Rediscovering My Love for Lego Games
I used to be a huge fan of TT Games and WB Games’ Lego titles. As a kid, games like Lego Star Wars, Batman, and Indiana Jones fueled my passion for video games. My brother and I would spend countless hours playing them, having fun, and occasionally getting frustrated. However, as time went on, I grew disappointed with the series’ basic open-world formula, which seemed to have become the norm after the fantastic Lego City Undercover. The series that had once solidified my love for video games was losing its magic. That’s why I’m excited about the bold new direction of The Skywalker Saga.
This upcoming Lego game not only revisits the films that inspired some of my favorite Lego games but also expands upon them. The Skywalker Saga offers more expansive hub worlds, mission variety, and deeper gameplay than previous Lego action games. Although I was initially concerned about the game’s multiple delays and development issues, I recently had the opportunity to try an early build, and it captured my attention just like the original Lego Star Wars did 17 years ago.
A Fresh Start for the Series
The demo I played took me through the first 90 minutes of A New Hope, one of the nine Star Wars films featured in The Skywalker Saga. Like previous Lego games, this segment followed the events of the film it was based on. The game even included full voice acting, although not from the original cast. What I found particularly enjoyable was the option to switch to a “mumble mode” that brought back the iconic grunts and pantomimes from early Lego games.
TT Games also took the opportunity to experiment with the iconic opening of A New Hope. The game incorporated many jokes to entertain younger players, while also weaving in elements from Rogue One. Surprisingly, my first playable character was Princess Leia, who tries to escape Darth Vader onboard the Tantive IV while carrying the Death Star plans. This oft-adapted and parodied plot beat felt fresh and exciting in this Lego adaptation.
The mission served as a tutorial, showcasing the differences between The Skywalker Saga and previous Lego games. While combat, exploration, and puzzles are still present, they have been enhanced. The addition of a cover-based system makes shootouts more engaging, and players can now perform melee combos and counter enemy attacks, adding depth to melee battles. Character classes and abilities ensure that fights require more than just button-mashing. Although it may not be as complex as Devil May Cry, these improved gameplay systems prevented me from growing bored within the first hour, something that had happened with recent Lego games I played.
The Skywalker Saga made a strong first impression on me. I was able to play as Luke Skywalker on Tatooine, meet Obi-Wan Kenobi, recruit Han and Chewbacca, and explore the Death Star before the demo concluded. Even though TT Games has adapted this material before, the revamped approach to storytelling, level design, and gameplay made it feel like a whole new experience.
A Universe of Possibilities
During my demo, I barely scratched the surface of what The Skywalker Saga has to offer. It seems to be the most packed Lego game yet, featuring all nine mainline Star Wars films. Alongside the linear levels based on the films’ major plot points and set pieces, there are large hubs on planets and in space that players can explore. These hubs also come with side missions to complete.
As players progress through the stories of the different films and unlock more characters, ships, and planets, the options available will continue to grow. The Skywalker Saga incorporates a progression system, rewarding players with Kyber Bricks for completing missions. These bricks can be used to unlock and enhance abilities on skill trees.
In addition to the various character classes, such as Jedi, Smugglers, and Protocol Droids, the game features skill trees that further enhance their capabilities. These systems bring TT Games’ Lego series up to par with other action games, making it feel like the franchise has finally matured. It’s relieving to see that The Skywalker Saga will appeal to those who have nostalgic memories of the earliest Lego games, without sacrificing engaging gameplay for older players.
Of course, the game remains accessible to kids with its visual style, humor, and approachable gameplay. However, it no longer feels as though it’s solely aimed at younger audiences. Thanks to its improved gameplay mechanics, The Skywalker Saga has caught up to me, reigniting my love for Lego games when I thought I had outgrown them.
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is set to release on April 5, 2022, for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Nintendo Switch.
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