A good Star Wars game? IN THIS ECONOMY?!
I know, I know. It is a truly a wild time seeing a good Star Wars game after our sense of pride and accomplishment had been attacked by the Battlefront franchise.
But it’s true!
While it may be applicable to Battlefront II now also, Jedi Fallen Order stepped forward first. It said “HEY! We won’t Order 66 ourselves again!”.
And maybe…just maybe…the Jedi Order rises again.
Five years after the execution of Order 66 and the beginning of the Great Jedi Purge, former Jedi Padawan Cal Kestis is in hiding from the newly risen Galactic Empire.
“THIS SH*T IS DARK SOULS.”
Everyone will say this when they start the game. Unless they haven’t played Dark Souls, cause then it’ll be either Bloodborne or Sekiro. Alternatively, it’s a riff on a style of game made famous by Japan’s FROM Software.
That’s not to say it’s JUST Dark Souls. Oh no, Respawn Entertainment are much better than that. In fact, their name is a caveat for what they wish to do; Entertain.
Therefore it is Dark Souls meet TitanFall meet Uncharted meet Metroidvania.
Is it a lot? Not really. It’s some of the best parts of each title. The aerial maneuverability of TitanFall sees some walls trek under your feet. Ropes cut corners and throw Cal across cavernous gaps like Nathan Drake. And the ability to travel back to previous areas, because you have so many cosmetics to collect, sees you become Samus Alucard.
BUT ALSO; SO. MANY. COSMETICS.
Again that’s not a bad thing, cause thank god these cosmetics aren’t paywalled. That’s right! You get actual, real-to-life cosmetics in the game! FOR FREE. An incredible development in this day and age.
Playing the role of Cal Kestis, or that Joker-BOI Cameron Monaghan, you travel the galaxy with a ragtag bunch of “maybe Rebels” in the form of MAD TV’s Debra Wilson and “that guy you’ve definitely seen in stuff”, Daniel Roebuck, who are trying to find a Jedi Wayfinder…wait…Holocron.
Much like the FROM Software games, you’re gonna hate the first 25% of the game. Everything is vicious, insta-killing nonsense that isn’t helped by the janky mobility of Cal. And janky is being kind to the mess of a model Cal can be. Almost representative of his lack of power, the more he gains the better he plays. You’d almost think this was intentional, but it doesn’t really explain how or why he clips into a lot of the environment but I digress.
Combat is simple and clean; Light and heavy attacks, with evade, jump and parry techniques which produce some of the best combat the Star Wars games has seen yet. These then slowly begin to collaborate with Force powers you’ll reacquire as you confront Cal’s past.
The past is your skill tree, and the skill tree is found within meditation spots around the areas you explore. Taking on a Qui-Gon Jinn-like pose without the Maul-shanking afterward, these spots help you restore Cal, in both health and power. Of course they’re just Dark Soul bonfires though, so everything you killed is now alive again.
Democracy is dead, and we’ll blame that on the Empire, but boy oh boy…you just kill a lot. A LOT. There’s no time to talk when you’ve got people to push off a cliff! And creatures. So many creatures. But that’s okay! They reconnect you to the Force, so that’s fine!
The story itself, described as canonical within the Disney Star Wars universe, is pretty great! Cal is an intriguing protagonist; His crew, as I said, is very ragtag, and a hot witch eventually shows up. There’s also Sith-y boys and girls who can be described as Vader-lite, but just as twisty and rewarding.
This game is an automatic 10 for me.
YES I KNOW. IT’S AN EA TITLE.
But they’re only the publisher. Respawn have had my respect for a while, and they definitely earned it after producing one of my favourite First Person Shooter experiences in TitanFall 2.
Throwing all the pride and accomplishment that started to become associated with the franchise out the window, Respawn did 2 things:
- made it a Single Player experience
- didn’t paywall it
And with that, they delivered a fun and entertaining romp in the universe of the star war that had me captivated until I fully completed it.
As in I got the platinum trophy for it.
Force powers that equal the intensity of The Force Unleashed, and cinematic moments that live up to its other mediums, it’s exciting to see Star Wars done so well in gaming again. While unfortunate that the next game may be the one that fully lands on its feet, it does share one thing in common with the original trilogy;
The Empire will strike back.
I fully completed this title within 12 days. It would have been less if I didn't force myself to do healthy things like live life, sleep and remember to eat and drink.
If DLC comes, I'm getting it. And when the sequel inevitably comes, I'm getting the Collector's Edition.
Boy, do I love a Star War!