Featured Columns

October 15, 2009

The Comics Console: Star Wars The Clone Wars: Republic Heroes

Some quick Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 news: Carnage is now available for download as a playable character in MUA2. You can check out the special Carnage trailer here. Mr. Cletus Kasady is only the second downloadable character for MUA2, Juggernaut being the other as a GameStop exclusive. Hopefully we’ll see more DLC for the Marvel RPG soon.

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UNLEASH MAXIMUM CARNAGE

Over the last few years one of the more celebrated eras of the Star Wars universe has been the Clone Wars. Everything from film, television, comics, and now video games have touched on the subject.

Between the years of 2003 and 2006 Dark Horse published 9 volumes covering the events of the Clone Wars, spanning from Star Wars: Republic #49-83. John Ostrander sculpts most of the narrative taking place between Episodes II and III, with Haden Blackman, Scott Allie, Jeremy Barlow, Randy Stradley and others taking on writing duties. Jan Duursema, Brian Ching, Tomas Giorella, and others provide the pencils.

A scene from the battle of Aargonar

A scene from the battle of Aargonar

Now the war comes to gaming consoles with Star Wars The Clone Wars: Republic Heroes, following along the lines of the Cartoon Network TV series. Game adaptions of TV shows and movies usually don’t turn out so well, so you wouldn’t be wrong to expect lackluster quality in Republic Heroes. However, Lucas Arts Singapore and Krome Studios actually set a new low for quality of TV and movie adapted games. If you’re a fan of the Star Wars Clone Wars cartoon, then you’ll appreciate the game’s story reflecting aspects of the show’s first season, and the same voice actors performing their best Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen impressions. What you won’t appreciate is that the game comes off as simply a Lego Star Wars rip off. And a bad one at that.

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I love the sound that blaster rifles make

The sloppy controls are the game’s biggest issue, followed closely by the erratic camera. You’re character will run wildly, falling off ledges and out of screen constantly, and missing jumps to platforms. You hack and slash through levels and levels of enemies and droids with the finesse and style of an intoxicated 3-P0 unit rather than an experienced Jedi. The Wii version of Republic Heroes actually has slightly better controls than its 360, PS3 and PC counter parts using the Wii remote and nunchuk, but are still a problem.

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Scramble!

Repetition is another one of the game’s biggest flaws. Once you’ve played through the first few levels, you’ve pretty much played the whole game. There are boss battles, the occasional vehicle to pilot, and some puzzles, none of which keep the game interesting. Levels go by pretty quickly, but boring gameplay will have the eight hour campaign dragging on seemingly forever, making you wish it would just end. The game’s poor level design makes things confusing at times. You’ll have a hard time telling where or what your next area is and what’s just background scenery. During heavy battles, the mixture of lightsabers flashing and blasters firing meld into a confusing mess fit to send small children into seizures.

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I wish I could have the sound of killing droids as my ring tone

One of the game’s positive features is its fairly large list of playable characters which can be played in a solo game or with drop-in-drop-out multiplayer on the same system (I hope you weren’t expecting online multiplayer, because there is none). Nearly every major character from the show is here. Series stars like Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Padawan Ahsoka Tano, to lesser lights like clone trooper Cody or Jedi third-stringers Plo Koon and Luminara Unduli. Villains are drawn from the show’s entire rogues gallery. Count Dooku makes an appearance, as do dark Jedi Asajj Ventress and bounty hunter Cad Bane.

Star Wars The Clone Wars: Republic Heroes is almost as bad as Star Wars Episode II. This is another shoddy Star Wars game that Lucas Arts has allowed to be released, and it’s a slap in the face to its enormous fan base. It was understood that this game wasn’t going to amaze us, and it didn’t have to. This was just damn sloppy and careless, and has me worried about the future Star Wars games. 1/5

So are any of you sick of all the attention the Clone Wars have been getting lately? I mean, as far as Star Wars wars go, the Clone Wars is hardly the best, in my opinion. How about a game touching on the Mandalorian Wars? Or better yet, the Great Sith Wars! What’s your favorite Star Wars war?

I decided to get the bad Clone Wars taste out of my mouth with a Star Wars game that’s actually really good.  Super Star Wars on the Super Nintendo.

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"Never tell me the odds!"

Now, this is the point where I would normally jump into review mode, but honestly, I can’t for these games. Why? Because these games are just too friggin’ hard! I’ve never gotten past a second or third level! I mean, the first few levels I can survive are really fun. The Super Star Wars series covers all the original films and are probably some of the best 2D side scrollers on the SNES, but I can’t know for sure, because I’ve never played one all the way through.

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I bet this boss battle against Darth Vader was fun…I'll never know for sure

The force is definitely not with me on my SNES. I challenge you to play them for yourself. If you can finish one of these games, especially Super Return of the Jedi, then you are truly a Jedi Master, for I am but a Padawan.

Next week in The Comics Console we summon Shenron, the Eternal Dragon, and wish for a good game in Dragon Ball: Revenge of King Piccolo!

Andrew Hurst
andrewhurst@comicattack.net

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7 Comments


  1. BladeMaster Dakk

    “blasters firing meld into a confusing mess fit to send small children into seizures.” LMAO!!

    im personally sick of the Clone Wars myself. One day i hope they’ll actually make some sorta movie, tv show, or game depicting the events AFTER episode VI. (Luke rebuilding the Jedi, Mara Jade, the Yuuzhan Vong War, Legacy) Which they only have in Books and Comics. But it’d be cool to play with those stories in a game. justsaying..

    The Jedi Civil War was my favorite.. It had the Jedi looking at how they did things. And then fighting about it. With both sides presenting valid points. That would make a great plot for something like Knights of the Old Republic 3.. since the others only touch around it, and the Mandalorian Wars. There was some Black Horse comics about Jango Fett when he was in the Mandalorian Corps. And about his mentor Jaster Mareel. Pages of it were unlockable in Star Wars: Bounty Hunter.. god i love that game..

    OMG!! SUPER STAR WARS!! ..only played Empire Strikes Back one.. but god arnt they hard!? i could only get to the end of the second level where you have to fight a Wampa the size of a house.. it was fucking bullshit how hard that was. but the graphics were awesome and gameplay fun.

    ..god i just rambled about star wars.. sorry.. XD


  2. billy

    I think I would like to play this game if I could kill Jar Jar. Good review AH.


  3. InfiniteSpeech

    I had all the star wars games for the super nintendo and I was able to beat them all after a LOT of dying but I was persistant as hell lol.

    I have heard nothing good about the clone wars game and even though the show isn’t well received there is still potential for a great game there. I mean when i comes to controlls being sloppy there is NO excuse!! Don’t they have testers that play the game as it’s being developed??? Damn shame!



  4. “During heavy battles, the mixture of lightsabers flashing and blasters firing meld into a confusing mess fit to send small children into seizures.” Now that’s hilarious!

    And I agree about the Super Star Wars line; they’re freaking great but hard as hell! I think RotJ is the easiest out of all of them, but why anyone would play as someone other than Luke is beyond. His lightsaber easily makes him the most user friendly character in the game. I think the looooong levels have something to do with the difficulty. But man are they awesome!

    My favorite Star Wars war is that of the Rebellion vs. the Empire. Call me vanilla, but there you go!

    And has anyone ever played TIE Fighter, X-Wing, Dark Forces, Dark Forces II: Jedi Knight, or Star Wars Rebellion for the PC? Those were some kick ass Star Wars games! Especially Rebellion, but I don’t think many people have heard of it let alone played it…


  5. Kristin

    Can’t say I’m surprised….

    You mentioned that you can basically play every character in the story. Do they have different combat styles, or are they all similar? That would be good to know. 🙂

    As for Clone Wars…. I’ve seen the new cartoon a few times (my fiancee has an 11-year-old son). Anything with that many plot holes, and that much disregard for the mythology, is garbage as far as I’m concerned.

    As for my favorite Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. So many people hate that one because of the Ewoks, but I think they’re adorable. Well, I mean as far as the movies go. I haven’t played many Star Wars games. Just the Knights of the Old Republic games, I think.



  6. @Andy

    Hell yes! All the old PC Star Wars games were the best! Especially the TIE Fighter and X-Wing games.

    @Kris

    All the characters that didn’t have Lightsabars were basically useless and dull. They had their blasters and maybe a few other attacks, but just made the game even more boring that what it already is. haha.



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