Star Wars Battlefront beta is coming in October

Star Wars Battlefront

Electronic Arts has announced that a Star Wars Battlefront "technical test" will take place in early October, with both a large-scale map—the 40-player Walker Assault on Hoth—and the smaller, more intimate two-player co-op Survival Mission on Tattoine set to appear. The beta will also include a brand-new mode called Drop Zone, which EA plans to reveal more about in the future.

We've seen Walker Assault and Survival in action already, thanks to their reveals at E3. Walker Assault comes is a riff on the opening Hoth battle in Empire Strikes Back, and features various sorts of ground and air units battling to take control of/escape from the rocky ball of ice. The map, and the beta, will also let players do battle as either Luke Skywalker or Darth Vader, two of the hero/villain characters that will appear in the game.

Survival is a bit simpler: You and a fellow Rebel trooper are stranded on Tattoine—because it's always Tattoine, isn't it?—and must fight off increasingly difficult waves of Imperial forces, until they decide that you're too hot to handle and bugger off to do other things, like enforce the subclauses of an unfair trade agreement. Because who doesn't want to watch that, right George?

The beta will also see the launch of the Star Wars Battlefront Companion, a mobile app for iOS and Android that will feature the strategy card game Base Command and enable players to check their stats and progression, communicate with friends, and earn in-game credits used to unlock Star Cards, weapons, and other resources and assets.

EA hasn't revealed when the beta will take place any more precisely than "early October," nor has it said if it will be open or closed, or how you'll go about gaining access if it's the latter. You will have to use Origin to play the game, however, which shouldn't come as any surprise but is worth clarifying anyway, just in case.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.