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Star Wars Trilogy Arcade (Arcade) artwork

Star Wars Trilogy Arcade (Arcade) review

"The Force is Strong with this One"

It was a hot summer day in 1998 when I first played Star Wars Trilogy Arcade at the basement arcade in Downtown Dallas. I first spotted it in awe, admiring how everything about this game was perfect, and how to me, it was the greatest adaptation of the famous trilogy into a videogame format overall. Even today I am having trouble finding what other SW game can do justice as much as this one did, and how much I miss playing it.

The game itself consists of 6 stages, three of such representing a battle scene from each of the movies in the original trilogy, plus 2 first person challenge stages against Bobba Fett and later Darth Vader (!), followed by one final stage taking part in the Second Death Star space battle above the forest moon of Endor. Each stage save for the first person battles are divided into segments as you fight your way through each fight scenario. For instance, the Battle of Yavin begins on the Death Star's orbit, followed by a battle on its surface and culminating into the famous trench run before you get to blow up the powerful battle station and move on to the next section of the game. You can choose which battle to begin with and where to go next save for the very final battle. Any remaining shields you have left can be restored after each successful mission.

Gameplay consists of one stick and two EVENT BUTTONS which are set on each side. While you will be using the stick mainly to shoot down enemies, the event buttons can be used in special occasions to call for back-up fighters to shoot photon missiles. You can only shoot such when the game states you are to do so, instead of being able to do at any given moment. There's a limit on firepower usage as in first person missions when you are shooting down stormtroopers to continue with the mission, if your blaster overheats you will be defenseless until it cools down to protect yourself. Extra points are awarded with what is left of health (shields,) shooting percentage, and secrets you may stumble upon during gameplay.

Music and sounds are simply astonishing, duplicating those from the movies and giving you that atmosphere which enhances your enjoyment as you blast your way through the foul galactic empire. The graphics here are smooth and amazingly rendered, not once do you see any sort of glitch as you shoot down TIE fighters and the like. That moment when Obi Wan's words reach to you telling you to use the force as you fly through the trench gets you every time.

As grandiose and simple this all seems you should not underestimate the power of the Dark Side. The game can be quite brutal and the fact that you cannot get any health back up during gameplay until you finish a mission can only test your skills as the heroic Rebel pilot you aspire to be. However you will be quite entertained during any length of time you play before you lose a battle and either have to continue of leave it for another day. It is quite satisfying in beating the game if you choose to go all out about it, this I declare.

May the force be with you.

CptRetroBlue's avatar
Community review by CptRetroBlue (December 27, 2019)

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