LEGO Star Wars II Preview

LEGO. You’ve got to absolutely love the small plastic bricks. I know there’s a lot more LEGO out there, but the simple different size blocks kept me entertained for hours on end. Trying to build a huge building with different size blocks, hoping it wouldn’t fall down — always failed. No matter what anyone says, I can guarantee many of you reading this article will have encountered the addictive stuff during your lifetime, some when you were young, some when you were helping your young relative build a house, but some of you may actually still be enjoying it now. What I know is looking enjoyable is LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy – boy does it sound good.

Star Wars fans will know that George Lucas went backwards about the ‘trilogies’. For example, the newest trilogy compiling of Star Wars Episode One, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith are the first three films, and the first films made back in the 1980’s were Episode IV (A New Hope), Episode V (The Empire Strikes Back and Episode VI (Return of the Jedi) and Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy is exactly that — the original films, IV, V and VI. LEGO Star Wars II follows the Rebel Alliance’s crusade to dismantle the Galactic Empire, rebuild a galaxy in pieces (get it?) and relive some of the films most extravagant moments — like the showdown on the second Deathstar.

But what does the sequel to LEGO Star Wars offer that the original didn’t, other than new levels? Well, quite a lot in fact. For the first time in the series, it’s now possible for characters to get in and out of vehicles along with using the creatures as transport. Those of you who had fun with LEGO in general — different colour bricks and whatnot, you won’t be disappointed as LEGO Star Wars II lets you mix-and-match body parts of over 50 of the playable characters to make millions of Star Wars characters. Those of you who have saves of the previous game get an added bonus — 50 additional characters for Free Play. It is also now no on-rail in vehicles, oh no, you can now control vehicles in a free roaming mode!

Talking about vehicles, you can now build and use your own vehicles, speeders, AT-STs, speeder bikes and more are on offer along with mounting creatures from the banthas of desert Tatooine to the tauntauns of frigid Hoth. LEGO Star Wars II is bringing LEGO videogames to a whole new level. With the creation of vehicles, as aforementioned, characters can be made — put Yoda’s head on Princess Leia or vice versa, there’s a lot of fun to be had in the creation mode. With the characters, you now have their specific attacks; Darth Vaders choke, Leia’s “slap” melee attack and even Chewbacca pulling enemies’ arms out of their sockets — the fun is there.

Within the Free Play mode, you can now import characters into the land levels to have even more fun, and with the tongue-in-cheek humour of the first LEGO Star Wars game, they’ll be more of it in LEGO Star Wars II with comical reinterpretations of classic Star Wars scenes and elements. Along with importing characters, you can also switch vehicles in space; anyone fancy destroying Death Star with a TIE fighter?

This time around, there’s a vast variety of puzzles to work your way around, that encourage creative thinking through the use of teamwork and unique building situations only possible in a LEGO galaxy “far, far away”. Difficulty wise, LEGO Star Wars II has an adaptive difficulty; those of you who do extremely well and match up to the Jedi skills will have tougher levels and opponents; those who are nowhere near that level will have a much easier time progressing. To top it off, LEGO Star Wars II will have cooperative gameplay which “encourages teamwork in a fun way and features a revamped camera for an optimal gameplay experience”.

So, LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy is sounding and looking quite impressive. Even I, at 19 years of age, am looking forward to destroying Death Star in a TIE fighter and messing around with the mix-and-match selection. With it all looking so promising, let’s hope that the developers will have as much success with this as they did with the original; I can’t see them failing if I’m honest. LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy is out later this year on the Xbox360 along with other formats, including the handhelds.


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