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Monday, May 16, 2005


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COURTESY EIDOS INTERACTIVE
What happens when you combine Legos with "Star Wars"? You get cool fight scenes with cute little characters.



‘Star Wars’ in LEGO

Lego Star Wars is the perfect game for fans of all ages who feel let down by George Lucas' prequel trilogy.

LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game

Rating: Everyone

Publisher: Eidos Interactive

Platform: Xbox (reviewed), PlayStation 2, GameBoy Advance, PC

Today, in print

D7 - 'Episode III,' the video game

Yesterday

WAY behind the scenes

Sci-Fi fills mythological role

Coming up

In Weekend: Test your "Star Wars" knowledge.

You know who you are. You're the ones who oohed and aahed over the sheer coolness of Darth Maul and Jango Fett, only to see them sliced into Jedi sushi before the end of their respective movies. You cringed at the horrible acting of that kid who played Anakin Skywalker in "Episode I: The Phantom Menace" and the Anakin-Padme Amidala love scenes in "Episode II: Attack of the Clones." And then there was that whole Jar Jar Binks thing.

Consider Lego Star Wars the Cliffs Notes version of the prequels, with all of the good parts and few of the bad. Plus, it all plays out with cute little Lego figures and assorted spacecraft made out of Lego blocks. What's not to like about that?

Most of the game plays out like a traditional 3-D platformer, with a main character and a supporting character battling baddies and hitting all the major plot points in the prequel films. (Fair warning: If you don't want any part of "Episode III: Revenge of the Sith" spoiled, stay away from that portion of the game.) A single player can have a computer-controlled companion, or two players can take on the challenges. Control is tight overall, getting dicey only when a large number of enemies swarm the player characters.

Certain characters perform unique tasks in each level. For instance, Jedi like Obi-Wan Kenobi and Qui-Gon Jinn battle foes with their lightsabers, while support droids open specific doors. While only a few characters are available at the outset, more can be purchased by collecting Lego studs littering the levels.

Some levels dip into different gaming genres, like a pod-racing segment in the "Episode I" portion of the game or several shootouts in space. It's in these areas that the game becomes more an exercise in frustration, forcing players to replay large sections over and over again until they get it right or die trying.

Granted, anyone with any degree of skill can beat the entire game in a weekend. The whole premise is geared toward children, after all, so it's only natural to expect a challenge skewed toward the easy side. Still, it's one of those games that should be experienced at least once.

LEGO Star Wars - The Video Game
www.legostarwarsthevideogame.com



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