Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.
Have you? I haven’t, despite desperately wanting to for most of my life. It’s still filed in a dusty backroom of my head, in a filing cabinet marked ‘impossible dreams.’ My PC at the time was without, and probably wouldn’t have been able to support, a CD-ROM drive (which Rebel Assault so famously required in order to provide its copious FMV), so I stared at what then seemed photo-real screenshots in magazines with dismayed disbelief. There was a game which just looked like the Star Wars films. A game which, quite obviously, would be just like being in Star Wars myself. A part of me wants to believe – hell, believes – that Rebel Assault looks better than last year’s Star Wars: Battlefront. That one day I will upgrade my PC and finally be able to play Rebel Assault.
I have no intention of playing Rebel Assault. I have a mixed relationship with Star Wars these days, in part due to increasing discomfort that my generation’s nostalgia plays such an enormous role in the decisions taken by the entertainment industry today, but the part of me that loved it when I was a boy and still loves, particularly, the spaceships now, still hangs onto the idea that Rebel Assault is the ultimate chance to play in Lucas’ toybox.
I don’t want to destroy that hope with the grim reality that Rebel Assault is a low-resolution, on-rails shooter with punishing controls. I want to go to my grave believing that there’s a game my computer can’t play yet, but when I can I will be inside Star Wars.