Star Wars Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike
Review by Triforce441
"Rogue Squadron is still flying high"
In October of 2003 a new game was brought to the Star Wars Universe for the Nintendo GameCube. Before its release it was highly hyped and brought speculation on how the on-foot (discussed later) missions would be and if the title would live up to the quality of the previous installments. This Game was titled Star Wars- Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike.
Rogue Squadron is a series that has been thought of highly by fans of the series and by many others. With the release of the first game on the N64, a fun game with many possibilities was brought to us. Rogue Leader (Rogue Squadron II) fulfilled these many possibilities by patching mostly all the flaws that existed in the original and made it a thorough run through the Star Wars Trilogy by allowing you to pilot through the key events in this expansive universe, with side missions in between. Rogue Leader was the game everyone wanted at the launch of the GCN and was considered by many to be the best Star Wars game (Only Challenged by Knights of the Old Republic). So a person may ask, Does Rebel Strike continue the greatness that existed in its predecessors and live up to raising the bar in the quality of the series, or is it just a game that became a rehash and disappointment?
Rogue Squadron has been famous for allowing you to pilot the many vehicles in the Star Wars Universe. The series has been exclusive to air and space combat for the past two games. However, our dear friends at Factor 5 have decided to try and add some flavor and innovation to Rebel Strike by bringing on-foot portions to the game. This change has caused criticism but truly doesn't hurt the game too much.
In Rogue Squadron you either play as Luke Skywalker or Wedge Antilles in a variety of missions. Rebel Strike is no exception, but this time it allows you to choose between either Luke or Wedge's campaign instead of your character being predetermined. Rebel Strike is also the first in the series to include a multiplayer (versus) and cooperative mode which are some of the greatest features of Rebel Strike.
Now that I have described the basics... On to the bulk of the review!!!
This is the highest Part of the Game. This really deserves something like an 11. The graphics on Rebel Strike are nearly unmatched in video gaming today. The Aircrafts shown are very detailed and make the experience of piloting so much more 'real.' In Space the backgrounds show lit stars and in Geonosis you see Asteroids that look great. On the later missions at Endor you see trees that even in areas in the middle of nowhere look just as they should. Enemy aircraft explode and show a bright blast that is jaw dropping. Also with the improvement on GCNs compatibilities the screen can show many many more tie fighters, which would have previously been impossible for Rogue Leader. The only graphical flaw is that I personally believe that the character models could have been better done, but they still look fine. The game can also show scenes straight from the movies due to the improvements of hardware compatibilities.
Another area that is perfect is the sound of Rebel Strike. Anyone who has seen the movies will understand what I mean. Every sound made in the game sounds like it came straight from the trilogy. As tie fighters fly by you hear the equivalent from the films. Same with laser fire and everything else. Not much else can be said about sound except that the music and sound effects are flawless.
The control in Rebel Strike is of high quality, but not perfect. In ships, controls seem a little bit tighter (good thing) and the same as Rogue Leader. However, everything gets messed up with the ground missions. They seem like they were hardly worked on and unorganized. While driving the AT-STs the feel gets fixed up a little bit over on-foot, but still could've been better. The overall control control is decent, but can take a bit of getting used to for newcomers to the series.
As everybody should know by now, Gameplay is the most important part of any game. And boy o boy does Rebel Strike deliver in almost every way. I'll get the negative part done with first. And it is.... *drumroll* the onfoot portion (surprise surprise). Factor 5, I commend you for trying something new, but you just pulled a Star Fox Adventures on us (it isn't that bad). They changed a series that has been known for Star Wars Air/Space combat and brought it to the ground. Sure the onfoot portion aren't that bad and are fun at times, but they should have been worked on harder instead being what looks like rushed. Now that I am done with that lets get to the positives.
The Main Menu has 4 options which are Single Player, Cooperative, Versus, and Options. Single player offers the great missions where you have to fulfill a variety of goals. Doing this is a very fun part of the game and usually deals with destroying or protection a target. You have the option to fire missiles or laser and perform other options in the ship. Cooperative is an innovation that has helped the series greatly since now we can play with a friend. YAY! AND IT HAS THE ENTIRE GAME OF ROGUE LEADER!! *anyway* But this time around it is harder and adds a challenge to the game. Versus is similar except in this you are in direct competition with player 2 in either a dogfight, race, or a variety of other mini-games. Options offers the same as usual with bonus features and ways to unlock other features that adds onto the game.
Not much to say here... Simply look at all the gameplay has to offer and you'll know that this game will keep you playing long after you beat the game the first time. Great replayability has been a staple in the Rogue Squadron series as there is almost always more to do. The greatest of these is to collect all of the golds and platinums which is and has been one of the greatest accomplishments a gamer can achieve since it is time consuming and difficult.
Rebel Strike is easily my favorite Star Wars game and is a must have. Whether it is better than Knights of the Old Republic is up for grabs and is dependant on opinion, although most would prefer KOTOR. If you have a GameCube, this should be the game your currently playing. If you were a fan of the previous games buy it now, and if you are uncertain play it first before purchase since this great game doesn't appeal to everyone. May The Force Be With Rogue Squadron As it continues in Flight!!!
Final Score: 9/10
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 10/28/03
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