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Star Wars: The Force Unleashed Review

September 29, 2008

So my first review on this website and to be honest I haven’t even finished the game. But really for this kind of game that doesn’t really matter and Ill explain why in a moment. First of all I’m reviewing this for the XBOX360. Now let’s give this a little back drop since you might not have any idea what this game is about. You play as a sith with the power of the dark side and your an apprentice for Darth Vader. He spared your life when you were a little itty bitty boy and trained you to go kill all the good, kind hearted jedi.
The game is very physics heavy, you use a lot of the environment around you where you can blast steel doors ajar force push by force push, lift a handful of objects and throw them, flail around a helpless stormtrooper, and interact with living organic things like gigantic mushrooms. A combination of all the jedi force moves you have and the interaction with the environment is what makes this game amazing, although the sexy visuals help.

The game designers gave you all this neat stuff to play with, but how well does everything tie into the game? Well pretty good I would say. They have a neat little array of enemies you have to constantly face and they try to strategically place them so you have a challenging time in certain area’s. For example in one instance they place 6 storm troopers in a crowded hallway. In this case there’s no challenge but a lot of fun as you can just force push the hell out of them until they bash up against the walls and into each other to die. In another instance they put 3 gigantic beasts in one area that do a ton of damage. If your careful you can fight one by one but if you walk too far you catch the others attention. On top of that you have an almost infinite amount of smaller enemies coming to whack you across the face. You have to figure out how to effectively use the powers you have in each area to clear it without dying. I mean I’m sure if you’re playing on easy mode you can kill mostly everyone with your light saber, but that’s definitely not as satisfying.

So suffice to say, there’s a ton of epic action that you get to control in this game. There’s also this neat little God of War/Resident Evil 4 “This is now an interactive cutscene, press this button when it flashes on the screen.” Of course with this, you get yourself an awesome interactive cutscene to finish off some larger enemies and bosses. But with all this going on there’s still a couple of flaws. First of all the game is a little bit repetitive. That’s not really a problem and it tries not to be at times but the bottom line is that it is. You start to re-visit some of the levels you already have been to. Its not as horrible as Devil May Cry 4 where the level is EXACTLY THE SAME. But you say to yourself “oh I’m in the junk yard world again…great.”

You also do the same attacks to your enemies over and over. You have to change up the way you kill them yourselves. They also try to bring in some different objects into the world, but sometimes its just the difference between throwing a rock or a giant metal object. But sometimes they give you some really neat things, like controlling a giant laser beam or a big broken tube that freezes enemies. You do get upgrades to everything which is pretty cool, as I haven’t mention you have a level up system. With this your force slightly changes, instead up being able to pick up one enemies you can do up to three. You also get to get some new combos that work really well together, like infusing your light saber with your force lighting or doing a force smash on an enemy after a finishing attack. So after every level you get one point into force attacks, one point into combos, and one point into attributes such as maximum health or defense.

Another flaw I want to mention is of course the camera angles. This plagues many games trough out our history but it really isn’t that horrible in this game. It’s pretty standard, in certain moments you just wish the camera wasn’t a piece of crap. Sometimes because of it you die and sometimes you have plenty of time to fix it yourself. Now while you’re beating the game, after every level you unlock some concept art. During the game you also collect square floating orbs that unlock costumes, give you more experience points, or different color light sabers. There’s also an additional mode to unlock that’s right under hard mode. I assume you have to beat the game so there is some replay value in this title but it’s not something everyone will want to do. Also since I mentioned hard mode, it’s one of those annoying cheap modes that just basically increases enemy health and makes them do more damage to you. Not much more of a challenge then that. The graphics are really great, the cinematic’s get even better which is weird because usually games these days just stick with in-game cinemtaic’s but it is a multi platform game.

Over all this game gets a B. What’s keeping this down is the bad camera angles, repetitive nature, typical hard mode, and a not so fantastic replay value. But it is still definitely recommended, the amount of awesome in this game is worth playing every minute of it. It’s built for any skill level, easy to breeze through the game and hard for a challenge. The environment is great to look at and fun to play with. There is also a story which is really interesting to watch the cinematic’s for. So if you have the ability to check this game out, you should, whether you buy it or rent it.



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