Monday, July 19, 2010

The Force Unleashed Trailer

So today I got my first eyeful of the trailer for the upcoming video game: Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II. Anyone who has kept up with my blog probably knows how much I detest this particular Star Wars franchise. Let me say that, apart from some nice computer animation, this trailer has only helped solidify my dislike. If you're interested in seeing what I'm talking about, take a look here.

First of all, I /will/ give this trailer the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps it is just showing a 'dramatized' account of the escape of the protagonist (Starkiller) from Darth Vader's holding cell. Perhaps this is just a teaser designed to show us some cool action. If that's the case? Fine, I can hold back some of my bile. If not? Then the game is even more stupid than I figured it would be.

Why is this so? Well, first of all, the thing starts with Starkiller in a cell, chained to the ground. Vader stands over him, says some suitably villainy things, then does the typical supervillain thing: Leave the 'good guy' alone with a bunch of grunt soldiers in an easily escapable situation. I mean for god sakes. I was expecting mutated sea-bass to leap up out of the floor (obscure(?) Austin Powers quote). So, let me get this straight, this is the guy who ripped a Star Destroyer out of orbit and crashed it into a planet with sheer brute force. This is the guy who kicked the CRAP out of Vader- who was only just a minor obstacle on his way to kicking the crap out of the Emperor. And...what do you use to restrain him? A super powerful force field? Nope. Electro-shock restraints? Nope. Critters who absorb the force? Nope. Flamethrowers designed to fry him if he twitches? Nope. Just a couple chains. Well. Surprise surprise. Starkiller escapes.

Now, the next stupid thing? For some reason, not one but TWO lightsabers seemed to be located in the cell. Kind of a bad place to store those, huh? Starkiller makes use of these to brutally murder all the Stormtroopers in the cell. Yes. Murder. It is one thing to kill if you have no other choice. But it is shown that Starkiller is powerful enough to have just blasted all these guys with TK, knocked out or otherwise incapacitated them, and just left. But no, he very showily kills them all, including the last guy who wasn't even shooting at him anymore, but rather was just backing away in terror. Yeah folks. This is the 'hero' of the story. The same 'hero' who in the last seconds of the previous game decided NOT to kill the Emperor (the most evil man in the freaking galaxy) because 'killing is bad'. Evidently, killing is only 'bad' if its a character important to the plot of the movies.

And before we move on... WTF- When did Vader ever leave the killing of his enemies to anyone else? He made a freaking point of doing it himself in the movies. But now, instead of simply stabbing his former apprentice or crushing him, he tells his troopers to do it and just walks out.

But the stupidity continues from there, with Starkiller taking on a killer droid. Then a room full of stormtroopers, then another (this time giant) killer droid. He exhibits some hither-to-unknown superpower that seems to disintegrate everything around him. Wow. So once again, Starkiller is the most powerful Force user evarr. You never see Darth or Palpatine or Yoda or Ben Kenobi pull anything like that. Why isn't Starkiller the Emperor by now? Beats me. Oh. Right, he's stupid.

Oh, and through all of the latter, he spouts in a rather stilted 'inner monologue' that he now has 'something worth fighting for' (I assume he means the Rebellion?) and 'someone worth dying for' (I assume he means his 'love interest' from the former game, Juno Eclipse?). First of all, if he's going to be a good guy now, brutal slaughter probably isn't the best way to start. Secondly, the 'romance' in the First game was brutally thin and undeveloped. Now all the sudden its soul-shatteringly deep? Hokay.

Our 'hero' goes on to spout about how 'Vader can't stop me now'. Umm. Yeah. We know. You beat the crap out of him in the first game, Starkiller. You're obviously even more powerful now. We know you'll beat him again. So... right. Its like a 300 pound pro football lineman gesturing to a pee-wee league kid and snarling. "You won't stop me again!" Kind-of lacks drama.

And now for the big finish—what is obviously intended to get the fan boys all aflutter. As Starkiller escapes (once again reiterating that Vader can't stop him, nothing can—once again, yeah, we saw that last game), the camera pans down through Vader's base to reveal a room full of... CLONES! OF STARKILLER! BUM-BUM-BUHHHHHHHH! Right, because the only thing that could possibly be as awesome as Starkiller is MORE STARKILLER! Hell yeah.


Once again, I find myself wishing that Starkiller would get his own antagonist and his own story and get the hell out of the movie plot. I might have even liked this game if it were set in some bygone era of the Old Republic, where Starkiller could be as awesome as he wants to be without pissing all over the established storyline. But no. Once again it seems as though we're getting a huge injection of crap.


P.S. Before anyone points this out—yes, I know Vader could (once again) be using his apprentice by 'allowing' him to escape. But this was done before, in the last game. So it aint exactly new or unexpected or cool.

P.P.S. Oh, and why the hell were the troopers in Starkiller's cell standing in a circle? Never surround someone and THEN shoot at them.

P.P.P.S. For that matter, why the hell were the Stormtroopers in the Hangar Bay all CHARGING Starkiller instead of setting up ranks and opening fire in concert? Sigh. Nevermind.

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