LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga | Review | Switch - Japan-based Nintendo Podcasts, Videos & Reviews!


Sunday, October 16, 2022

LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga | Review | Switch

While there have been plenty of retro Star Wars titles released on the Switch over the years, modern games have been lacking. Most of the big titles have appeared exclusively on more powerful hardware with games missing out on the Switch completely. That changed with the release of LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga. The game promises huge worlds, revamped combat, flying missions, open world areas and more. It’s pretty ambitious, but is the Switch version worth taking a look at, especially if you have the means to play it on more powerful hardware? That’s what we’re here to talk about. 

If you’ve ever played a LEGO title, you probably know what to expect here. The series takes source material from your favorite comics or movies and splice in humor and general silliness. This is no different with The Skywalker Saga. All of the mainline Star Wars movies are here to play through - Episode I all the way to IX. Each movie is divided up into five main missions with numerous objectives, places to go and items to collect. The story beats are going to be familiar to any Star Wars fan out there. The introduction of humor or general silliness, something that the LEGO titles do quite well, is here, too. It was funny to see some super serious scenes turn into some unpredictably humorous. They did a great job in that respect. For those that are looking for less spoken dialog but the same silliness, there is a “Mumble Mode” that can be used to give the game a similar feel to the LEGO titles of old. 

Outside of the main story mode, you are free to explore the places you’ve visited in an open world like setting called “Free Roam.” There are a lot of secrets to find and characters to unlock, so if you want to track down everything the game has to offer, this is something you’ll want to check out. Revisiting past missions or these open areas with different characters can help you in your endeavor to unlock more secrets and goodies. 
While this is a vast game, don’t make the mistake of thinking this is a seamless, open world in the traditional sense. It is pretty open, but areas and planets are sectioned off for the most part. That’s not to say this aspect of the game poorly executed by any stretch of the imagination. Again, the areas on offer are vast and traveling to other planets or other areas are masked behind travel loading screens which I found pretty clever. 

The Skywalker Saga features quite a few different options when it comes to gameplay. A big chunk of the missions will take place on foot. Characters will come equipped with a variety of blasters, lightsabers and other melee based weapons. Things in The Skywalker Saga have been revamped considerably, bringing things like cover based shooting combat to the series for the first time. The gunplay feels really great and helps bring the series in line with other modern titles. Of course, melee combat is also on point. While I don’t think it’s quite as smooth or intuitive as the ranged attacks, it’s still fun. 
Different character types bring somewhat unique abilities and attributes to the table. Of course, Force wielding characters can push over enemies, move heavy objects and more. Droids like R2-D2 are useful to open specific locked doors. Imperial characters can unlock specific doors or areas. With all of the different playable characters and hidden/locked locations, it’s really in your best interest to replay areas to get the most out of the game. 

The Skywalker Saga also features a robust upgrade system for characters. There are Core Upgrades as well as upgrades for specific character classes. While you can play through the game and not touch this aspect of the game, it can be beneficial to make use of what’s on offer. These are all unlocked via studs (the in game currency) and Kyber Bricks. I honestly haven’t gotten super deep into this aspect of the game, but some things like the Core Upgrade for attracting studs, gaining more health and revealing secrets are quite nice. Not only this, but these can be upgraded up to three times which boosts their effectiveness. 
Ship combat also plays a part in a handful of stages. This is very smooth with an arcade-like feel, almost akin to games like the Rogue Squadron series. It was great seeing these cool set-pieces in LEGO form. I really enjoyed what was on offer here and wanted a bit more. 

Visuals, Audio & Performance
Although the versions of The Skywalker Saga on PlayStation and Xbox platforms packs more of a punch in terms of performance, the Switch does a respectable job with bringing the world of Star Wars to life in this version of the game. Despite the somewhat hazy appearance, the world of Star Wars in this LEGO form really shines through. Locations capture the essence of what makes Star Wars…well, Star Wars. The streets of Mos Eisley and Coruscant are bustling with people, the forests in Endor and Naboo are lush with vegetation and the halls of the Kamino cloning facilities are as pristine as ever. Characters look and sound the part here, too. Of course, there are some “sound alikes” for some of the main characters, however, several voice actors that lended their talents to shows like The Clone Wars make appearances. 
Performance on the Switch is also respectable. The game runs at a pretty consistent 30 frames per second and rarely sees any dips while playing. Some jitters do happen here and there some of the on foot missions (for example, the battle scene on Geonosis suffers from some slowdown), but they weren't too bad. I did find the cutscenes to be a bit choppy at times. Overall, though, I'm pretty satisfied with the game. If you're looking for better performance or graphics that will pop more, you'll probably be better off checking out the game on more powerful hardware. 

Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is a fun, packed game. Star Wars fans will find a lot to like here with some new takes on familiar stories and locations. While the visuals are definitely a step back from what you would find on more powerful platforms, the game does enough to immerse you into the world with engaging missions and tight gameplay. If you’re a Star Wars fan, this game is a no brainer. If you’re a fan of action based games with a comic twist, this should be on your radar.

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