Following a disastrous debut for Early Access players, Star Wars Battlefront II has been dealing with criticism from all fronts, mostly surrounding publisher EA’s handling of microtransactions and in-game progression. Now, the ability to purchase premium currency has officially been taken offline ahead of the game’s official release.
The premium currency known as Crystals were taken offline earlier this evening, with eagle-eyed Redditors confirming that they were nowhere to be seen across Xbox One, PlayStation 4 or PC. Not too long after posts continued to pop up on r/StarWarsBattlefront in a frenzy, the official @EAStarWars account posted a statement confirming that in-game purchases had indeed been turned off until further notice.
Oskar Gabrielson, GM of developer DICE, took to the EA Star Wars Battlefront II blog with a statement that it has become “clear” that players feel that there are further challenges in the game’s design, as well as the “concerns about potentially giving players unfair advantages.”
“This was never our intention,” Gabrielson said. “Sorry we didn’t get this right.”
The development team will now spend more time listening to player feedback, balancing, and tuning the game accordingly, according to the blog. As a result, all current progression unlocks will be earned strictly through gameplay, though the ability to buy Crystals seems to be coming back at “a later date,” but only after some sort of changes have been implemented. Gabrielson didn’t elaborate on what kind of changes would have to be made first, nor if the loot crates and items bought with in-game currency would be progression or cosmetic-related.
This change of heart could very well have stemmed from the fact that the original developer response to player critiques of the game’s progression system earned the most downvotes in Reddit history. Or it could be the fact that even mainstream outlets are shining a light on the situation. Whatever the reason for the current change of heart, hopefully this makes for an improved game overall going forward, and a much fairer experience for all involved.