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Monday, May 04, 2009

Game Play: The Force Unleashed

I was actually pretty unprepared for how bad this game turned out. I had thought the demo was pretty fun, all in all, and had read the mixed reviews that hit the net.

The takeaway I should have had from the demo, and certainly have from the game, is what a blatant God of War clone the game really is and how I really wish that if people are going to rip off that format - that they do something different and interesting with it. The Force Unleashed never comes close to this concept.

The good? Production values are pretty high and there are some truly pretty moments in the game. Being a Jedi is always at least a little badass, even when the mechanics get in the way.

But oh, the mechanics. My shelf moment in this game, probably not even half way through, was when the Rancor beast attacks in the middle of the uberswampforest planet. Firstly, I have no idea why the annoying enemies with their odd ability to be invulnerable on a sneeze need to be here when there is, you know, a freaking Rancor beast to worry about. Nor do I know why they seemed to love the idea of getting stomped by said beast. Some kind of cult, maybe? No idea.

I was curious as to why no attack of mine seemed to result in much of anything until I happened to stand in just the right place and saw the Quick Time Event button come up.

Seriously? I'm supposed to be this mutant powerful Jedi who can pull Vader's saber out of his hand and yet I'm completely useless unless I set up the right cut scene? Way too much of this game vacillates in between being monotonously easy (all of said cult soldiers were cut down by the same annoying combo, reports said) and inexplicably annoying because the player doesn't know they're supposed to be waiting to be told what button to push. This is QTE done horribly wrong - intrusive and user unfriendly.

And before I got into more of them, I just shelved the game.

There was a lot of potential to this game that seems to have been lost. Even the story was saddled by occasional poor voice acting and bizarre inconsistencies (for someone who isn't supposed to know anything about Starkiller's missions, the pilot knows a lot about Starkiller's missions). I think I can safely say I enjoyed The Apprentice's involvement in Soul Caliber more than this game.

Probably late in the game here, but if you haven't played this game - might keep it that way. If you're a Star Wars fan, you've probably already played it. If you must, keep it a rental.

1 comment:

sterno said...

I found the game to be mostly enjoyable but exceedingly brief. I HATED the quick time events and it was really frustrating to go through the same battle over and over because I slipped on getting the right combo. QTE's should be banned.

My take is if you liked the demo it was enjoyable enough to rent. I wouldn't spend money on it though because it's just too short of a game.