The game follows Rogue Squadron, which, under the command of Luke Skywalker and Wedge Antilles, uses starfighters to engage and defeat the Galactic Empire. The game is set during the original Star Wars trilogy and recreates battles that take place during those films. Some levels are based on Star Wars novels and comic books from the 1980s. The game features a "making-of" documentary. According to this documentary, the game was assembled in roughly eight months.
Rogue Leader was developed as a sequel to Star Wars: Rogue Squadron. It features significantly improved graphics and a new tactics menu that allows the player to form up their squadron or set a target for their squadron. The game features more unlockable content. This is one of the few GameCube titles to make extensive use of bump mapping and other advanced multitexturing effects.
- Tatooine Training Grounds
- Luke Skywalker explores Tatooine and races his friends, Biggs and Wedge, while flying a T-16 Skyhopper.
- Death Star Attack
- Luke Skywalker and his allies must destroy a series of deflection towers in an attempt to provide cover fire for the squadrons making a run at the Death Star's main trench. A squadron of TIE fighters soon join the fray, and after dispatching them Luke must fly down the trench himself.
- Ison Corridor Ambush
- A Rebel convoy is attacked in the Ison Corridor, a trade route used to transport goods from the old Yavin base to the new Hoth base. Rogue Squadron must eliminate TIE fighters and TIE interceptors in the heart of the dense nebula.
- Battle of Hoth
- Rogue Squadron must drive off a wave of AT-STs attacking the ion cannon. Upon saving the cannon, the Rogues attempt to attack the AT-ATs, but Luke Skywalker is shot down. Wedge takes command of Rogue Squadron and leads the attack on the remaining walkers. After the shield generator is destroyed, the Rogues make their way back to Echo Base to get into X-wings and destroy a wave of TIE bombers to escape.
- Prisons of the Maw
- Rogue Squadron pilot Y-wings on a rescue mission into an Imperial prison. The Rogues use their bombers to cover a group of escaping prisoners.
- Razor Rendezvous
- After receiving information of a new Imperial weapon in production, the Rebel Alliance beams a set of plans to a blockade runner, the Razor. Arriving at the rendezvous with the frigate Redemption, Rogue Squadron, Green Squadron, and Blue Squadron find the Razor being captured by an Imperial star destroyer over Kothlis. After destroying the shield generators, Wedge destroys the command bridge, sending the destroyer and the captive Razor crashing into Kothlis' oceans.
- Vengeance on Kothlis
- Wedge, Crix Madine, and a commando squad go to Kothlis to retrieve the data. A swarm of TIE fighters attacks the transport carrying the commandos, and the Rogues are tasked with flying cover. Squads of AT-ATs and AT-PTs survived the crash, and escaped the wreckage. They attack the commando team on the beaches near the wreck, but Rogue Squadron eliminates them. The commandos enter the wreckage and retrieve the plans from the Razor. After uploading the plans into a computer, Madine discovers that the Empire is constructing a second Death Star.
- Imperial Academy Heist
- Wedge Antilles must attack the Presbelt IV Imperial Academy and steal the Shuttle Tyderium. By night, he sneaks in under the fog in a Snowspeeder; by day, he storms the compound in a Y-wing. Both times offer the chance to steal a TIE fighter for a stealthier infiltration of the base.
- Raid on Bespin
- Preparing a major attack on the Empire, the Rebellion realizes they have a shortage of tabana gas to power their turbo lasers. Lando Calrissian points them toward Cloud City on Bespin, the Tibanna mine at which he was administrator. Rogue Squadron leads the strike, driving out the Imperial forces by knocking out power generators in canals around Cloud City.
- Battle of Endor
- The same battle from the movies, the Rebel Alliance begins it's attack on the second Death Star. The Rogues are ordered to defend the medical frigate from an onslaught of TIE Bombers, TIE Fighters, and TIE Interceptors at the beginning of the mission. After the initial assault from the TIEs, the Death Star proves to be operational, and Lando Calrissian comes up with the plan to hit the Star Destroyer fleet at "point-blank range." In the second half of the mission, the player must destroy 2 Star Destroyers.
- Strike at the Core
- Wedge must defend Lando from a wing of TIE fighters as he makes his assault on the second Death Star's main reactor.
- Death Star Escape
- After escaping from the Death Star, Luke mans the Millennium Falcon's gun turret to destroy a pursuing TIE Fighter squadron in an arcade style shooting mission.
- The Asteroid Field
- The scene depicted in the movies, this mission centers around the Millennium Falcon escaping from the Battle of Hoth into the Asteroid Field.
- Triumph of the Empire
- A sort of "what-if" mission, the player actually plays as Darth Vader in his TIE Advanced and leads the defense of the Death Star. After defeating the Rebels in the initial dogfight, Darth Vader is assigned to run the trench and destroy rebels attempting to assault the exhaust vent.
- Revenge on Yavin
- Revenge on Yavin is the second Darth Vader mission. Rather then blowing up Yavin 4, Darth Vader leads an assault on the rebels and attacks the Rebel Shuttles escaping from Yavin IV. In the end, Vader penetrates the main Temple complex and destroys the remaining Shuttles from the inside.
- Death Star Endurance
- A "survival" mission in which the player takes a ship of his/her choice and flies above the Death Star, encountering masses of TIEs that are organized into a number of waves. After 5 waves, the player can destroy several Imperial Shuttles for a free life within a limited amount of time. The mission revolves around getting the highest medal, awarded for shot accuracy and shortest time completed.
The game features multiple characters from the movies, including Luke Skywalker, Wedge Antilles, Han Solo, Lando Calrissian, and others. However, the former two are unarguably considered the main characters, as the others mentioned (among countless others) are just secondary ones.
Luke Skywalker will take part in five of the missions, though only three of those are included in the main plot line. Wedge, however, is a playable pilot in a whopping eight missions, all of which are found in the main story.
There are multiple ships that you control in Rogue Squadron II, each one being dramatically different from each other. The following are a list of each and every fighter in the game, and what they're able to do.
- T-16 Skyhopper
- This ship is only used in the training mission, and thus it isn't very important to master. In the multiple training missions there are a wide variety of weapons that can be attached to the ship. It's also able to use a speed boost for a short time.
- The X-Wing is generally considered the most popular ship in the game, or the most recognizable. It has rapid fire lasers, and a secondary weapon called the proton torpedo which is used to destroy the Death Star in the first mission.
- The ship also includes a feature called S-foils, that, when open, will allow your ship to fire. Though if you choose to close it, you'll be able to go much faster. It also sports a droid which will repair your ship.
- The A-Wing is the fastest of the jets that you'll control in the game. However, they're weak armor is a major downside of the ship, and can easily be destroyed after taking a few shots. Nevertheless, they do have powerful weapons, most notably the Concussion Missiles.
- The Speeder is a ship that, despite its name, is not the fastest of all the vehicles in the game. You also can't fly the Speeder to high above the ground, though this can be a major advantage during certain missions, notably mission number 3 where you must use its tow cable to take down the Imperial AT-AT Walkers. Like most other vehicles, it also includes a speed boost.
- It may have horrid maneuverability, though it does have powerful armor and lasers. It has two secondary weapons, including the Proton Bombs and the powerful Ion Cannon. Like some of the other ships, it features a droid which will repair your ship, though it lacks in the speeding category. It should also be noted that out of all of the ships, the Y-Wing is the worst when it comes to slowing down.
- The B-Wing has, like the Y-Wing, great armor and fire power, though it also lacks maneuverability. It has proton torpedoes and ion cannons, and has retractable S-foils which will allow you to go faster or shoot, depending on if they're open or not.
|Famitsu||28 out of 40|
|IGN||9 of 10||Editor's Choice|
|Game Informer||9.5 of 10|
|EGM||9 out of 10|
|GameSpy||90 of 100|
|GameSpot||9.4 of 10|
|Nintendo Power||5 of 5|
|Compilations of multiple reviews|
|Game Rankings||90 of 100 (based on 79 reviews)|
|Metacritic||90 of 100 (based on 45 reviews)|
Rogue Leader got the best reviews among the GameCube launch titles, getting praise for its gameplay and graphics, considered some of the best in the console.
Rogue Leader was also the most successful third-party game of the GameCube launch (and the second overall, behind Nintendo's Luigi's Mansion), being the seventh best-selling game of November 2001. The game is now available in the Player's Choice line.