Star Wars: Battlefront Companion App – A Beyond the Films Review

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With recent events leading to a backlog of recorded episodes and episodes to record very soonStar Wars Beyond the Films‘ Nathan P. Butler will be posting short, non-spoiler reviews for new releases. Spoiler-filled discussion will follow in the weeks thereafter on the podcast. (In the case of minor releases, that discussion may be kept for a Year in Review series of episodes.)


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Battlefront Companion App Career Menu

A Companion and a Game

I recently reviewed the new Battlefront video game from EA and DICE. Due to its length, I chose to keep one releated item for a separate review: the Battlefront Companion App. As has been the case with a growing number of AAA video games on current consoles, EA has released an app to tie into Battlefront that not only assists in managing your career in the game but also has a built-in game of its own, Battlefront: Base Command.

The app’s home screen features the latest official Battlefront news from EA. A Friends Menu helps you keep track of which friends on your gaming network are online or offline and, if online, whether they are playing Battlefront. (You can even allow the app to send you notifications any time someone on your friends list signs on to play Battlefront.) The main thrust of the app, though, is found in the Career and Base Command sections.

The Career section allows you to track your current credits, items related to stats and progression (such as how many diorama pieces you have unlocked, what your kill/death ratio is at the moment, etc.), and allows you to view your Star Cards, Blasters, and Appearance options from the normal game’s “Collect” menu. You can change your equipped items and spend credits on available items, just like in the regular game. In this sense, it works as a decent (though somewhat redundant) management system.

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Battleftont: Base Command pre-siege loading screen

The built-in game, Base Command, is where the app really shines. It is a digital combination of a card game and miniatures game. You take the role of the Rebel Alliance. At the center of a set of concentric rings is a Rebel base (with a big ol’ cannon) that is under siege by Imperials, represented by various miniatures that appear at the outer ring and work their way toward the center, turn by turn. Your goal is to wipe out all of the Imperials before they can bring your base’s “health” to zero.

To to this, you draw upon two decks of Star Cards, built by unlocking Star Cards both in the main game and in the app itself. Each turn, you draw three cards that act as support, doing things like dealing damage to all enemies in a particular quadrant of the “board” or rebuilding the health of your base. You also draw three cards to represent Rebel units to attack the Imperials like snowspeeders, X-wings, infantry troopers, and the like. Different cards (and different Imperial enemies) have various perks that alter how they play in relation to other units. This is a turn-based game, though, so while the constant march of the Imperials on your base gives it a sense of tension, you can also strategize and take your time akin to playing chess.

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Base Command siege in progress: Imperial units converge on the Rebel base, while the player uses its cannon and three cards drawn from two customized sets of Star Cards to withstand the assault.

Base Command is relatively simple intiallly and grows in complexity. Eventually, you will face Battlefront‘s three villains (Boba Fett, Darth Vader, and Palpatine), Slave I, and two different power levels each of seven other Imperial units. You will use nine different Rebel units as you unlock them, including Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa, the Millennium Falcon, and other more generic units. The game includes 25 regular missions, divided among 4 campaigns, then also features a Master level version of all four campaigns for a total of 50 sieges to play.

As a fan of both card games and miniature games, along with digital variants of those that track stats for you as you play, I was very pleasantly surprised by Base Command. In fact, I may one day find myself playing it more than Battlefront itself.

The Verdict

The Battlefront Companion App is a redundant management tool in relation to the Battlefront video game, but its built-in Base Command game is quite enjoyable. If only for Base Command, any fan with a compatible mobile device should pick this one up. It is free with no microtransactions involved, so why not give it a try?

Recommended for: Those who enjoy combinations of card and miniature games, looking for a fun “freebie” game.

Not recommended for: Those looking for something that substantially adds to the Battlefront experience on Playstation 4, Xbox One, or PC in the vein of something like the Destiny Companion app.

No review copy was provided for this publication. It was a standard consumer download.

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