A scene from 'Angry Birds Star Wars.' (Photo: Rovio)
By Brett Molina, USA TODAY
Blasting off into space just wasn't enough for Rovio's blockbuster franchise Angry Birds. For their next act, the feisty, feathered creatures headed to a galaxy far, far away.
Fresh off the release of March's intergalactic adventureAngry Birds Space, Rovio joins forces with Jedis and Wookiees in Angry Birds Star Wars, a delightful puzzle game that intelligently incorporates the beloved sci-fi classic.
The premise follows the path of previous Angry Birds' titles: a group of pigs is stealing eggs, and the birds seek to bring them back. Using a slingshot, players fling the birds toward pigs protected by makeshift structures constructed of wood, steel and other objects. Birds have special abilities to boot, from smaller creatures that split into three or birds that operate like bombs.
Naturally, with the involvement of Star Wars, expect a Rebel twist. The story takes inspiration from Episode IV: A New Hope, as a winged Luke Skywalker meets Obi-Wan Kenobi and learns the ways of the force. Each bird assumes the appearance of keyStar Wars figures, such as the red bird with Luke's blond hair and the giant, hairy bird resembling Chewbacca.
The birds adapt powers from their Star Wars counterparts. Using the Obi-Wan bird, players can use the force to push objects out of the way before crashing, while the Han Solo bird lets players fire off blaster shots before landfall. Then there's the entertaining Skywalker bird, where players swipe the touchscreen to slice through objects with a lightsaber. If players have trouble with a level, they can call in the Millenium Falcon to take out all Imperial pigs, some dressed in Stormtrooper garb.
The attention to detail is amazing, and it goes beyond just the game's impressive physics. The sounds are spot-on, from the screeching beeps of a R2-D2 flying through the air to the roar of a TIE Fighter zooming across the sky.
Levels feature a mix of concepts from the original Angry Birds as well as Angry Birds Space, as players carefully aim shots to pull their bird within a zone of gravity.
Most of the games 80 levels take place in two locations: Luke's home planet of Tatooine and a pig-shaped version of the Death Star (a free update featuring the ice planet Hoth is in the works). There's also Path of the Jedi, which adds a bonus 40 levels for $1.99.
Overall, Angry Birds Star Wars is every bit as charming and fun as any of the other previous titles. What makes this game special is its ability to weave elements of Star Wars through the atmosphere and mechanics while still maintaining the feel of anAngry Birds game.
Platform(s): PC, Mac, Apple iOS, Google Android, Windows Mobile
Release Date: Nov. 8
Score: 4 stars (out of 4)