I take exception to the comparison Chi made of The Phantom Menace to Super Mario 64 and the Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time. Being a fan of both games, I can say that The Phantom Menace has little to show in terms of inspiration from either masterpiece. What I do see is that LucasArts wanted to capitalize on the trend of third-person perspective titles and the Star Wars prequel license at the same time. Chi and I both agree that the control is not the greatest. It's silly that an action title, which The Phantom Menace essentially is, doesn't allow you to turn on a dime and face an enemy, run away, or even move around the screen with ease. All the pivoting you must do before you can move is a total nuisance.
LucasArts teases us with the beautiful and complete world of The Phantom Menace, but never lets us enjoy it. The world feels big but we're stuck in set paths or set areas and I never could shake the feeling that I was being manuevered through the game. It's also very confusing. Is it an action title or an adventure/exploration title? The Phantom Menace would jump from action to scripted conversation haphazardly and since it was never fun to do any of these things, it began to wear on me the more I played. This game feels rushed (probably to coincide its release with the movie), but it definitely needs polishing. It's an unfortunate example of why license games routinely suck.
Disclaimer: This review is based on the PlayStation version of the game.