I’ve finally gotten a chance to connect my Xbox 360 to the internet after about a month and a half. My thirsty system drank deeply of the sweet, sweet nectar of free Live Arcade downloads and new game demos that enriched the lives of the Xbox faithful all summer.
I got a chance to play the demo for Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, which features the Euphoria physics engine that I’ve talked about in the past. My initial impressions: The gameplay is pretty solid, though the camera definitely seemed a bit loose and hard to control. It was hard to gauge the effect of the physics on the gameplay — in the demo, there seemed to be limited opportunities to really play with the interactions between the physics systems. Apart from tossing Stormtroopers around like ragdolls, force-throwing boxes, and force-pushing doors, there wasn’t much else for the physics system to show itself off. In the final release, I’ve been told to expect realistic glass shatterings, pipe-bendings, and tree splinterings. As a die-hard Star Wars fan, the story alone will be enough to warrant a purchase; any additional cool physics and animation added in will be icing to me. I can’t wait to get my hands on the full system, though, and brainstorm future possibilities for physics-based animations for when Euphoria (like Havok before it) inevitably becomes widely available.