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Star Wars: Squadrons straps in for epic dogfight in new gameplay trailer

By Benjamin Bullard
Star Wars Squadrons X Wing fighter

Two days after showing off a cinematic trailer that introduced Star Wars: Squadrons to the world as a video game with darn near movie-quality graphics, EA has followed up with an extended gameplay trailer that appears to make good on that earlier tease. 

Bringing the galaxy far, far away onto gaming consoles as something that looks and feels a whole lot like the final three movies in the Skywalker saga, EA packed a ton of new info into the five-minute clip, including the game's fall release date and plenty of details on how you’ll fight your way to victory in both single-player and multiplayer modes. 

Touting Squadrons as “the definitive Star Wars pilot experience” — no small boast, given some of the classic fighter sims that’ve come before — EA walked players through the game’s story setup, which puts your team at the center of an epic conflict that’ll shape the future of the galaxy. 

Squadrons features a single-player story spanning two factions (one Imperial; the other Rebellion) in addition to multiplayer dogfights as a member of a five-ship squadron. There’s also the option to play the entire game in VR — a huge perk for PlayStation 4 and PC owners.

The single-player story campaign veers back and forth between the Empire and the Rebel Fleet, putting you in the cockpit as both an X-Wing and TIE Fighter pilot. Take the fight online, and you’ll end up earning your wings behind the controls of 8 different ships in total. Throughout the campaign, you’ll be able to unlock both cosmetic and functional upgrades — including more than 50 component swap-outs that affect “how your ships fly, fight, and survive.”

In multiplayer, things branch out further with modes that play out pretty much like they sound: Dogfight Mode is “an all-out 5-v-5 battle” that puts your ship right at the heart of an high-stakes space fight. Fleet Battles, meanwhile, raises the stakes, taking your team through extended multi-stage conflicts that use your “social hub” (aka your base) as a refuge where you can coordinate your action plan, prep each ship’s battle loadout, and take stock of the overall mission. Whether playing attack or defense, the game appears to take direct aim at emulating the tight, urgent communication between squad members during battle. After all, EA teases, “a unified squadron is the key to victory.”

Squadrons wasn’t the only game that EA showed off during its EA Play online event Thursday. The publisher also teased new looks at how games from franchises like Dragon Age and Battlefield will look on next-gen consoles, and even rolled out a couple of new game announcements — including the quirky, Tim Burton-esque Lost in Random (shown above), which puts you in a stylishly gloomy animated world where fate hinges on the roll of a dice. 

Lost in Random is set to arrive sometime next year, while Star Wars: Squadrons swoops down on Oct. 2 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Coupled with the success of EA’s recent Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, Squadrons looks — in the trailers, at least — to be another big step toward getting EA’s Star Wars gaming franchise back on track