Count Down Too Star Wars Day 1 Review: The Force Unleashed

Force_Unleashed

A long time ago in a galaxy far far away…

One man will review five well known Star Wars video games as a special count down to when he sees star wars episode 7 on the 18th. He will be covering great titles that have bece fan staples in the series for what is a good star wars game, and the occasional missed mark on what should have been a great game. The count down shall begin with the first Force Unleashed.

Background information:

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is a LucasArts action-adventure video game and part of the The Force Unleashed project. It was initially developed for the PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, and Xbox 360 consoles and on the iOS, second-generation N-Gage, Nintendo DS, and PlayStation Portable.

The game was released in North America on September 16, 2008, in Australia and Southeast Asia on September 17, and in Europe on September 19. LucasArts released downloadable content for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles. AnUltimate Sith Edition of the game, containing new and all previously released expanded content

Plot:

Set in between Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and Episode IV: A New Hope, Darth Vader is sent by Emperor Palpatine to destroy a Jedi who survived Palpatine’s Jedi purge and is hiding on the Wookiee homeworld, Kashyyyk. The Force Unleashed begins with the player controlling Darth Vader as he searches Kashyyyk for the Jedi. After defeating the Jedi in battle, Vader discovers a child who is strong in the Force and raises him to become his apprentice, unknown to the Emperor for several years. When the apprentice (known in the game as “Starkiller”, and whom the player now controls) reaches adulthood, Vader sends him to kill the remaining Jedi as training for his ultimate goal: assassinating the Emperor so Vader and Starkiller can rule the galaxy together.

However, the Emperor discovers Starkiller’s existence and forces Vader to kill the apprentice; Vader hurls Starkiller into space, but secretly dispatches droids to retrieve and revive him. Vader sends his apprentice to foster a rebellion among those who resist the Empire, distracting the Emperor so Vader can make his move. Breaking into various Imperial facilities, Starkiller rescues Rogue Shadow pilot Juno Eclipse, Jedi Master Rahm Kota, Princess Leia Organa, and Senator Bail Organa. In the process, Starkiller learns from Kota about the Jedi way, ultimately sparing Jedi apprentice Maris Brood, who had succumbed to corruption by the dark side after Starkiller murdered her master Shaak Ti. Starkiller travels between missions aboard the Rogue Shadow, developing a close relationship with his crew.[14]

Senators Organa, Mon Mothma, and Garm Bel Iblis meet to plan a rebellion against the Empire, but are interrupted when Darth Vader arrests them and Kota. Vader attacks Starkiller and reveals that Starkiller was never meant to overthrow the Emperor; from the beginning, he was the Emperor’s tool to expose his enemies, and that Vader’s plans to overthrow the Emperor did not include Starkiller. Surviving Vader’s attack, Starkiller uses the Force to ascertain the senators’ and Kota’s location: theDeath Star. Inside the station, Starkiller duels Darth Vader. Kota attempts to fight the Emperor, but is wounded by the Emperor’s Force lightning.

Possible Ending:

  1. Former Canon Ending Pre Disney- If the player attacks and defeats Emperor Palpatine, Kota prevents Starkiller from killing Palpatine in hatred. Starkiller dies while absorbing the Emperor’s renewed attack, but Kota and the senators escape. The Emperor and Vader look over Starkiller’s corpse, concerned that he has become a martyr to inspire the newly formedRebel Alliance. Senator Organa and the others agree to proceed with their rebellion and Leia decides to use Starkiller’s family crest as the Rebellion’s symbol. Outside, Juno talks to Kota, who tells her that among Starkiller’s dark thoughts, Juno herself was one bright spot that he held onto right until his death. This is the ending depicted in the novelization. This is the canonical ending. And to honor Galen Marek (Starkillers) sacrifice the newly formed Rebel Alliance picks his family crest as their symbol. A great origin for the iconic rebel alliance crescent symbol from eps 4-6.
  2. Bad Ending DLC expanded: If the player attacks and kills Vader, the Emperor offers to let Starkiller take Vader’s place as his apprentice if Starkiller proves himself by killing Kota. Starkiller instead attacks the Emperor, who crushes Starkiller with the Rogue Shadow and kills Kota and all his allies. The story ends with Starkiller’s broken body being grafted with armor so he can serve as the Emperor’s assassin until Palpatine finds a new apprentice. The game ends with Palpatine assuring Starkiller that he, like Vader, will be cast aside when he finds a new apprentice. This further expanded on in the two ultimate sith edition DLC’s one set on Tatooine where now Darth Starkiller in his new cyborg claw handed body, hunts down rogue jedi obi-wan, fights and kills boba fett, and finally kills obiwan twice (you force push him into the falcon’s engines and then kill his ghost). Then the other set on Hoth where Darth Starkiller is hunting down Obi-wan’s student Luke Skywalker, and engages him in a battle as he stalls him so the Falcon can escape, only to channel the darkside in anger and be hinted at becoming Starkillers new apprentice.

Extra DLC

Aside from some iconic character skins, their is one final dlc expansion to the game where starkiller goes on multiple soul searching quests to the jedi temple on courscant. Where he’s are confronted by the spirit of his jedi father, in constant battle with Vader a symbolic metaphor for the battle inside starkiller between the light and darkside and how he’s on the tipping point for either. The battle being left undecided as his father leaves one final message to him “I never wanted this for you” before disappearing. Starkiller also is given a cryptic hint about his two possible futures as a martyr for the rebel cause, or a slave to emperor palpatine  as Darth Starkiller.

Gameplay

The Force Unleashed is a third-person action game in which the player’s character’s weapons are the Force and lightsaber. Developers treated the main character’s lightsaber like another Force power, and wanted to ensure “something visceral and cool” happened with each button-push. The game has a combo system for stringing lightsaber attacks and for combining lightsaber attacks with Force powers. Experience points earned by killing enemies and finding artifacts can be used to increase Starkiller’s powers and traits. The gameplay is intended to be easy to learn; the development team included “horrible” gamers to help ensure the game’s accessibility. Players can casually run and gun through the game, but the game rewards those who take a stealthy, more tactical approach. The game includes enemies that are easy to overcome; game difficulty arises from presenting these enemies in large numbers that can wear down the player’s character. Additionally, enemies learn from the player’s character’s attacks; using the same attack on different characters can sometimes lead to the player’s character doing less damage.

Bonus Information:

  • The voice, face, and model actor for Starkiller is Sam Witwer, he was given the role mainly because the first concept art for the character looked almost exactly like him. So he was called into the studio and auditioned for the role.
  • Starkiller brought a new interesting way use a lightsaber, not only does he hold it backwards in his hand, but he also can run force lightning into it extended the blade while doing force damage.
  • The game offered a unique and in our opinion BETTER origin story for the creating of the rebel alliance then Disney’s current Rebels show.
  • Their were two different versions of the game, due to system requirements. The PSP, DS, and WII versions were different from the XBOX 360 and PS3 versions.
  • Our favortie scene in the game, and truly perfect way of showing just what the force is capable of is when Starkiller PULLS A STAR DESTROYER DOWN FROM ORBIT AND CRASHES IT WITH THE FORCE!

Verdict

The Force Unleashed was an amazing game that like Knights of The Old Republic set a standard for what a GOOD star wars game should be. It offered fun new explanations for the rebel alliances and the universe at large in between episodes 3-4. That’s why we are very happy to say this game is a solid 8.5/10. And it is with a heavy heart that we will also be doing Force Unleashed II, and see just how bad Lucas Arts killed this once great game tomorrow.