Star Wars: The Force Unleashed

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed delivered the main thing I wanted and expected out of this game: to be a super powerful bad ass character that uses Force powers to kill and destroy stuff. I finished it about a month ago on Apprentice and got the Jedi ending.

The game play stayed true to what I experienced in the demo. My main problem with the game play was that sometimes I found myself fighting enemies off screen. This was irritating, however I got used to it. One game play feature I wasn’t too keen on was the timed button combinations you needed to execute to do special moves on bosses. I didn’t like it in the Resident Evil 4 demo, and I don’t like it in this game.

(The following isn’t a spoiler because you can see the battle right on the back of the game box.)

An irritating game play moment was the battle with the Imperial Star Destroyer. It was prolonged and tedious after all previous boss fights, which were much faster paced. Having said that, I felt accomplished after I finally brought that thing down.

The graphics were superb on the PS3. I had no complaints at all. The art design looked and felt like Star Wars, though I didn’t particularly care for the bright hues of the jungle planet, and the dull metal hues of the junk planet were also not too appealing. However, the two locations did provide a nice contrast to the Imperial levels. I really appreciated all the graphical and artistic details in the game. I really liked Starkiller’s costumes. The costumes and clothing in the whole game were really, really cool. Sometimes I would just stop playing and just pan the camera around Starkiller to get a better look at his clothes, and it was the same with the environments. The art team did a great job in bringing the Star Wars universe to life in this game.

The story was not nearly as good as the hype would lead one to believe, but I didn’t believe the hype anyway, so I wasn’t let down. I should probably play it again to get the Sith ending, and while it is a really fun game, I am feeling a little lazy to do that at the moment. One thing I also would have liked to have seen in the game is the use of Force powers for creation (healing) rather than destruction. Isn’t the Force supposed to be able to do both? (Star Wars nerds, please correct me.)

I don’t like the fact that the only unlockable characters you can play are male. Why do we get to play as Bail Organa, but not Leia Organa? Bail Organa. He’s not that huge of a character in the Star Wars universe compared to Leia Organa. We can unlock and play as a number of different Stormtroopers, but not the other major character in the game, Juno Eclipse? Irritating. What would have been cool is if you could choose your sex and have the two actors play either of the two main roles, depending on which sex you chose. However, I speculate that if they wanted to have this option, it would have incurred additional time and cost, because they’d have to create another combat/animation rig for a female, because the body frame isn’t the same, plus they’d have to do everything related to both sexes twice — clothing, etc. I’m not a game designer, so I’m just guessing.

I also honestly don’t see why Starkiller couldn’t have been female. The character of Starkiller is pretty much the standard, boring white male with hardly any personality to speak of, which is typical for videogame protagonists. Since he had no personality to start with, they could have had this character be a woman just as easily as a man. The only reason you don’t have a choice for gender is because yet again, male is the default and female the afterthought — or not considered at all. There’s no valid reason why Starkiller couldn’t have been female. Rather than start off with male as a default, they could have decided at the very, very beginning that Starkiller was a woman.

Details aside, I quite enjoyed Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

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