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114 Comments

Stop Hitting Yourself!

If your big brother could use the Force.

I'd be happy to never even touch a lightsaber in this game.
Maybe it was the general exhaustion inherent to the last day of E3, maybe it was my ever-increasing disinterest in Star Wars, or maybe it was a bitter cocktail of the two, but the last time I saw The Force Unleashed, I just thought it looked dumb. Having downloaded the demo this morning, I'm happy to report that The Force Unleashed looks dumb--dumb as hell--but in a really giddy, appealing way.

My concern early on with The Force Unleashed was that it would just be a pile of licensed middleware engines loosely tethered together by storm troopers and TIE fighters. While it would appear that my fears weren't unfounded, it turns out that's maybe not an entirely bad thing. Using the Force to grab storm troopers and slam them into each other or fling them into TIE fighters is consistently hilarious enough that I'm willing to forgive the otherwise thin gameplay and ignore the annoying conceit of playing as a ridiculously overpowered secret apprentice to Darth Vader who, unless you count his synergistic appearance in Soulcalibur IV, no one has heard of before.

Part of the reason The Force Unleashed works is that the basic mechanics work well, but the specifics aren't quite right. Using the Force to manipulate objects is pretty smooth, and the dual-stick controls are set up in a familiar, first-person shooter fashion that makes the three dimensions intuitive to navigate, but the way the dudes flip about and try vainly to grab onto objects or other dudes just looks silly. Inappropriate sound effects and some confused AI behavior really enhance the effect.

I really enjoy that the game encourages you to basically play like an asshole, using the Force primarily to humiliate your opponents, with their eventual deaths seeming almost more like a side-effect. It's like the ultimate game of “stop hitting yourself!” Here's a brief montage to give you an idea of how I like to play The Force Unleashed.

  
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Posted by Ryan
I'd be happy to never even touch a lightsaber in this game.
Maybe it was the general exhaustion inherent to the last day of E3, maybe it was my ever-increasing disinterest in Star Wars, or maybe it was a bitter cocktail of the two, but the last time I saw The Force Unleashed, I just thought it looked dumb. Having downloaded the demo this morning, I'm happy to report that The Force Unleashed looks dumb--dumb as hell--but in a really giddy, appealing way.

My concern early on with The Force Unleashed was that it would just be a pile of licensed middleware engines loosely tethered together by storm troopers and TIE fighters. While it would appear that my fears weren't unfounded, it turns out that's maybe not an entirely bad thing. Using the Force to grab storm troopers and slam them into each other or fling them into TIE fighters is consistently hilarious enough that I'm willing to forgive the otherwise thin gameplay and ignore the annoying conceit of playing as a ridiculously overpowered secret apprentice to Darth Vader who, unless you count his synergistic appearance in Soulcalibur IV, no one has heard of before.

Part of the reason The Force Unleashed works is that the basic mechanics work well, but the specifics aren't quite right. Using the Force to manipulate objects is pretty smooth, and the dual-stick controls are set up in a familiar, first-person shooter fashion that makes the three dimensions intuitive to navigate, but the way the dudes flip about and try vainly to grab onto objects or other dudes just looks silly. Inappropriate sound effects and some confused AI behavior really enhance the effect.

I really enjoy that the game encourages you to basically play like an asshole, using the Force primarily to humiliate your opponents, with their eventual deaths seeming almost more like a side-effect. It's like the ultimate game of “stop hitting yourself!” Here's a brief montage to give you an idea of how I like to play The Force Unleashed.

  
Staff
Posted by broqz

why do the video's never load for me?

Posted by Artie

I played the demo, it seemed like every other 3rd person star wars game that's come out in the past 20 years.

And they played up all the engines like Euphoria, DMM and Havok, but all that technologic combination goodness that was seen in tech demos isn't shown off in gameplay form ever. Proving that it's an awesome tech demo, but it's not a good game. 3 out of 5 stars, calling it right now.

Posted by zig

Tried the demo a few minutes ago, I thought the controls were mediocre and the force powers weren't fun to use at all.  The only cool thing I saw was the shattering glass.

Posted by zophar53

That's pretty hilarious!  It didn't even cross my mind to play the game like that.  I'll have to try it out in between sessions of playing it for serious.

Posted by Xenos_19

Lol Hilariously Awesome, I tottaly forgot to mess around ... even though I played through it three times already, I really have to mess around now it seems like so much fun :D

And you guys have great music :D

Posted by GalvanizedNails

calling a 3 out of 5 stars as well with brad as the reviewer. I'll try the demo when I get my 360 back, but im very skeptical

Posted by Buddycuffs

This game is deeper than it looks. The physics that usually apply only to story objects apply to literally everything in the game. For instance, when you use the force push to blast open the big doors - that same rule applies to all of the metal panels on the walls. It just feels so realistic. I hope the story is good.

Posted by ColumnBreaker

The only real appealing factor of this game is the force powers. The combat itself is more shallow than the combat in the Conan beatem up, and that's saying something.

Posted by MasterSplinter

That video was hilarious. I'm looking forward to trying out the demo.

Posted by FallenFatKid

i try to play the demo on my xbox360 it was jack

Posted by Vinchenzo

The reason I love the force mechanics is so much is because it reminds me a lot of Psi-Ops. Psi-Ops was a very underrated game, but a fabulous one, and very simple to latch onto gameplay mechanics such as SWTFU is doing. Looks to be promising, not sure about the replayability factor.

Posted by Scroll

Am I that much of a fool that I really enjoyed pretty much everything that demo had to offer.

Please don't tell me I'm George Lucas's bitch!

Posted by mawfu

throwing the storm troopers as far as I could see was awesome. Was it just me or the fake Vadar voice throw you off?

Posted by ZmillA

omg if you guys made that beat PLEASE PUT IT UP FOR DOWNLOAD!! its really good :)

Posted by AnEternalEnigma

Is that an Upright Citizens Brigade reference?

Posted by Absurd

Good job, Lmfao

Posted by Zergvasion

You people complain too much.
It was a solid demo, which is more than I can say about Too Human.

Posted by HumanTorch101

I need to try that demo out the next time I boot up my 360.

Posted by imayellowfellow

is this off the new midnight brown album?!

Posted by spiceninja

I thought the demo was great, although the lightsaber fighting fell a little flat. I understand that the game is all about the force powers though.

Posted by Aaron_G

Haha. Great video.

Posted by Illmatic

I loved the demo actually and it pretty much got me really interested in the actual game. First Dead Space and now this...way to change my mind game companies. My wallet officially hates you.

Posted by MagusMaleficus

I don't really get how this game "looks dumb--dumb as hell," or why the apprentice is annoying. More importantly, I don't know why Ryan wrote an impression piece about the demo, when he openly admits on the podcast he's not a fan of Star Wars. I'd rather read Brad's thoughts on the demo.

Posted by Zergvasion

It's a good demo.
Nuff said.
Brings back the "Jedi Academy" feel of gameplay.
Stop bitching.

Posted by giyanks22

it really is a fun demo.

Posted by ObsideonDarman

I played the Demo and I thought was really cool and very impressive, you guys must be playing a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT DEMO!!!

I am calling a 4 out of 5 Stars here

Posted by roofy

vids not loading for me either.
im off to DL the demo now

Posted by dQuarters

HAHAHA! THAT's why I didn't enjoy the demo ... I'm not big enough of a prick.

*loads demo again to learn prickishness*
Posted by Zergvasion

The "prick" effect is exactly why I enjoyed the demo.
Those assholes were shooting at me! They deserve to fly infront of a Tie Fighter.

Posted by albedos_shadow

That looks exactly like all of my demo playthroughs.

Posted by joslop500

Played the demo and i thought it was pretty cool. Graphics are amazing.

Posted by Jawshua

I enjoyed the demo alot,this is a first day buy for me.

Posted by TheGTAvaccine

I actually thought the demo was awesome.

Posted by wrecks

Demo was fun enough I guess, nothing amazing. After 30 years just kinda over Vader's mug and killing dudes in white plastic costumes with a laser sword seems old hat. 

Posted by Milkman

I had a hell of a lot fun with the demo, just playing as an asshole. I bent the support beams so that every TIE Fighter that flew by hit it and was destroyed. I must have moved a storm tropper off the edge of a walkway and just dropped him at least 20 times. I put a storm tropper as high in the air as possible then dropped him in front of me and laughed my ass off while doing it. My personal favorite was taking a storm tropper and just repeatably slamming him between the floor and ceiling.

By the way, the music in that montage was rad. I hope that's a new Midnight Brown song.

Posted by Iainzor

I lol'd.  Downloading the demo now so I can do that :)

Posted by John

the demo was so awesome, really think this game is going to be great.

Posted by Zergvasion

I lol'd when I force pushed a Stormtrooper into the air. And the camera went all "actioncam".

Posted by BlazingWookie

that was hilarious

Posted by BD_Mr_Bubbles

The demo was great in my opinion, definitely picking the game up

Posted by patrick5152003

psi-ops unleashed LOLZ

Posted by Zergvasion

"psi-ops unleashed LOLZ"

LOL UR COOL

Posted by Tharrington

That was some freaking awesome music.

Posted by Jotun

Just finished the demo for the third time in a row and I'm pretty sure this one ranks as a purchase for me. The force powers reminded me of Psi-Ops (which is awesome, by the way) and the melee combat seemed fun and fluid. Can't wait to see what the final game has to offer.

Posted by zoozilla

While it is pretty fun, I'm not sure the game play will stand up during hours and hours of game play.  I'm also very interested in the story, actually.  It can't be any worse than Episode I...

Or can it?

Great video.  It's probably a pretty accurate representation of what a Master of the Force would do with a lot of free time and a bunch of cannon fodder.

Posted by Trilogy

this game is going to be sick.. can't wait

Posted by dsplayer1010

I liked the demo.

Posted by wefwefasdf

I really liked the demo and I know that the story is at least adequate from reading the book they released for the game.

Posted by Shinedown220

the videos in recent blog posts have not worked for me. Has this happened to anyone else?

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