All of us who had the Super Nintendo remember the Super Star Wars series. The games were among the most prestigious of the SNES games and any Star Wars fan, myself included, played all three of them. Now Nintendo has re-released the entire series, including the original Super Star Wars on the Nintendo Wii’s Virtual Console for 800 Nintendo Points.
Super Star Wars loosely follows the plot of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. The game puts you in the boots of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and of course Chewbacca the Wookie as you must progress through each level to save Princess Leia and destroy the Death Star in a very impressive early 3D trench run. Several changes are made to the plot to make the game more action oriented such as Luke having to rescue R2-D2 from the Jawas rather than just buying them. The changes aren’t terrible, just necessary to make the game longer. The game is a platforming shooter and it works well for the technology of the time.
The presentation for an SNES game is outstanding. The graphics are colorful and sharp. The sprites look like the actors, and the backgrounds are beautifully drawn. The sound is also great. The sound effects sound exactly as they do in the movies, which for the time was a considerable achievement. The music is beautifully ported from the movies, but not as perfectly as the sound effects. Still, the music in the game captures John Williams’ score perfectly and really adds to the game play.
The controls lead to a few problems. The layout is very well done and perfectly preserved on the Wii Classic Remote. However, a flaw from the game itself makes platform jumping very difficult. This leads to countless deaths and redoes to get the jumps right. The shooting controls are great though and the vehicle controls are simple after a quick learning curve.
As for the gameplay itself, it is summed up in one word: HARD. The game is nearly impossible to beat without the debug codes and cheats still in the game. I attribute most of the difficulty to the platforming problems but the AI is also extremely difficult, even on the easy mode. Only the best of players can beat this game without cheating so be aware that you will become easily frustrated by this game if ill prepared for it. That being said the game is still fun when you can progress and the vehicle sequences are brilliant.
All in all, Super Star Wars is a game to be loved by some, and loathed by others. It is a very difficult game that only the best of players can handle. For others the game will become so frustrating you’ll want to curse the day this game was ever released. If you love Star Wars and a challenge, I can recommend this game. You get a lot of gameplay for $8, and a classic SNES game. Everyone else should consider staying away from it.
Game review by Anthony Lifrieri.
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