The Death Star looms as an ominous reminder of the might of the Empire far off in the distance, but as Rebels, before we can even consider blowing it up, we have to get past a number of Star Destroyers. It may sound like suicide, but Star Destroyers aren't exactly suited to hunting down smaller ships. However, they have some means to counter their relative lack of agility. Massive hangars that can accommodate entire swarms of TIE Fighters, and that's the most immediate threat.
With a hissing sound, our X-wing stretches out its wings in the classic X-formation, and one of the most famous battles in the Star Wars universe can begin. Two TIE Advanced starfighters fly past with that unmistakable shrieking sound that's the last sound many an X-Wing pilot has heard before succumbing. The radio chatter reveals that several colleagues are in trouble already, but along with a few others we manage to get through swarm after swarm of TIE Fighters and can start offloading our torpedoes and lasers onto the Star Destroyer's shields.
Both the Outer Rim and Bespin DLC packs were rather enjoyable multiplayer expansions for Star Wars Battlefront. Definitely worth the money as they that let us visit Jabba's spooky palace and the gorgeous Cloud City. But at the end of the day they just delivered what we've come to expect from traditional multiplayer DLC. We're also not completely sold on the idea of dividing the player base by charging for certain maps, not ideal for those buying (fewer players to play with) and clearly not for those who are stuck playing the old maps. We'd rather see EA and DICE charging for cosmetic stuff, or something similar to the REQ Packs in Halo 5: Guardian, or even EA's own Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare.
Fortunately, Death Star includes something fans have wanted for a very long time and offers good value for your hard earned cash - space battles. This has been in huge demand since the game was announced, and now it has finally arrived. And it delivers. The feeling of flying around the giant Star Destroyers in a fragile A-wing is phenomenal, and the effort from the Imperial fleet to stop the rebel assault is one of true might.
Just like in the normal game, there are power-ups here and there in space, but now they repair your ship or let you acquire a legendary one. Thus, the rebels can fly around with the Millennium Falcon as backup and the Empire gets the much needed backing of Boba Fett's ship Slave 1. But as much as we love this, as Star Wars fans, we do think there is a slight case of overusing these classic icons, and neither the Millennium Falcon or Slave 1 are really fighters. It would had been fun to get something more unusual, instead of the expected, something a little more exotic that would make more sense in this context.
The unique flavour of the Death Star expansion in addition to surroundings and space battles, is provided via the new mode Battle Station, which stitches together multiple game events for a longer adventure that will take upwards of half an hour to play through if the Empire doesn't manage to curb the rebel advance early on. You can see it as an inverted version of Walker Assault if you want, where, after the above attack against the Star Destroyers, you have to steal data from the Death Star with some help from RD-D2. An escort mission where you also get the chance to play as the little tin can every now and then.
To visit the Death Star is a breathtakingly cool experience where all the interiors have been recreated in a way that doesn't feel too forced. We get to fight where Obi-Wan turned off the tractor beam, shoot our way through the corridor to Leia's cell, guard the room where C3PO was hiding in A New Hope and try to survive in a huge hangar. The level naturally has very confined spaces, and therefore grenades and other explosive weapons cause more death and destruction than in virtually any other of the game's environments. This makes for unique strategies and a style of play that adds something more than just visual variation.
If the Rebels succeed in their mission, only one task remains: blow up the Death Star. This means mighty battles just above the most epic construction in pop culture ever, speedy races in narrow trenches, and neon coloured lasers that light up the darkness of space.
Besides everything mentioned, there are also additions like the opportunity to play the Y- and B-Wing or TIE Defender, and two new heroes in the form of Bossk and Chewbacca. In particular, Chewbacca really adds something by being a unmatched tank, while the players who are truly dexterous most likely will learn to appreciate all the possibilities Bossk brings to the game.
To sum up, the Death Star DLC does a mighty fine job of not only adding new content, but also re-energising Star Wars Battlefront, making it fun again. Perhaps precisely because of this it would have been more ideal if this was free content to bring up the player count again. But regardless of business models it now feels like the season pass can truly be recommended to anyone who aspires to bring down an empire, or perhaps save its most precious construction from destruction.