drop zone

Electronic Arts has unveiled Star Wars Battlefront’s newest game mode, Drop Zone.

Drop zone is modeled after the popular first person shooter game “King of the hill”. Here players will encounter eight man teams which, unlike the previously announced 8 vs 8 Blast mode, has yet to be announced whether it will feature smaller maps and the support of aerial combat.

Players will have to keep their eye on the sky in this mode as each Pod that drops from the sky creates a new zone that players  of both teams will rush towards to establish dominance. The team that either takes control of 5 pods or the majority of them at the end of the ten minute match wins.

One of the interesting changes to the formula however, is that in the event of two equally matched teams constantly fighting for control of a single pod, a new pod will automatically drop to distract one of the teams and break the stalemate.

The major beauty of this game mode is in it’s punishment of players who take advantage of the mechanics. DICE’s Lead level Designer Dennis Brännvall explains that, “We’re promoting the idea of a fast, action-packed game where you need to be mobile and think on your feet. Camping doesn’t really pay off.”

Meaning that even though each area will need to be defended in order to keep the other team at bay, camping is now an impossibility since the pods are located in easily accessible spaces that can easily be decimated by Y-wing bombers or an Imperial strike.

New strategies being implmented in this mode are power pick ups. These are special power-ups that are packaged inside of the pods that drop onto the battlefield. Once a pod is controlled by your team, players can either wait for the pod to open and deliver the goods, or they can make their way to the next pod that has dropped on the map. Both can potentially win the round for your team, but both can also potentially lose the round. The point here, being to chose quickly and wisely.

Activating droids and makeshift turrets will be key in deciding the victory of these battles as turrets can easily pick off enemies that are going for your team’s pod. The newly announced Viper droid is a new addition that can actually outline where each enemy is hiding, allowing you and your team to sneak in, pick them off and claim the pod as yours.

Gamers will experience Drop Zone on the diverse terrains of Tatooine, Endor, Hoth and the newest planet Sullust. Each planet featuring specific areas that make it better or worse for different types of combat.

The level designer, Brännvall, went on to detail his team’s favorite area, the forrest moon of Endor. “The fight takes place around a crashed GR-75 transport ship with containers from the craft strewn acro0ss the landscape, and there’s one section with a waterfall overlooked by an Ewok village, where you have to jump down into the pool below in order to claim the pod, hoping no one’s hiding in the trees above waiting to pick you off.”

Drop Zone is an exciting, new take on a FPS classic and luckily we won’t have to wait too much longer to get our hands on this and more intense action when Star Wars Battlefront is available November 17 on the PC, PS4 and Xbox One.

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