2020 was a great year in the free games department, and 2021 is getting off to a strong start . The Epic Games Store just revealed that it’s giving away the popular and wildly fun experience of Star Wars Battlefront II for free next week. That’s surely enough to send fans into a tizzy, but the good news doesn’t stop there. Epic will offer the Celebration edition of the game which includes tons of extra cosmetics, offering a great jumping off point for new players. Aside from this announcement, gamers can get into some other tactical space battles via Crying Suns, which is free this week.
I’m sure many still remember the whole Star Wars Battlefront II microtransactions debacle from 2017. In one of its worst attempts to date at money grabbing, EA introduced totally randomized loot crates with perk cards that effectively made the game pay-to-win. Fortunately, gamers fought back and EA withdrew microtransactions upon launch. The game still features these perk cards, but they are only attainable through playing the game.
Bringing balance to the Force
However, that was not all of the bad news about Battlefront II either. Many complained that it felt barebones, myself included. We assumed it would die a horrible death due to EA’s neglect after being demonetized and that it would forever be a disappointment for Star Wars fans. Fortunately, that was not the case. Disney stepped in and demanded proper treatment and love for the title, which led to years of updates that added new player classes, levels, heroes, modes, and lore-friendly (free-to-earn) skins. Talk about one hell of a comeback.
The game feels quite fun these days, runs great on the lean Frostbite engine, and truly nails the Star Wars warfare experience. Battlefront II isn’t perfect, but you’re really missing out if you don’t pick it up for free on the Epic Games Store. The game features a Battlefield-like experience with all the iconic things that make up Star Wars. You can play as troopers, heroes, space pilots, and more. It also features most of the iconic movie locations from the various trilogies in amazing detail.
However, you can’t join the Empire or Rebellion just yet. The promotional window runs from January 14 at 11 AM ET to the 21 at the same time. Fortunately, you can try out some other space battles in Crying Suns, which is free now.
Greetings, fleet commander
This one sounds like it will hit right for a certain crowd of gamers. The devs describe the game as “When FTL meets Foundation… and Dune.” Those are all impressive titles in their respective genres. For the price of free, you might just decide to see how Crying Suns lives up to those claims. The devs promise a rich story to go along with the tactical strategy elements, and the overall theme looks well done.
The theme centers around humanity’s struggle for survival in a galaxy where the godlike machines they created long ago have now failed. Humans apparently lost the capability of self sufficiency, though hope is not lost. You are created as a clone of one of the greatest admirals to ever live. Your goal is to — you guessed it — save the galaxy. That’s the short run of it, but it’s a lot more interesting than that when you jump into the story.
As for the game elements, you will fight in capital ship/fleet/squadron duals. There are plenty of units and tactics to employ. The UI looks like a great blend of sleek, modern cues mixed with retro elements. It’s not an easy style to pull off, so the devs certainly earn some points in that area. Finally, it looks like the game will require a dedicated GPU. That’s a little surprising considering the many 2D elements, but it looks like pretty much any GPU you can dig up will run the game.
Don’t forget to claim Crying Suns for free before the offer ends on January 14 at 11 AM ET, when you can then claim Battlefront II as well.