Top Ten Tuesday – Lucasarts Games

“This deal is getting worse all the time…”

Lando Calrissian knew not what he was getting himself into when he bargained with the Empire to protect Bespin. Likewise, when Disney acquired Lucasfilm and its subsidiaries for a massive $4.05 billion, it all seemed a bit too true to have new creative direction, the production power of Disney and maybe even a little of that Pixar magic. But just like Darth Vader said, “I have altered the deal. Pray I do not alter it further.”

It seems that Lucasarts, the longstanding gaming division of Lucasfilm, is the first major victim of the acquisition. While the current plan is for Lucasarts to continue as a publishing studio, its days as a developer are over. To be fair, the studio had been in limbo for sometime with Star Wars projects 1313 and First Assault stuck in development purgatory. The end of Lucasarts as a development studio not only closes the door on the Boba Fett featured title of 1313, but marks the end of one of the most fantastic studios of all time.

To me, Lucasarts was synonymous with quality. Despite all the constant negative feedback regarding video games based on licensed intellectual properties, Lucasarts delivered time and time again to their Star Wars and Indiana Jones titles. While not every title was perfect or even ran properly (Star Wars: Obi Wan), Lucasarts had a penchant for making sure everything stayed true to form, with fantastic art direction, graphics engines, stories and sound.

Now I have to disclose, as much as I’ve wanted to, I have not played every single Lucasarts game released. As much as I want to place a title like Grim Fandango on this list for all its critical acclaim, I simply don’t have the experience with it to give it the ode it deserves. Thus, only titles that I have a solid amount of experience with have made this list.

10. Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II – Rogue Leader (2001)

Rogue Squadron II - Rogue Leader

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My favorite BioWare moments

Gaming blog Screen Play, written by Jason Hill of The Sydney Morning Herald, featured a fan driven competition in search of gamer’s most memorable moments from BioWare’s many successful franchises. The contest, which ran in recognition of the release of BioWare’s Dragon Age II highlighted gamer’s memories every BioWare title from Baldur’s Gate to Mass Effect.

Popular choices included game shaking plot twists in Knights of the Old Republic and Mass Effect II, praises of gameplay elements in Jade Empire and Dragon Age: Origins and celebration of characters including everybody’s favorite blue alien Liara T’soni, the evil (and sarcastic) protocol droid HK-47 from Knights of the Old Republic and the¬†incomparable¬†ranger Minsc from Baldur’s Gate and his miniature giant space hamster Boo.

Sadly, I have not received my copy of Dragon Age II yet as finding affordable shipping to my island state is difficult to say the least. I am however, excited for the game (as mentioned in my impressions of the demo) and have had my share of experiences to BioWare’s many franchises. I’d have to say my favorite BioWare moments have to be: Continue reading