- "Do not rest until the destruction of Alderaan is complete."
- ―Darth Vader
The game's prologue takes place after the destruction of Alderaan. Under orders from Darth Vader, Commodore Rae Sloane deploys Helix Squadron, led by Captain Lindon Javes, from the Imperial II-class Star Destroyer Vigilance to Fostar Haven to wipe out a possible Alderaanian refugee convoy. Captain Javes, conflicted about his loyalty to the Galactic Empire after the recent destruction of Alderaan, orders that only standard TIE fighters be used. His second-in-command, friend, and wingmate, Lieutenant Terisa Kerrill, still undeniably loyal to the Empire, thinks little of his decision. Arriving at Fostar Haven, Helix Squadron begins scanning ships. The squadron fires at a fleeing ship, prompting the Stationmaster to activate the station's defenses. After a brief firefight, the Alderaanian refugee convoy is discovered in a tunnel and a dogfight ensues between Helix Squadron and rebel X-wings. After destroying the X-wings, Lieutenant Kerrill orders the pursuit of the refugee convoy through the tunnel. However, before Helix Squadron could destroy the convoy, Captain Javes disables their TIE fighters with ion missiles. Lieutenant Kerrill, shocked by Javes' betrayal, quickly reboots her ship and orders pursuit. After a short chase, Javes destroys the tunnel's exit, blocking Helix Squadron. Javes and the convoy flee the tunnel, but the Vigilance exits hyperspace just in front of them, blocking their escape.
Somewhere in the Mid Rim, the Rebel Fleet, led by Admiral Gial Ackbar, receives a distress call from Fostar Haven. Ackbar deploys Echo Squadron to answer the call. Reaching Fostar Haven, Echo Squadron finds the refugee convoy under attack from the Vigilance. As they move in to assist, Echo Five is shot down and killed. Echo Squadron receives a transmission from Lindon Javes on an Imperial Channel, and they accept his assistance as a defector. After a battle resulting in the death of Echo Two, Echo Squadron damages the Vigilance long enough for the convoy and the Rebels to escape.
Four years later, after the Battle of Endor, the game's main plot begins and centers on two fighter squadrons: the New Republic's Vanguard Squadron, and the Galactic Empire's Titan Squadron. In the plot, "two pilots shape the balance of power in the galaxy." Part of the plot deals with the New Republic's Project Starhawk, which the Empire has gotten wind of, sending spies to deal with it. The player will play as both Vanguard Five and Titan Three for the New Republic's Vanguard Squadron and the Empire's Titan Squadron respectively.
Vanguard Squadron is comprised of four other pilots, including Kierah "Gunny" Koovah as Vanguard Leader or Vanguard One, a Mimbanese female; Gracalia "Grace" Vatara Sienar, a human female; Feresk "Frisk" Tssat, a Trandoshan male; and Keo Venzee, a non-binary Mirialan. Shortly following the Battle of Endor, Lindon Javes is given command of the Temperance and Vanguard Squadron, quickly putting them to work for the benefit of Project Starhawk. Javes, with the help of Fleet Intelligence Officer Ardo Barodai and Chief Mechanic Zerelda Sage, assigns Vanguard Squadron to disable Imperial jamming ships causing blackouts. Vanguard Squadron splits up for the assignment and regroups at Cavas, where after a small battle, the jamming ship is destroyed. Upon returning from their mission, Vanguard Squadron is immediately deployed on another mission where they work with Wedge Antilles and Talus Group to capture the Imperial II-class Star Destroyer Victorum above the planet Yavin Prime. Despite heavy casualties, they succeed, and the Star Destroyer is taken for Project Starhawk. Vanguard returns to the Temperance not too happy about all the secrecy surrounding Project Starhawk. Commander Javes tries to reassure them when he is interrupted by a Code Yellow from the Victorum. Its hyperdrive had malfunctioned behind enemy lines and it was pulled out of hyperspace. Imperial ships are on the way to reclaim the Victorum, so Vanguard Squadron is sent to defend it. Managing to destroy several Imperial shuttles, Vanguard gives the crew of the Victorum enough time to repair the hyperdrive and jump to safety. Vanguard follows the Victorum to just outside the Ringali Nebula where they discover Project Starhawk to be the construction of a battleship at the Nadiri Dockyards led by General Hera Syndulla.
Titan Squadron is comprised of four other pilots, including Varko Grey, a human male; Rella Sol, a human female; Shen, a cybernetic-supported human male; and Havina Vonreg, a human female. In the Talcene system, the Imperial Star Destroyer Overseer, led by Captain Terisa Kerrill with the help of Imperial Intelligence Officer LT-514 and Chief Mechanic Willard Waylin, receives orders Admiral Rae Sloane to find and eliminate Lindon Javes and Project Starhawk. Kerrill enlists Titan Squadron for the task. Their first mission is to extract an Imperial spy, Agent Thorn, from a Hosnian Prime orbital outpost. They succeed with minimal casualties. After receiving Thorn's intel, Titan Squadron is sent to track a New Republic engineer convoy's trajectory from Hosnian Prime near Desevro to uncover the location of Project Starhawk. A local Imperial force led by Captain Amos and the damaged Imperial Star Destroyer Tormentor is instructed not to interfere with this discreet mission, but Amos' arrogance leads him to attack the convoy. In the ensuing battle, Titan Squadron is forced out of hiding to protect the convoy from Amos. Imperial shuttles manage to board the convoy ships and retrieve the data, but Amos is killed and the Tormentor is destroyed. Only the sector is found from the mostly wiped data. Kerrill orders the destruction of the convoy to send a message to Lindon Javes that they're coming for him.
In order to keep Terisa Kerrill off the scent of Project Starhawk, Lindon Javes sends a message to be intentionally intercepted by an Imperial listening outpost near Esseles. Javes deploys Vanguard Squadron to destroy the outpost to make Kerrill think they were hiding something about Project Starhawk and throw her off the trail. Vanguard successfully destroys the outpost, and Kerrill takes the bait. The false intel states that Vanguard Squadron is protecting a shipment of magnite crystals essential to completing the Starhawk. This false intel is used to draw Kerrill and the Overseer deep into the Zavian Abyss. The trap is a success, but not before Titan Squadron is able to scan the convoy's navicomputer for the precise location of Nadiri Dockyards. The Starhawk emerges and activates a powerful tractor beam on the Overseer, ripping it apart and slamming it into the surrounding asteroids. Kerrill manages to jump away, the ship badly damaged.
The Overseer exits hyperspace in the Remitik system where they quickly send a distress call to a nearby Imperial munitions depot les by Colonel Gralm. With Gralm unwilling to provide aid for the Overseer due to his problem with rebel guerrillas, Terisa Kerrill sends Titan Squadron to retrieve baradium from the outpost while it is under attack from rebels. LT-514 is able to remotely retrieve the baradium, and the Overseer leaves, repairs nearly complete. In order to lure the New Republic Fleet away from the Nadiri Dockyards, Admiral Sloane orders simultaneous attacks on New Republic targets across the galaxy. The Overseer and Titan Squadron are sent to destroy the fuel pods and medical frigates over Mon Cala. Sloane also sends Imperial battle groups to strike Onderon and Gorse to disrupt New Republic supply lines. At Mon Cala, Titan Squadron meets heavy resistance from Anvil Squadron, a New Republic squadron that Shen had previously encountered and lost too. During the battle, Titan manages to destroy the Silver Coronet and deal a heavy blow to Anvil Squadron. The diversion is a success and Vanguard Squadron rushes to aid the forces at Mon Cala. With Vanguard out of the way, the Overseer travels to the Nadiri Dockyards and attacks the Starhawk, severely damaging its hyperdrive with the baradium missiles. Just as Kerrill fires the killing missile barrage, Lindon Javes and the Temperance exit hyperspace in front of the Starhawk, taking the missiles and damaging the hyperdrive. The Temperance manages to scramble the Overseer's missile targeting system, causing Kerrill to fall back. As the Nadari fleet flees, the Titan Squadron is sent to trap them enroute to Chandrila with the reactor cores leftover from the dismantledVictorum. Titan manages to destroy the fleet save for the Starhawk, which diverts toward the Ringali Nebula.
Wounded and nearly defenseless, Lindon Javes sends Vanguard Squadron and Zerelda Sage to reboot a nearby broadcast hub that once orbited Galitan. They manage to repair the hub and send out a distress call to the New Republic. Despite the mission's success, the Starhawk has suffered too much damage and is ordered to be evacuated to the Temperance by General Syndulla. In order to help the Temperance escape, Javes pilots an X-wing to buy them time to fix the hyperdrive. Thanks to the distress call, Anvil Squadron arrives just in time to assist Javes take on the Overseer while the Temperance breaks off from the fleet. General Syndulla sends Meteor and Hail Squadrons to secure the Nadiri Dockyards from the Empire.
Following closely behind the New Republic Fleet, Terisa Kerrill ignores the Temperance and pursues the Starhawk. In one final strike, Titan Squadron attacks the Starhawk. Titan Three manages to blast a hole in the hull and travel down the shaft to the tractor beam core. Destroying the reactors, Titan Three is shot out of the shaft, leaving the Starhawk a ticking time bomb. In one final attempt to fend off the Empire, Lindon Javes attacks Titan Squadron, only to have his X-wing shot down and crash into the side of the burning battleship. Assuming his death, Kerrill calls back Titan Squadron to the Overseer. As it leaves, the remaining Imperial forces pursue the burning Starhawk. Titan Three is promoted to Flight Baron for his service.
Aboard the Temperance, General Syndulla sends Vanguard Squadron to save Anvil Squadron from the remaining Imperial forces. Vanguard manages to destroy the nearest Star Destroyer, allowing Anvil to escape. As Vanguard is clearing a path, they receive a transmission from Lindon Javes, who survived the crash. Several CR90 corvettes pull in front of the Starhawk which is firing periodic tractor beams. The Corvettes tow the Starhawk into a straight shot of the unstable moon of Galitan, which is surrounded by Imperial forces as Javes pilots an X-wing off the Starhawk. The Corvettes pull back and Vanguard protects the Starhawk as it makes its way to the moon. It crashes, and the Starhawk explodes, causing the moon to go with it. The explosion engulfs all remaining Imperial forces, and Vanguard Squadron narrowly escapes. They regroup with the Temperance and head to Chandrilla, engineers safe and ready to rebuild the Starhawk and more.
The entire game is playable in VR. The PC version fully supports joystick use as well as hands-on-throttle-and-stick rigs. Crossplay is available. The game takes place entirely during a first-person perspective. The game features a singleplayer campaign and various multiplayer modes. The campaign alternates between the perspective of New Republic and Imperial pilots.
There are four types of starfighters available in the game: fighters, which are balanced in firepower and defense, interceptors, which have superior speed and are useful against fighters, support, which are heavily armored and can support other craft, and bombers, which are slower with better firepower and armor and are best for taking down enemy capital ships. The New Republic has access to these classes via the X-Wing, A-Wing, U-Wing, B-wing and Y-Wing respectively. Similarly, the Empire has access to the TIE Fighter, TIE Interceptor, TIE Reaper, Tie defender and TIE Bomber.
- Dogfight: 5v5 battle with respawns and weapon loadouts. The winning side is determined by whichever side reaches 30 kills first.
- Fleet Battles: Designed as multistage conflicts, Fleet Battles begins in a social hub that is used to devise strategies. After settling on a strategy and launching from the hanger, players are tasked to push a front line toward the enemy's side. Depending on which way the line is moving, players must attack or defend two medium-sized capital ships. If a player succeeds on the offensive end, the final goal is to take out a flagship, beginning with its subsystems: shield generators, power systems, and targeting systems. When the flagship falls, the destroying side wins. This mode can be played as a lone player against AI, or as part of a two-player online coop experience. It can also be played as a ranked mode with two teams of five players fighting against each other.
As one plays through single player and multiplayer, one unlocks the ability to customize their craft, including exterior paint colors and interior cosmetics. Over 50 loadout options are available, allowing players to customize their fighter. There are two types of currency, both of which can be used to purchase items.
Star Wars: Squadrons also features a "training" mode for players to practice and experiment with different load-outs as well as a Fleet Battles tutorial.
- In Practice, players are able to add in as many starfighters, cruisers, and capital ships as they like to sharpen their skills. They can also experiment with different starfighter load-outs to find the optimal setup of their choice.
- The Fleet Battles tutorial gives players an understanding of the mechanics of the game and gives a unique reward once completed.
The game was released on October 2, 2020 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. Two companion stories were released on EA's website shortly after launch: The short story "The Light You Bring" on October 8, as well as "Count to Three" on October 13.
On December 11, 2020, the B-wing was added as an alternative bomber class starfighter for the New Republic while the TIE Defender was added as an alternative fighter class starfighter for the Empire.
|Organizations and titles||Sentient species||Vehicles and vessels||Weapons and technology||Miscellanea|
Organizations and titles
Vehicles and vessels
Weapons and technology
Notes and references