for Season Pass holders who will get a first look at the new content. 

What are your thoughts on the new DLC? Are you excited to take the battles to outer space? Let me know in the comments!

GameSkinny Spotlight // Fallout 4 Nuka World, Overwatch Free Weekend Fri, 02 Sep 2016 15:31:07 -0400 BlackTideTV

This week on GameSkinny Spotlight we're joined by special guest, Pierre Fouquet! The articles covered range from indie game Hue to AAA Fallout 4 DLC news!

Check out the original articles here:

If you're reading this, you're watching on GameSkinny! Come on over to BlackTideTV and see what we're all about! Hit that like button and don't forget to subscribe!

You can follow me on Twitter (@BlackTideTV), here.

Until next time, STAY TUNED! 

Star Wars Battlefront to have Rouge One DLC Sun, 17 Jul 2016 07:42:37 -0400 Joseph Ocasio

Love it or hate it, EA and D.I.C.E's reboot of the popular Star Wars: Battlefront series has been a giant commercial success. Whether it was just based on name recognition or legitimate enjoyment of the game, there's no way to ignore the 14 million copies the game sold since it's launch since last November. 

Announced today, at the annual Star Wars celebration event, Battlefront Design Director, Niklas Fegraeus, has announced the 4th piece of Battlefront DLC called Rouge One: Scarif. The DLC will be a tie in with the upcoming movie and is set for a holiday 2016 release window.

The DLC will be set on Scarif, the tropical planet that was last seen the new Rogue One behind-the-scenes video and poster. Rogue One protagonist Jyn Erso will be playable in the DLC, along with antagonist Dir. Orson Krennic.

Star Wars: Battlefront was released On November 17th, 2015 with lukewarm reception from critics.

DICE CEO leaves EA to go to Raw Fury Mon, 04 Jul 2016 15:00:14 -0400 Jordan DiPirro

Indie publishing company Raw Fury has just added a new employee to their roster. The VP of Group Strategy at EA and CEO at Dice Sweden, Karl Magnus Troedsson has left his position of almost fifteen years to join the indie company.

In 2001, Karl joined DICE as a producer on Rallisport Challenge. This job led him to becoming the executive producer on the Battlefield series. These two experiences made him an excellent candidate to be the studio's VP GM and CEO in 2010. In 2013, he became the VP and Group GM at EA. There, he was responsible for all the games and services built out of DICE Stockholm, Los Angeles, Visceral Games, and other DICE operations. During this time he supported Star Wars Battlefront, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, and Battlefield 1.


Some may wonder why Karl left his job at big corporation for a small start up. In a blog post on Raw Fury's site they stated,

“When KM started in this industry he was a part of creating small games. He journeyed into the land of AAA and now returns, with a wealth of experience, to support those who are about to start their very own journey.”

He wants to get back to his roots and the reason why he got into the business in the first place. This new position also allows him to give back.

Karl comes into Raw Fury as a co – owner and partner. He has yet to select an official title. Since the company only has five employees, he will jump in as needed.