|System: DS, X360, PS3, Wii, PS2, PSP||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: nSpace||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Lucas Arts||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sept. 16, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-6||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
The main thing that you can look forward to when leveling-up throughout the game is picking up new combos. Accessing the combos is almost as easy as putting your finger on the touchscreen, but instead you use the stylus to connect and combine two regular moves. You'll be able to pick up an enemy and throw him, or perhaps you would like to slash and electrify them. Connecting the various combos is intuitive and fun, but they are more of a novelty factor than anything else.
You'll end up using the lightsaber and the push move more than anything else, as these are the most effective and powerful moves. The others are like designer moves that add a bit of dramatic flair but feature style over substance. It's nice to try the caviar now and then, but it's the meat-and-potato moves that get the job done.
I expect more from a Star Wars game than a predictable hack-and-slash, but unfortunately that's what Unleashed is all about. Each level leads you through a series of corridors with pockets of enemies around corners. The pace increases, culminating with large arena-style battlefields teeming with swarms of baddies, which takes you to the inevitable boss battle. Each level follows that pattern. There are few surprises, despite the fact that there are two different endings. At about five hours, the game is very short, so to artificially extend the replay value you can unlock a different ending while playing in the various unlockable outfits you collected the first time around. You can forget about the multiplayer modes. Deathmatch and one-on-one modes are not very much fun. Once again, there is very little feel of freedom. These are among the most linear multiplayer modes I've ever played. You are forced into areas where death for your character is caused more by environmental forces than the other players. The Deathmatch mode can accommodate up to six players, but they will all require a copy of the game.
Graphically, the game is plagued by poor camera angles that cannot be overridden, ghosting, slowdown, and repetitive, blasé character models, with the exception of your character and the Darth. The blasts of the lasers and the hum of the lightsabers are pure Star Wars, but the overall sound effects palette is extremely limited.
If you must, play Unleased in small doses, or better yet, just read the book.
CCC Senior Writer