Time and memory are a hell of a thing. My first thought about Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga was “Again? Play through the whole thing again.?” Little did I realize that yes and no, because while Episodes 1-6 got released as Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga, we only really got Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens. But who knows, maybe building a few Lego Last Jedi sets and not liking Rise of Skywalker led to the chaos in my brain about this game. So here we are. Back at the now complete Saga with the Skywalkers.
What’s It About?
The Skywalker Saga brings together the nine-episode saga and retells the stories in speed mode. In a Cliff’s Notes setting, you play through the main story beats and peruse the different planetary settings. Each one should take you less than 2 hours if you’re really pushing it.
What you don’t get are any levels associated with Star Wars Stories (Rogue One, Solo) or scripted shows (The Mandalorian, Boba Fett & Friends Desert Time Smile Factory). It would have been a great addition to round out the story, at least with Rogue One, but the only taste you’ll get is through playable characters in DLC packs. Full disclosure: Rogue One is my absolute JAM.
Why Should I Care?
For throwing a lot of the same Star Wars content back at us, there’s a lot the game tries to do, but perhaps a bit too much.
Lego games have generally been great with replay value, as additional characters, secrets, and unlockables littered the maps so Free Play could be more than just smashing bricks for hours (but that’s still fun). With the Skywalker Saga, there are constant side missions, rumors, and activities that lead to kyber brick/crystal rewards for unlocking skills via an RPG tree. And guess what? There are OVER ONE THOUSAND BRICK TO UNLOCK. That should speak volumes to how much content there is in the game. A lot of it can feel like completionist overkill, especially with 300 characters to unlock (or buy). A good chunk of it is still plenty of fun, as is just running around cities, smashing bricks and being a menace to the locals as they cower in fear (or get destroyed).
But detrimentally, for a game that focuses so much on family entertainment, it can be horribly confusing with its expectations and lack of communication. For instance, there isn’t much of a UI tutorial that you’re walked through, as much as you are expected to read through a sassy protocol droid that just leads you to the in-game Hint menu. Granted, it’s a Lego game, so much of the controls play out the same, but there are more nuanced elements with combat, maneuvering, and navigation that gets muddled and confusing. For instance, it took me completing four episodes to finally understand that using the D pad would allow me to switch through more than just my two main characters in Free Play (whereas it was a different setup in the past). The in-game menu is clunky and slow, as is just booting up the game. One final gripe in this area is the constant need to watch the opening crawl every time you boot up an episode (which you can skip after the first time, once it slowly allows you to do so).
But the game’s bigger downfall are the bugs. There are several that can completely impede progress with the game. My first hand experience came from The Force Awakens. When I needed to speak to Maz Kanata to continue the story, the story had bricked and wouldn’t give me the option to do so. To get around it, I had to reload a local save – which eliminated by 40% progress in The Force Awakens. Thankfully, going back through allowed me to get through the whole thing, but it still wasted a ton of time. Judging by Twitter searches, plenty of others are experiencing that same issue, as well as others.
What Makes It Worth My Time and Money?
All that said, there’s still a good chunk of fun to be had with The Skywalker Saga. The game does a great job of retelling the stories with updated jokes, especially with running gags throughout episodes, and creates an environment that gives you a lot of value for what you pay. And some of the extra characters can just be so fun (Mando comes with a Grogu floating around in his pram; Classic Lando is smooth as ever; Mister Bones from the Aftermath series exists!). But, the game can feel needlessly confusing at times, difficult or frustrating with what it wants you to do, and suffers from being so big that its bugs can really hit you hard. If you have a solid affinity for the Lego Star Wars series, it’s generally worth picking up (if you haven’t done it already). But if you’re on the fence, wait until you can get it on sale.