“Star Wars: The Force Unleashed”

I finally picked up “Star Wars: The Force Unleashed” for my Playstation 3 last week; it was on clearance at Target for $10 to make room for the new SKU with the Sith missions.

I hadn’t had much experience with the game beyond playing through the free downloadable demo available on the Playstation Network, but I thoroughly enjoyed that brief glimpse of the game and have been looking forward to the full game.

I’m only through the first two chapters so far; I finished the second mission this evening, and so far the game is pretty fun. Targeting can be pretty frustrating, and the game’s approach of making your character significantly more powerful than any single enemy means it’s a game of surviving despite being vastly outnumbered. And anything you’re supposed to “use the Force” on to manipulate is either targetable or glowing in this hideous blue; so there aren’t really environmental puzzles to solve (at least through the first two missions), but just a series of “push here, dummy” waypoints to fight your way to.

I like the role-playing aspect of the game, where you earn “orbs” by achieving various things in the game that you can spend to upgrade skills or abilities in three different categories, although this would be more interesting if it were set up in more of a traditional talent tree. Still, it’s an engaging process that gives you some connection to your character’s progression.

I’ve enjoyed being able to levitate a Jawa, hit it with Force lightning and turn it into a bomb, then hurl it into a group of enemies and watch it explode and kill them all. That’s the best part of the game so far. The environments are also incredibly detailed and very attractive; a lot of effort was put into recreating the visual atmosphere of the Star Wars movies.

It’s not a perfect game by any means, but I’m enjoying it so far.

Andy Bartlett

By day, I am the executive director of communications and marketing at Bemidji State University. The rest of the time, I'm a husband, father of three, and proponent of super heroes, lasers, space ships and explosions.

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