It's Almost A Shame How Nice Battlefront 2 Looks

Saying nice things about Battlefront 2 is pretty unpopular, because there's plenty of justified, legitimate complaints against the game. But the campaign still has some visually spectacular moments that developers quietly slaved away at to create, so let's take a moment to appreciate some of their work - because it's pretty bloody good.

The first Battlefront reboot stood out thanks to some cracking photgrammetry tech from DICE. Put simply, it's technology that scans and meshes a ton of photographs together, which form the basis of a 3D landscape that can be replicated in-game.

We're Getting Dangerously Close To Photo-Realistic Video Game Landscapes

What you're seeing here is a process known as "scanning", or "photogrammetry". It's not new, having already been used to generate the landscapes in games like Star Wars. Battlefront, but as you'll see, as the technology involved (and the skill of artists) advances, so too do the results.

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The tech also works for smaller objects, like helmets, weapons, starfighter models and so on. DICE simply has to put the object on a turntable in front of some cameras, and the photogrammetry software will then look for points to stitch the images together.

So in other words, when you see a helmet in Battlefront 2 and think "cor that looks good", now you know why. As a note, I captured all the screenshots below on a i7-7900X/GTX 1080 Ti/16GB RAM rig, running at ultra settings with the resolution scale upped to 150%.

The landscapes are nice enough, but what I'd really like to call out are the facial models. In a year where EA in particular copped a ton of flak for crappy player animations and rubbery faces, Battlefront 2 knocks it out of the park.

The campaign runs through a lot of cinematic close-ups: shots of Iden Versio talking to her squad, or fan favourites Luke, Leah, Lando talking to the player character. It's basically an opportunity for DICE to flex their wrinkle and pore recreation tech as much as possible, which is the level of production you'd really expect from a flagship Star Wars property.

None of this, of course, excuses how Battlefront 2's loot crates and progression system are structured. But AAA titles, Battlefront 2 and others included, are the byproduct of hundreds of illustrators, coders, environmental artists, lighting artists, and so on, who all bring this together.

The anger around Battlefront 2 means a lot of their good work will go unseen. Which is a shame, because the environments, models and overall look of Battlefront 2 is probably a level above anything we'll see this year.


    I see Loot Skywalker!. I want this game for the single player campaign but it alone isn't worth the purchase price plus i'm not paying cash upfront for a free to play game, Can't actually remember the last EA game i purchased, Maybe Crysis 3?.

      Apparently the campaign ain't all that great judging reviews from Techradar and a few from Reddit users. I will just wait for a sale or rent it out

      I want this game for the single player too, that and the SP Arcade mode, I can estimate from the amount of single playing (excluding multiplayer) I did on SWBF1 that with the addition of a single player campaign i'll get 15 hours minimum out of this game.
      $69\15 hours= $4.50 cost per hour.
      I am a casual gamer in that I have a household to run, and a full time job. This means I will be splitting up my sessions in maybe 1 hour lots with 2-3 hours on the weekends. Again using SWBF1 as a guide I'll still be playing well and truly 6 months after release.
      ~5hours week X 6 months = 30 hours / $69 = $2.30 per hour
      Average $4.50 - $2.30 = $3.40 per hour.
      Not every game needs 40+ hour grind fest, or to give over free content simply because.
      For the price above I get better value than a movie ticket and that is enough. I despise multiplayer shooters and will never beat the 16 yo who plays 8 hours a day. I don't need loot creates, or skins, or to pour money into virtual items to justify my entertainment.
      Super Star Wars on the SNES originally cost $100 when it was released, and was nothing more than an arcade shoot-em-up. The game was done in 3 hours and no-body took to the streets demanding blood.
      The Gamers have fed the industry by buying horse armor and Smurf berries. By mobile striking, candy crushing, and angry birding they have accepted the adverts. Demanding that paying more should progress me further faster and better so my facebook status update is better than Ms. Jones'.
      When all is said and done the industry responds with what has been asked why is it the Gamers who get upset... are you not entertained?

        Ummm... Super Star Wars was also fucking AMAZING for the time. I remember playing it with my mates and we couldn't believe how good it was.

        Also it was before the internet so we couldn't scream about anything. No-one's actually taking to the streets. It's just toxic people venting garbage out their keyboards.

        I think you've missed the point. It's not that EA is selling horse armour. It's not even like Dead Space 3 pay to cheat. It's that they've intentionally balanced this game like a free to play game then charged a high retail price tag for it. You buy the game, then technically you can earn the heroes for free by putting hundreds of hours in or you can spend money on credits to unlock them right.
        Instead of using the free to play structure as an alternative financial model they've used it as an additional financial model.

        I think you should be more annoyed than you are. After single player you're going to spend most of that fifteen hours spinning your wheels. You're not going to get to use many characters or really accomplish anything. I don't know about you, but I feel like a massive part of the appeal of Battlefront is getting to use people like Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker.
        They've crippled a great game for the sake of wringing the maximum amount of money out of the games fans.

      its really not that bad, worth it alone for single player campaign. Also the multiplayer is fun, i havent purchased any loot boxes and i have no desire to. Im pretty happy the lowered the amount of in game credits to unlock characters, i played for one night and got Vader. pew pew pew pew Star Wars!

    It does look nice, as did the previous one. I'll pick it up on sale in a year or so and give the single player a go.

    Isn't that last image kind of a spoiler?

      I'm not sure? It happens reasonably early on (about the sixth mission), but I'll put in a spoiler tag just in case. Thanks mate.

      I'm not in the least surprised. I expected this "twist" the second I heard you start out working for the Empire.
      For once I'd like to see a game have the guts to go with a storyline like TIE Fighter where you stay on one side of the war

      No, but it is sad that they went the expected route instead of sticking with the idea of an Empire focused campaign.

    It looks great. No doubt about that. EA wouldn't do this with a bad game that people are willing to skip.

    It's a damn shame, you can see that there is real effort put in there by Star Wars fans.

    The sound design, the visuals are stunning and I'm sure the core gameplay is solid and the story looked amazing, I really digged the idea of following what happened to the empire after the rebels took down the deathstar.

    But those damn lootboxes. It's like having the perfect ribs, sauce and sides and then dropping it on the floor and stepping on it with the promise the dirt will make it taste better.

    I really really wanted to buy this game. So much so that I went into EBs yesterday as I thought the release date was advertised as the 14th. It was only the deluxe rip off edition available 3 days prior to the normal game being released.

    That was the straw that broke the camels back. Fuck this game.

      Man, I didn't realise they were doing that. Honestly, fuck EA. I'm not normally one to engage in this publisher bashing, but EA epitomise everything that is wrong with monetisation of games - or are they 'services' now?

      Wow, that's exactly what happened to me.... called EB, asked if they had the game..."No, you can only buy it today if you buy the premium version, if not, wait til Friday"

      k, thx...I'm out.

      wtf seriously???? Wow.... that's a new low.

      Is this a new thing? I've not heard of it before but yeah... wow...

    'Luke, Leah, Lando...'

    Is that supposed to be Leia? Because I've never heard of fan-favourite Preahncess Leah ;)

    I'm super interested in playing Battlefront for the pretty and the campaign. Those high-fps trailers were amazing.

    What this ends up meaning, though, is mostly that I'm looking forward to when their server populations crater and they put it on fire sale to try and keep it alive.

    I'll see the campaign when it's a couple of bucks.

    I got the 10hr trial on EA Access, beautiful game loving the Xbox X enhanced games feel like I’m spreading myself too thin now though got too many games on the go.

    Now if they could use this tech for a remake of Rogue Leader...

      I'm greedy, I want an original script like Rogue Squadron with no trench runs, Hoth or second Death Star. I'll let them rebrand it to Black Squadron if they absolutely must.

        Hell, wrap Squadron/Leader/Strike all up into one awesome package. With VR support.

        I've been hanging for years for a follow up to the X-wing/TIE series using more up to date graphical fidelity.
        Give me an Empire/First Order story and include an Alliance/Resistance story and I'll devour it multiple times before I put the game on ice for a few months.

        I still play X-wing Alliance regularly just for the feel of being an Alliance pilot!

    The loot box complaining is out of hand. I've been playing in the early-access and it's nowhere near as bad as the vocal minority of whingers are making it sound. It's a good fun silly game, somewhere right in the middle of COD and BF for scale and speed of the battles. So you've got a star card that gives you 10% more health or whatever? Cool story, it's only going to factor in in situations where you both come round a corner face to face and start blasting simultaneously.

      I agree. The opposition to this game is s circle jerk of biblical proportions.

    And besides: there's an opportunity here for MASSIVE player satisfaction whenever you take out some 15yo with deep pockets and zero skill. A better-quality player will always win out in the end. Only thing I'd like to see is a tag added to any star cards or unlocks a player has paid for vs earned, so we can more easily spot the gullible dickheads in the playing community.

    luke's f'ing weird looking in that pic, like he pushed out a fart that turned into a shart.

    Honest Review: everything IN THE GAME. is amazing. the game play. the visuals. the music etc. Especially Galactic Assault. Stunning on every level. (havent had too much bad pay-to-win stuff yet). Heaps of value for money, until...

    Everything OUT OF THE GAME is absolutely terrible. Slow levelling. Tightfisted rewards, that make Destiny Year One crytrach look kind. Loot boxes. overly complicated currency.

    Its thoroughly insulting to the amazing work of DICE that the only discussion of this game comes from the EA side of things.

    Unlocking Everything in Battlefront II Requires 4528 hours or $2100

      Nothing like a little bit of unfounded/since disproven BS to spice up a conversation...

    It doesn't matter how good the game looks, if it is a pay to win crapfest with loot boxes it's still a shit game, and another franchise ruined by EA! I will never buy this game.

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