Metascore
73

Mixed or average reviews - based on 74 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 74
  2. Negative: 1 out of 74
Buy On
  1. AceGamez
    70
    Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is flawed, cursed with anti-climaxes and a sprinkling of disappointment. It's not the game we all hoped it was going to be, it doesn't reinvent anything, it's certainly not original and the main tenant upon which its sold - that you can 'kick ass with the force' - is often forgotten in favour of tedium and annoyance.
  2. As a fan you will want to experience what The Force Unleashed has to offer. It's just a shame that while there are occasional moments of brilliance when everything falls into place, they're not quite enough to back up the game's delusions of grandeur.
  3. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is an entertaining romp through the Star Wars universe; just don't expect something of The Empire Strikes Back brilliance.
  4. If you like the idea of messing with some storm troopers to the extent that it verges on Force-fuelled torture we recommend you give The Force Unleashed a look.
  5. The combat is fun and visually rewarding, if a little glitchy, but at the end of the day it's Star Wars, you probably already know if you're going to enjoy this game. [Issue#37, p.80]
  6. The fancy technology powering the experience is impressive, as is the performance by actors who lent their voices and likenesses to the game's pivotal characters. That's mixed with rote game mechanics -- hack, slash, fight big boss, level ends -- that can easily grow tiresome, and a leveling up system that's more distraction than a way to create a customized character.
  7. For anyone who considers themselves a fan of the series I would recommend a purchase, there is definite replay value in repeating earlier levels with newly gained abilities, and many of the game’s flaws fade into the background when your character is powerful enough to dominate a level.
  8. A great game if you can stomach the bugs, but that’d be like trying to ignore somebody choking you from across the room.
  9. Front end presentation is pretty dreadful. The menu system, which you'll see plenty of as it is also used for levelling up, is a shoddy mess. It looks like something from ten years ago or placeholder graphics that the developer didn't have time to replace.
  10. 50
    It's all the more disappointing because you can see, mired in the boring levels and bad cameras, glimpses of fun ideas.
  11. It's a decent game, although not nearly as groundbreaking as we hoped. Once you complete it, I'm afraid there won't be much to lure you back.
  12. 73
    Uninspired level design and some tedious enemy battles mar an experience that gives you power over the Force like we've never really seen before. While it's far from perfect, Star Wars fans will find that it's worth playing through simply for its story and the ability to use the Force in fairly awesome ways.
  13. Without a doubt, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is a masterpiece of storytelling and fits magnificently into the Star Wars universe. Unfortunately, as a video game, the gameplay issues in The Force Unleashed are extremely noticeable and hinder a lot of the enjoyment that is derived from the narrative.
  14. If you want to play an average Star Wars experience, The Force Unleashed is par for the course. Those of you looking to have an engaging video game experience, may want to invest time looking elsewhere, or rather, replay God of War, since this is practically the same game.
  15. A seriously surprising entry into Star Wars canon, the storylines is largely strong, and whilst there are several issues with the gameplay, The Force Unleashed is not the Phantom Menace we thought it would be.
  16. As long as you're prepared for that you'll enjoy a great Star Wars story with incredible graphics and a bunch of ultra powerful Force Powers at your disposal.
  17. 70
    Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is a good game that could have been great.
  18. An essential play for any fan of George Lucas’ creation. Unfortunately, the gameplay feels a tad repetitive, un-ambitious and never quite lives up to the superb storytelling.
  19. It initially delivers on its promise, but it erodes over time due to the monotony and meager difficulty that discourages exploring the combat’s complexity.
  20. There's no feeling of being "unleashed," and the actual implementation of Force powers is drastically inferior to older games like Jedi Outcast.
  21. Lucas Arts can't fill the high expectations for his awaited game, presenting a product that contains the great idea of incarnate Darth Vader's secret apprentice and a fantastic visual representation of the use of The Force, but that fails victim of a repetitive level structure, plenty of bugs and a lack of real incentives to play it again when the player completes the 6 hours of insatisfied entertainment that it offers. Only recommended to the Star Wars fans for the script and the events included on it, despite all of the new characters cant compete with the Jedi and Sith introduced in the movies.
  22. 60
    It's not what I wanted, it's not what I expected and it's fundamentally broken in many different ways. It's a callous cheat of a game, it's shallow, short and has a man doing a crap Darth Vader impression.
  23. In short, I was satisfied with the game, but not overly impressed. The faint thrill of Jedi-dom was indeed there, but in the end it's just another action game in a vast, overflowing ocean of them.
  24. 60
    Awkward controls and handling largely dilute the fun of "kicking ass with the Force," especially during a few big moments toward the end. The Force Unleashed spins an entertaining yarn, but its gameplay prevents it from becoming a rich contributor to "Star Wars'" interactive tapestry.
  25. The story is the main thing that I'll remember about The Force Unleashed--I found it to be more satisfying than the last three movies combined. Though you go in sort of knowing how it has to end, since it has to lead into Star Wars, there are plenty of significant events occurring throughout. It's enjoyable to watch it all unfold. That said, it's unfortunate that the game isn't a bit more even, because the constant flips from too easy to too hard really drag things down and prevent The Force Unleashed from being great.
  26. Being let loose with the Force and given some spectacular scenarios to work with makes for an excellent game in premise, but LucasArts just haven't nailed the basics. Disappointment of the year? Quite possibly.
  27. Unfortunately, though beating the crap out of Rancor is cool, it's quite flawed, thanks to the wonky camera and targeting system.
  28. 50
    A more appropriate name would've been "Star Wars: The Force Mildly Contained" -- rarely does the Force truly feel like the ultimate weapon, something that separates you (Darth Vader's not-so-secret apprentice) from the rabble of stormtroopers, Rodians, and Felucians.
  29. 70
    Make no mistake: you can have a lot of fun with The Force Unleashed. [Oct 2008, p.88]
  30. games(TM)
    70
    By even allowing the choice between simple hack-and-slash gameplay and the more complex mix-up combos, LucusArrts has ensured that many will never view the title’s full potential. [Oct 2008, p.104]
  31. 360 Gamer Magazine UK
    70
    The more you appreciate Star Wars in general the more you’ll get from this occasionally inspiring run-and-slasher. True, the touted technology is never really used to do more than put on a fine electric show, but what a show it is. But as for Anti-Force Fields? Well, they’re one way of making Jedi and Sith characters somewhat redundant, and just one example of how Force Unleashed goes against 30 years of lore in order to shoehorn a game together.
  32. Edge Magazine
    50
    If you take a player to the extremes of in-game power, giving them the equivalent of a god mode against standard enemies, how can that be turned into something more engaging than a temporary plaything? [Nov 2008, p.90]
  33. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    56
    An ambitious--yet ultimately dissatisfying--effort. [Oct 2008, p.82]
User Score
6.7

Mixed or average reviews- based on 405 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 65 out of 128
  2. Negative: 21 out of 128
  1. Dec 16, 2011
    4
    It was interesting and it did have potential but it was a poor start. Starkiller (a terrible name BTW) is a boring character, The story isntIt was interesting and it did have potential but it was a poor start. Starkiller (a terrible name BTW) is a boring character, The story isnt interesting, Its too repetitive, Short campaign, and using force powers does get old rather quickly. It also has a bit of uneven difficulty as well. It had its moments but the game is an overall fail. Full Review »
  2. Aug 27, 2010
    3
    They should have called it The FAIL Unleashed

    Pros: -the graphics are great. -you have quite a bit of control over your character's growth
    They should have called it The FAIL Unleashed

    Pros:
    -the graphics are great.
    -you have quite a bit of control over your character's growth and upgrades.
    -the story is awesome, really, its the only thing that kept me playing it!
    -interesting character, level and boss design.
    -achievements are easy and cliche (i.e. kill X amount of enemies using Y).
    -attacking lesser units like storm troopers can be really fun and/or hilarious.
    -you can collect "Holocrons" for power-ups and items and the game keeps track of "Force Points" based on who or what you kill.
    -there is a neat and challenging bonus objective in each level.

    Cons:
    -auto targeting is a joke (ie you're in a corridor, you use the force to pick up a barrel, there is a storm trooper and a service droid next to each other down the corridor, you aim for the trooper and throw the barrel, the game decides that the barrel should hit the wall to your right).
    -invisible walls everywhere and you can't climb on anything that you would normally be able to climb on (ie big rocks, tipped over tree trunks).
    -completely linear level design.
    -glitched level design; I almost found my way out of the level once or twice. In a boss battle I accidentally threw the boss below the level, the only indication of this being her light sabre sticking up out of the ground, causing me to have to start the level over again. In one level I found an invincibility power up, but fell off of a platform to what should have been a flaming death, but instead I survived because of the power up and was stuck at the bottom of the level, even after the power-up faded away.
    -inconsistent as hell! if I can pull a Star Destroyer from space, then why can't I pick up AT-STs or Dark Troopers!?
    -"finishing moves" in boss battles are reduced to God of War style "Simon says" button mashing...rendering some of the awesome combos you learned near pointless.

    To add insult to injury, the game was shipped with a huge glitch that took months before it was addressed; on some random level(s), the game will not keep track of Force Points, the number of Holocrons you collected or even tell you what your bonus objective was (it would say "DEFAULT TEXT") at the end of the level, this happened to me on the very last level and stayed that way until the patch for it was released.

    They should have kept this game in development for another 6 months and actually tested it!
    Full Review »
  3. Apr 28, 2013
    10
    The game is solid, great combat, upgrade system, not a over abundence of QTEs and its challenging. But the main reason its getting a ten in myThe game is solid, great combat, upgrade system, not a over abundence of QTEs and its challenging. But the main reason its getting a ten in my book is I am a huge fan of Star wars and this game cares about the lore and shows how the rebels came to be. Hell Lucas even says he includes this story in the star wars cannon. Plus there is no Jar Jar Full Review »