Available on: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, PC
We played on: Xbox One
Any big media property you can think of has probably had a LEGO game made on its heels. Hell, they even made a LEGO Rock Band. But Star Wars was the property that got it all started. The current LEGO games have all been variations of LEGO Star Wars, which was released in 2005. LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens follows the same formula. Whether or not that’s a good thing can be debated.
The story of LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens is exactly what you would expect. For the most part, it’s the story from The Force Awakens film. I was expecting that as well, but I was pleasantly surprised to see the first level was the end of Return of the Jedi. I got to play as Wicket the Ewok. Enough said.
The game’s major claim to fame, however, is the inclusion of levels that feature never-before-seen story elements like Han Solo and Chewbacca hunting the menacing rathtars. I was disappointed that these special levels are locked behind “gold brick” barriers. You can earn gold bricks by playing the game, but it’s possible that you would need to play through the entire game and possibly some levels twice to be able to earn enough bricks to pay the price for unlocking the level. If you were hoping to jump in quickly just to see those new story elements, you’re out of luck.
As noted, the gameplay is the same as every other LEGO game. However, there is the addition of vehicle, or should I say, space ship gameplay. This type of gameplay is a first for the LEGO games and it’s well executed. I am terrible at any type of flying gameplay, but this was easy enough for me to play it fairly well. That means it shouldn’t trip up players who aren’t as skilled as some others.
Another thing to note is that LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens continues the recent trend of using voice over rather than mute interactions. It works better here than it did in LEGO Marvel Avengers, but I still prefer the way the story would be told without any words as it was in the early LEGO games. While there still are some goofy moments that made me chuckle, I feel more of that charm could have been present had the VO not been there.
Besides the main gameplay there are gazillions of characters, vehicles and other collectibles to find through out the game. That’s the same tried and true formula that has been working in LEGO games for more than 10 years.
At the end of the day it is a LEGO game and it’s Star Wars. That’s all you really need to know. If you or your kids are into LEGO games, then you’ll find a good experience here. If you’re someone who hasn’t liked or been lukewarm on the LEGO formula, this game won’t change your mind.