Sorry, but one of the last encounters is hands down the worst piece of gameplay ever. I suppose they were going for “You must dominate”. But I’d like to be able to see my character, especially since targetting is based on the direction you are facing.
It seems like there may be two possible endings. I was working on one last night, then I fired it up again today and found it hadn’t saved that progress and put me back at the sequence of fights. There is one fight with an enemy standing in the middle of a little force-shieldy thing. After you get past the first round, he jumps to the back of the scene and forces you to do the same. Then … the camera stays at the far side of the room, and you have to finish the fight with your characters only about 1/20th of the screen height. There are no lights at the back of the room, just the very bright glow of the force-field-floor between you, throwing the back of the room into deeper shadow.
Finally defeating this guy, I returned to the “you choose” step of the finale. Annoyingly, it put my character just off-screen. Assuming I was facing down the center of the screen I pushed forward and fell to the choice I didn’t want to make. Nice.
Ok – so I’m fighting the other guy again, who has magically regrown the limbs I chopped off in the previous sequence. This can’t be a good sign…
I get my ass kicked thru a series of tricks that I think are supposed to make you realize “there is one way to fight this, and you will not try any other”. Run away, and you’ll be stunned and tossed around or blasted with something you cannot dodge or prevent being fired. Get close and you’ll be knocked down or herded into a corner where you can’t see what’s going on.
I die, slowly, and annoyingly, essentially trapped. I’m frantically bashing away on the controller but I can’t get in range or get up so I just watch my character beaten down until I die. Fair enough. We saved at the choice, right? Oh, no we didn’t. We saved with my back to the enemy so as soon as gameplay commences, I get knocked down, zapped or blown across the room. I’ve lost 1/5th of my health before I gain control. I get my ass kicked. And that’s how it got saved.
Sheer bloody mindedness finally finishes the guy off and a non-canonic seeming ending sequence although you can kind of figure out how it might work.
I might give the other ending a go, so long as I don’t first have to re-run the entire level…
Incidentally, when you start the last level, the UI proudly displays: BONUS OBJECTIVES: *DEFAULT TEXT. When you complete it, this changes to BONUS OBJECTIVES: NIL.
There are some really sweet cutscenes in the game, and there are some that are slightly spoiled by uncharacteristically inelegant backdrops or crappy walking animations. There’s one sequence with a bunch of apparently one-legged characters who walk solely by moving their right legs.
It also seems that accessing the UI – e.g. for levelling up etc – introduces some kind of leak. Either that or an hour or two of play. The result is that if you play for an extended session, you begin to experience chugs with various effects – such as, for example, when your light saber hits an enemy. Since many combos are timing-based this can make it virtually impossible to pull off combos.
My advice would be to restart the game after each level; except that messes with your stats.
It can also be really hard to pull of combos because either the enemy dies in one or two hits or the enemy blocks or has some kind of shield. There are also tons of times where the visual feedback is utterly ineffective. Several NPCs will secretly block you can run around with a huge, glowing, lightsaber wound that would seem to indicate you scored a hit. Nope, they blocked, but your blade passed thru them in the animation. I cut countless stormtroopers in half, if you go by the fact I melted their waistline, kind of funny to watch them running around.
Likewise, it can be difficult to tell whether you successfully blocked or not. There are several times where I appear to have blocked but I take damage; times where I don’t appear to have blocked but took no damage. The only time it’s really obvious is when you happen to time your block perfectly and you counter attack, which is dubiously desirable because it often moves the enemy back just far enough to let them do something nasty back to you while you are finishing your animation and waiting to get them re-targetted. I suspect that it may be a good idea to play with “target lock toggle” enabled, especially since holding down the target lock seems to mess with combos.
The icing on the cake… There is only one Save Game slot. Actually, there are several, but when you select “Save Game” it saves it to the first slot. When I tried to “continue game” in the hopes of trying the other ending… It quickly overwrote my previous save with a save point at the very beginning again. SWEET! I guess I can mission-select the last mission in the game and go thru the whole thing to try the other boss…
Honestly, if this game weren’t laden with some of the best Star Warsy goodness going, I would have ditched it within a few hours. If you’re a Star Wars fan, then this game is worth it despite the issues.