Whether or not you’re a fan of LucasArts games, it’s no question that the company left an indelible mark in the industry. Having already done my part in honoring the legacy of LucasArts, the rest of the Gamer Horizon crew wanted to share their thoughts and memories of the company and the games that they’ve played throughout the years.
When I think of LucasArts, three games come to mind:
The first is Star Wars: Rogue Squadron, which was one of my favorite Nintendo 64 games and which managed to draw me into a genre that normally doesn’t interest me. I remember putting hours into attempting not only to beat the game, but to clear the challenging bonus objectives in every level.
Then there was Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire. It ended up in my collection of Nintendo 64 games by default, since it was one of the only games available on the system at the time. That game includes levels in a variety of genres, and some of them played better than others. I absolutely loved The Battle of Hoth in Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire, and though the 3rd person shooter aspect of the game was largely flawed, I still enjoyed it.
Finally, with devious puzzles, an entertaining story, great characters and plenty of laughs, The Secret of Monkey Island will always be a classic of the adventure game genre. The 2009 HD special edition of the game is the perfect opportunity for new players to give it a try if they didn’t get to play it in the early 90s.
Look behind you, LucasArts, a three-headed monkey! Damn… too late.
When I think LucasArts I think fondly of all the Star Wars games I played starting with the arcade games, then moving onto the Atari, then followed by Nintendo and Super Nintendo classics. Star Wars: Dark Forces and Star Wars: Jedi Knight for the PC were some of the best games around, along with Star Wars: Rogue Squadron and Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire for the N64. When I think about it, there were a lot of Star Wars games that were shipped over the years. My favorites have turned out to be Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Star Wars: Republic Commando which need a re-release and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.
Unfortunately, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2 and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 didn’t live up to expectations and seemed to be the the beginning of the end. With fans clamoring for a Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 3, Lucasarts and Bioware tried to answer the fans with Star Wars: The Old Republic. It started off great, but just seamed to lose momentum. I pre-ordered my copy and played it all the way up until Mass Effect 3 came out.
It’s unfortunate that LucasArts closed. They made some good games with The Secret of Monkey Island and Day of the Tentacle but never seemed to bounce back. We will miss them and hope that Star Wars 1313 and Star Wars: Battlefront 3 find a home soon.
My fondest memories of LucasArts come from two games. The first is Indiana Jones and the Emperor’s Tomb for the original Xbox. Developed by The Collective, it was a highly underrated gem of the last generation. What I loved about it were the little things The Collective got right like how Indiana Jones was animated just like Harrison Ford in the iconic role. Every punch, stagger and gesture rang true to the movies. Then there was when Indy would lose his hat and I would always run back to find it. Good puzzles and platforming rounded out the package making it one of my favorite titles from the original Xbox.
My second, also on the Xbox was Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Another game not developed by LucasArts proper, instead by the then unknown to me, Bioware. As a huge Star Wars fan and a huge fan of RPGs I had always thought a Star Wars RPG was a no-brainer. When it was finally in my hands I was blown away. The characters, the story, the gameplay were all stellar and the twist remains in my top 3 of all time, if not my number one.
Growing up, I had a Mac. I was a 90s Mac gamer and it was difficult to get by when Windows had all the major titles. I fondly remember the days when I went over to a friend’s house, where I watched him play Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis. I marveled that these characters were talking! I had seen voiced games on the Sega CD, but this was somehow different… like a cartoon! I watched my friend play Day of the Tentacle and thought that was even closer to that ideal. The only LucasArts games I actually ever played were Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, and I don’t have a lot to say about those that others won’t say the same about.
My memories of LucasArts were of a company whose games I really wanted to play but sadly couldn’t. All the same, what they could have made given the talent they possessed, will be lost and the line between entertainment and art seems lesser without it.