Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection Is A Messy Stumble Down Memory Lane

Image: Lucasfilm / Disney / Aspyr
Image: Lucasfilm / Disney / Aspyr

Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection, which combines remastered versions of the first two Pandemic-developed games, is now out on consoles and PC. And while I’m enjoying the chance to replay this favorite of mine from yesteryear, bugs and other problems make it tricky to recommend in its current state.

2004’s Star Wars: Battlefront and its 2005 sequel, Battlefront II, are incredibly beloved Battlefield-like shooters that let players recreate battles from the first six Star Wars films across multiple modes and planets. The games weren’t perfect, but younger Zack didn’t care. I spent far too many weeks of my life playing these two games (most of that time spent in the much better sequel). And while I enjoyed the modern, EA-published Battlefront games developed by Dice, they didn’t quite scratch the same itch that those classic games did back in the early aughts.

Now, those first two Battlefront games are back on modern consoles with some new features and tweaks. However, while I’m happy to be playing classic Battlefront again, I hope the collection gets some patches to help fix the issues plaguing these nostalgic Star Wars games.

For solo players, things are mostly okay

First, the positives: Being able to easily load up Star Wars: Battlefront II on my Xbox Series X/S or PS5 and play any of the single-player modes is awesome. These games weren’t impossible to play before 2024, sure, but now it’s easier than ever to get in a few matches of Battlefront or its better sequel without relying on emulators, backward compatibility, mods, or anything else.

I also love that Aspyr included all the DLC in both games, and that they provided some features that were previously PC-only—like larger XL battles with more AI NPCs—in the console versions of the collection. Also, being able to play the all-heroes and villains mode (which lets you play as Obi-Wan, Darth Maul, Yoda, Han Solo, and other famous, powerful characters in a giant brawl) on any ground map in Battlefront II is a wonderful addition. Previously, it was locked to just two maps. I’ve had a mostly smooth time playing by myself in both games, with 60fps support and improved textures. Nothing super impressive, these games still look old, but they look nicer than ever on my big 4K TV.

However, while they look pretty good, play well offline, and feature some nice additions and all the DLC, the package still needs some work before I would enthusiastically recommend it to anyone but the biggest Battlefront sickos.

Online issues and other problems in Battlefront Classic Collection

Playing online right now isn’t a great experience. Lag and rubberbanding abound, and I’ve been kicked from servers or lost audio during matches online. I’ve also encountered a consistent bug in Battlefront II when playing online that sees the game’s performance get cut in half. This doesn’t happen in Battlefront. I’m not sure what’s going on there, but it makes the better sequel feel sluggish to play online against friends.

I’ve also run into strange bugs with the camera. Sometimes after dying it will freak out and spin around like it’s trying to get a close-up of every pixel in the level before letting me respawn. Another annoyance is the controls, which seem to have little to no dead zone on the sticks, leading to my troopers and droids aimlessly moving around when I’m trying to snipe enemies. Perhaps the oddest issue I’ve encountered in the Classic Collection occurred when I tried to play split-screen on my Xbox Series S with my brother. We had to plug in a second controller physically and back out of the menus a few times to get it to register. Oh, and split screen is limited to two people, even though on the OG Xbox the game supported four.

Online, players have been logging other problems, some of which I’ve not experienced, others—like crashes during certain modes—I have. There were also complaints about a lack of official servers, though it seems more have been spun up since launch. There’s been backlash about the price tag, $35, and the lack of new content, too. I’ve also seen some head-scratching at the size of these games. On my Xbox, they take up over 50GB and there is no option to install just one, which would be nice and might save some room.

As someone who has spent so much of my life playing these classic Star Wars Battlefront games and loves them dearly, I’m sad to say that this collection is a bit of a mess. If you plan on just playing alone or split-screen with a friend—which is how I mostly play these games, honestly—then you’ll have a mostly okay time, marred by some occasional bugs and control issues. If you want to hop online and play in large-scale 64-player Star Wars battles, things get messier, faster, and I’d probably recommend holding off and seeing if Aspyr addresses any of these bugs and problems in future patches.


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