Thursday, February 4, 2016
5 of the Worst Star Wars Experiences of 2015
1) Hakko Drazlip and the Tootle Froots
First of all, it's a dumb name. That said, though, a bad band name is a forgivable offense. A bad band name with a bad song title, "Vader’s Many Prosthetic Parts," I just can't let that go. Second, I thought Vader was a more mysterious individual, not someone whose "more machine now than man" background was common knowledge...and, even if it's just a lucky guess and people don't know he's actually largely prosthetic, why would you put out a song naming him? I understand using music as a way to speak out against the regime, but the Empire isn't the U.S. - I'd think, knowing what people knew about the Empire, especially in what I assume was the latter stages of their rule, when the iron fist had been coming down for some time, the band would be a little more clever about their political commentary...the real kicker, though, is that there's really no reason to include it. Sure, it gives someone that would otherwise maybe be content about their lot in life a reason to join the Rebellion, but couldn't she just make a conscious decision to fight against the Empire because it's the right thing to do? (Or just because she needed a pilot...get it?) Anyway, in my head canon, there never was, nor will there ever be, a band called the Tootle Froots, and the legacy of Vader being the thing of nightmares that no one would dare publicly make a mockery of is still intact.
2) Lando's Droid in Star Wars Rebels: The Siege of Lothal
Just...why...they've made a few decisions on Rebels that I've been kind of "meh" about, but I usually come around and accept that I'm not going to wholeheartedly agree with everything they do; and, it's never something that really pulls me out of the story, just something I roll around in the back of my mind, perhaps contemplating what I'd have done differently...except with Lando's droid...that yanked me out of the story by the collar and tossed me on the curb (alongside common sense and decency)...okay, I'll freely admit I may be making a mountain out of a molehill with this because it's such a small part, but I don't think so. The fact that Siege of Lothal was so good and this minuscule part still managed to shake me out of the story and continues to make me cringe to this very day speaks to its severe lack of appeal. So, like that other thing I mentioned in #1, I'm going to forget his droid had a voice and pretend he just beeped like an astromech.
3) The Death of Han Solo
Yup, this is what I meant by something that was just bad when it happened. It was, in truth, a terrific story choice and something I think needed to happen to solidify Kylo Ren as a villain, but damned if it wasn't hard on the heart...I knew it was going to happen as soon as Han started down that catwalk, but held out hope until the moment the red blade made its way through his chest that I would be wrong...and the second viewing was even worse, I had tears building from the, well, crawl really, if we're being honest, and as soon as Han shouts "Ben!" I couldn't stop the flow...I'm still not sure how to move forward in a Star Wars universe without Han Solo in it, but, in time, I'm sure someone will step up to fill the scoundrel void in my fandom...perhaps Lando will step up, but only if he leaves his droid at home...and promises to bring Lobot (if you haven't read the Lando comic yet, do it, it's fantastic and makes Lobot a much, much more complex character).
4) Lightsabers in Star Wars: Uprising
Okay, a little disclaimer here, I don't actually know how lightsabers factor into the story, or if they do, because, as I predicted, the mobile game format got stale and I haven't kept up with it, but when I updated the app a while back and the new icon was a Twi'lek with a lightsaber I audibly groaned and rolled my eyes so hard I thought they might get stuck. I had immediate flashbacks of when Jedi started appearing in Star Wars Galaxies, i.e. the beginning of the end of Star Wars Galaxies. The only acceptable reason for a character wielding a lightsaber is that they found it, bought it, etc. and just use it as a sword, without any Force power...otherwise, it's further saturating the Rebellion Era with Force users, and making the Skywalker legacy less impressive...yeah, that's right, I'm one of those people that think if there are any lightside users left in the galaxy aside from Obi-wan and Yoda at the start of A New Hope that it lessens the importance of Luke and cheapens the story. So, granted, I don't know the whole story, but I'm still just not on board with lightsabers showing up randomly in the Anoat system...even if they resolve their existence in a compelling and appropriate way, there's still no reason to add lightsabers to the game aside from pandering to the players or would-be players that expect all Star Wars games to have lightsabers.
5) No campaign in Star Wars: Battlefront
I was as excited as anyone about the release of Star Wars: Battlefront, and I enjoyed it and logged several hours when it first came out, and several more when the Battle of Jakku was added...but I rarely play it anymore. To be honest, I planned to do a whole big review post about the game after it came out, but I didn't get around to it. At first, I told myself it was because I was too busy, but, in truth, I think it's because, deep down, I didn't really like the game as much as I thought I would and, rather than give it a mediocre or, dare I say, bad review, I just didn't give it one at all. As the numerical title states, I think the game really suffers from having no campaign or story to it whatsoever. It's really just any multiplayer shooter with a Star Wars skin. The only saving grace is Fighter Squadron, that game mode is still incredibly fun, and I really hope they expand on it in the upcoming DLCs (yeah...I bought the season pass...). What I'd really like to see in a Star Wars FPS game is, basically, a Star Wars version of Destiny...that has the potential to be something amazing...but, instead, I'll hold out hope EA does something compelling with the Battlefront DLC while I play Disney Infiniti and wait patiently for the next Star Wars title...I'm looking at you, Visceral Games...
And there they are, ladies and gentlemen, five things that even I thought were bad Star Wars experiences in 2015. I don't really have any honorable mentions since, as I said, I had to wrack my brain to come up with the five I listed here...actually, I'll say that not being able to go to Celebration was a pretty bad experience, so we'll call that a solid honorable mention...aside from that, though, I'm happy with the overall direction Star Wars is going, and look for 2016 to carry the torch held by 2015 and for it to continue to be a great time to be a Star Wars fan...so, while you're basking in the glow of last year and looking forward to things to come this year, may the Force be with you...