- Respawn’s Star Wars Jedi series was a magnificent addition to Star Wars games. Fallen Order started it all and Survivor went above and beyond to surpass expectations.
- Another important third-person action game was Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, which brought an unbelievably powerful protagonist and straight-up crazy Force powers.
- The Force Unleashed was an action game full of potential, and it unfairly suffered due to the second entry. With Survivor’s success, it’s the optimum time to bring back the beloved series.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order was a gem from Respawn and a surprise hit that instantly became beloved among the series’ fans. Its sequel was no exception. Jedi: Survivor shouldered immense expectations after its reveal. The final trailer was the catalyst to take the hype to new heights, showcasing the game’s intense action and gameplay improvements in all their glory.
Other than a few hiccups along the way like a broken PC port, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor was a magnificent adventure, delivering what people had hoped for. Considering the success of a third-person RPG-style Star Wars game, another franchise that comes into mind is Star Wars; The Force Unleashed. The series regrettably never received a continuation despite being a promising formula.
Star Wars Jedi Duology Won Our Hearts
I admit the news of a new Star Wars game from EA had me worried, considering what happened to the last one – Star Wars Battlefront II. EA has become notorious for its predatory loot boxes and microtransactions, as well as hollow, soul-less games, and Battlefront II was also a victim of those practices. Thus, we all were wary about the new game, but Respawn made sure to throw out all the worries.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order was an intriguing concept with excellent execution. The game added a magnificent piece to the Star Wars canon and introduced a bunch of beloved characters. Set 5 years after Revenge of the Sith, the game follows Padawan Cal Kestis, a survivor of the Jedi Purge, on his journey across the galaxy to escape his deadly pursuers and help rebuild the Jedi Order.
Cal is not alone on this perilous venture and is joined by former Jedi Cere, certain alliants, and a fan-favorite companion BD-1. The beloved mascot is important for many gamers and is also being compared to the new mascot – Nix, in Star Wars Outlaws. The game also features fascinating characters from the Empire side, like the inquisitors and the big bad – Darth Vader himself.
Fallen Order took multiple inspirations in its gameplay. The non-linear, semi-open world planets follow a Metroidvania-style exploration and design. Traversal is aided by parkour, with force powers to spice things up in both exploration and combat. For the latter, Fallen Order employs a Souls-like system. Use your lightsaber to crush your foes while being mindful of their devastating hits, break their stances and use the Force to turn things around.
All of these features blended beautifully in Fallen Order, and the game was a surprise hit. No one believed this pure single-player bliss came from EA, and it served as the first step to the company’s redemption. With the hype still fresh, rumors of a sequel started surfacing, taking it to the next level. The wait was finally over when Star Wars Jedi: Survivor came to blow us all away.
The game was a significant improvement over its prequel in almost every field. Survivor gave Fallen Order’s story premise and characters a strong, meaningful continuation. The story keeps you hooked till the end, and the beloved characters are back and better than ever. The game gives every character considerable depth and makes sure to embody the sense of dread and the presence of the enormous odds stacked against our heroes.
In comparison to Fallen Order, Survivor is a gigantic expansion in both quality and size. With a lot more planets to explore, the area design received an upgrade too. In addition, the worlds are now larger and filled with content, traversal is a lot more fluid with the availability of mounts, and the best thing is the vastly improved enemy variety to occupy the improved surroundings. The whole droid army is out to get you now.
The combat this time around is much more action-packed and adrenaline-fueled. Cal retains his previous abilities – a definite sign of progress and can learn new moves. Force abilities are much more fun to use now, being able to use stormtroopers as shields and force-throwing them into TIE fighters. In terms of melee combat, the game brings five different stances to ensure combat variety.
Everything is packed in a faithful adventure set in the Star Wars universe. Survivor features iconic locations from the series like the former Jedi present Empire HQ Coruscant. All in all, you’ll never get bored while playing through this incredible journey, as the setting keeps you on edge, and pulling off stylish moves and triumphing over all adversaries is a highly satisfying experience.
Just finished Star Wars Jedi Survivor and it just became one of my favorite Star Wars stories of all time. Respawn has single-handedly reinvigorated my love for this franchise and has blown me away with its top notch combat and superior level design. Easily a GOTY contender. 👏🎮 pic.twitter.com/3vGEPnfLqF
— Evan Filarca (@EvanFilarca) May 5, 2023
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed Was Loads Of Fun
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is truly the definite Star Wars action game, but it also makes you think about the last third-person action series that gave you full control over the Force. A throwback to simpler times, when no one cared about accuracy and graphical fidelity, and would just enjoy ingenious mechanics and crazy fun gameplay of annihilating everything in sight.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is an embodiment of that concept, an overpowered character just going around wrecking everything foolish enough to cross his path. Despite some problems, it did many things right. The game had an integral focus on destruction and wreaking havoc. The game’s visuals and physics worked to reinforce the idea, as the visible destruction and movements of bodies and debris depicted an era-appropriate realistic touch.
The Force Unleashed follows Starkiller, Darth Vader’s apprentice whom he took in after killing his father and trained to aid in the Jedi Purge. His identity was kept a secret as Vader planned to use him to overthrow the Emperor. Throughout the game, Starkiller slowly realizes the weight of his actions and begins to work toward redemption.
In terms of gameplay, it takes you through linear, pre-determined levels as Starkiller fulfills Vader’s orders and takes out the Jedi in hiding. The game’s linearity was one of the major problems associated with it since it restricted the approach considerably. Although there are collectibles to be found, the pre-calculated path made it difficult to establish the thrill of exploration.
It’s the combat where the game truly shines, and brilliantly at that. Other than the lightsaber, Starkiller has a vast arsenal of Force abilities to use, and he’s deadly at it. The game primarily revolves around the Force abilities, and the lightsaber also serves as a sort of extension to it. Just juggle around your opponents and throw them like paper with your enormous power, or crackle things up with a little Force lightning, it just feels so satisfying.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed seems like a standard button masher, but the combat does have some depth to it. You can channel together and link combos that require timely presses of buttons. In addition, the enemy AI also responds to your behavior, as repeated use of the same attacks causes them to deal less damage and the enemy to react accordingly, which encourages switching things up.
Overall, Starkiller is just so strong nothing matters when you start punishing enemies. The combat gives a true sense of superiority as you toy around with your enemies using advanced Force abilities. The Force Unleashed is the most fun I’ve had using the Force in a Star Wars game. Moreover, bosses are not complete pushovers as they can counter your abilities and require you to take things seriously for once.
The game has a simple premise and design, but the gameplay was a ton of fun and makes you feel like a total powerhouse. It’s no wonder it received a sequel, but that’s where things started going South. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 failed to live up to the expectations, as it presented a repetitive design and monotonous gameplay, a poor story straying far away from the series, and an overall lack of originality.
The story of the series has always been questionable, even more so now with the expanded lore and canon material. Starkiller’s enormous feats make it difficult to place him in the canon. If you thought The Force Unleashed was somewhat unbelievable, wait till the sequel throws out everything even slightly believable in a completely strayed story. However, I believe the concept holds potential and shouldn’t have been shelved.
The Force Unleashed Series Shouldn’t Be Abandoned
The Force Unleashed 2 certainly failed on many avenues and became the reason for the cancellation of the third game after Lucasfilms was acquired by Disney. However, the overall idea of the series held considerable potential and I believe it should have been continued while removing the problems of the second game. We owe it to the first game to complete the initiated saga.
Recently, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed was enhanced and released for the Switch, and people still care for this series and continue to demand a continuation or a remake of the first game. I’m fine with either of the direction, just need a more refined approach this time around. With a continuation, a Star Wars game series will finally become a trilogy, as The Force Unleashed, KOTOR, and Star Wars Jedi, all remain a duology.
If the series is to be re-visited, the first thing to do is to make the story more believable and lore-appropriate. A lot of Starkiller’s feats need to be toned down. Starkiller makes a good Inquisitor candidate. He can stay a strong practitioner of The Force, but not a complete monstrosity with it. The story needs to be adjusted so that it is in agreement with or adds to what we know about the time between the Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope.
Another thing to mention is the Star Wars Jedi approach. Star Wars: The Force Unleashed was designed for its era, and I believe the combat can welcome many improvements from Jedi: Fallen Order and Survivor. As third-person action games, the formula can be shared with minimal troubles. A new Force Unleashed can command a Survivor-style heavy combat, and bring crazy fun and overpowered Force abilities as a personal touch.
Whether it be a remake of the original or a third game, I believe the series deserves a second chance at the spotlight. The game provided loads of fun just dominating everything and utterly humiliating your foes. With a refinement of the formula, improved story, and modern fluid mechanics the series can shine once again. It was always close to my heart and I hope it doesn’t remain forgotten.
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