LEGO:STAR WARS: The Force Awakens
Released: June 27th
Genre: Action, Adventure
Developer: Traveller’s Tales , TT Games
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Played on: PC (available on all major platforms)
When it comes to gaming there are 3 things you should know about me. 1) I will turn my hand to pretty much any Star Wars game that comes out, 2) I have 100% completed every LEGO Game on PC and 3) If there is an option I will play a Dwarf. Given that only 1 and 2 are relevant here, you can ignore 3.
I have no illusions about the complexity of LEGO games. Mash buttons, collect studs. They are games aimed at much younger gamers. But you know what? I don’t care. I love playing LEGO games. Perhaps it being aimed at younger gamers helps me recapture images of sitting in my bedroom surrounded by LEGO blocks and letting my imagination run wild as I created lunar rovers, fighter jets and houses for all the happy people to live in. Maybe the focus on younger gamers allows me to just have a simple fun time button mashing and forgetting the squad based gameplay or over complicated game-ishness of many titles I like. I’m not sure what it is, but something about these LEGO games speaks to me on a primal level and brings me joy.
Concurrent to that, The Force Awakens (TFA) was a massive conflict for me when I saw it in theatres. I came out of the movie theatre in a state of pure enjoyment. I had been allowed to once again fall in love with a universe that I once loved. The thing is about my experiences with TFA was that I was completely also able to sit down and dissect the movie and talk about things in it I didn’t like, but in conclusion when it came to the movie the Whole was so much more than the sum of it’s parts and that also perfectly sums up this game.
The gameplay formula is mostly the same. Certain characters have abilities that allow you to overcome obstacles that require a specific ability to defeat. This time they have added 2 new mechanics. Firstly; the shootout. The ability to take cover behind a barricade and pop up and have a gunfight like you were playing Gears of War. The second new mechanic is the Multi-Build. In previous LEGO titles you could build piles of blocks into objects or machines to help you progress. In TFA however, certain piles will allow you to build more than one thing. You choose the one you build, you use it, then you can destroy it and build the other options. This adds some interesting puzzle solving elements, but it can be a bit annoying if you spend the time building something, and then have to get into combat around it, it can be destroyed before you even get to use it and you have to rebuild it again. Overall though both mechanics are welcome additions to the gameplay.
When I heard that LEGO was going to be basing an entire game on TFA I was worried about how many levels there would be, as the most they have squeezed out of a single Star Wars movie until now was 6. But there are many more, including many trips into extra levels based around the movie which are, apparently, canonical. Outside of the side excursions the movie follows the plot of TFA quite nicely, with LEGO trademark brand of humor.
The game however, still controls like crap with a keyboard, so I hope you have a controller plugged into your PC as the controller controls handle like a dream. The graphics are the same high quality fare that we got with LEGO: Marvel’s The Avengers and the soundtrack is that of the movie so it is hard to knock it.
One thing that I want to touch on before I wrap up is price point. The game is currently retailing on PC for $39.99 or a Deluxe pack (which comes with the season pass) for $49.99. For anyone looking for an excellent time to cash ratio, LEGO games (with the exception of The LEGO Movie Videogame) are where you should be looking. To 100% a game I usually spend 30-40 hours on each title. If you are not the completionist like I am, while the games lack in single player replayability, not only do they have high replayability in multiplayer, the DLC packs you get with the Season Pass are a lot of fun that will keep you coming back.
Overall I’m very much looking forward to plowing on through this game and getting to that 100% mark. Though I will not be able to until mid July, I will be streaming my play of LEGO: Star Wars: The Force Awakens on my Twitch Channel, so if you have further questions, come by and ask there or drop in and share your experiences with playing the game as I HIGHLY recommend picking this up.
So what do you think of this Installment of LEGO’s Star Wars franchise? Let us know in the comments below!