Star Wars: Rebel Assault Blasts On GOG

Zapbeams.

Star Wars: Rebel Assault is the series that made a younger me realise fancy technology doesn’t make a game fun or good. It looked like a movie! It had fancy pre-rendered 3D graphics! You sometimes controlled an actual real actor how could that even be! And it was a boring and janky rail shooter and yes I will fight you COME ON THEN.

You don’t need me to stomp all over nostalgia, mind. The two Rebel Assault games are now on GOG in a $9.99 (£6.50-ish) bundle, so you can see for yourself.

With a mix of pre-rendered backgrounds, FMV cutscenes, and FMV-ised real actors as game characters, Rebel Assault dances across the Star Wars movies. You get to blow up Star Destroyers, fly around on Hoth, and, yes, take the place of Luke Skywalker to blow up the Death Star yourself. Star Wars! And it’s rubbish and boring and clunky but heaven help me nostalgia is a heck of a drug.

Who am I to crush dreams? I can’t take your experiences away from you, and I wouldn’t want to. If you loved them, good for you, and I hope revisiting them brings you happiness.

Though I will defs for real irl fight you if you say that the rubbishness of MegaRace is not made at least tolerable by the squealing and gurning of FMV game show host Lance Boyle.

26 Comments

  1. Premium User Badge

    Neurotic says:

    I remember playing the first one on my friend’s Amiga, or maybe his PSX. Probably the latter. Seemed alright-ish back then. I’ll give this a go — at the least, it should amuse the kids.

    • Kempston Wiggler says:

      “playing”

      Are you sure that’s the right word to use?

      • Darth Gangrel says:

        Are you saying that Rebel Assualt did the whole “interactive movie thing” before it got cool?

  2. Shaun Green says:

    I thought this was rubbish at the time too. I sure got given shit for that opinion!

    Fairly sure I have a copy of this for the 3DO kicking around.

  3. Det. Bullock says:

    O dear, I still have the Rebel Assault cd, but I would need a legal copy of the second (by the time I had the money it became almost impossible to find).
    While they are essentially the classic FMV shooters with little to no interactivity, they are still fun to play.

    • Hmm-Hmm. says:

      Also, it’s STARWARS! At least that was a big part of the appeal for me.

      • Det. Bullock says:

        Funny, these games were (toghether with X-wing) my first expierience with Star Wars.
        I didn’t know about Star Wars until I saw Rebel Assault 2 at a friend’s house, there were stil no italian VHSs (they finally came out only sometime before the Special Editions) and I was able to partially see the first movie on TV only a couple of weeks later, fortunately they reissued the italian VHS box set that winter and see the whole saga.

  4. Bull0 says:

    Among the first PC games I ever really got into, I was given this for christmas when I was tiny. Speaking objectively, fairly shit game, but the nostalgia is strong

  5. Morlock says:

    I loved playing the first part back then despite all the simplicity. It made my young self feel like in a Star Wars movie, and that was all I wanted, so you and your game criticism can bugger off in face of my teenage fantasies. The magic didn’t sparkle when I played the sequel, either through my maturation or the game simply being less good.

  6. tomimt says:

    Neither of them has aged very well as the controls are a bit sensitive kind, but out of the two the second feels more playable.

    • Det. Bullock says:

      Well, the second has an autofire option, thoroughly adjustable difficulty levels and less awkward stormtrooper shooting mechanics.

  7. latedave says:

    I used to love the first one so much, it was pretty hard though as I recall, not helped by the fairly random deaths!

  8. latedave says:

    Also kudos for megarace, anyone remember what else it came with, I’m sure it was on a dual cd, we got it with my parents first ‘gaming ‘ pc

    • GAmbrose says:

      Wasn’t it bundled with Intel MMX based computers?

      • Premium User Badge

        Risingson says:

        That should have been POD. Or Rebel Moon Rising. Or maybe another of the very few games that took advantage of MMX when it was released.

        Megarace was just cd power. BTW; I played it for the first time this year and it is a fun dumb game.

        Rebel Assault was, actually, the worst rail shooter I played at the time: it is Star Wars alright, but is not as playable as Cyberia, The Hive, Wetlands or Loadstar. Or maybe it’s my pink tinted shades.

  9. SanguineAngel says:

    rebel assault was terribly on rails and really limiting but my word was it addictive

  10. GAmbrose says:

    I remember getting a demo of the Mega CD version, I think the magazine was about £6.99 (which was a lot in 1993)

    Mega CD has particularly awful video (limited colour palette, slow CD drive) which didn’t help, and the game was rubbish.

    I still went out and bought it as soon as I could because

    A) It was Star Wars
    B) IT WAS STAR WARS!

    This was before it had been tarnished in any way by bad prequels, ageing visual effects, the realisation that there are much better films etc etc.

  11. Delicieuxz says:

    Rebel Assault 1 and 2 are both awesome games, and they were exciting in their day. Calling them boring seems a bit contrived. We get more boring games sold as $60 blockbusters these days.

    • K_Sezegedin says:

      Were they exciting? Like Alice says they were the epitome of flash over substance.

      It was fun to witness the technology, but that’s about it – at least for Rebel Assault 1. The gameplay did not compare favorably to any action or sim title I’d played prior, but I didn’t begrudge it cause, you know, movies.

      But taking out the Deathstar in X-Wing was several orders of magnitude more interesting than what we had in Rebel Assault.

      It wasn’t but a year later that we had Wing Commander III showing how CD-ROM moviegasms could be effectively bolted to an actual game, in my view that really sucked the wind out of Rebel Assault II which showed up a year later.

      Nostalgia or historical curiosity are the only reasons I can see to play a Rebel Assault today.

      Unlike the X-wing series, the titles have no gameplay to mitigate their age.

  12. smegjacob says:

    Let us not forget that Rebel Assault II is still the true Citizen Kane of videogames.

  13. Arehandoro says:

    I think Rebel Assault II was my first Star Wars game ever so I better grab them and give to that bitch (nostalgia) its dose.

  14. fco says:

    i remember loving rebel assault, but for what i really thank it is for introducing me to the graphic adventure genre, as it included demos for sam and max, day of the tentacle and fate of atlantis.

  15. Elusiv3Pastry says:

    I fondly remember Rebel Assault 2 as having the most atrocious “acting” anywhere, ever. I’m pretty sure they only hired failed porn actors and high school play rejects for the parts to save budget. Putting a lens flare on a blue screen was expensive back then.

  16. Mr_Blastman says:

    Rebel Assault sucked!

  17. Arren says:

    I’d hazard a guess that our opinions of Rebel Assault align with our age at the time it came out. Me-at-thirteen absolutely loathed it, being still besotted with X-Wing at the time, and generally scornful of faux interactivity (though I’d have called it something less French back then).

    RA must have been a blast for a younger SW-lovin’ kid — but it still bears the dubious distinction of being a pioneer of the Awesome Button school of design.

  18. BooleanBob says:

    I think this was the first game I played that I recognised was bad. As in, when you’re a kid, you’re easily pleased and new games come around so infrequently that they don’t exactly have to do much to impress. But this was the one that I unwrapped in a frenzy of excitement, positively vibrated through the installation, and listened, awestruck, to the Star Wars music as the curtain was drawn away to reveal… something that I couldn’t even pretend I was enjoying beyond maybe twenty minutes.

    The world closed in a little that day.