EA Isn’t Kicking Itself About Not Having A Story Campaign In Star Wars: Battlefront

EA Isn’t Kicking Itself About Not Having A Story Campaign In Star Wars: Battlefront

Star Wars: Battlefront won’t have a single-player campaign — and EA is totally fine with that.

I feel like I’m part of a dying breed: the kind that genuinely enjoys playing through the single-player campaigns of multiplayer-centric shooters. I loved playing through SP in the original Battlefield games. The story for BF3 and BF4 was rubbish, but I played through those from start to finish.

Maybe it’s because I grew up on a lot of first-person shooters that had strong story modes — or at least story modes that they cared about. Like Dark Forces and the Jedi Outcast games. Strife. Blood. The original Shadow Warrior. Duke Nukem 3D. Painkiller. Counter-Strike: Condition Zero. Even Unreal Tournament (although putting story in the same sentence as that seems churlish to the extreme).

The point is, I like FPS stories. Problem is, EA doesn’t think you do — and they have the numbers to back it up.

In a new interview with GameSpot, EA’s chief operating officer Peter Moore was asked why Star Wars: Battlefront wasn’t shipping with a single-player campaign. His response: it doesn’t actually matter to that many people.

“Very few people actually play the single-player on these kinds of games. That’s what the data points to,” he said. “You make a decision, years out, and you plan for what the world looks like when a game ships in two or three years.”

“That’s about the intuitiveness about the executive producer, and his or her vision for the game.”

The interview covers an awful lot of ground, from EA’s approach to indie games, their overall publishing strategy, Battlefield Hardline, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst and even what Moore thinks of Hideo Kojima.


  • Any word on Glactic Conquest mode? If they’ve removed that too then this will pretty much be a bargain bin/steam sale game for me.

  • I like campaigns in FPS games as well, but who was asking for a story for the BF series? When BF3 was announced coming with a story, everybody asked ‘What’s the point?’. We all gave it a shot but it was just CoDLite.

    The only ‘single player’ elements should be short skirmishes that are all designed to explore the various classes. For example, the Assault class will play a mission where he has to run back and forth reviving teammates, then move on to firing smoke grenades to cover his teams assault. The Engineer class will be about fixing up tanks then firing rockets at buildings. Then a level about vehicle combat.
    All dis-jointed to get new players a chance to learn their roles.

    The only BF story anybody gives a damn about is Bad Company, and that’s because they take the piss out of themselves.

    • all i want for singleplayer in battlefield games is fucking botmatch. thats it i just want tobeable to run around on the maps and fight against the Ai while having Ai team mates thats it and none of the shitty unlock bullshit either

    • BF4’s story was fantastic.

      Story modes are a game seller too. Online becomes the same old rabble over and over. Story modes a rich deep content. Dont get me wrong i love playing multiplayer shooters even though im getting too old, too distracted and i just suck these days.

      Wolfenstein is a perfect example – NO ONLINE mode – and i could trust it was going to be a deep experience which it was! Online modes in a lot of games are coming through as an afterthought because everyone needs it. Im glad EA didnt slap something shitty together just to say they had campaign mode but at the same time it would have been a great opportunity to create another story arc in the Star Wars Franchise

      • Didn’t you find BF4’s story to be significantly less polished/interesting/fun than Wolfenstein’s though?

        Nothing wrong with enjoying them both, but I thought BF’s story was several leagues below what you’d hope for in a single-player focused title.

        Maybe it’s because I’m time-poor, but i’d rather have a AAA single player game like Wolfenstein AND a AAA multiplayer game (like SW:BF should be) than a pretty good multiplayer game with a watered down single player component.

        I agree with you that I’d love a single player Star Wars game, but I don’t think EA would have put the effort in to realise the potential.

        • Oh hell yeah it was much less polished than Wolfenstein for sure! But it was a good story. Not amazing. just good enough to make you want to finish it and then not mind playing it through again for trophies and collectibles. Maybe im getting old but im happy with that level of polish too.

          Youre right about EA they wouldnt put the effort in – they see the big Online gaming scene and they want a piece of that pie – They dont want to impress geeks like us who like nothing more than absolute polish and playing alone to chill the f… out after a long week 😉

          Still its the COD fan in me from years gone by – They used to make great campaigns and great multiplayer – now they just reskin last years iteration with new guns

          Even AW had a good campaign i was getting into recently but need to get back to – Been a bit distracted by Wolf Among Us actually! lol – surprised that game got me – the first hour or two were slow going but its so worth it now im on chapter 3

      • I didn’t really get into the wolfenstein story unfortunately, but I did enjoy the length and depth of the campaign. The story just didn’t grab me unfortunately, but I loved it all the same

        • Fair enough – I was almost fatigued by the end but it kept me gripped – Dont expect FPS games to be that long anymore!

          • I get a bit caught up looking for all the hidden objects and the like that I forget what is actually going on in the story, and that game had a lot of hidden objects and secret rooms. I spun out when you could enter ‘nightmare mode’ and play as your character in the old wolfenstein 3D game, I thought that was a really cool touch.

      • I found BF4’s story sub par. It had a lot of potential. It could have easily been a really complex, nuanced story that explored all sorts of issues from the bond that develops between soldiers to the political competition between the military and the more peaceful elements of society. Instead it felt like there should have been a couple of hours of story before the start, and that half the plot after the first level was cut. I think that’s what annoys me most of all. There was the potential to come close to Spec Ops: The Line, but it was all wasted.

      • Wolfenstein: TNO was surprisingly good.
        A game with a lot of polish, in jokes, and was not afraid to take the piss out of itself, but also had some surprisingly intelligent commentary in it.

        The only thing I felt they could have done better (apart from the massive glossing over of 14 years of muscle atrophy) is develop more of a sense that the Allies had lost the war – Half Life 2 did this quite well with more bleakness and the feeling of despair in CIty 17, whereas in TNO, I feel less of a guerilla fighter and more of the traditional base raider type.

        Not sure if you let the credits play right to the end -and I’m not going to spoil it for you if you haven’t, but I’m interested in seeing where they go with that.
        Wouldn’t be surprised if we see Anya being a playable character in any future iterations of the series.

        • Yeah I’ve almost finished my second playthrough so to be honest – not sure if i watched at the end of the credits but i will this time!

    • I… actually really enjoyed BF3’s story. Even though it had practically no bearing on the multi at all, playing RIO/gunner for the pilot in that air mission with a wide screen and surround-sound head-phones was probably the closest I’ve ever had to really feeling a fighter-jet experience in a video game.

      I even really enjoyed the story-light ‘excuse for a scripted scenario’ co-op missions.

      I want story in my shooters. All of them. God knows the only part of Call of Duty I ever touch is single-player.

  • I love campaign more then anything, but with this particular game, I don’t mind. That being said, I’d love the game a 100 times more if it did have a campaign. This game has always been about the MP for me though, so am not all that fussed

  • They missed the memo. People don’t want Battlefield single player campaigns, but they do want Star Wars campaigns.

    • A whole load of this. I’ve had a lot of fun with BF4 collecting all items etc but Hardline just didnt cut it!

      Star wars could have been an epic adventure!

    • Sort of.

      Most people would love a fully committed single player game or a really good multiplayer game.
      What people don’t want is a boring, half-assed single player game and a broken multiplayer game, which is what we’d likely be getting if past history is any indication.

      If the single player isn’t going to be Wolfenstein level good I’m not going to play it anyway.

    • Sort of.

      Most people would love a fully committed single player game or a really good multiplayer game.
      What people don’t want is a boring, half-assed single player game and a broken multiplayer game, which is what we’d likely be getting if past history is any indication.

      If the single player isn’t going to be Wolfenstein level good I’m not going to play it anyway.

    • Absolutely this. SW:BF was played by people who loved the idea of playing out some of the events of Star Wars (or making the empire win). Theres a fully fleshed out fictional universe there, so it makes sense to build in some sort of campaign.

    • I was going to say the same thing.
      “Very few people actually play the single-player on these kinds of games. That’s what the data points to,”
      What data? If it’s not data from previous Battlefront games it isn’t relevant, Battlefield =/= Battlefront (or shouldn’t).

  • This game is being made by DICE, in which case you kinda expect it to be all about multiplayer, and I’m ok with that. My friends and I used to joke about BF3 having a single player campaign, and not one of us touching it.

    • battlefield 1942, Vietnam, Battlefield 2 and 2142 all had singleplayer and Co-Op as well.. it was called botmatch and was fucking awesome. it was with Battlefield 3 they EA decided to waste money on CoD style campaign. Even battlefront 1 and 2 had botmatch, not actual campaigns

  • I love singleplayer FPS games too Alex, Dark Forces and Jedi Outcast (along with the rest of the list you posted!) were some of my favorite games that I grew up with! Not to mention UT99!!!

    Battlefront isn’t one of those games, I am actually happy that its not shipping with a traditional singleplayer campaign. I’d much rather them focus on releasing an AWESOME multiplayer game then a good multiplayer game with a terrible 4 hour singleplayer campaign on the side.

    There WILL be more GREAT Star Wars games with amazing singleplayer campaigns to come, but this isn’t one of them. *Fingers crossed on a new Jedi Knight game!!!!!!!)

      • ^ This. It’s always good to be able to hone your skills by fragging a group of mindless bots, I do agree. Remember when games always used to ship with the ability to be able to use bots in offline matches? ahhhh those were the days. I was actually surprised the new Unreal Tournament (Which is awesome by the way!!) has the option for bots, but then again its being made with the help of Epic Games and they haven’t forgotten how to make an FPS game.

    • Reminds me I need to play through the Jedi Knight 2 story again. I’d planned to do it for my fortnightly challenge and really should get started on it soon.

      • Haha, “I’ll have a Ruby bliels… in a clean glass!”

        I actually played through it myself not to long ago just for nostalgia’s sake. Sooo many memories, those damned Reborn warriors!!!! haha

        • Pfft, Corellian Ale all the way.

          (Ended up getting to this level over the weekend! Those first few levels are really, really slow.)

    • You’re seeing Battlefront how it’s meant to be seen, and I appreciate that. haha There’s so many Star Wars singleplayer games it’s strange that one has to be looked down on by some for not having one.

  • No single player…

    EA – Don’t have to spend money on:
    * AI development
    * Skirmish modes (AI)
    * Authentication Server costs (no single player, noone playing 5 years down the track or just kill servers off completely, they are constantly doing this for older games)
    * Shorter initial development costs – No polish on single player, multiplayer polish/bugs resolved with patches after meatbags buy up and complain everything is broken (que 10gb day one patch)

    They could make amazing games, instead they just make games

    I will still buy it… and that’s why I hate you EA

    • It’s not like they’ve EVER put their heart and soul (or dollars, which might be EA’s heart and soul) into the single player component anyway.

      The potential for a cool SW single player shooter is clearly there, but the sad thing is that laundry list of saving’s that you listed is the full extent of what EA would be saving.

      A real, proper single player game would take years of specialised development and planning and EA were never going to do that. It was going to be a game tacked together using the multiplayer framework with a rough AI and a basic story. With that being the case, I’m happy for them to forego single player entirely rather than phoning it in.

  • Considering EA has the Star Wars IP for a long time. I would say we will see a SP FPS game set int the Star Wars universe eventually.

    But I think we all to remember that Disney wants to create new canon, so it would have to pass their tests first. I think once the new new movie is out, we will know the direction Disney wants to take the franchise.

  • Multi-player to me, was and always will be an additional feature to extend the life of a sub-par campaign.
    It can be accomplished with minimum AI, character interaction, artistry and storytelling. I wouldn’t pay full price for just a bonus feature.

  • The “campaign” modes of the older SW:BF games were fine, they were just a veneer of story to link together a bunch of botmode matches on the same maps as multiplayer. Developmentally very cheap, so I dont quite understand why they left it out.

    They’d better leave galactic conquest in though. I dont need rich storytelling in singleplayer from a SW:BF game, just the ability to crush the Republic army with my hordes of droids. Or whichever other faction takes my fancy.

  • I’m hoping to see some more positivity from Battlefront articles in the future. Getting really sick of all the negativity on reddit and on forums about it. Can’t seem to really enjoy talking about it without people screaming about EA or DICE or what is and is not in the game. There’s still a lot there that I like the look of and I’m thankful we got the Survial/Missions modes with AI Bots. At least they put in the stuff I cared about but whatever.

  • *shrug* As long as they don’t try to charge the price of a full game when they ship half a game, what’s the harm?

    Won’t be buying it til it’s a Steam sale (or Origin facsimile), myself. Co-op/competitive multi-only has such a limited and temperamental shelf-life that you REALLY can’t guarantee a return on investment for entertainment unless you’re buying day one. Hell. If the community/servers are shit, you still may not have a great experience. And if there’s amazing BF-style progression=power systems in place, good luck jumping in as a newbie later. Nope. All too dependent on other people for me to trust it one whit.

    Just look at the server list graveyards of the multi-only games on Steam that had such high hopes, only a year or two ago.

    I’m sure it’ll be very pretty. I’m sure I won’t ever see for myself. I skipped Titanfall, and life has been pretty good without it.

  • I suppose this way they avoid adding anything to a canon that may just be thrown away a few years down the track anyway? Shame though. I’m likely not going to get this without a single player campaign, mostly because there’s only so many times I can be totally owned in a single day before I decide I’d rather cry myself to sleep.

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