Electronic Arts “made some mistakes” with the progression system of Star Wars Battlefront 2 and vows to “be better” in the future.
According to newly appointed chief design officer Patrick Söderlund, the months following Battlefront 2’s release were a valuable learning experience for the publisher.
“I’d be lying to you if I said that what’s happened with Battlefront and what’s happened with everything surrounding loot boxes and these things haven’t had an effect on EA as a company and an effect on us as management,” he explains to The Verge.
“We can shy away from it and pretend like it didn’t happen, or we can act responsibly and realize that we made some mistakes, and try to rectify those mistakes and learn from them.”
It’s too early to tell if Electronic Arts is truly done with loot box-based progression systems, but the negative reaction from fans has definitely made an impact.
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Electronic Arts states the original intention of Battlefront 2’s progression system was to have players engaging for a longer period of time, taking inspiration from other popular titles such as Blizzard’s Overwatch.
“People seem to appreciate what we’ve done, players are coming back, and we’re seeing stronger engagement numbers. People seem to think that for the most part, we got it right. It doesn’t mean we will stop.”
“We’ll continue to improve the game, we’ll continue to push on these things, and we’ll have to be very cautious with what this means for future products.”
As a result of its loot box controversy, Star Wars Battlefront 2 failed to meet its sales expectations. Electronic Arts is keenly aware it cannot make similar mistakes in future.
“We have taken significant steps as a company to review and understand the mechanics around monetization, loot boxes, and other things in our games before they go to market,” Söderlund says.
“For games that come next, for Battlefield or for Anthem, [players have] made it very clear that we can’t afford to make similar mistakes. And we won’t.”
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Battlefront 2 recently had its progression system overhauled and thus we decided to dive back into the shooter and revamp our review. Here’s a quick snippet:
“Star Wars: Battlefront 2 will never be the game it was meant to be, but this patch takes it a little closer, if only by a few small steps. However, microtransactions are far less frustrating now, and that’s a good thing.”
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