One of the great debates in the Star Wars universe is how a ragtag bunch of pint-sized furballs could have defeated the heavily armed Stormtroopers in Return of the Jedi. Now you can relive that night of terror yourself in the limited-time “Ewok Hunt” event, part of the Night on Endor update for Star Wars Battlefront II. As if Ewoks weren’t frightening enough, loot boxes are also scheduled to reappear in the space-age multiplayer shooter.
Available April 18, Ewok Hunt is a horde mode that puts you in the boots of a stormtrooper on the forest moon of Endor. Armed with blasters and flashlights, the Imperial soldiers need to repel the nasty critters until an extraction team can arrive. Each defeated stormtrooper respawns as an Ewok, so as your meager squad dwindles, the enemy forces increase.
As EA announced several weeks ago, crystals are also returning to the game as part of the update. Crystals can be purchased with real-world currency, but they’re only used to unlock cosmetic upgrades for your character, dubbed “Appearances.” Players cannot purchase items that affect progression or gameplay, such as Star Cards.
You can keep any Star Cards you currently own, but new Star Cards will be unlocked depending on your level. Parts will no longer be awarded, and as of the update your current parts will be converted into skill points, which can be used to upgrade current cards or unlock new ones. You can find out all the details at the Progression Update FAQ page.
EA hastily pulled the plug on the Battlefront II microtransaction system just hours before launch, following player backlash and an avalanche of poor publicity. The controversy helped elevate the loot boxes argument beyond the gaming community, leading some governments to speculate whether paying for random in-game items constituted gambling.
Game publishers seem eager to avoid any further regulation, and many have opted to scale back in-game purchases and make cosmetic items like outfits available for real cash, as opposed to experience boosts or upgraded weapons. Warner Bros. recently pulled all microtransactions from Shadow of War, and the upcoming Battlefield game will only feature cosmetic microtransactions as well.