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The $79.99 edition of Star Wars Battlefront 2 is a pay-to-win bonanza

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Why earn the best abilities when you can buy them?

DICE/Electronic Arts

While EA has suspended the premium economy of Star Wars Battlefront 2, the game’s $79.99 Elite Trooper Deluxe Edition comes with a variety of epic cards that will immediately give you an advantage when playing online. If someone has much better gear than you on the first day of play, it’s likely because they bought their way in.

I should know. I bought my way in. For science.

To give you some examples, the epic “Improved Thermal Detonator” card gives you a grenade with a larger blast radius and a shorter recharge time. You’re also given the CR-2 blaster with the maximum rate of power possible, although you’ll have less range and do less damage per shot.

It’s an effective weapon online, and would be the second weapon you unlock after the A280, which is a medium-range weapon that fires in three-shot bursts. So right off the bat you’re given an incredibly powerful grenade and the second-to-last weapon in your arsenal in the assault class already unlocked.

The heavy class is given the “Improved Combat Shield” epic card, which boosts your shield health to the maximum of 300, and the specialist class gets the epic “Trip Mine” card with the least possible recharge time. Every class is given an epic ability card and one of the weapons that would normally be unlocked by destroying a set number of enemies during play. These ability cards aren’t just helpful, you’ll get the most powerful version of each one in this edition.

The extra $20 doesn’t get you a season pass or a nice bundle of aesthetic options, although there are some nice aesthetic options included in the cards. But the real draw is getting access to powerful weapons and epic abilities from the moment you begin playing Star Wars Battlefront 2 online.

The official description isn’t subtle:

The Star Wars Battlefront II: Elite Trooper Deluxe Edition turns your troopers into the ultimate opponents. Every trooper class (Officer, Assault, Heavy, and Specialist) is upgraded, delivering superior firepower, deadly weapon modifications, and epic combat abilities.

I played without these cards and weapons during the 10-hour preview through EA Access and did OK online, but my kills went up noticeably after I purchased this edition of the game and made my characters more powerful, using weapons that more suited my play style.

I didn’t have to earn them, I just needed to pay more.