Review

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II: PS3 Review

A few years ago, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed came out and all Star Wars gaming fans were excited. It was one of the few Star Wars games that looked like it might very well contain a great story alongside all the of Jedi powers we have come to know and love as fans of the films. In the end, The Force Unleashed went on to become the biggest selling Star Wars game of all time despite numerous flaws, from platforming issues to repetitive gameplay. Now, here we are a few years later and it seems that little has changed in regards to the problems the first title showed.

The story picks up loosely from where it left off at the end of the first game. Your character, Starkiller, either died at the end of the last game and has now been cloned or he never died at all. Trying to find out if you are a clone is what the game's story has you trying to find out, as well as trying to take down Darth Vader and rescuing your loved one, Juno Eclipse.

Firstly, lets get some of the good points out of the way. Graphically the game is great looking. The character textures and animation on the whole are great, despite numerous clipping issues throughout the game where characters drop into scenery or lost their feet missing through the floor. The game also suffers from a number of slowdowns during some of the larger scenes, sometimes strangely dropping below 10 frames per second. The sound is also superb during the game, from the voice acting to all of the well-known music. The 5.1 surround sound is used to great effect too during the game with stormtroopers shouting out orders and screaming all around you.

The cutscenes are also great to look at, though for some reason there seems to be a lot less of them than there were in the first game. We will get to the length of the game later on in the review, as this is a major issue for The Force Unleashed 2.

The first level is based on the one from the demo, which sees you break out of Darth Vader's clutches. The level is longer than the demo version, which pretty much showed off what the entire game is like. I actually quite enjoyed the start of the game, being back in control of Starkiller and taking down stormtroopers with force lightening, throwing them off of ledges with force grip etc; it is a lot of fun. That is, until you realize that this is basically what the entire game is like throughout, with very little in the way of variety.

Taking on what I guess you could call big enemies such as AT-ST's requires you to either attack them directly or to rebound their missiles. You do this by blocking them with your lightsaber or by force gripping them out of the air and firing the projectiles back. Since this is quite easy to do, it tends to result in you standing a distance back and then doing this over and over until they are destroyed. You can also get close to them and start up a quick time event which has you press a sequence of buttons. My issue here is that the sequence of buttons is the same over and over for the same enemies each time and they are never difficult to pull off.

Platforming is a also mixed bag. Sometimes it can work perfectly, and other times it is just a frustrating experience. This gets very frustrating later in the game when falling off a platform will result in starting quite far back due to some dodgy level saving. The game also suffers from repetition not just in the gameplay department, but also from the enemies. You get the same basic enemies over and over again including the walkers. The environments look very similar too, which is a real shame considering just how good the game looks at times.

The story also doesn't seem to go anywhere. It doesn't end with any conclusion or any idea about what you were looking to find out in the game. It’s as if they forgot about the storyline somewhere along the way. This gets me on to what I feel is the worst part of the game, the games length. Don't get me wrong, a 6 hour game can be great, but this one I completed in just over 4 hours and I'm not even a fantastically talented gamer. This included all of the cutscenes and me sometimes just wandering around to take in the views. It feels as if Lucasarts' plan to pad the game out is by releasing lots of DLC in the future, something that as a gamer I'd be really annoyed about if it did happen.

So, as you may be able to tell, I'm not much of a fan of The Force Unleashed 2. It is far too easy to complete, the problems from the first game haven't been resolved, the story goes nowhere and the environments and enemies feel as if they are just rehashed over and over. As a sequel, the developers were supposed to improve what was good and fix what was broken. The Force just wasn't with them this time.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

WP7 marketplace now has over 12,000 developers

Next Story

Use Hotmail without changing your email address

22 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

I just played it on the PC and it is awesome. You can't claim that they didn't fix any of the problems from the first game, because they did. I've noticed no major fps drops (at 1080p) and I have don't have a very hardcore gaming system. The game costs only $30 on Amazon. Sure, if you dislike certain gameplay elements getting it on a different platform isn't going to solve that, but obviously you picked the wrong system to get this game for (although the CE does look nice and might be worth paying extra for the, well, extras). I do plan on getting a PS3 one of these days, but it sure isn't so I can play Star Wars games.

I see games price range from $59-69 minus the DLC content which are around $3-5 if not more depending on content. So you'll find yourself spending actually almost $90 on a new game these days. What you get now are shorter games around 3-4 hours (unless it's mmo/rpgs) it takes to beat and the only replay value goes straight only to MP if you play it a frequently.

I remember the good $49.99 days where games came with everything it was intended instead of dividing up the content as DLC (unless it was an expansion pack) and asking for more cash.

I had been so looking forward to this game. I even went so far as to purchase the collector's edition for my 360. (I bought the first one on PS3, but, my son wants to play it and only has a 360). I was extremely disappointed when I reached the end. Quite frankly, by the time you reach "the end" it feels like it should only be half over. The story.....is just non-existent. The first one at least had an engaging story line which made you want to mostly ignore some of the gameplay issues. This had.....nothing. Literally. Consider me a very frustrated gamer right now and I for one will be VERY hesitent to buy a third one if they ever go that route.

SamuriHL said,
I had been so looking forward to this game. I even went so far as to purchase the collector's edition for my 360. (I bought the first one on PS3, but, my son wants to play it and only has a 360). I was extremely disappointed when I reached the end. Quite frankly, by the time you reach "the end" it feels like it should only be half over. The story.....is just non-existent. The first one at least had an engaging story line which made you want to mostly ignore some of the gameplay issues. This had.....nothing. Literally. Consider me a very frustrated gamer right now and I for one will be VERY hesitent to buy a third one if they ever go that route.

If you're in the UK do you want to sell it? If so how much? I'll PM you my email

cerealfreak said,

If you're in the UK do you want to sell it? If so how much? I'll PM you my email

I'm not in the UK, and I'm not going to sell it. My son hasn't had a chance to play it yet. Plus, if what the original article says is true, we can expect to see some DLC that may fill in the blanks a bit. I'm not hopeful, but, I'm not ready to sell the game yet, either.

This game sounds a lot like Fable 3. Devs just pinch out the exact same game as the last one without fixing any of the issues or improving on anything.

It's sad.

Yea I dunno, I quit playing, especially when I hit the PC bug where you can't remove the energy canister from one of the ships guns to put into the broken gun and blast a door, on the ship that is being attacked. I still don't think they have issued a patch for it yet. So most people on PC are stick at that point. Google "Starwars Force Unleashed 2 PC BUG" it should come up on Lucasarts forums.

xendrome said,
Yea I dunno, I quit playing, especially when I hit the PC bug where you can't remove the energy canister from one of the ships guns to put into the broken gun and blast a door, on the ship that is being attacked. I still don't think they have issued a patch for it yet. So most people on PC are stick at that point. Google "Starwars Force Unleashed 2 PC BUG" it should come up on Lucasarts forums.

Very poor if they havent fixed it yet.

xendrome said,
Yea I dunno, I quit playing, especially when I hit the PC bug where you can't remove the energy canister from one of the ships guns to put into the broken gun and blast a door, on the ship that is being attacked. I still don't think they have issued a patch for it yet. So most people on PC are stick at that point. Google "Starwars Force Unleashed 2 PC BUG" it should come up on Lucasarts forums.

Did you go into the other room and grab the canister from there? The first canister is supposed to explode. It forces you to go into the second room which has another canister.

I had tremendous fun with this game. And there were definitely some WOW moments in it (Gorog, for instance). Granted, it has its flaws, but it's not as bad as the majority of reviews have been labeling it.

Lately more and more gaming articles have been popping on Neowin. Keep them up!

I liked the original game, it was good for the price at the time which was £14.99, which is extremely reasonable for a console game. I'd probably buy this if it was sold at a similar price.. but it isn't. So, no thanks!

jamesyfx said,
I liked the original game, it was good for the price at the time which was £14.99, which is extremely reasonable for a console game. I'd probably buy this if it was sold at a similar price.. but it isn't. So, no thanks!

Yea for the length of the game I wouldn't spend any more than that on if. Or just rent it for an evening