Star Wars: Force Unleashed (Wii)

Ever since the Nintendo Wii was launched, children, teenagers and adults alike were waving about the remote and nunchuck pretending to be gladiators and Jedi.   This was the game everyone had been waiting for, and only one question remained: would it hold up?

Sadly, despite having a powerful character driven story, the answer is no.

This game can be picked apart on many levels for all the different consoles, yet of them all the Wii release is the most disappointing as it has the most squandered potential.   Force Unleashed tells the story of Darth Vaders apprentice, the forming of the Rebel Alliance, and how both Vader and the Rebels vie for the soul of the protagonist.   This is an excellent idea, though it would have been more interesting had the player been given the choice of who to side with, making the game-play more dynamic.

Lower storage capacities on Wii discs mean that the variety that features in the Xbox and PS3 editions of the game are not present, instead replaced with redundant missions to a Massassi Temple on Yavin 4, whose only reason for existing is to lengthen the game to a reasonable length.

This drawback aside, the story is excellent, so with the Wii’s interactive joystick (lightsaber) and nunchuck (force powers) it could have really immersed you in the experience.

Unfortunately, the creators put emphasis on verbose force powers.   These are so much more effective than the lightsaber they make it seem redundant.   This combined with the Wii remote not able to distinguish discrete changes in position, the combat falls seriously short of what is expected and desired from the fans (I find little difference between carefully wielding the lightsaber and wiggling my wrist whenever I spot a squad of Imperial Stormtroopers).

I didn’t want to like this game: I wanted to love it.   I wanted this to be a game I could play for hours and hours on end, and yet, it currently languishes at the back of my games, behind Mario Kart Wii, Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and even the recently re-launched James Bond: Goldeneye!   The story they tried to tell and the powerful John Williams score are the true saviours of this game; the interface and the overbalance of the force powers preventing it joining the few LucasArts masterpieces.

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