While considering topics to cover for May the Fourth, aka Star Wars Day, the one topic I felt the most pull to write about was the state of the game from a fan’s perspective. This game has had some ups and downs, some of which I will touch on, others I will not. But all in all, SWGoH should be celebrated by Star Wars fans and EA stockholders alike. Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes has been around for over 5 years and does not show any signs of slowing down, and with new Star Wars content in the works by LucasFilm currently and Disney fully-invested in building the Star Wars universe, that is only going to be good news for us as fans. Now I realize my views on SWGoH will not be the same as the views of others, but I have played this game every day since December 2015, so I hope that will account for something.
Let me add one more item. I am not afraid to be critical of EA Capital Games, and you will see some of that below. While I am critical, I also try to be fair, and I have held back on stories on this site 50 times for each time I was critical. But the key in all of this, like any relationship, is the ability to move on and celebrate what we have in front of us. I will touch on the future of the game below, but let’s just say that I feel like SWGoH has a very bright future.
The Past of SWGoH
Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes launched in November 2015, the same year that CNET dubbed “Lifeline,” “Prune” and “Dark Echo” as top games. Players started in SWGoH with a Clone Sergeant, Royal Guard, Clone Wars Chewbacca and others as they progressed through the challenges of the Holotables, often struggling to get past Savage Opress in the AGI Gear Challenge or have enough purple Ability Materials. The Rancor Raid was a tough challenge for players in the early days as we worked to build up a Teebo turn meter reduction team, and Qui-Gon Jinn’s leadership was the Speed boost needed to win in the Arena.
Mods were added in-game in July 2016, forever changing how we played the game and, intentional or not, making Speed the name of the game. Emperor Palpatine joined SWGoH with his Legendary event just before the Heroic AAT forced guilds to adjust, or be left behind, and that was around the time that Gaming-fans.com was launched. Like many other Content Creators, there was a need for education around SWGoH and this site has been lucky enough to be one of many sources of that education. As Clone Troopers led by Cody dominated Phase 4 of HAAT, the game continued to grow and evolve, and even in the early days we reported on a Gorilla Rave Games video on how SWGoH had changed from its launch. Rogue One came out in December 2016 and introduced new characters to the Star Wars universe and CG was on top of this with several new characters in the game.
As 2017 began we started our character mod guides here at Gaming-fans.com and have continued those to this day, often going back to update and revise as new characters are added or factions evolve with new synergies. SWGoH saw the introduction of Knights of the Old Republic characters, which continued off and on for over a year, and the Star Wars Rebels characters joined the game, as did R2-D2 and Grand Admiral Thrawn. The introduction of Territory Battles was the hot news of mid-2017 as Wampa and Hermit Yoda joined the game, and BB-8 joined us in the Fall of 2017 as the Nightsister faction was expanded and became the META until the release of Rey (Jedi Training) in December. Then we got the release of The Last Jedi in theaters, and while the negative backlash this movie got undoubtedly impacted SWGoH in 2018, it took a few months to be felt.
In 2018 we saw Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes and the GameChangers at their highest points in the announcement of the new Sith Triumvirate Raid when EA Capital Games flew many of us to Sacramento to preview the new game mode, the addition of Darth Sion and Darth Traya, and the memorable near eviction of Ahnald & the rest of us in Sacramento. The HSTR came to the game and once again forced guilds to adjust, and we saw a Quality of Life update in late February as the high that SWGoH was on was unable to be sustained. Solo: A Star Wars Story was released as were characters from the movie, and more KOTOR characters and Bounty Hunters were added, along with new Gear 12 pieces, as the first Jedi Knight Revan event was announced in October. It was just after this that the GameChangers program began to fall apart and communication from the studio to the community diminished heading into 2019.
It was early 2019 when the GameChangers liaison from EA was forced to move on (to a rival game and studio) and shortly thereafter that EA Carrie, the Lead Producer of SWGoH, left Capital Games. Yes, we got the Millennium Falcon, Darth Revan and Darth Malak, but Mobile Gamer and Ahnald has the foresight then to see that SWGoH was on the decline. The biggest news of mid-2019 was the announcement of the Geonosis Territory Battles which we finally started to get to play in June. Relics were added in the Fall of 2019 as communication with the studio continued to be minimal at best, and we closed the year with the Light Side version of the Geonosis Territory Battle map being added.
As 2020 began, Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes reached $1 billion in lifetime revenue, and while The Mandalorian was in full force, dominating the Internet, we were instead getting Clone Wars content and a Hyperdrive Bundle in SWGoH. Vague issues of The Road Ahead told us little, because very little was going on, but we did get two new Capital Ships and the announcement of Galactic Legends. In fact, just days before COVID shut the world down, we received the final requirements for Rey and Supreme Leader Kylo Ren despite not having kits for either Galactic Legend character.
Then some weird thing called COVID hit the world, but instead of addressing it early and offering incentive to play the game more often, Capital Games drug their feet. In fact, we at Gaming-fans.com addressed a need for content from game developers on March 13th, the day that many states started to close down here in the USA, but not to worry, the developer insights for both Galactic Legend Rey and SLK came just days later. The Bad Batch debuted in The Clone Wars final season, but not in-game, and we did finally see the first of The Mandalorian characters added in SWGoH in May 2020. However the next month saw the relationship between Capital Games and the SWGoH community sour to an all-time high. It started with the fact that none of those in-the-know had felt good about the direction of the game or the communication from the studio for many months, if not over a year, but it hit a boiling point when former GameChanger AhnaldT101 had an alt account banned for account sharing, a fairly common practice in the SWGoH community. I will not get into all of that now, and while some of the issues that were brought to the forefront by this move have been improved upon, others remain problems with SWGoH and Capital Games to this day. CG’s answer to the outcry was a oddly-timed release of Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker, with no Rebel synergy and only a Jedi tag. Yes, the same Jedi Knight Luke who was the only Jedi of his time and was a leader in the Rebellion. But not a Rebel… In August they added Admiral Piett and announced two new Galactic Legends – Jedi Master Luke Skywalker and Sith Eternal Emperor, then October saw us start slicing 5-dot mode before more Mandalorian content and a revamped Challenge Rancor Raid before Christmas. As 2020 came to close I published Three Keys to Continued Success for Galaxy of Heroes in 2021, and while EA Capital Games is not following my blueprint perfectly, they are hitting on all three points.
So far in 2021 we have seen the addition of the Conquest game mode, Bo-Katan and Dark Trooper joining the game and now the Bad Batch. This, coupled with MUCH better communication from the studio and a bit more competition from outside now that the exclusivity of the Star Wars gaming license is coming to a close, seem to have Capital Games motivated to push this game forward.
The Present & Future of SWGoH
The future of SWGoH is as bright as anything the game has accomplished to date. The studio, despite a lot of criticism (which I am not afraid to join in on), seems as though they are putting pieces in place to enhance the old technology with a new platform, updated graphics, etc. In addition, since CG_Doja_Fett came on board the communication is lightyears better. One of the biggest keys to the game’s continued success, in addition to having a large number of whales and krakens like myself fully addicted (yes, I used that word as it is the truth…), is that Star Wars content is about to explode. Today we saw the launch of the Bad Batch series. The Mandalorian is a huge success and Season 3 will be out in 2021, The Book of Boba Fett is scheduled to come out this December, the new Ahsoka series is set for a 2022 release and many, many other projects are in the works (including what I think is highly underrated already – the Cassian Andor series). With new content from Disney and Star Wars we will undoubtedly see more interest in Star Wars as a whole, and more interest means more downloads of SWGoH and more $$$ in EA’s pockets, as long as they play things correctly. So in addition to the keys for 2021 success that I mentioned before, if EA Capital Games can continue to publish new game content around what is coming in the Star Wars universe, listen to the community and communicate, I feel like the future of SWGoH is one we will all enjoy.
About the Author
LJ, in-game name ljcool110, is a Digital Marketing professional who loves all things Star Wars, except Rian Johnson, and has played SWGoH every day since December 2016, now competing with the game’s best in a Top 10 guild in the game. A former member of the SWGoH GameChangers, LJ is the founder of Gaming-fans.com and remains the Director of Content at Gaming-fans.com today. A husband, father and Little League coach, LJ regularly speaks to Middle and High School students in and around his rural Midwestern community about his unique career and interests in Star Wars, Marvel and more.