Lenovo Star Wars: Jedi Challenges Review: Battling Darth Vader In AR

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Star Wars: Jedi Challenges Final Thoughts

I had a blast playing Star Wars: Jedi Challenges. With a street price of $199, the kit isn't exactly cheap, but it isn't exhorbitant either considering the technology involved, and it will likely please Star Wars fans of any age. Just be sure you've got a compatible phone to use with the kit, otherwise you can't do much with it and will only end up with a couple of collectibles.

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Most aspects of the Jedi Challenges game were a blast to play, though Holochess was somewhat less exciting due to the slower pace and lack of fast-paced action. The overarching game can also be frustrating at times and might be a bit overly scripted when it comes to Lightsaber combat for some players. It can also be annoying when the blade goes out of sync with your hands, should it be engaged when its out of position. There is no way to properly attack, dodge, and parry strikes with a blade that isn’t perfectly aligned with your hands in the game.

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The best way to prevent this from happening is to be sure to always grip the lightsaber in your hands in essentially the same position. That may seem difficult to pull off, but in the hours spent playing this game, I only experienced sync issues a few times, especially in the beginning as I got familiar with the kit. When it did go out of sync, I either restarted or flailed about hoping to finish the stage, and when the next stage started I opened the blade properly when prompted and fixed the sync issue.

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The big question for many people is whether Star Wars: Jedi Challenges is worth the $199 asking price. This isn't chump-change for what is essentially a single game. The PS4 and Xbox One S sell for that same price and there are hordes of games to play with those systems. We supposed it's going to come down to individual preference and how much you love the Star Wars universe.  If you get tired of games easily, then $199 may be a tough pill the swallow.

If you are a big Star Wars or AR fan, however, Jedi Challenges will probably be much more appealing. You get to be a Jedi, command forces in battle, and beat down baddies like Kylo Ren, as revenge for killing Han. That might be worth the asking price alone for the hardcore fans out there. Functionally-wise, aside from the occasional sync issues with the Lightsaber blade and the need for a specific compatible phone, the hardware is fantastic. The gameplay is hours of fun, and the Lightsaber makes for an awesome collectible, which also certainly makes this a compelling holiday gift for Star Wars fans that might be on your short list.

  • Collectors-grade Lightsaber
  • Great, fun AR gameplay
  • Mirage AR headset is comfortable
  • Easy to see your existing environment with headset on
  • Only works with specific smartphones
  • Lightsaber sync can be finicky

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