Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga

Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga
Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga Cover
Platforms Nintendo DS, Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Wii
Genre Brick-for-Brick Movie Remake
Score 8  Clock score of 8Gameplay: 8
Fun Factor: 8
Gfx/Sound: 9
Story: 6
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Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga is the combination of the first two Lego Star Wars games (The Video Game and Original Trilogy) in what is an obvious attempt to sell more copies of the games and reach that same Star Wars audience that will only buy the DVDs when they're all available in one, giant box set. So basically we have all the levels from the first game, plus all the levels from the second game, plus some more (minor) stuff in case you already own the first two. I received this game for the Nintendo DS, which is essentially my platform of choice of late, and played the heck out of it for the last week and a half. And surprisingly, I loved every minute of it.

I'm not sure why it took so long for someone to realize that Legos are awesome, Star Wars is awesome, and video games are awesome, so why not put them all together. But it finally happened a few years ago and it was like my childhood fantasies were coming together for one last amazing adventure. Somehow though, I never played the first one (Episodes I-III) but got the chance to play The Original Trilogy (Episodes IV-VI). I thought the game was fun but short. The Complete Saga has allowed me to play the first game and replay the second, giving me a much more satisfying experience. It took me a solid 21.5 hours to achieve 100% completion and I'm a little sad to say goodbye. Thankfully though, Lego Indiana Jones and Lego Batman are only a few months away... Now let's get to the review!

Scores

Gameplay: 8
There are three modes of gameplay in Lego Star Wars: regular character levels, vehicle levels, and minigames. So between the character and vehicle levels there are 30 total stages, and I would guess each is around 10-25 minutes long. This makes for a lot of variety and different experiences, and if you want to complete 100% of the game, you'll have to play each level at least twice. The second time through you can play as any character you have unlocked or purchased, making for a really fun replay (Darth Maul rocks, even in the Original Trilogy). There are a ton of things to collect in each stage and they're not outrageously difficult to obtain either, making it very rewarding to totally complete a level. You also want to collect as much money as you can to buy everything available at the shop, this was the first game in a while where I never wanted to stop getting more and more stuff. It can be repetitive at times, but there are plenty of immediate and longtime goals that kept me focused on having fun and playing.

The vehicle levels are kind of fun, but they utilize both screens to display the action making it somewhat awkward to navigate sometimes. For whatever reason, there are some DS games that when they display continuous action on both screens, they have a gap in the display between the screens. I know that there is like a 2 centimeter between the screens physically but that doesn't mean that there should be in the game too. Often enemies are lost in the black hole between the displays popping up on you unexpectedly, making vehicle levels as annoying as they are enjoyable. Finally, there are the minigames, which are actually quite varied and didn't feel totally tacked on like I expected them to. The minigames were the last thing I beat to reach 100% and I wish I had tackled them earlier as some of them were really fun. Though some did suck and pissed me off to no end. I hate DS games where they make you scrub at the screen or spin the stylus in a circle because I'm really afraid I'm going to break my screen.

Fun Factor: 8
I said in my introduction that I loved every minute of Lego Star Wars, this isn't completely true, but it is pretty close to the mark. Near the end of the game I was just replaying this one level over and over to get enough money to buy the rest of the stuff I needed to buy, and that made the game feel a bit more like a chore than a game, but it didn't take me long before it was all over. Lego Star Wars is really a great combination of two cultural icons and the developer Traveller's Tales did an awesome job on it. Even if the game itself is just the first two games put together, for those of us who haven't played them both you will have fun with this game. It's very easy and seems aimed at kids, but it's hard to pass up something like Legos and Star Wars.

Graphics and Sound: 9
For being a DS game, I'm pretty impressed. The game is fully 3D and the music and sound effects are ripped straight from the movies. All the character models and animations are pretty simplistic, but you have to remember, everything is based off Legos. It's exactly how I would have imagined such a combination a glorious combination. Objects are destroyed in a pile of Lego bricks and you can pretty much believe that everything is made out of the classic building toy. Characters are instantly recognizable even though they're all the same height and shape. The cutscene animations are extremely lacking, but they're such a small portion of the game I can't fault the development team much. Overall, the game looks and sounds great, I was really impressed.

Story: 6
Lego Star Wars is based directly on the six movies, and in the DS version, each movie has five levels to play (for 30 total). Some of the movies have an obvious five levels that can be pulled out of them (such as Return of the Jedi) and some of them... don't (such as Revenge of the Sith). They do follow the movies closely but I found myself thinking, "this has got to be the fourth or fifth time I've played the Battle of Hoth." In every level you play as the characters that were present during the movie, and it is kind of fun replaying the climatic battles and scenes. The worst part though is the cutscenes. You can't skip them the first time through and they're just awful. At least on the DS there is really no animation, suddenly a character will be looking one way and the next moment he'll be looking the other way. Maybe this is more of a graphical complaint, but at least let me skip them, I know the story to Star Wars and these jerky, voiceless scenes are doing nothing for me.

Overall: 8
If you haven't played both of the Lego Star Wars video games already, do yourself a favor and pick this one up. I am whole-heartedly recommending the DS version too even if it is missing a few levels and characters, this game just works perfectly on a portable platform. The levels are pretty short and it is a great pick up and play kind of game. There are a ton of things to collect that will keep you playing for more than 20 hours, and probably beyond if you like the minigames. This is a great game that fans should not miss out on.

Lego Star Wars The Complete Saga

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