Top 10 Original Trilogy Moments

Carrying on our look back over the best moments of Star Wars, our travels now take us back to where all the magic began for many fans.

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Following the fall of the Jedi order and the rise of the Galactic Empire, our journey through the story of the Force picks up with the first feature film simply named (At the time anyway) “Star Wars”.

Moment 10: “Use the Force Luke”, A New Hope

We kick off our list with perhaps one of the most significant moments in all of Star Wars, the moment that I young moisture farmer from the backwater planet of Tatooine realised the power he held inside and brought about the destruction of the largest battle station ever created.

Using the Force as his deceased former Master as his guides, Luke does what no other pilot in the Rebel Alliance was capable of, he destroyed the Death Star, saving millions of lives and bringing hope to the Galaxy.

Moment 9: Luke vs. Vader 2, Return of the Jedi

The culmination of three film’s worth of build. As his allies fight in space and on the forest moon of Endor, Luke Skywalker confronts his father and the Emperor for the final time. In what is to be considered one of the better lightsaber fights in Star Wars history, we witness father and son battle with the emotion and conflict that only these two characters could muster.

The fight allows Luke to show not only Vader, but the audience as well, how far he has come as a character. From the moisture farm of Tatooine, to a battle against the ruler of the Galaxy, Luke has finally affirmed his role as a Jedi Master and this battle brings out the best in every character involved.

Moment 8: Obi-Wan’s Sacrifice 

Now perhaps the moment that helped make Luke the character he became. Slayed by his former Padawan, it was Obi-Wan’s sacrifice aboard the first Death Star that helped Luke to understand his role in the Galaxy, that the good of the many outweighed the life of the one.

It was an important lesson for Luke to learn so early into the trilogy and enabled Obi-Wan to become far more powerful and useful to Luke in the form of an ever-present force ghost. A fitting end to an outstanding character.

Moment 7: “Never tell me the odds”

In a scene that perfectly portrays Han’s character as a reckless scoundrel, who just so happens to be an incredibly confident and gifted pilot, the “never tell me the odds” quote captures the energy of the scene perfectly.

Although some Star Wars films are often criticised for having bland side-stories away from our lead Jedi protagonist, the story of Han, Leia, Chewie and C3P0 was perfectly executed in The Empire Strikes Back.

Moment 6: “I love you” – “I know”, The Empire Strikes Back

And now onto the culmination of that story arc. Whereas the previous moment captured the scoundrel side of Han’s personality perfectly, this moment instead perfectly depicts his loving side. Not wanting to let his feelings show for fear that he would never see Leia again, Han ends his role in the Empire Strikes Back with a simple “I know”.

Not only is this scene heart-wrenching, but it was also a bold step for the franchise to take, deciding to end the middle film in a dark place with only the feint glow of hope to guide us into Episode 6.

Moment 5: The Battle of Hoth, The Empire Strikes Back

The best large scale battle scene in the entire original trilogy. Whilst the CGI and grandeur of the action may not hold up with later installments of the franchise, the gravity and importance that you feel when you first watch this battle unfold will be difficult to ever match.

A perfect example of the might of the Empire, with all its power, wealth and heavily armored machinery, battling against a ragtag group of Rebels who are fighting with little more than battered speeders as they try to buy enough time for their allies to escape.

Perfect storytelling.

Moment 4: Vader redeemed, The Return Of the Jedi

The culmination of Anakin Skywalker’s story across the entire saga. Growing from young boy, to a troubled young man, before morphing into the “more machine than man” figure known as Darth Vader, before finally realising his wrong doings, allowing the light to win the fight inside himself and fulfilling the prophecy of the Chosen One as he slays The Emperor to save his son.

Say what you want about Anakin’s turn to the dark side, but his redemption was handled perfectly. Character is something that the Original Trilogy does best, and this is by far one of the best examples of character-arcs.

Moment 3: Twin Suns/Binary Sunset, A New Hope

Perhaps the most beautiful of moments from the Original Trilogy, and yet perhaps the one which is the most insignificant to the actual story. The binary sunset scene, otherwise known as the twin suns scene, tells us all we need to know about both our protagonist and the universe in which we’re about to adventure.

The scene is one of longing and hope. As Luke watches over the sunset we are engulfed by John Williams’ perfect musical score, and it’s because of this that despite having little narrative importance, this scene lives in the hearts of many Star Wars fans.

Moment 2: The Opening Sequence, A New Hope

It’s been said a million times before, but the opening sequence of A New Hope was masterful. The way in which the scene is shot was not only a wonderful use of CGI for the time in which it was released, but it perfectly sets up our story without having to use a single line of dialogue.

The size of the Imperial Star Destroyer compared to Leia’s smaller cruiser tells us perfectly about the wealth and power available to the Empire, a visual depiction of the “long arm of the Empire”. Compared to the smaller Rebel ship, which in comparison is tiny, an immediate comparison through which we can understand the situations of both the Rebels and the Empire immediately.

A truly masterful opening.

Moment 1: “I am your Father”, The Empire Strikes Back

It had to be didn’t it? THE moment from Star Wars, the scene that even people outside of the fandom will recognise to one degree or another. The shocking revelation which was kept secret from even the cast of the film.

To this day it is arguably the biggest twist in cinematic history, a revelation that broke through the boundaries of the film itself and became a part of pop-culture. It is the perfect twist within a near perfect film, and is without a doubt the scene which helped to cement The Empire Strikes Back as the best of the bunch when it comes to Star Wars films.

Top 10 Prequel Trilogy Moments

It’s been a few weeks now since Star Wars: The Last Jedi hit cinemas and sent the entire fandom into a frenzy. With every Star Wars fan seemingly at each other’s throats we figured that now would be as good a time as ever to divert away from all the negativity and take a look back over the best of Star Wars.

So here’s part 1 of a 3 part series looking back over our Top Ten Moments from each Star Wars trilogy.

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Going in chronological order we’re beginning our 3-part series at the start of the Skywalker saga. Back in a time before Luke, Leia and Han, our story begins with the slow rise of Darth Vader and the death of a young man called Anakin Skywalker.

Moment 10: Rise of the Empire, Revenge of the Sith

Our first entry on the list earns its spot more through its importance to the saga as a whole, rather than its content. Palpatine finally reaching the heights of power he had sought since Ep. 1 and beginning the formation of the Galactic Empire. This is a powerful scene that encapsulates the best of the politics in the Prequels, something that many would argue is severely missing from later Star Wars films.

Moment 9: Gladiator Battles, Attack of the Clones

Despite this being what many consider to be the worst installment in the Star Wars films, it did provide one of the most gripping and visually impressive action sequences out of all the films.

This is the only time that we have seen Jedi fighting in large numbers before, in any form of post-Disney canon, and regardless of the story surrounding it the action itself delivers. Jedi fighting shoulder to shoulder against overwhelming odds, before the eventual save made by the Clone army is a spectacle that is hard to forget.

Moment 8: Duel of the Fates, Phantom Menace

Moving from a more grandiose battle to the first Sith vs. Jedi battle we are treated to in the Prequels. The battle between Qui-Gon/Obi Wan vs. Darth Maul isn’t only visually impressive, but it presents us with one of the most well-known scores in all of Star Wars and it perfectly sets up the feud between Obi Wan and Maul which is further expanded upon in canon shows The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, as well as comics (Even if Lucas meant for this to be Maul’s end originally).

Moment 7: Imperial March, Attack of the Clones

Following the previously mentioned battle on Geonosis Yoda utters the famous line “Begun the Clone War has” as the creeping score of the Imperial March plays on in the background, foreshadowing the revelation that everything is playing right into Palpatine’s hands. For those who first saw Star Wars (A New Hope) in cinemas it is perhaps this moment that is one of the most rewarding. After hearing about the Clone War from Obi Wan you are finally witnessing its beginning, and whilst it would have been good to see more of the war itself outside of the TV series, it is still rewarding to see the very beginnings of the Empire’s army.

Moment 6: Order 66, Revenge of the Sith

Order 66 portrays not only the ruthlessness of the Sith, but also their cunning and ability to outplay their Jedi counterparts at every turn. Characters who we’d seen fight for 3 films were cut down by their own troops in a montage that is equal parts horrific and mesmerizing.

And let’s face it, we’ve all pretended to be Palpatine when he first gives the command to “Execute Order 66”.

Moment 5: Birth of Vader, Revenge of the Sith

Right off the bat it’s worth noting that this scene isn’t perfect, but I couldn’t in my right mind put the birth of perhaps the most famous film character of all time any higher up the list.

Seeing Anakin’s burned body being treated to by the droids, and finally covered in his iconic black suit was the sort of imagery that people had been wanting to see for decades by the time it came around.

The Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker had died (For now at least), and Darth Vader was finally born.

Moment 4: Opera House, Revenge of the Sith

One of the few scenes in all of Star Wars that actually provides us with backstory which has yet to be explored. Hinting at the death of his former master Palpatine tells a conflicted Anakin about the power the Dark Side can wield. It is a master stroke of storytelling, allowing the viewer to see the cogs turning in Palpatine’s mind, watching as he presses Anakin’s worries and makes the Dark Side appealing with every word he speaks.

Furthermore it caught the interest of an entire generation, who to this day are calling for further backstory and the on-screen debut of Darth Plagueis, the Sith who could cheat death itself.

Moment 3: Battle over Coruscant, Revenge of the Sith

Our final large scale battle of this list is the one which features the most impressive visuals, the best film direction and the one which finally shows us why 1.) Obi Wan considered Anakin to be such a great pilot in the original trilogy and 2.) Builds up their friendship beyond just Padawan and Master.

The battle over Coruscant is easily the most exciting start to a Star Wars film and any director going forward will have a tough time of matching the feat pulled off by George Lucas in Episode 3.

Introducing us to Buzz Droids, showing us the Clones in action, Anakin and Obi Wan working together, command ships in battle above a famous planet, it all worked perfectly.

Moment 2: Mace vs. The Emperor, Revenge of the Sith

The reveal of Darth Sidious and the exposure of his real power. Lucas spent the prequel trilogy building up Mace Windu as a “bad-ass” Jedi whose skills in combat were not to be tested by anyone. Then came along the hidden Sith, Palpatine himself. Immediately eliminating 3 Jedi, Palpatine kick starts the action in ferocious speed, and the battle never really lets up.

A final dialogue between Windu and Anakin serves to solidify the young man’s turn to the Dark Side as he echoes concerns about the Jedi, concerns which are still prevalent in the franchise today as they are echoed back by Luke Skywalker.

Not to mention it’s this scene which provides us with the meme-loving quote “UNLIMITED POWER!”.

Moment 1: You were my brother, Revenge of the Sith

An argument could be made that this entire fight is worthy of the No. 1 spot on our list. But for me the fight drags just slightly too long and becomes a tad preposterous towards the middle. But this moment at the very end, after Anakin has been defeated and lies burning on the floor is wonderful storytelling.

Obi Wan pulls at your heart strings as he watches the man he considered a brother lying on the floor, dying because of his own hands. And as Obi Wan confesses his love for him, Anakin retorts his hate for Obi Wan. It is the perfect ending to their relationship and wonderfully depicts the opposing paths they have chosen.

Top 10 Mass Effect Trilogy Moments

 

This is a list that we’ve been wanting to do here for a while now, but the list has changed so many times in our head that we kept putting it off until we really decided what we wanted to be on here and where.

We want to say though before we begin that we aren’t including moments from any of the DLC packs. So sorry but some of the incredible moments from Lair of the Shadow Broker or the Citadel DLC’s won’t be making the list. This will be purely vanilla titles, Mass Effect, Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3.

So let’s get on with the list!

Moment 10: Meeting Sovereign, Mass Effect

What’s more important than first impressions?

During Shepard’s mission on Virmire, we come into contact with a Reaper who goes by the name of Sovereign. Despite Saren being set up as the big bad for the first installation of the trilogy, it is this conversation with Sovereign that sets up the trilogy’s overarching story with the Reapers.

Moment 9: Hold the line, Mass Effect

Also coming on the mission on Virmire, before you head off into war it isn’t Shepard who gives the heroic speech, it is instead Captain Kirrahe and by god is it a good speech. It is impossible not to feel pumped about going to kill some Geth after listening to the wise words of the trilogy favourite.

Moment 8: Escape from Earth, Mass Effect 3

In a moment that really upped the ante of the series, Mass Effect 3 starts out with the invasion of Earth and subsequently Shepard having to leave in order to rally the fleets of the Universe to its defence. Whilst we can ignore what becomes of the young boy throughout the rest of ME3, taken at face value Shepard having to stand there and watch as innocent people die is a hard moment for any Mass Effect fan.

Moment 7: Praying with Thane, Mass Effect 3

You would be hard pressed to find a Mass Effect fan who doesn’t believe that what makes the series great are the characters you meet, travel with, fight with and love. So when it’s time to lose them it makes it all the more heart-wrenching. What made this one so impactful, even though Thane may not make everyone’s top 5 favourite teammate lists, is his final prayer. A prayer that everyone assumes to be about himself, the lonely assassin, when in fact it turns out to be for his friend and Commander.

A fitting farewell for an amazing ally.

Moment 6: Do we save the Council? Mass Effect

Whether you choose to save the Ascension or hold back until it is a clear run to attack Sovereign this moment makes the list regardless. Whilst Mass Effect gives you the option of saving one life over another much earlier in the game, it amplifies this a hundred fold in the final moments by putting the lives of thousands of people in your hands.

Save the Ascension at the cost of human lives or sacrifice the Council and everyone on board the Ascension so that you have a better shot at beating Sovereign. An impossible call that you have no choice but to make.

Moment 5: Quarian and Geth peace, Mass Effect 3

Bringing an end to a centuries-old war? Losing a squad mate who only wanted to help his people? Potentially losing another squad mate you’ve had since the first game? All this at once and you’re damn right it’s in the top 5.

Ending the war between the Geth and the Quarian’s is an amazing feeling, but it takes such a large amount of effort in order to pull it off that the majority of people end up having to choose one side over the other. This is a crucial moment in the third game and no matter which way you play it tears will be shed.

Moment 4: The fleets arrive, Mass Effect 3

Everyone loves a big battle right? Well it doesn’t come much bigger than this. Yes this scene is even better once you take into account the extended cut, but the vanilla version alone is worthy of a place in our Top 5.

This is the moment that the culmination of 3 games worth of effort (Both offline and online by this point) finally comes to fruition. A final siege of the Reaper forces in an attempt to liberate the Galaxy of their scourge or go down fighting.

To simply see so many fleets that you personally have gathered as war assets over the course of the third game finally come together to fight an unbeatable threat makes this a moment that you’ll never forget.

Moment 3: Mordin’s sacrifice, Mass Effect 3

From the largest scale possible to the very smallest, one man alone in a tower takes our third spot. Mordin’s sacrifice to cure the Genophage perfectly sums up what we love about our Mass Effect companions, in the right circumstances they can show more humanity and character than countless high budget films.

Yes, it is possible to save Mordin, but that is route chosen by few. In his final moments, Mordin sings his way into our hearts and into the future of an entire species.

Farewell good friend.

Moment 2: Suicide Mission, Mass Effect 2

Possibly the best mission in any game ever made. The Suicide Mission puts the crew of the Normandy in an impossible scenario, but they go in anyway and the game allows you to choose who does what. Whilst at first that may seem a simple way to send your favourite (Or least favourite) crew members off to do the important tasks, it soon reveals itself to be much more meaningful.

Every crew member can die. Shepard can die despite completing the mission. Squad mates can die before you even reach the surface. Everything is down to choices you make and with that you take full responsibility for what comes next.

Yes it may be easy to figure out the patterns for who should do what on repeat playthroughs, but going in blind the first time? There aren’t many who save everybody.

Moment 1: The Normandy is destroyed, Mass Effect 2

And kicking off our list is the moment that made every Mass Effect fan ask “What the fuck is happening”? The original Mass Effect had been a success, but the developers of Mass Effect 2 knew they had to up the ante in the sequel. So what did they do? They killed Shepard in the opening sequence and destroyed your ship that you’d been flying around the Galaxy in since day 1.

Yes this all becomes redundant in a matter of an hour or so, but that doesn’t take away from the impact that this opening sequence has on first time players. It was a (somewhat) bold move and really sets the scene for what is possibly the best game ever made.

 

So there you have it, our personal Top 10 best moments of the Mass Effect trilogy! There were so many moments that we wanted to include… Shooting bottles with Garruss, any number of romances, playing as Joker when the Normandy is attacked, choosing between Ashley and Kaiden to name but a few. But we had to cut it down to a Top 10 and these are the ones we finally settled on.

Do you agree? Do you have other moments that you prefer? Let us know on Twitter @WeAreNiche!

Top 5 Most Anticipated Games of 2017

WeAreNiche take a look at our Top 5 most anticipated games of the year!

Welcome back!

As the new year draws ever closer we’re delving both back in time over the past year and looking ahead at what the new year has to bring us. As for today, we’re peering into the looking glass and going through our top 5 most anticipated games of 2017!

Today’s list isn’t in any particular order because quite frankly we can’t choose between these 5 games.

Strap in soldier.

 

Number 5 – Horizon Zero Dawn

Horizon Zero Dawn is a PS4 exclusive that really took the world by storm at E3 2016. After coming out of nowhere the game’s graphics and unique setting really helped to throw fuel onto the hype fire.

Over the past year we’ve been slowly drip fed more gameplay, but the story has for the large part been kept under wraps. Whilst this doesn’t work for some games, the mystery surrounding Zero Dawn’s story is only proving to be another element that is making us want to play the game right now.

Release date: February 28th 2017

 

Number 4 – Resident Evil 7

Whilst installments 4 through 6 have been less than stellar for the series, entry numero 7 promises a startling return to form. After some mystery footage was dropped at E3 2016 (What an E3) it was quickly revealed that the Resident Evil franchise was ditching the 3rd person action movie-esque style and going back to its roots in horror.

Perfectly adapted for a VR experience Resident Evil 7 promises to be a blend of old and new as the grand-daddy of all horror games prepares us to cry like a baby once again.

Release date: 24th January

 

Number 3 – Mass Effect: Andromeda

Holy crap, holy crap, holy crap are we excited for this game. We’re not afraid to say that the Mass Effect trilogy is our favourite ever game series (Crappy ending and all), and any return to the universe that engulfed us so well before was bound to excite us. But with some excellent gameplay being released only a matter of weeks ago, and an excruciatingly long time in between the odd tidbits of information has only served to make us as fans want more and more.

From what we can tell Mass Effect: Andromeda promises to bring everything that we loved about the original series (Except for the Paragon/Renegade options) and at the same time promises to take us in all new and exciting directions.

Whilst we don’t know exactly how many games Bioware has planned in Andromeda, even if it was just the one, we couldn’t be happier about going back.

Release date: TBC

 

Number 2 – South Park: The Fractured But Whole

South Park… THE. FRACTURED. BUT. WHOLE…. Look at that trailer… Need we say more?

Release date: TBC

 

Number 1 – God of War

Another game that debuted at E3 earlier this year is God of War. In a move that no one saw coming, Sony decided to move God of War away from the hack and slash era of old, and in a move that is entirely suiting of modern gaming, made it darker, full of character and with graphics that look more realistic than real life.

The new over the shoulder camera angle, combined with a more grown up father version of Kratos makes the game feel much more brutish. Think The Last of Us with swords… who the hell doesn’t want to play that?

Release date: TBC

 

There we have it folks, our Top 5 most anticipated games of 2017! Hit Follow and stick around as we’ll be bringing you lots more content between now and the end of the year, with plenty of things in store for the channel in the new year.

Twitter – @WeAreNiche