Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Y-Wing

Ever since I saw the blocky, ugly, functional design of the Y-Wing in Star Wars, I was enthralled. Yeah, I love the sleek, acrobatic X-Wings, too—but to me, the Y-Wing really looked mean and 'realistic'. I believed it was a war-machine. It wasn't glamorous, but it got the job done (well, almost). Even as a kid, I realized the difference between this craft and the Imperials'. It was old and beaten-up, reflecting just how desperate (and brave) the Rebels were—going up against the best the Empire had to offer in these old rust-buckets.

The fact that the Y-Wing was presented in various games and books as an "old" design, nearing obsolescence, helped convey to me a sense of depth in the Star Wars universe. Not every ship was shiny and brand new. There was a history and a lifespan to things.

I am only an infrequent watcher of the Clone Wars CG animated series, but It is starting to grow on me. And when I saw Y-Wings in one of the episodes, I was very pleasantly surprised. Here we see them as 'prototype' craft—they are shiny and new, covered with all their body-panels and making their combat debut. It was a nice (and rather infrequent) tip of the hat to the original movies. With the Clone Wars series, I often get the idea that there is a lot of thought put into merchandizing—and when you do that, you always want to come up with 'new toys' for the kids to play with. This means that every new fighter has a new design, every Clone Trooper has some new type of helmet or armor or gizmo or backpack. It is for this reason I never thought that Clone Wars would go 'old school'. But then again, they did it smart. Yeah. They're Y-Wings, but they're also different. And when the toy comes out? You bet I'm gonna buy one.

Unlike the atrocious Force Unleashed game, this is the kind of 'link between trilogies' that I can identify with and respect. It isn't heavy handed. It doesn't run over established continuity. Its just cool.

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