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Arhetton
18th September 08, 04:06 AM
http://www.fanboy.com/images/star-wars-force-unleashed-thumb.jpg

The Force Unleashed is a 3rd person action game with some light rpg elements (abilities to purchase, health and equipment upgrades etc).

In case you've been living under a video-game-inhibiting rock, you've probably heard of it already. Some of you have already played the demo available on xbox live.

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Theres lots of things about this game that make it really great, but like always, there are elements which I just find incredibly annoying and not thought through.

This game gets two thumbs up for the force abilities that you have, the environment and the interactivity of the game. The physics engine and animations are ridiculous, as you can drag stormtroopers screaming around the walls/ceilings like some sick scene in the exorcist before flinging them out through a window into space (sucking anyone else nearby out too until the bulkhead closes).

I'll keep this review short, there are three major things that bother me about this game.

The first, is that although the force powers are very well thought out, the other major part of being a jedi is that you carry a lightsaber. A lightsaber is supposed to be an energy sword that slices effortlessly through limbs, robots and can even melt corridor bulkheads. Unfortunately in this game, instead of being given a lightsaber, you are given a colourful baton which you bash stormtroopers with. Thats right, once again a lightsaber is just a colourful toy which reduces the health bar of your enemy. Stormtroopers can take multiple hits on the 'normal' difficulty setting before dying, and squad sergeants can take a full combo of half a dozen or more hits before they die.

Enemy AI is okay in the game - most of the soldiers stay back to shoot, which means that if you want to use the lightsaber you have to chase them down, which is kind of thoroughly unrewarding really. Its much easier to just stand at a distance and fling soldiers around (usually straight off the map).

Which brings me to the second part of this game that annoys me: The enemies. There are certain things which I think are kind of lazy about creating enemy kinds, specifically ones which are just straight out immune to powers you have had to earn and spec. So at the point in the game where stormtroopers were suddenly surrounded by a protective bubble which meant I couldn't pick them up, force push them, or lightning them at all - I knew I was being forced to use my lightsaber. You know, that colourful stick which you have to run up and bonk them on the head with. I thought this was lazy. How does a stormtrooper get a force immune shield? What were these people thinking? It totally disrupts the experience of using the force at all.

There are entire enemies whose 'ability' just seems to be 'immune to your force powers'. Whats the point? Sure I can pick up an enormous rock and hurl it at an battle tank - but for some reason there are some imperial droids that I can't pick up? Why? Are they heavy? How heavy? And in a trailer where you tear a starship out of the sky, why do I have to face these warriors whose battle CV is basically 'heavy'?

The fact is, that even in the excellent duel scenes against other jedi you can still use all of your force powers. But for some reason, not against some troopers that live in a bubble, and some robots.

Which brings me to the final point that irritates me about this game: the health system and death penalty.

If you die, you respawn at a local checkpoint. The only way to increase your health in the game is that every time you kill enemies, they drop a little bit of health (at least its more consistent than another recent game I bought, which dropped health randomly).

However there are particular cases where you are low on health, you know the checkpoint is too far away and you don't want to lose progress. But there are some enemies around the corner that are immune to your force powers, and they're all carrying guns. So you can't exactly do a mad sprint and bonk them with your glowing stick because you'll simply get shot to pieces and have to respawn, over and over again.

I'm good at video games. I grew up with them. If I die more than 3 times doing the same room filled with the same enemies, something is wrong with your game. Seriously.

I used all the tricks - throwing objects around corners, working out the weaknesses of specific enemies (some are vulnerable to lightning, others can have force powers used on them after you bonk them with your lightsaber once).

But still there are cases in this game, on normal difficulty, which I simply can't seem to get past because at some point your health is particularly low and theres no way to get it to go up without rushing headlong at your enemies.

How about a little meditation animation guys? Is that so hard? Or if you're the badass sith, a drain health power? You know, the ones that were present in practically every other star wars game?

The other issue with this is that if you respawn at a checkpoint, all the enemies behind that checkpoint respawn too. So there are cases of you getting sandwhiched between a large amount of enemies, probably dying, and having to fight the same area again.

Anyway its still a solid, enjoyable star wars game, and I won't spoil the good stuff, like the plot, the great level design (although you are on forgivable rails), the force powers I already mentioned etc. But its not a masterpiece, and it could have been.

6/10

ojgsxr6
18th September 08, 04:23 AM
I have the game for the Wii, I can't believe they neutered the lightsabre like that. Enemies should be limbless after they get hit that many times with it. Anyway, so far I have the same complaints

Neildo
18th September 08, 04:28 AM
Sociocide - Popping culture in it's stupid face Message:

You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Arhetton again.


I was going to rent this, but then i played the demo again and decided to keep playing mercenaries 2 because it was slightly less annoying.

when the hell is a good game coming out? what's the release date for fallout 3?

edit: i'm annoyed because they went and made the game about being a super fucking badass dark side guy named FUCKING... STARKILLER!!, and then PUSSIFIED it. argh....LUCAS. *kicks something*

Steve
18th September 08, 04:30 AM
The first, is that although the force powers are very well thought out, the other major part of being a jedi is that you carry a lightsaber.

EXCUSE ME???

Arhetton
18th September 08, 04:47 AM
I suppose I should have used the word 'sith', but I was just using jedi interchangably. You get what I mean.

MrGalt
18th September 08, 07:49 AM
The lightsaber thing disappoints me enough not to purchase this game at all. Then again, being Sith would be great for once. If it weren't for the Rule of Two the Vong could've run face-first into a hundred thousand Sith when they invaded and the Galaxy would've been in better shape.

Incidentally, is anybody else enough of a geek to want to see some good console games set in the post-Yavin expanded universe instead of all these prequels?

Arhetton
18th September 08, 08:17 AM
there is literally not a single amputation animation in the entire game so far (even when the enemies die to lightsabre, their whole body stays intact), and I've played half a dozen missions and slaughtered hundreds of enemies and several bosses. I could not believe that with such a juicy physics engine, ragdoll reactions etc there was no 'cut stormtroopers up with a lightsaber' option.

The animations and combos are great, its just such a weak weapon. And I poured my points into melee and combo damage. Let alone the fact its a biatch to run after the enemies.

The plot fits in well with the sith rule, in the first five minutes you find out you're vaders secret apprentice and your main mission is to train to be powerful enough to kill the emperor alongside vader.

EvilSteve
18th September 08, 08:51 AM
when the hell is a good game coming out? what's the release date for fallout 3?


Next month. 24th I think.

Equipoise
18th September 08, 09:10 AM
The ending sucked bad.

Technically Steve, Starkiller is a Jedi.

rocketsurgeon
18th September 08, 09:20 AM
So I'm going to the beach on Monday for a week with my 11 month old who will be napping 3-5 hours a day. My wife is buying me a video game so I will be willing to sit in the condo during nap time. This is the only $60 range game I'm likely to get for the rest of the year.

For me, KOTOR over Jedi Academy.

Should I drop the cabbage on Force Unleashed?

Anybody have an alternative suggestion on a 360 purchase?

Equipoise
18th September 08, 09:39 AM
No, you'll get around 8 hours of mediocrity out of it, then wish you had your 60$ back.

Arhetton
18th September 08, 07:54 PM
My recommendation is to rent this game instead of buying.

Buy Mass effect. Expecially if you like Kotor. Its a futuristic science fiction action RPG adventure - you can visit like 25 planets! Its even made by the same people (bioware), and the first edition in a trilogy.

If you already have mass effect, I'm waiting to buy fable 2. I've been dissappointed by the games I've been waiting for this year (force unleashed, too human), and theres only a couple more that I want (fable 2, goldenaxe, GoW 2).

Shawarma
19th September 08, 02:49 AM
Get Mount & Blade while you wait. Odds are you'll get ten times the playtime out of that + mods than you would all these other games put together.

Quikfeet509
23rd September 08, 02:25 PM
I thought the demo was boring after five minutes.

I'll wait until COD5 drops.

Gezere
23rd September 08, 06:21 PM
First off: GAMEFLY!!!!

I don't know how much money I saved on that. Yes you pay monthly fee but I would have spent more on that in games than I would for a year's worth of membership and given some of the games I would have traded in after playing through once.

As for SWTFU it was enjoyable but short and not worth a replay. I figured after seeing the game rating that there wouldn't be any limbs flying off. There was potential but not fully taken advantage of. Still even with the gripes I am sure a SWTFU 2 will be on the way.

Equipoise
23rd September 08, 07:39 PM
Ehh but the ending?

Gezere
23rd September 08, 08:13 PM
Ehh but the ending?
What do you expect. Its a YAFP (Yet Another Fucking Prequel).

For some reason LucasArts allows pple to place in this period of SW continuity and think nothing of it. We already know what happens so anything they introduce should fit into continuity, right? NOPE. Given thtat in the original trilogy that JEDI or SITH were not common, hence RETURN of the Jedi, so if a "Jedi" was responsible for the Rebel Alliance you think someone would have remembered him.

So we should plead to stop fucking with time between III and IV and focus on the later time line.

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
23rd September 08, 08:44 PM
I thought it was a little strange that the Star Wars universe experienced such small technological leaps in the 4,000 years since KoTOR, though.

partyboy
23rd September 08, 10:21 PM
I didn't play the game, I read the graphic novel instead... excuse me while I let this out:

HOLY FUCKING SHIT ON A STICK WHY THE FUCKITY FUCK DO YOU HAVE TO FUCKING SCREW WITH OUR CHILDHOOD MEMORIES LUCAS YOU FLYING FUCKSTICK DOUCHEROCKET

ahem, anyway, yeah I couldn't get over how retarded the plot was:

Vader: no one knows about you except me, not even the big Emps, teehee.
<10 minutes later>
Vader: LOL!!!!!! just fucking wit chu!! you got us all the uppity rebels!
<10 minutes later>
Vader: OH NOES!! all the rebels got away, so we're going to let them go about their bizness for ANOTHER 3 FUCKING YEARS EVEN THOUGH WE KNOW RIGHT WHERE THEY ARE!

Phrost
24th September 08, 12:22 PM
So I'm going to the beach on Monday for a week with my 11 month old who will be napping 3-5 hours a day. My wife is buying me a video game so I will be willing to sit in the condo during nap time. This is the only $60 range game I'm likely to get for the rest of the year.

For me, KOTOR over Jedi Academy.

Should I drop the cabbage on Force Unleashed?

Anybody have an alternative suggestion on a 360 purchase?

Get The Orange Box and an XBox Live subscription.

bob
24th September 08, 10:32 PM
I thought it was a little strange that the Star Wars universe experienced such small technological leaps in the 4,000 years since KoTOR, though.

Yes. I always attributed it to their religious fundamentalism.

Arhetton
25th September 08, 01:58 AM
/star wars nerd mode

actually thats a good point. How come they had interstellar travel but hadn't solved issues like longevity, augmentation/enhancement etc? I suppose its because its limited to the imagination of lucas who wasn't really aware of that stuff. In that sense its a reflection of the authors choice about how the canon exists and not neccessarily a compelling representation of what the future will be like.

The technology in star wars always seemed to be advanced 'physics' (FTL travel, anti gravity drives, laser guns, some artificial intelligence [droids]), whereas the concepts that are future driven at the moment are biology, information technology etc. I mean the internet wasn't even around when the first movies were made!

Theres an outer world (space) and an inner world - biology, information technology, psychology and consciousness, the hidden properties of matter and energy etc - and I don't think star wars explores them all, or could.

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
25th September 08, 04:10 PM
They have those suspended animation tubes in every hospital, and many games have featured injections and implants as powerups.

MEGA JESUS-SAMA
25th September 08, 04:11 PM
let's end this conversation before everyone realizes how dorky i am please

Neildo
25th September 08, 04:17 PM
TOO LATE NERD

partyboy
25th September 08, 04:22 PM
LUL DWEEB