Lego Skywalker Saga: A Good Ol’ Time
Lately, I’ve been playing through Lego Star Wars: The Sky Walker Saga (Lego Skywalker). However, I have to admit when I tried to think of the game and the values it upheld/pushed, I came up empty. To me, the game was just a fun game that allowed me to turn off my brain and play with a friend. Taking a closer look, however, I think I’ve found some ways that it does contain and display some values.
Before delving into the values themselves, I’d like to establish a frame of reference for Lego Skywalker. That is that Lego Skywalker is a kid's game, so most values need to be observed from this perspective. Even though the lego games are intended to be enjoyed by all types of audiences, they’ve always been aimed at kids. This can easily be observed through the comedy and the level of difficulty experienced through normal gameplay and puzzle sections.
Value One: Spatial and Critical Thinking
Spatial thinking refers to the type of thinking used when taking on puzzles and moving around the pieces to get things to fit into place. Critical thinking is the thinking involved in assessing a situation and coming up with solutions or courses of action. Both of these types of thinking are present throughout Lego Skywalker and its seemingly infinite number of puzzles. While the majority of puzzles are rather easy and don’t require much thought, I could see how some of them would have challenged me when I was 8 or 9 years old. With that being said, there have even been a couple of puzzles and challenges that made me look up a solution after sitting there trying to figure it out for 30 minutes. So in terms of values, Lego Skywalker does a fantastic job of making you work your brain to solve problems throughout its massive world. Due to the younger target audience, it would have been perfectly acceptable if the game had puzzles that required almost no thought.
Value Two: Co-Operation.
My entire playthrough has been done by playing split-screen with a friend of mine. Though I traditionally hate the limited screen space involved with split-screen gameplay, I eventually got past that and started having a blast. I can’t think of a co-operative experience that has been this engaging and fun in recent memory. Remembering the fun that I’m having with my friend showed me that this is in fact one of the largest values present through the gameplay. By using this split-screen mode, my friend and I have had to communicate to accomplish certain timed tasks or contemplate puzzle solutions. Requiring this level of communication and co-operation shows how much of an emphasis the team at TT Games wanted to place on those values amongst all players. The developers could have easily saved themselves some work and skipped out on a lot of the game's puzzles or at least made them easily achievable by a lone player, but they opted to aim for this shared experience.