Review by Silent_Bread

"The Force is with you...just not so strong here."

The Star Wars franchise of video games has been a long time staple for video game consoles, all the way back to the Atari. It has triumphed (and failed) on nearly every major system.

This review is on Lucasarts latest incarnation of the Star Wars universe, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed. The whole point to this game is using the force like it was never pushed to before. You'll be crushing powerful war machinery into a bite sized ball, making every enemy you encounter fly from 0-60 in less than a second. You'll run into frame rate, camera, and bug issues in every force jump, dash, and saber combo.

Graphics: 7/10

For being on the PS3, the hailed "most powerful console" of this generation, you'd think the graphics would be somewhat superior to its 360 counterpart. But in order to save time in the production process and able to port it to the PS3's lesser cousin, graphics are equal to the Xbox 360 port. Actually, they aren't even that. The graphics are a little splotchy in some environments, textures being reused throughout the game, character models look a little choppy during some animations, your saber sometimes is stuck in "attack mode", with the player's character running with a lightsaber continuously giving off a "after effect" similar to swinging it.

The graphics could have been done better with all the time they spent working on it. This next-gen Star Wars game is a cut above previous titles, but it could have been pushed so much further.

Sound: 9/10

It's a Lucasarts Star Wars game. If the company utilizing the full power of THX does something right, it's the sound. Music pumps during action sequences, electricity crackles with power, characters are voiced fantastically. You will find no fault in sound quality here; it is a epic space drama with all the choir and drums it can muster to give a perfect mood.

But you aren't here for the music.

Gameplay: 6/10

I wish I knew what happened. Can you use epic force powers? Yes. Can you tear up the Empire with as much bloodlust as the dark side provides? Yes. Does it feel satisfying? Yes.

Then what's the problem? The problem, which plagues you throughout the game, is the whole camera and moving around part.

Yes, you killed a platoon of stormtroopers. Not a big deal when you get caught in between 2 crates that are about 3 feet high in length.

Boy, that Force Lightning chain was awesome. Too bad I got shot off-screen, from a guy I could not even target. Oh crap, there are 5 more off-screen, let's turn to get them, oh no, fell off that bottomless pit. Boy, doesn't even look like I'm falling.

This game has combat looking, when you decide to use more than the 4 hit combo, the most useful combo in the game.

That being said, combat is tedious, yet great to look at when you string together devastating moves. Too bad getting to places was such a hassle.

Replay Value: 7/10

The game does have unlockables, a cheat code system (the codes should be up on Gamefaqs within a few days), new costumes, and a higher difficulty setting. There also saber powerups and EXP to find in game, that you may have missed the first time around.

But what you won't miss is how the game reuses several of the levels (only beefing up the enemies), and the lack of something to come back for. Like a 2 player duel mode (found in the Wii version, basically IS the Wii version), an expansive mission mode (Like Devil May Cry's Bloody Tower, or Ninja Gaiden's Mission mode), we could go on all day naming things off to extend a game's lifetime.

Overall: 7/10

All in all, this game is not a bad game. The problem is that it's also not a great game either. An effort tried, and failed to deliver in some areas.

But don't cry little Jawa gamer, I do recommend you play it, it is an excellent story, with fantastic action. Just remember you will be frustrated with bugs and camera issues through out the game.

Compared to other games, this game could have been SO much more. But it also could have been a lot less. When they make the sequel (which they will), just fix what you screwed up.

And more wookies to kill.


Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 09/17/08

Game Release: Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (US, 09/16/08)


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