Star Wars: The Clone Wars Hands-On

NZGamer was fortunate enough to attend Activate ’08 – a three day over-view of Activision / Blizzard’s gaming titles set for launch leading up to Xmas. This is what we saw...

The Force Unleashed isn’t the only Star Wars title due out soon by LucasArts and in November, Wii owners will be given more light-saber action in The Clone Wars. The animated movie and up-coming TV series tells a story that fits between episodes II and III revolving around a ‘re-Darth Vader’ Anakin. It introduces us to several curious new characters, including Anakin’s new padawan Ahsoka Tano and a maliciously delicious Sith known as Asajj Ventress. The movie and TV series also did an excellent job of making existing characters like Anakin, Obi Wan and Count Dooku more likable and interesting.

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The Clone Wars, an exclusive for Nintendo (it also appears on the DS) brings these characters together in a Soul Calibur-like title, making clever use of the Wii-motes along the way. When the game ships, it is likely to have the full title of Star Wars: The Clone Wars - Lightsaber Duels which is not only a mouthful, but describes the game pretty neatly as well. Basically players chose their favourite character and then go head to head against others – duelling with light-sabers and force powers across many recognisable locations including Tatooine and Teth.

The main cause for excitement in this title is the chance to wield light-sabers via the Wii-motes – a controller that has the potential to lend itself perfectly. Without any instructions, anyone can pick-up this game and play thanks to the intuitive controls – but it also felt that players with experience could probably have the upper-hand with enough practice for the finer combos. You can slash or stab your opponent by swinging the Wii-mote from side-to-side or thrusting it forward respectively as if you were actually holding a light-saber. Player movement around the 3d arena is via the analogue stick on the Nunchuk controller, whilst buttons A and B will either jump or block respectively. Force powers allow you to pick up objects like rocks scattered around the area and chuck them by making a throwing action with your Nunchuk controller as well.

The end result is a fairly detailed combat simulator and thanks to both your force powers and destructive environments – Clone Wars was an action packed (albiet extremely frantic and retarded) experience. There is no way to look cool whilst playing this game so expect to see many flailing arms and screwed up facial expressions during gameplay. Although we didn’t get to see single-player action, it is likely that the core elements will remain the same. We expect that the player selects a character and then through a series of cinematics and rough storylines where you battle other characters to progress from scene to scene.

This title is sure to be a winner amongst a younger audience and to anyone who enjoyed the Clone Wars movie. The animated style of the game is perfectly recreated on the Wii and graphically is one of the better presented games for the console that I’ve seen to date. It arrives here in NZ on the 28th November – perfect for that Xmas stocking filler.

For more from Activate '08, visit our Activate '08: Full Coverage Feature.

+ You can play as Asajj Ventress.
- You can’t cut off Jar Jar’s head.
"There is no way to look cool whilst playing this game."
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars
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Comments Comments (4)

Posted by alienhominid
On Saturday 13 Sep 2008 4:08 PM
sounds pretty cool but do the light sabers do what you do? or does it do whatever it wants when you waggle it.
Posted by Koopa18
On Saturday 13 Sep 2008 4:18 PM
ROUGHLY what you do, mostly what it wants.

Posted by tim705
On Saturday 13 Sep 2008 7:44 PM
Makes me want a Wii even more.
Posted by Donutta
On Sunday 14 Sep 2008 12:54 PM
So, so asking for this one for Christmas!