VIDEO GAMING

Game review: Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens is very good, as far as it goes

The Force Awakens video game is a huge amount of fun, replete with in-jokes that point out plot holes and obvious retreads – but why is it the only tie-in to the most recent Star Wars movie?

PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 July, 2016, 1:02pm
UPDATED : Monday, 11 July, 2016, 1:02pm

Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Warner Bros

3.5/5 stars

Despite the overwhelmingly positive response from everyday fans, inside the hardcore community which waited more than three decades for a true Star Wars movie (the prequels didn’t count, OK?), The Force Awakens tore many a true believer.

Sure, most of us liked it – but while some adored it for its rollicking throwback adventure (this critic included), others despised it for the very same reasons, saying it was basically a remake of the original 1977 film.

For what it’s worth, this new Lego game doesn’t come with that sense of uncertainty. After a good 20 Lego releases tied to existing properties, you know what you’re getting into here: a series of best-of movie scenes, with all the standard reward-based gameplay elements, simple puzzles and corny character humour that defines this kid- and adult-friendly franchise.

So why bother? Because despite the naysayers – both of the movie and the gaming series – the only Force Awakens video game is still a huge amount of fun. For a game that you might think is aimed solely at children, the developers have seemingly gone an extra length to appease the long-time fans. There’s the ability to finally control such classic characters as Han and Chewy, but more importantly for all the aforementioned detractors, in-the-know jokes that point out blatant plot holes and obvious retreads.

Alongside that is the gameplay, a series of well-worn button-mashing and puzzle-smashing tropes – nothing exactly innovative considering its winning formula, but they are trying: new “building” conundrums attempt to embrace Lego’s original purpose, and while they never live up to the endless possibilities of the blocks, we do appreciate the effort.

Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a decent game, but I’m ending this review on a rant: while the Lego gaming series is fun and all, don’t you kind of miss real games based on movies? Wouldn’t it have been cool to have a proper planet hopping, light sabre duelling adventure based on the movie?

I get it: real games cost a lot, and more often than not, they epically fail due to studio interference – but the whole Lego-only tie-in thing is getting a little saturated. Here’s hoping the next Star Wars flicks aren’t only built of bricks.