Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga is finally available to play after a long development time. We got an early look at the game at TT Games' digital preview event showing off some of the re-created Star Wars episodes in action.
The Skywalker Saga, originally announced in 2019 for release in 2020, will be arriving for all current consoles, including the PS5, PS4, Xbox Series, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC.
The game is packed, including re-creations of all nine mainline Star Wars films in the Skywalker Saga, along with downloadable content that will feature Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Solo: A Star Wars Story, both seasons of The Mandalorian and The Bad Batch. This amounts to over 300 characters and 20 unlockable planets from all over the Star Wars universe.
For our preview, we got to see a demo of the beginning of A New Hope, featuring Princess Leia obtaining the Death Star plans transmissions and finding a way to get the plans of the ship. You don't have to start with the levels based on the original 1977 film, though; the game's opening menu will let you pick everything from The Phantom Menace all the way up to starting with Rise of the Skywalker.
The level kicking off A New Hope lets you swap between Leia and General Antilles to solve puzzles and navigate the ship, eventually taking over as R2-D2 to reach an escape pod. A bonus when playing as a droid? You're not seen as a threat by enemies unless you attack first.
Much like previous Lego games, each level has unique challenges, quick-time events, strategy opportunities and some choice elements. If a path is blocked, you can choose different options to proceed -- blast debris away with a laser turret, or put out a fire with the ship's water cannon. It's also easy to swap between using a blaster gun and hand-to-hand combat.
TT Games says the game is built for users to explore and enjoy in a way that's best suited for their play style.
This "play your own way" style extends throughout the whole game. Kyber bricks, for example, can be collected during levels and applied to ability upgrades. According to TT Games, there's no wrong way to collect the bricks. One of the first upgrades you can get is Speedy Sprint, which helps you run faster.
These upgrades can be applied to multiple character classes like Jedi, Scavenger, Bounty Hunter, Dark Side and Protocol Droid. Each character class has different and specific ability upgrades. If you're playing as a Jedi, you can equip the Force Flinger, which increases attack damage when you use the Force to throw an object. If you're playing a character on the Dark Side, you can equip Fear the Dark Side, which makes enemies and civilians run away from you.
The game has a menu where you can keep track of upgrades, missions, what ships you've unlocked, special in-game extras like a Porg companion, galaxy maps and the ability to easily switch between episodes.
The Skywalker Saga offers co-op play throughout, making it easy for anyone to join in your campaigns through the Star Wars movies. For example, you can play with a friend and team up as master and padawan.
Boss battles are a test of anticipating your enemy's attacks and strategizing your own. If Count Dooku tries to Force choke you, staying on top of quick-time events will save you. As you play, enemies can learn your attacks and block, so keep your battle plans varied.
One of my favorite parts of the game is the level of detail like the shadows, the light reflections, as well as the environmental weathering system, much of which likely got a revamp over earlier re-creations seen in previous Lego Star Wars games. If C-3PO is traveling on foot through the deserts of Tatooine, you'll notice sand pocketing and scuffing up his leg joints. The Skywalker Saga also seamlessly weaves in its own comedic moments that makes the game something unique, instead of just a Lego version of all the Star Wars movies.
Check out the trailer from Lego here: