Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (Video Game 1999) Poster

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5/10
Typical movie-to-game transition.
As usual, somebody tried to make a game from a movie that didn't have enough gaming material.

The usual results?

A game that follows the movie in certain places, but adds so much other stuff that makes you wonder if it came from the movie. Also, it doesn't tie in with the movie or other Star Wars games based around The Phantom Menace. For instance, on the final level, you play as Queen Amidala. You must take Captain Panaka to capture the viceroy and, of course, win the battle and save the world. But in the game Battle for Naboo, Captain Panaka enlisted the aid of Gavyn Sykes and his battle cruiser to destroy one of the Trade Federation's hover tanks. This never happens in the game Phantom Menace.

A lot of things from Phantom Menace the game are entirely new. In fact, almost all of it is, such as rescuing Jar Jar Binks from the Gungans, or fighting off some ugly guy to recover Anakin's stolen podracing pieces minutes before the race begins. Possibly one of the most frustrating parts of the game is attempting to trade various items in order to get parts for Anakin's pod racer. Or spending a whole fifteen minutes trying to get back up to the fight with Darth Maul could possibly be one of the most frustrating parts.

Also, the acting is terrible. Some of the voices are totally absurd in comparison to their counterpart actors in the movie. Possibly the worst is Darth Maul. He never says a word in the movie, yet in the game he brags to Obi-Wan Kenobi about killing Qui-Gon Jinn.

The music is pretty good, as it all was taken from John Williams composition in the movie.

All in all, play this game only if you really liked The Phantom Menace and feel the need to play as the characters. I wouldn't really suggest playing it before you've seen the movie, as the storyline and plot is all thrown in rather quickly.
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May the force be with you!
TJ-7230 December 1999
When I got this game from my mum and dad I went crazy trying to get past the first level.Talk about being Sony giving easy games. Now you know with this thing it only took me 3 days to get to the last level. If anybody can get me good cheats like unlimited weapons or stuff like that, please e-mail them to me. Never e-mail me without my say so. This game is the best.Take the roles of Obi-Wan Kenobi,Qui-Gon Jinn,Queen Amidala and Captain Panaka. I'll give a hint. While you're playing as a Jedi, while you're talking to someone, you can use a Jedi mind trick! Episode 1 is the best game ever. A Bug's Life is now 2nd place!

Good luck! And may the force be with you!
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7/10
Overlooked?
TBJCSKCNRRQTreviews24 June 2008
Yes, we all know about the usual quality level of licensed releases. No, this does not particularly raise the bar. But it is definitely an entirely reasonable effort, and I would say that if you like the movie, you may enjoy this. I will start with my personal favorite thing about all of Star Wars... the light-sabers. The use of them can be entertaining enough in this, and the way they did them in this(I will keep it vague intentionally so as to not spoil it for those who have not seen the Prequel Trilogy, it is awesome beyond the point that it should be blown) definitely fits(and, lest we forget, this is the only time it has been done this way in this medium, to the best of my knowledge) with the recent silver screen depiction... but for one thing. The speed. They move rather slowly in this, both the sword itself and when they move as they attack with it. There is also not exactly an abundance of different moves. They look real nice, however, in fact, the graphics of this in general are quite well-done. The engine somewhat supports an enormous scope, if you aren't allowed to go everywhere, which helps the feeling of being in the galaxy far, far away. The architecture can be... blocky, I guess is the word, by which I mean that a lot of... big, square..."things" are found. "Eye-sore" and "distracting" spring to mind. The way they kept you out of areas that you shouldn't have access to can also be clumsy. The level design on the whole isn't bad, though... and you get to visit and to some extent explore locations(unless I'm terribly mistaken, all of them) seen in the film. The voice acting varies a bit, and there are points where there is too much dialog. The overall writing is pretty decent... the story is told relatively well, and a little expanding is done. In spite of that, this isn't that long... I can imagine it could be beat in a weekend. Add to that that the re-playability value is limited to only one single-player campaign, no difficulty settings, and with no more than a sparse breakdown of your performance and time following its completion. There is good stuff in this, though. You get Force Push, and even, at certain points, Mind Trick. The former is especially fun to use, to effects similar to those we've seen at the cinema. This is an action adventure game, if anyone was not aware, and both aspects are fairly nicely done. The first-mentioned runs well, letting you fire half a dozen guns or so, and features throw-ables, as well(the method for aiming... don't even think you're gonna use a mouse for this... can be a tad trying). The latter portion is fine... the puzzles are arguably easy and tend to be both few and far between, as well. This is seen in the third person, or a mix of that and bird's-eye-view, and the camera is usually helpful(with a couple of glaringly obvious exceptions), in spite of you not having much sway over it... much at all, and there are some great tricks done with it. This isn't always perfectly smooth. You get to control multiple different characters(anyone's who's watched The Phantom Menace could probably guess who all four of them are, and I'd be happy to tell anyone who asks), each with skills and/or weapons that the others do not, and for my money, all are useful(really, every piece of your arsenal and every ability in this comes in handy herein). I realize it's not popular, but I do care for the Stunner, if it can be a trial... the concept and execution may be unique, and in spite of a measure of unpredictability to it, it makes for magnificent dispatching of adversaries. The AI can be... well, is, erratic, but there are interesting and noteworthy details to it... for example, I've seen foes step out of the line of fire of a projectile headed at them, successfully, as well as move if they are being hit and either can't see you or don't appear to be able to shoot straight at you. Sometimes annoying, perhaps, but you gotta admire the technology and effort behind it. The internal logic of this is, more often than not, broken... you may find yourself trying a lot of things that seem like they could be the solution, and it turns out it was something else entirely. The low level of interactivity with your environment doesn't outright aid you. The game-play is very cool when at its best. This was seemingly rushed, to get them out at the same time, and there is some feel of it being an unfinished project. And if I, or anyone else, really, for that matter, said "buggy" in reference to this, you can be almost 100 percent sure that they do not mean the mode of transportation. This has several cut-scenes, in-game(scripted without errors, more or less) and fully rendered alike, and the last-mentioned are purdy. All are directed just fine. I don't believe there are any clips of TPM itself in this, I, myself, did not miss them with what we had instead(bearing in mind that I like it more than the other two PT entries). The score is marvelous, save for the remarkably abrupt shifts that there can be. The sound is done well almost invariably, including in the menus, which are concise. The boss fights vary, not all are imaginative, but none are downright poor. The enemies are somewhat well-done and diverse. All in all... I'd conclude that if you dig the flick, you are set for having a solid playing experience, with hours of running around the SW universe with this, provided you can accept blemishes. This is not a flawless masterpiece, but it by no means deserves being branded an utter failure. I recommend this to fans of Episode 1, and the franchise in general. 7/10
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9/10
Star Wars is back, in pixelated form!
dhislop77 January 2007
I'd just like to say that the movie was lacking in all departments, acting etc. But i'm not writing about the movie, i'm gonna tell all of you about the rather excellent game that is the tie-in to the movie.

As all gamers should know, tie-ins are usually a cheap cash in to try to squeeze more money out of the franchise. Not in this case, oh no, what we have here is an awesome game which restored my faith in the star wars galaxy.

First off, a good game isn't a good game if it isn't addictive. This game is seriously addictive. I could saber my way through hoards of robots all day long. It never gets boring, not once. Even after seven years.

Secondly, the music is beautiful, fast paced and wondrously conducted. You begin to feel like a Jedi, be it a small one, and whether you like it or not, you'll end up with a huge smile stretching from ear to ear.

And thirdly, the freedom you are given is immense. There is no set way to complete your mission. You don't have to dive into in straight away, instead you annoy all the gungans with hilarious results, or you can murder innocent children for calling you "a monster". It's priceless.

By now, this game should be available for less than five pounds. Do yourself a favour, go out and buy this game. You will never look back.

Oh yeah, almost forgot, may the force be with you.
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The Force is not only strong with this one, but addictive too.
squir1y8 March 2000
This game followed up to one of the greatest movies ever. It wasn't the most challenging game, but it was really addictive. It ruled. You can play as Obi-Wan Kenobi, Qui-Gon Jinn, Queen Amidala and Captain Panaka. Your missions are to escort the Queen to Coruscant, save Anakin from Tatooine, keep Jar Jar alive, and save Naboo plus several other cool things. Even after I killed Darth Maul I still played it endlessly
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10/10
The closest you'll ever get to being a jedi knight.
Morlock-22 December 1999
I haven't played that much games for the last 4 years cause they've all been "too much". But Star Wars Phantom Menace got me going again... I felt like a Jedi when I ran around in the worlds of George Lucas... I played constantly for a few days until I finished the game and killed Darth Maul. Hope Episode 2 comes soon... the movie wasn't all that great... but the game is a masterpiece.
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10/10
help me!
Indy-528 July 2000
i haven't finished playing this great game yet, but i can see already that it's one of the best ever. I love the way it follows the original story so well, and then adds all kinds of other interesting things about it. The voice characterization is great and i love it when you can choose to give different answers. Some parts of the game were truly hard to get through, the second level especially drived me crazy. I personally found the third level to be quite easy. In the fourth level you have to fight a whole lot of battle droids by yourself, which was kind of hard, but it's easy once you understand the right method (tip: for those who can't get past this part, just try and avoid those droids. Just run as fast as you can, you'll lose a lot less strength than if you try and fight them). I'm currently busy on the fifth level. I am at the point where the queen is waiting for me to find a way to open that big gate. I thought the solution to that part was to bring that little droid to where it says "ÿou need a red key pass to use this console", but it wasn't. I'm really stuck there. If someone is willing to help me, mail me at unicorno@planet.nl.
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Watch the movie instead
Crono_7829 January 2000
This is an average game. I really had high hopes for this game. Every mission is the same thing over and over. To complete a mission, all you do is run around playing baseball with droids, push or "force push" a switch, and fulfill your objectives, which in some stages there is a boss.

However, this game also has its good sides. For example, for the ones that hate Jar Jar, you can kill him, but the mission comes to an end. Another good thing is the Duel of the Fates video that was packed with the game.

I hope the next two Episode I games, Power Battles and the Obi-Wan first-person adventure game, makes up for all the errors from The Phantom Menace.
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