It's true that Rebel Assault II is, at its core, an arcade-style shoot-'em-up, but the play experience goes far beyond that description. It starts with the story--an original Star Wars-based plot that pits Rookie One (that's you) on the side of the Alliance against the dark forces (no pun intended) of the Empire. Action sequences are integrated almost seamlessly into the storyline, and interwoven with movie scenes that add both context and suspense to the game.
Interactive movie games are nothing new. But this product's full studio production values set it apart from lesser interactive adventures that come out of the typical Hollywood-Silicon Valley convergence.
Passwords and user-defined skill levels ensure that all players can enjoy Rebel Assault II at a comfortable flying and combat level. Hard-core gamers who like the 3-D action of Dark Forces may scoff at the game's limited options. Likewise, veteran joystick jockeys will laugh at the fake flying, which follows a predetermined line and doesn't provide the kind of control you get in Origin's Wing Commander series.
Rebel Assault II's fine musical score, well-written script, and decent acting will be enough to satisfy those seeking a worthwhile multimedia "experience," but the limited gameplay will most likely send hard-core gamers running back to Tie Fighter.