Super Empire Strikes Back for the Super
Nintendo shows off the fact that the SNES had a great color palette, a fantastic
sound chip, some cool special effects, and a whole pile of games that should
have been cool, but weren't.
Super Empire Strikes Back is bang-your-head difficult. No
kidding. Apparently, you're able to control Han Solo and Chewbacca in SESB,
but good luck getting to those levels. On the highest difficulty level,
you'll be fighting against all odds just to survive the snowy surface of Hoth.
Your Taun Taun is completely doomed. If you are an absolute gaming master,
you should also be able to fly around in the Millennium Falcon.
Before I describe the good parts of Super Empire Strikes Back,
I think I'll describe what are some of the more... odd elements of the game's play.
The way that Luke swings his light saber makes me wonder if the game's artists
just finished a baseball video game. Or, maybe Lucas is a big baseball fan.
Baseball fits in there somewhere, I'll tell you that - no WAY are these animations
are accurately portraying how Luke swings his light saber. Another fun little oddity is
the COMPLETELY OUT OF PLACE items that show up when you slay your foes. A cute little
heart will come jumping merrily out of a slain warthog, and bounce around...
It's absolutely, undeniably stupid. The power-ups are like
no other element in the game. It's as if Lucas regretted the decision NOT to include Ewoks earlier in the trilogy...
And he took out his frustrations on the hapless developers of Super Empire
Oddly hacked together - that's the feeling you'll have while playing Super
Empire Strikes Back. On the positive side of the game, the visuals are
stunning. They really are, considering the relative speed and power of the
Super Nintendo. Liberal, yet still GOOD use of special effects.
You'll want to pull this game out of the closet occasionally to have a look at
how well they put together the cuts between scenes, and how effects like snow
are handled. But then you get some of the odd elements, like I mentioned
above - the weird sword swinging, hearts jumping everywhere, and the feeling
that this game is a bit "off."
Likewise, the music is fantastic. Any time I need to remind myself why
the Super Nintendo was so popular, I'll just crank up the introductory movie to
Super Empire Strikes Back. But the sound effects are sparse at
best. The light saber, the pistol, and a few scattered weapon and animal
sounds are all that you'll find.
The controls are laid out well - but they are mushy, and you'll find yourself
stuck in situations you can't get out of.
So, there you have it. Super Empire Strikes Back is only OK - there are
a lot of real annoyances with the game. Beyond that though, it is worth a
look, especially if you can find it for a few bucks at your local game store.
I give SESB a 6/10.