Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga is still by far the best adaptation of the original and prequel trilogies, as well the definitive way to enjoy the films in a whole new way.
Granted, since its release 13 years ago, there has been an increase in the number of Star Wars games that expand the universe of Star Wars instead of adapting it. Case in point: Jedi Fallen Order showed us the tale of a Padawan who survived the Jedi purge, while the recently released Squadrons gave us a new take on piloting the many fighter ships in the series.
In its own special way, Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga adapts six Star Wars movies so succinctly and humorously that it might not be replicated ever again.
A Long Time Ago
The Complete Saga is actually a two-pack compilation of the very first Lego Star Wars and Lego Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy with a number of extra features added in. The core gameplay basically boils down to players having to play through a Lego version of the first six Star Wars movies, each with six levels. Players can go through each game chronologically or in whatever order they want.
The stories are all recreated through Lego props and Minifigures, with every iconic scene in the series being told through pantomimes as there is no voice acting in the game. This adds a lot of charm to the game, which includes seeing Obi-Wan beat Anakin on Mustafar. Instead of hearing their final words to each other, the exchange was just mimed instead. If you’re a fan, this is a fresh spin on the stories, and if you haven’t seen them, then this is a great tongue-in-cheek way of getting an abridged version of Star Wars.
In A Galaxy Far, Far Away
Gameplay-wise, it is a mix of collectathons and puzzle platforming, with arena battles and spaceship shoot-em-up segments to mix up the gameplay. Each level has a number of collectibles to acquire, like a certain number of Minikits, which can be used to build iconic spaceships, and studs, the in-game currency which players can use to unlock more characters, and Gold Bricks that act as cheats.
From Luke Skywalker to the humble Gonk droid, no matter how important a character is, they are playable in this game. If they were a background character, you know that you can somehow play as them in Freeplay mode. The Complete Saga also adds in levels that were cut from the original releases, a new battle arena Arcade Mode, and even Indiana Jones as an extra character.
The first Lego Star Wars game was slightly limited, as only Jedi characters could build certain objects within levels, and weapon-less characters had no way of defending themselves. The second game added non-Jedi building and allowed for characters to attack bare-fisted. Because of these additions, levels from Episode I, II, and III were reworked for The Complete Saga to make them function with these new mechanics.
The Skywalker Saga
Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga was just the ultimate fan-service video game, all wrapped up in a family-friendly, colourful world of Lego. It also launched a sub-franchise that is still ongoing today. Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars was released soon after, but didn’t reach the same highs as The Complete Saga since it is based on the CG-animated TV show.
The Force Awakens also received a Lego Star Wars game, though it really seemed like they were stretching it since the game was based on only one movie. It also added voice acting, which really made the game lose its charm when compared to The Complete Saga.
Sadly, Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga has been delayed, and definitely had the potential to replace The Complete Saga as the definitive Lego Star Wars video game since it adapts all nine Star Wars movies.
If it’s any consolation, the upcoming Lego Star Wars Holiday Special short film will be adapting one facet of Star Wars that we haven’t seen in Lego just yet, so maybe that will tide us over until the new Lego Star Wars game. At least, we’ll always have The Complete Saga to go back to.