Almost Like the Game is Force Choking You - Star Wars Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels - Nintendo Wii -
Switch Lights

The lights are on

What's Happening

Star Wars Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels

Almost Like the Game is Force Choking You

In the original Star Wars, Obi-Wan blindfolds Luke and makes him block incoming blaster fire from a training droid. I never knew how Luke felt until I played Star Wars: The Clone Wars and found myself wildly swinging my Wii remote trying to tap into a mysterious unseen force that would let me execute one of the game's evasive combos.

Clone Wars' biggest failure is its broken combo system, which is composed of a string of directional Wii remote swipes. Using motion controls in a fighting game requires thinking outside the box. Instead, Clone Wars attempts a quick and dirty swap of traditional button combos with inaccurate motions. You'd have to be a Jedi Master to play this game flawlessly.

It wouldn't be much of a Star Wars game if you couldn't tap into Force powers. I love the idea of grabbing objects out of the environment and throwing them at my opponent, or knocking them out of the ring with a powerful Force push, but the Force is a difficult beast to tame. This feature should have provided plenty of excellent moments, but it's bogged down by poor targeting and lengthy animations.

The broken core mechanics are especially shameful since the game is so skeletal. The story follows the plot of the recent movie, which means there aren't many characters for Krome to tap for the game, so you end up repeatedly facing off against the same opponents over and over again. While a few character-specific challenges flesh out the single-player experience, they aren't creative enough to be entertaining.

The graphical style of the show works well on the Wii, and the fighters' mid-battle banter adds some flavor to the action. I was even amused by the Lightsaber Clash minigames that occasionally interrupted the bouts, even though these sometimes falter due to poor motion control recognition. While these few gameplay elements help make the experience more digestible, it hardly matters because the basic mechanics are a mess.

Email the author , or follow on , , , and .

Second Opinion:


LucasArts and Krome's latest effort game takes the dream of authentic lightsaber combat and impales it like so many Jedi Masters. Without a one-to-one correlation between your gestures and the position of your saber, the Wii remote is just a poor substitute for button presses in less-than-epic duels. Even simple ''left, right, left'' combos are difficult to reliably execute. While sluggish mechanics are the main problem, Lightsaber Duels is also thin on content; a repetitive campaign (Do I really need to fight Asajj Ventress three times?) and uninspired challenges are the main attractions outside of versus battles. Unless you need something to make your Sith apprentice give in to anger and hate, don't go anywhere near this game.

User Reviews:

  • 3.75
    This game is just horrible. You really just fight the same character over and over again. It gets really boring after five minutes. As for the controls, they are just crap. This was a horrible buy for me and I hope no else decides to buy this crappy Wii exclusive.
    read more
  • 5.25
    This game is fun at first, but then you start ignoring it. All it needed to be a 7 or up was a free mode where you could roam anywhere. The graphics were ok, but there was no concept. It needed that too. I liked the insults the characters made to each other.I also liked the ways you cuold use the Force...
    read more