By JediXMan 4 Comments
Star Wars: The Clone Wars
No, no. Not that atrocity. This game was made in a much happier time; a time when Ahsoka hadn’t been thought of, Anakin was still a padawan, and Obi-Wan wasn’t over compensating with tons of armor over his Jedi tunic. This was when the Clone Wars stories were really in their prime. Just after Episode II came out. We had this, the original Clone Wars show, the Star Wars: Republic comic book series, and other things that would take advantage of this new, untouched time, where they could do a lot without messing with continuity. The Clone Wars wore out their welcome after Episode III came out, and then we got… well no more talking about that. Let’s go to the good stuff. Once more:
The game begins just before the Battle of Geonosis, where Mace Windu is sent down the take out defenses in order for Jedi transports to get through and stall for Yoda. So ol’ Windu goes in and blasts his way through CIS forces before, finally, fighting three of Dooku’s acolytes – which stalled him, preventing him from getting to Dooku. Moving right along, the Clone Wars have started, and our brave Jedi friends are fighting across the galaxy. Obi-Wan and Anakin take the fight to Raxus Prime, where Dooku is trying to excavate an ancient device of a mysterious nature. Anakin rushes into the base headfirst despite Obi-Wan asking him not to (… even though he makes no effort to follow him). Anakin engages Dooku, but is attacked from behind by a Bounty Hunter working for Dooku. Anakin wakes up in a prison, where he befriends a woman and they decide to help each other escape. They are brought down to Alaris Prime, where Dooku wishes to test his doomsday weapon, known as the Force Harvester, on his prisoners and the nearby Wookiee villages. Moving right along, we discover that the Harvester drains the Force from living things, using the energy to power a more powerful weapon, known as the Dark Reaper. The Dark Reaper was apparently used by Exar Kun during the Great Sith War, where Ulic Qel-Droma – after being redeemed – taught the Jedi how to resist the Dark Reaper’s draining properties (… I’ll get to that in a minute). So Anakin goes to the tomb of Ulic on Rhen Var to learn from the fallen Jedi and learn his secrets. Anakin saves the day by destroying the Reaper, and the game ends with a rather ominous tone, considering the ordeal Anakin went through, and what it may have done to him.
Now before going on to gameplay, I have to discuss this. While yes, it is original and a good idea – I myself like the Dark Reaper – it makes no sense. No. Sense. When would Exar have deployed this weapon? Or better yet, when would Ulic have had time to teach the Jedi anything? And why were there dark spirits around Ulic’s tomb, despite the fact that Ulic died a Jedi and wasn’t even dark when he went to Rhen Var? These things and more could have easily been resolved. The easiest I can think of is saying it was from the Hundred Year Darkness, not the Great Sith War, since little is known about the Hundred Year Darkness as it is. But the Great Sith War was fleshed out quite well, from beginning to end, during the Tales of the Jedi series. It just doesn’t make any wit of sense.
That aside, I was still uneasy with some of the early missions on Geonosis. It’s a bit close to the movies, which is always tricky. I prefer the idea of the Jedi going in more stealthily than blowing up CIS defenses. While yes, I believe they did explain that they knocked out their comm channels, it still doesn’t sit well with me. And the Acolytes fighting Mace… again, feels weird.
On to gameplay:
You play as Mace, Anakin, and Obi-Wan over the course of the game. There is almost no difference between them other than appearance. For 90% of the game, you’re driving a tank or piloting a LAAT Republic Gunship. Now I could nipick and ask “how can you operate all the guns on a LAAT when it takes multiple gunners?” … but… well yeah, it doesn’t make sense. But it’s still fun. At one point, they mix it up by giving you a speeder bike, and another mission gives you an AAT and an animal to ride while on Alaris Prime. On rare occasions, you’ll fight on foot, which isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. You just get Force push, lightsaber throw, standard button-mashing lightsaber swinging, and maybe pull, but I can’t recall. You basically just plow through your enemies, sometimes stopping to fight gigantic hover tanks. The graphics are just okay, nothing spectacular.
In conclusion, the Clone Wars is… okay. It’s an okay game. It’s not gold, but it’s not terrible. Do I recommend it… yeah, I do. It’s still interesting, and if nothing else, has the possibility of introducing you to Tales of the Jedi. If you want a better Clone Wars game, then stay tuned. I’ll get to those soon enough (hint, hint)