TGC Review – Angry Birds Star Wars

angry birds star warsI’m a girl; it’s safe to say I don’t know a lot about games. My gaming knowledge extends from cute little mobile games to The Sims therefore I have a love/hate relationship with Angry Birds. It frustrates me, I get angry (insert “Angry Bird joke”), and I’ve thrown my phone a few times whilst playing but I always come back to it because it’s adorable and only takes seconds to load, compared to the Sims which has been known to take more than 20 minutes on a fair few occasions.  Although I can’t tell weapons apart on COD or play through Uncharted because moving the camera confuses me, I do know the difference between my yellow and red birds so when I found out about Angry Birds: Star Wars, I was more than a little giddy; it combines two of my favourite things!

Angry Birds: Star Wars is too long to type each time so I’ll shorten it to “ABSW” – I know how you lot like your abbreviations. I first played ABSW a week or two ago at 3 in the morning because I couldn’t sleep. I downloaded it and as the slightly lighter Star Wars music started, I was impressed. The loading screen has all the Star Wars characters dressed as birds, with Darth Vader made to look like one of those dastardly pigs, very cute.

You start your battle against the Tuscan Raider/Sand People pigs on Tatooine, as a young, blonde (red feathered) Luke Skywalker. I think the attention to detail is fantastic, there are little pig houses in the background of the level and the 2 setting suns of Tatooine in the sky and the Tuscan Raider pigs look disgusting. Although I don’t know why Luke Skywalker has been given a ‘80s style bouffant hairdo, but that’s the girl side of my brain talking. After playing a few levels your mentor Obi Wan Kenobi (who is in fact the black bomb bird from the original Angry Birds) appears and helps you fight those evil piggies. Obi’s power is obviously “The Force” but for some reason I didn’t catch on how to use his powers to the max for quite a few levels. I just used him as a bigger, cloaked version of Skywalker. A few levels later, Luke is given his light saber which, in my opinion, makes the bird 1000 times better. You fling him at the quivering pigs, touch the screen and then you light saber those evil little piggies, and it’s so fun.

The next bird to be introduced is the yellow bird or Han Solo, whichever fan base you’re reading this from. Han Solo comes with accessories; his trusty wookie Chewbacca and the Millenium Falcon both of which are equally fun. Chewie is essentially the big red bird who will smash everything in his path whereas the ship is a new feature. You can touch an icon in the top of the screen and the next bird to sacrifice itself for the side of good becomes a remote for the Falcon. You then use the remote to call the Falcon who will come and obliterate all the piggies hiding in their ice and wood structures. Why they have ice and wood structures in space is beyond me.

After completing Tatooine, the other planets are opened up to you, of which there are 4: The Death Star, Hoth (unselectable, but will be a free update in the near future) Path of the Jedi and Bonus. The Path of the Jedi is a bit of a false friend as you can select the planet and play the first level but after completing it you have to pay to progress which is something that I detest in “free” games. Seriously, if they make Sims a play to progress game then I will give up and start buying cats to occupy my time.

The Bonus planet is quite fun as this is where Rovio introduce their take on C3P0 and R2D2; I don’t really like them as birds as their powers are a bit “pleurgh” after playing with all the other characters who seem to have really been thought about. Both R2D2 and C3P0 feel like afterthoughts, somebody at Rovio woke up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat yelling “Oh no! We forgot the droids!”

After the disappointment that was Angry Birds Space – adding the physics of space to a mobile device game, what were they thinking? I think ABSW is brilliant and very much a game that you can play over and over without it feeling like it’s getting too hard. I gave up on the original AB game months ago; the levels felt stale, the birds were just useless (Toucan bird, I’m looking at you) and it felt like Rovio had abandoned its base game to make other “exciting” features like an Angry Birds Samba Song. I personally feel as though ABSW may save Rovio, the birds are interesting, they actually have powers or guns to use and it’s made me want to give the original game another chance to redeem itself. So now I’m splitting my time between ABSW and the AB, maybe that was Rovio’s plan after all?

Graphics: The same charming 2D visuals we have become accustomed to. Crisp and clear, no fuss.  8

Gameplay: One of the best time wasters, whether you’re on a bus or on the loo, you can have an enjoyable bit of mobile fun.  7

Sound: The birds sound angry, blasters sound good and lightsabers are satisfying. The theme music is a bit dodgy though…  7

Presentation: Easy to navigate through the menus, you won’t get lost here. 8

End Score: 7.5

What did you think of Angry Birds: Star Wars? Was it a force to be reckoned with or a Darth Turd?

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