Lego Star Wars II's gameplay is from a third-person perspective, and takes place in a 3D game world that contains objects, environments, and characters designed to resemble Lego pieces. Its gameplay—a combination of the action-adventure, platform, and sometimes puzzle genres—shares elements with that of Lego Star Wars: The Video Game (2005). While Lego Star Wars followed the events of The Phantom Menace (1999), Attack of the Clones (2002), and Revenge of the Sith (2005), Lego Star Wars II is based on Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), and Return of the Jedi (1983). The game comically retells the trilogy's events using cutscenes without dialogue. The player assumes the roles of the films' characters, each of whom possesses specific weapons and abilities. At any time, a second player can join the game, by activating a second controller. During gameplay, players can collect Lego studs – small, disk-shaped objects, which serve as the game's currency. The player has a health meter, which is displayed on the game's heads-up display. The player's health is represented by four hearts; when these hearts are depleted, the player dies, and a small amount of their studs bounce away. However, they instantly respawn and can often re-collect the lost studs.