It's safe to say that Star Wars Battlefront II had a very rocky launch indeed. Players and critics alike noticed that the game's progression system, involving loot boxes and microtransactions, was weighted towards a pay-to-win structure. All microtransactions were eventually pulled as publisher EA stated that they were to revise them.
It had been all quiet on the loot box front, that is until EA posted an update today outlining the new, tweaked progression system. From when the new system launches on March 21, all progression will be linear, with EA stating that "Star Cards, or any other item impacting gameplay, will only be earned through gameplay and will not be available for purchase." Instead, the game will feature a more traditional approach to character levelling, in which players earn experience points through playing which can be spent on increasing the level of a unit and subsequently receiving a Star Card in the process.
There has also been a change in the way crates are gained in the game. Previously, they contained Star Cards and could be purchased with real money. This is no longer the case instead "Crates are earned by logging in daily, completing Milestones, and through timed challenges. Inside of these crates, you'll find Credits or cosmetic items, such as emotes or victory poses, but nothing that impacts gameplay."
Some may be worrying about all of the content they earned during the time in which microtransactions were previously online. Fret not, as all content including heroes, skins, weapons and Star Cards will still be available to use by those who already have them. In April, players will be given the opportunity to gain new appearances via two different purchasing options. EA detailed this new system, stating "you'll be able to grab new looks for your heroes and troopers directly by using either Credits (earned in-game) or Crystals (available to purchase in-game and through first-party stores)."
EA conclude the post by teasing new modes for the game coming in the future, as well as further balance patches. It seems like a step in the right direction for Star Wars Battlefront II then, after the game sparked many debates and discussions surrounding the ethical use of microtransactions in games when it launched. The controversy surrounding the game and others like it lead to several governing bodies from several different countries weighing up the use of loot boxes and the like.
What do you think of the new progression system? Will it be enough to win back the players they lost? Let us know in the comments.