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Off-Topic Discussion => Gaming Discussion => Topic started by: CommanderDJ on September 16, 2011, 02:17:28 am

Title: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: CommanderDJ on September 16, 2011, 02:17:28 am
Star Wars Battlefront II

Part 0: Introduction
So I decided to do an LP of Star Wars: Battlefront II, one of my favourite Star Wars games. For those who don’t know, Battlefront II (which will be referred to as BF2 from now on) is a first/third-person shooter game which spans the era of the Star Wars movies. The player can take on the role of soldiers of the various factions throughout the movies (clone troopers with the Republic, droids with the Confederacy of Independent Systems (CIS), stormtroopers with the Galactic Empire, and plain old humans with the Rebel Alliance). Each faction also has several special units, some of which are non-human (for instance the Rebels have a Bothan Spy) that bring unique abilities to the table. I’ll explain more about these (and other gameplay elements) as we go.


So let’s get started. BF2 has several modes of play: campaign, instant action, and galactic conquest (as well as multiplayer). The first two are fairly self-explanatory: the campaign follows the fall of the Jedi Order, the end of the Republic and the rise of the Galactic Empire. Instant action allows you to pick any battle available, and go play it. We’ll be playing the third mode, galactic conquest. In this mode, the player picks a faction, and that faction plays off against their counterpart for control of the galaxy, moving fleets around, taking over planets, and waging war both on land and in space. Again, I’ll explain the more intricate details as we get into it.


Now, this’ll probably lose me a lot of respect from some, but I have a fondness for the battle droids seen in the prequel movies, so I’ll be playing as the CIS. You can see their galactic conquest mode is called The Confederate Uprising. So without further ado, let’s move in, completely screw with canon and crush some Republic skulls.


It’s a little hard to see, but the above screenshot shows the stakes as they stand at the start. I start off with three planets: Mustafar, Utapau, and Geonosis (coloured blue). The Republic controls the other ten planets (coloured red). It’s my job to change that.


Each side starts off with one fleet, though more can be constructed. The planet your fleet starts off orbiting is pretty much picked at random from the ones available to you at the start. This time, my fleet starts off above Mustafar. You can just see the Republic’s fleet in the top right of the above screenshot, in orbit above Coruscant.


Notice the little CIS symbol above Geonosis. This signifies a base planet. Taking over your opponent’s base planet earns you a lot of credits, but apart from that doesn’t make that much difference. You can also see Kamino, the Republic’s base planet, up and to the right.

As the game is so happily telling me, building a second fleet would cost me 1000 credits. The cost of a fleet rises by 1000 credits each time you build one (the first one’s free though, so if you lose all your fleets you can build one for nothing).

You may have noticed the three tabs up the top of the screen, labelled “Move”, “Bonus”, and “Units”. Let’s take a look at each one. The Move tab is the one we’re already in, where each player creates fleets and moves them to attack or defend planets and engage enemy fleets in space. Next is the Bonus tab.


Before each battle, each faction can activate a bonus to turn the tide in their favour. The available bonuses range in cost and effect, and I’ll detail them more as we go further on. The important thing to know is that they affect one or more factors of the battle by either strengthening your side or weakening the enemy. Some bonuses are incompatible with either space battles or ground battles. We’ll get to all that later.


The Units screen. Here each side can recruit (or manufacture, in my case) units for different roles. At the start, I only have the Super Battle Droid (for ground battles) and the Pilot Droid (for space battles). The Super is pretty much a standard run-of-the-mill fighter with just a regular blaster and wrist rockets. Good for medium-close range. The Pilot Droid has a blaster pistol, timebombs for sabotaging enemy critical systems from inside their own ships, and a fusion cutter for repairing friendly systems. They also have the added property of automatically regenerating the health of any ship they pilot.

Now, this is just my personal style of play, but with one or two exceptions, I won’t be purchasing any new units. I don’t find that the BF2 AI uses the specialists very well and I myself prefer more general killing machines (such as Supers). We’ll see how we go though.

Oh, and one thing before I start playing properly: I haven’t played BF2 in quite a while, so I’m a little rusty. There will definitely be some back-and-forth in parts of the game. If there isn’t, I’ll be surprised. BF2 has only two difficulties: Normal and Elite. I’ll be playing on Elite. And just to prove it:


BF2’s AI isn’t the smartest around, but playing on Elite does provide some extra challenge.
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: CommanderDJ on September 16, 2011, 02:17:56 am
Part 1: A Not So Valiant Start
Right, now to get into the game proper. Galactic conquest is turn based: each side can stock up on bonuses or recruit new units during their turn as well as create fleets.


As we said before, my fleet is currently orbiting Mustafar. During my turn, I can move any fleet I have into any adjacent region of space. If that region of space contains an enemy planet, an invasion is launched on that planet. If that region of space contains an enemy fleet, a space battle between fleets occurs. If a fleet is orbiting a planet and an opposing fleet moves in to attack, the attacking fleet must destroy the defending fleet before it can attack the planet. In this way, if I wanted to, I could create fleets and position them above planets to defend them if I didn’t want to risk the Republic capturing a particular planet.

Each faction has a “narrator” or “announcer” that lets the player know of how things are going. The CIS announcer speaks in that instantly recognisable, synthesized battle droid voice.
“Please select a fleet to command.”

Alright, let’s go. You can see from the above screenshot that I have three possible destinations this turn. There are two Republic-controlled planets within two moves of my fleet: there’s Polis Massa on the left and Dagobah on the right (it’s a little hard to see, so I’ve highlighted it with the cursor). Let’s look at the region of space to the right of the above screenshot.


Again, Dagobah is highlighted with the cursor. As you can see, moving right would bring my fleet closer to many more Republic planets.  Notice the little icon indicating Geonosis, my base planet, at the bottom of the screen; I’d also much rather my fleet be close to my base planet in the early game, ready to defend it. I’d rather not lose Geonosis (you’ll see why as we move further along). At this point, the Republic fleet could reach Geonosis in four moves. The BF2 AI moves a little predictably here, and I’m fairly confident that it’s going to move towards Geonosis. If all goes well, I’d like to intercept them at Naboo (the red planet just below the centre of the screen), after taking Dagobah. So I move right. As there’s no danger of a battle in the next turn, I don’t buy any bonuses yet. Let’s wait and see what the Republic does.


And thus, my turn ends (or is about to end). At the end of each turn I get a summary of how many planets I control and how many fleets I have deployed. By clicking back, I could cancel my move and rethink my turn, but I’m sure of what I want to do. I click End Turn.


Oh dear. The Republic has done the opposite of what I expected them to do, and moved the other way.


They are now within two moves of Mustafar. At this point, I have two options worth considering: I can keep going with my original plan of taking Dagobah and Naboo and count on defending Mustafar successfully from the ground, or I can move my fleet back to Mustafar and intercept the enemy. In this case, I will choose to continue with my original plan, for several reasons: my fleet will be closer to Geonosis, and (assuming I win both battles), I will have taken two more planets before one of mine is under attack. Plus, ground battles will earn me many more credits than space battles. I will move to attack Dagobah, but first things first: bonuses.  When buying them, I must account for what will happen in my turn as well as my enemy’s next turn, as I won’t have a chance to buy more bonuses until after my enemy has moved (and, as a consequence, potentially attacked). At this point, though, we see that the Republic won’t reach any of my planets in their next turn, so I can safely only buy one bonus.


For planetary battles, there is one bonus I consider an absolute must: the Garrison bonus. For only 200 credits, it’s one of the cheapest bonuses in the game (in fact, it ranks equal cheapest with Supplies and Energy Boost, both also at 200 credits), but its effect on a battle can (without exaggeration) turn the tide.
Now is a fitting time to explain how ground-side battles work in BF2. Whilst there are a whole bunch of gametypes for ground battles in BF2, galactic conquest uses the standard Conquest gametype for all ground battles: specific points on the map are dubbed “Command Posts”. The two sides work to eliminate their opponents and/or capture all Command Posts (CPs) on the map. Victory is achieved by either capturing all CPs or by defeating all opposing reinforcements. By default, each side starts off with 150 reinforcements. You can think of reinforcement points as respawns, basically. Each time an AI unit (or I) die, we can respawn at any friendly-controlled CP. Doing so deducts one reinforcement point. The Garrison bonus works simply: the first time that the reinforcement count of a side using it drops to 30, it adds another 30, boosting it to 60. This has won me more battles than I care to count, and so I’ll be making almost exclusive use of it during this LP.


So I buy one. Each side can carry up to three bonuses at a time, but I won’t be buying any more now for the reasons I mentioned before.
I move to attack Dagobah.


Below the planet’s name we see the amount of credits winning the battle will get me, and the planet’s planetary bonus (I’ll explain what that is shortly). For now, we know that taking over Dagobah will earn me 500 credits.


My fleet orbits the hapless planet of Dagobah, where no doubt Republic troops are scrambling to assemble a force even as my ships unload emotionless, cold killing automatons onto the surface. Attack!


Here we have a screen that allows me to select a bonus for this battle. Since we only have Garrison, I choose that.


The Republic chooses Autoturrets. This bonus places an automatic sentry gun at each Republic-controlled Command Post, giving it an extra layer of protection. These things tend to be annoying, but they shouldn’t be a major hindrance. Assuming all goes well.


Here is the spawn screen. I can select a unit to spawn as (obviously I’ve only got the Super, so not much choice there), and which Command Post to spawn at. To the right is a map of the battlefield. You may have to squint a bit, but you’ll see there are six CPs on this map (and pretty much every other map). Some ground battles start off with three a side, while others (like Dagobah) start off with one a side and the rest unclaimed. It’s up to me and my troops to claim as many as possible at the start to gain an initial advantage.


I spawn and rush to the nearest Command Post (that ray of light there). The little icon on the right (which is white at the moment) shows which side is in the process of capturing the CP. As I stay within a certain radius of the Command Post, the icon will fill up with blue. When it is fully blue, the CIS has captured a Command Post.


I capture it successfully, and move on. As I rush towards the middle of the map, the announcer lets me know that my allies have captured another CP, and a few seconds later, that the Republic has captured two. We're even.


I emerge into the middle of a battle with Republic forces, shoot down a few, but am quickly shot down myself. Not to worry, time to respawn.


I spawn at one of our newly captured Command Posts and engage the enemy. In very small writing up the top of the screen, you might be able to make out two numbers, one blue, one red. Those are each side’s respective reinforcement counts. If either of those hits zero, the battle is over. Currently it’s sitting at 139-141. Relatively even. I take down a few more Republic troops, and respawn again just as the announcer tells me that one of our CPs is being contested. We lose control of it before I can spawn there, so I’m limited to trying to rush over there from the nearest CP. I spawn, start sprinting, and hear:
“A command post is under enemy control.”
Then, in a slightly more urgent voice:
“Reinforcements are being depleted!”
That’s another thing Command Posts do. If a side controls the majority of the CPs on a map, the enemy’s reinforcement count will slowly drop.


You can see the effect of this immediately: the reinforcements now stand at 93-111. It’s important that we recapture at least one CP to stop our reinforcements being drained.
Initially, I am not very successful. The Republic troops are walking all over my droids, and I myself am not good enough yet to make up for all of that. The battle is looking increasingly grim.


By the time I finally make it over there, the numbers are at 32-71. A huge lead for the Republic. However, only moments after I took that screenshot...


The count is now at 60-71. This is our Garrison bonus at work. I had hoped that by the time we’d get to this point it would put us in the lead, but at least now we’re on much more even footing. If we can hold out from here, we should be able to make it.


Initially after the Garrison boost, it seems the CIS is going to win. The numbers stay even, and I do my best to wrest control of another CP from the Republic. But as the battle continues, the Republic establishes a fledgling lead, presses it, and quickly comes out in front.


We trade several more command posts, but ultimately my troops cannot hold, and the Republic captures four and places a fifth one in jeopardy. The count is now 6-27. I die and respawn, moving to a Republic command post to try and capture it, and get taken down by the autoturret I forgot was there. It seems the autoturrets were indeed making it difficult for my troops to capture CPs.


Alas, we do not hold. With a shot to the left shoulder, a clone trooper dispatches my last droid, bringing our reinforcement count to zero. The battle is lost. Droid fragments litter the swampy marshes of Dagobah, which remains firmly under Republic control.


The above three screens show some post-battle statistics. I’m not big on those, so I won’t be showing them again unless something extraordinary comes up.


And the post-battle summary. My fleet has just disappeared in a mighty conflagration, and Dagobah floats peacefully through space as though nothing has happened. Each side receives credits based on whether they won or lost and how many planets they already have. That’s what the planetary bonus amount shown before the battle was for: each planet you hold gives you extra credits at the end of each battle, regardless of whether you win or lose.


Ah. That was... unexpected. I told you I was rusty. In a move I did not foresee, the Republic created another fleet and has moved straight to attacking Geonosis. My base planet is now in jeopardy.


And they’ve used the Garrison bonus. That’s not good. The CIS is at a big disadvantage. But we fight nevertheless.


I start off by getting in a vehicle. It is on wide, open planets like Geonosis that my lack of specialist units is a disadvantage. If I had snipers here, we’d have a much easier time. But oh well. No use crying over spilt milk.
We come out with an early lead. The CIS has the aid of the Geonosians, the native species, and we seem to do well. With three command posts apiece, we wither down the enemy.


The Republic strikes back, however, and pushes forward. 105-121. Surprisingly, my troops manage to capture a fourth command post, meaning that the Republic’s reinforcements slowly decrease. I decide to defend this command post, as it will soon come under heavy attack, being in Republic “territory”.


The battle continues to rage. Trooper corpses and droid parts crash and fall. Vehicles are destroyed. Lasers and missiles replace various gases as the main component of the atmosphere, and Geonosis is witness to war as it has never been waged before. 58-66 on the reinforcement count. Still fairly even, but tipping towards the Republic.


But then the tide turns. For reasons unknown, my droid compatriots begin to falter, and the clones push their advantage, bringing the reinforcement count down to 5-36. I am perched up on the top of a cliff and am “sniping” Republic troopers down below. With the scarceness of my reinforcements at this point, the clones have almost run out of targets, and easily fall prey to my laser cannon. I might still have singlehandedly won the battle for us if the Republic had not used Garrison, and as soon as it hits 30, their reinforcement count jumps up to 60. My last few remaining allies fall as I frantically try to take down as many clones as I can with me.


The battle is lost. The CIS has lost its base planet.


The Republic gains a staggering 1000 credits on top of any planetary bonuses they have. I earn a meagre 410. I am now down to only two planets, Mustafar and Utapau, with no fleets of my own, and two enemy fleets on my doorstep. Will the CIS survive and make a dramatic comeback? Or will the Republic use its momentum to surge forward, crushing what forces I have remaining?
Find out next time.
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: deathfun on September 16, 2011, 04:37:57 am
Ah man, I love this game

I had everything of mine to the point I had all the upgrades
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: Scotty on September 16, 2011, 12:05:53 pm
I had everything on Veteran level except for the never-to-be-sufficiently-damned Demolitions.  The Veteran assault rifle is probably one of the single most brutal anti-personnel weapons in the game, if you're any good with it.  That and the Veteran pistol.
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: Patriot on September 16, 2011, 01:23:42 pm
Man, been a while since i played this, had a k/d of ~10 on my Galactic Conquest profile. Had Veteran Rifle, Sniper, Rocket Launcher, Pistol and Shotgun. Also damage reduction and increase and faster Stamina regen as permanent bonuses.

This game was fun as hell, on the old Xbox you can even co-op with 4 players in this mode(and i think even campaign) and in Instant Action i think, or you have to hit up the multiplayer for it, forgot D:
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: Sushi on September 16, 2011, 03:59:17 pm
Meh, the first Battlefront was better.

Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: StarSlayer on September 16, 2011, 04:28:29 pm
Meh, the first Battlefront was better.

You could pilot a LAATi via the cockpit and murderate everything down below.  No such luck in II.
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: Droid803 on September 17, 2011, 11:16:47 pm
I only ever bothered getting the Veteran Assault Rifle, Pistol, and Sniper. Only ones worth using IMO. :P
Rockets and shotguns be damned as...they're pretty much useless. You can kill (most) vehicles just fine with the Assault Rifle if you just shoot the crit region :P 'Specially those worthless AATs which can't even hit you.

I still remember all the glitching locations.
'specially the space one over...whichever planet it was where you could get on top of one of your acclamators and repair it.

Wonder if they ever fixed that.
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: deathfun on September 18, 2011, 02:15:36 am
Highly doubtful since I don't recall this game to ever be updated
Not on console anyhow
Title: Re: Let's Play... Star Wars Battlefront II!
Post by: Firartix on October 03, 2011, 12:22:48 pm
OMG BF2 ! Do anyone actually still play that?

I played it for some time in solo, both on PS2 and PC - and it gets easy so quick - because the AI is real crap... It's good, but not for long, imo
With a bit of time and training i could no-scope one-shot stuff with sniper while randomly moving around, against Hard Mode IA, and outnumbered 2 to 1, and ending up winning
And as you figured already, i'm not even a 1/100th that good on other FPS. But BF2 got no recoil, no random inaccuracy, nothing...

I won't talk about the BF3 on PSP. I gave it a try, and it's ridiculous, because you only really have 2 dimensions of aiming and it's mostly auto.
Online gameplay is kind of fail : either you take an assault rifle, keep the locking and fire buttons held down and do 5 kills every magazine without doing anything, or you take a remote guided rocket launcher and spawnkill the other team.
I liked the idea of remote ion bombardement rifle though, it was kind of cool :D!

Also, since you were talking about space glitch: try to take off/land in rapid succession in hangar, close to force field. You'll end up landing halfway into it, and can exit outside of forcefield and walk on the ship.
Best part is when you have a rocket launcher on you, and start taking down fighters with it...