In my 90-minute preview of Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga, I got a chance to run through some of the opening segments of A New Hope, starting with the attack on Leia’s starship by Darth Vader and ending just after meeting Han Solo on Tatooine. I got to sample a handful of beloved characters in a couple of iconic locations along the way – Leia, a rebel soldier, pre-Jedi Luke, and Han Solo, just to name a few. Each character sports unique abilities and skills, which is customary of the Lego games, but none left as big an impression on me as old man Obi-Wan Kenobi.
As my second favorite Jedi in Star Wars lore (Team Ahsoka Tano), he’s always come across as cool, collected, and in control of the situation. He’s the go-to mentor figure for younger Jedi, and Lego Obi-Wan exemplifies all those traits. However, with the quirky Lego comedy spotlighting his sillier qualities, I was reminded of one of my favorite things about him: Obi-Wan is tired of all of this.
Midway through my Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga preview playtime, I got to take control of Obi-Wan as he is first introduced to the audience with that insane scream on a cliff side. His goofy behavior from that point forward feels the least like a parody of his original character compared to that of anyone else; instead, it works to reinforce his sarcastic and quick-witted nature.
Watching him wince and shrug in response to Luke asking, “How did my father die?” is both funny and in character. In the original scene, he blames the death on Darth Vader, conveniently leaving out the fact that they’re the same person or that he cut the man in half, leading to his robot makeover. Of course, that context didn’t actually exist at the time, but that’s what makes a retelling of the story in this way a much more novel prospect than many other remakes or reboots.
During my final minutes with the Skywalker Saga preview I was in control of a full party of Lego characters: Luke, R2-D2, Han, C-3PO, and Obi-Wan. While I cycled through the group a bit to get a sense of everyone’s combat abilities, I found it hard to part with Obi-Wan – and not just because he was the only Jedi. My favorite move of his, a lightsaber boomerang throw, was accompanied by audible grunts of pain and discomfort. It took a while to realize those noises weren’t coming from enemies but from Obi-Wan himself, as in his old age it must really ache to use the Force or swing a lightsaber. It’s honestly hilarious, and it endeared me to the character in a way that really didn’t cross my mind before this iteration.
Having Obi-Wan in the group is great fun while the droids can perform hacking puzzles and Luke and Han can shoot stuff. Obi-Wan has a myriad of cool Force abilities immediately available to him that really showcase how diverse the gameplay plans to be. With Jedi mind tricks you can control other characters and use their skills to open up locked pathways, or you can just throw heavy objects at enemies with a Force push. I wasn’t able to reach the scenes where he inevitably leaves the party, but It’s clear his presence will be missed in both the narrative and gameplay.
Luckily, once you’ve completed story sections and unlocked characters starring in them, you can return to any other levels in free play mode to take on sidequests or hunt for secrets. Old-man Ben Kenobi isn’t featured for a long time in the movie and so likely won’t be in the full story mode of Episode IV, but he’ll definitely be a go-to for me for any extracurricular adventures in Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga.
Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga launches on April 5, 2022 for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X | S, Nintendo Switch, and PC.