Despite major controversy, the new 'Star Wars' game is a massive success

  • “Star Wars Battlefront 2” launched amid a storm of controversy, with many fans vowing not to buy it.
  • Despite that controversy, the game was the second-best selling game of November – the biggest month of game sales all year.
  • Strong sales of “Battlefront 2” demonstrate the disconnect between critics and fans.

Against all odds, the new “Star Wars” game is a major hit. It was the second best-selling game in November, according to market research company The NPD Group, just behind the latest “Call of Duty” game.

Take a look:

Top video games november npdThe NPD Group/Business Insider

That’s a major surprise given the game’s tumultuous debut.

“Star Wars Battlefront 2” launched on November 19 to a storm of controversy. Major changes were made before the game even launched – a response to backlash from fans who played the game ahead of its official release. Those changes continued in the week following launch, arriving against the backdrop of largely negative reviews of the game.

In short, “Star Wars Battlefront 2” is underwhelming. It’s graphically beautiful and rife with “Star Wars” fan favourites like Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, but the game’s single-player campaign is shallow and its multiplayer is bland.

Worse: The game’s multiplayer section seemingly encourages players to pay additional money for in-game “loot boxes.” Much of the controversy around “Battlefront 2” directly concerns the loot-box system – a Hawaii lawmaker is even pursuing potential legislation based on the backlash.

Star Wars Battlefront 2EA DICEThis is a loot crate in ‘Battlefront 2.’

Regardless of this backlash, and regardless of largely negative reviews (including our own), “Star Wars Battlefront 2” was a sales hit in its debut month.

According to The NPD Group, “Battlefront 2” topped sales of “Assassin’s Creed Origins” and “Super Mario Odyssey” – one of the biggest launches of November and one of the biggest launches of the year, respectively. It also topped so-called “evergreen” blockbusters like “FIFA 18” and “Madden 18.” It’s not clear how many copies of “Battlefront 2” were sold; the game is available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. The last game in the series, 2015’s “Star Wars Battlefront,” sold over 10 million copies.

Whether “Battlefront 2” can sustain its initial sales momentum is another question, but it assuredly won’t hurt that a major “Star Wars” film just launched.

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