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ups: Some nice effects in landspeeder and starfighter levels.
downs: Repetitive gameplay; no checkpoints on levels; very short.

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Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones Review (GBA)
game: Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
two star
posted by: GF! Back Catalogue 10/2004 => 1995
publisher: THQ
date posted: 09:10 AM Fri Jul 26th, 2002
last revision: 05:50 AM Fri Sep 23rd, 2005

By Jason Frank

With Star Wars I feel like a zealot who knows his prophets are false but continues to believe in them anyway. Sometimes faith is easier than doubt. Even though I\'m a little jaded now, I know I\'ll be ready to believe again when Episode III comes out. Why do I look forward to Star Wars spin-offs with such anticipation? What is it about the Star Wars universe that instills an unshakable faith in the vision of George Lucas? I\'ve seen Attack of the Clones three times in the theater now, and I don\'t fully understand why. I liked Spider-Man and The Bourne Identity much more, but I\'ve only seen those movies once. My affinity for the franchise notwithstanding, Star Wars Attack of the Clones for the Game Boy Advance is a game that deserves to be missed. It has some rather noble aspirations but loses all in the execution.

The game\'s graphics are passable, but we\'ve seen much more exciting in earlier games on the platform. The colors echo the drab tones of the film which makes it difficult to see your way around on some of the levels. The only thing good about this game is that it makes a very strong case for a backlit Gameboy Advace (shorter battery life be damned).

Many handheld games now cost a mere 20 percent less than new next generation titles, yet we find ourselves counted lucky if they offer even half of the gameplay of their counterparts. Attack of the Clones will be over much sooner than most might expect (but not as soon as they might hope). It just feels slightly off kilter to me. I know that when the Clone Wars comes out for the Game Cube later this year it will have days of gameplay wrapped up in it. Yes, I know that cartridges cost more to manufacture than discs, but that cost should be considerably offset by the monies saved on lower production costs.

Attack of the Clones follows the basic structure of the film from Coruscant to Tatooine and Genosha. You play as light saber wielding Jedi and, at times, get to pilot speeders and starfighters. The side scrolling Jedi levels are like pretty much any other side scrolling game on the market. Walk, fight, walk, fight, jump, fight. There are bosses at the end of the levels, but they are so easy to vanquish that you don\'t even realize that they\'re bosses until you\'re told that you\'ve completed the level.

The starfighter/speeder levels play a lot like a poor man\'s Iridion 3-D. The colors aren\'t nearly vibrant enough, and the levels don\'t go on nearly long enough. The faux 3-D levels are dark and difficult to navigate through. The objects in the distance look pretty good, but when they get up close, the pixelization is unforgivable.

The most annoying aspect of the game is the necessity for starting each level over at the beginning whenever you die. There are no check points in the game whatsoever. Although this technique does lengthen the overall time it takes to play through the game, it does absolutely nothing to enhance the gameplay.

Even though the movie was a bit of a disappointment and Star Wars Episode II: The Game was downright bad, I still find myself anxiously anticipating The Clone Wars and Star Wars Bounty Hunter for the Game Cube this fall. I don\'t know if I\'ll ever learn my lesson. Star Wars is such a significant aspect of my formative years that I will anticipate almost any new incarnation. Unfortunately, it seems like the anticipation will always be sweeter than the realization.