Having nothing to do with the upcoming shorts on Cartoon Network, this is the first game released, based on Episode II.
Title: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
Developer: Pandemic Studios
Platform: GameCube, Playstation 2, XBox Live
Players: 1 to 4 (possibly more in the XBox Live version)
Release Date: 2002/2003
Game Type: Action/Shooter
Taking off from the climactic battle on Geonosis, you lead Anakin, Obi-Wan, and Mace Windu on a search to find out Count Dooku’s next plan to destroy the Galactic Republic. Along the way you pilot a variety of craft and do battle with the massive Separatist Army.
First off, for those of you who played Pandemic’s Battlezone or Battlezone II, you know exactly what this game is like. And that’s a good thing. While there isn’t as much strategy as those games, the sheer fun of blasting away at enemies from a hovertank is still here.
Multiplayer features four different modes, each with varying settings and craft. A quick note, the Arena mode can be played one-player, offering some great practice sessions. There are also several bonus features to unlock, including a Making-Of video, Unit Viewer, CD-Player, and lastly you can unlock a playable Master Yoda for the Geonosis Arena.
The gunship missions are the best part of the single-player campaign. A close second: The multiplayer Geonosis arena battle is a blast.
There’s no way to know what bonus objectives you’ve completed in past missions. You can end up redoing the same ones over and over unless you write them down. Another thing I’d like to have seen was the implementation of the gunship in multiplayer modes. For that matter, several units got left out of multiplayer that would have been fun to leave in.
The originality is hard to lock down. It isn’t a total retread of Battlezone, but there are few games like it. I’d say 4 out of 6.
The story isn’t deep, but it is Star Wars. I give it a 3 out of 6.
The graphics aren’t outstanding, but they have their moments. They break down on the Raxus Prime missions, but look sharp on Geonosis (dust clouds) and Rhen Var (snow and ice). The color depth isn’t great, but they do keep the Star Wars feel of monotoning color schemes. 4 out of 6.
The sound, using Dolby II on the GameCube, is great. Pulled right from the movies, they sound spectacular. And where can you go wrong with John Williams’ score? Top marks, 6 out of 6.
The playability is mixed. Each craft is a little different, so I highly recommend studying the manual as you may not have time to play around during the missions. 4 out of 6.
This game has great immersion. You definitely feel like you’re in a Star Wars film. Definitely a 5 out of 6.
Overall, this is fun game. The multiplayer options alone make it very replayable as do the bonus objectives in the single player mode. 5 out of 6.
Total: 31 out of 42
Clone Wars for GameCube
Clone Wars for Playstation 2
Clone Wars for XBox Live (Available March 28, 2003)
- Official Game Site
- Pandemic Studios