With the exciting release of Respawn’s Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, players all over the world are rejoicing once more for the chance to join Jedi Knight Cal Kestis on his new journey. This was the game I was personally looking forward to the most of 2023. And spoiler alert: Star Wars Jedi Survivor was worth every single second of the wait.
Star Wars Jedi Survivor Story
The story picks up five years after the events of Fallen Order. Cal Kestis is now a confident and battle-hardened Jedi Knight working with Saw Gerrera in hurting the Empire any way they can. After a botched job on Coruscant, Cal finds himself on Koboh seeking Greez’s help in repairing the Mantis. While on the planet, Cal discovers an old temple from the High Republic era and learns of a safe and paradise-like planet that the Empire might not ever find. He also uncovers a High Republic Jedi who has been in a bacta tank for the last hundred years: Dagan Gera.
After finding a new hope to fight for, Cal sets off on a journey to reach this planet in order to finally achieve some sort of relief from the Empire. This campaign of intrigue and discovery will suck players in just like the first game. Greez, Merrin, and Cere naturally return to help Cal once again. This time, they are given a lot more time and development to cement themselves in the players’ hearts.
While there are some slow parts in the middle, the final arc of the campaign is anything but boring. It will hit you in the heart and will leave a lasting impact once you complete the story. It’s a roller coaster of emotions.
Visuals and Sound
From a visual standpoint, the game looks beautiful. The environments are very detailed and pleasing to the eyes. What especially stands out are the temples that Cal can explore. It’s in those segments where the color, the music, and the sound really shine. To really hammer home that Cal has stumbled upon something special, all three of those elements combined produce emotional and thought-provoking feelings of the player.
The sounds of the lightsaber deflecting incoming enemy fire, the silly dialogue that happens between two enemies before you get the jump on them really help the player feel immersed in the combat Everything from the action, the environmental soundscapes and the characters dialogue make for an amazing experience. Towards the end of the game is where it will really pull on your heartstrings. One thing I will say, is that Jedi Fallen Order has achieved this as well. As a result, you might feel that Jedi Survivor doesn’t look or sound all that different from its predecessor. Regardless, it gets the job done very well.
Respawn has done right by the fans by ensuring that Cal does not lose any of the force abilities he’s learned from the first game. While refreshing previous players of his abilities, they’ve created new opportunities to use those abilities in brand new ways. Especially when it comes to traversing the planets.
The Metroidvania style returns as expected. The two main explorable planets are vast in scope and there are numerous ways to go about exploring them. Along the journey, Cal will learn even more exciting abilities to further enhance the player’s enjoyment in discovering new areas and new items.
Fighting with a lightsaber has never felt better. With Cal no longer being the Padawan he once was, switching to different stances and taking the different enemies head on at close range felt exhilarating. There are many different combos and techniques to unlock that take the gameplay to a whole new level. I also found myself using the new force abilities a lot more when fighting enemies. Abilities such as mind control, lifting them up and slamming them down to the ground, and even using enemy fire against them by force pulling a storm trooper and shooting their blaster. I personally haven’t had this much fun since Knights of the Old Republic.
Ever since players were introduced to Merrin in the first game, many have been wanting to have a partner AI to fight alongside Cal. Respawn has answered the plea with its introduction of the buddy AI system. This particular system isn’t anything special by any means, but it allows players to enjoy fighting side by side with Merrin and Bode Akuna, Cal’s new companion.
The buddy AI plays a lot like God of War Ragnarök. As you’re playing as Kratos, Atreus will fight alongside of you, giving the player a substantial amount of help. Using a specific command, you can tell your partner to perform a special attack on an enemy. You can also of course perform special group attacks and finishers with your partner. Jedi Survivor’s system plays nearly exactly like that. But aside from this implementation, the sequel doesn’t add anything that we haven’t seen before.
Another thing that makes Jedi Survivor even better than Fallen Order is its many side quests. Meeting new NPCs and fulfilling their different requests can easily pad your game time. It’s very likely, too, that you won’t discover everything on the first run through. What’s more, just like the previous entry, completing the main story unlocks NG+ (new game plus) to encourage replay ability. A lot of cool things are added to spice up the players’ next game. Along with unlocking the red lightsaber, Cal even gets a fun (and hilarious) new party blade that has rainbow colors. The list of additional new perks are as follows:
- Unlocked Skill Trees
- Unlocked Saber Stances
- All Unlocked Cosmetics
- Map Upgrades
- Previously discovered Databank and Tactical Guide Database
- Previously found Collectibles.
In addition to these, any skill points earned on your first play through are refunded and ready for you to spend again. Players can also look forward to some increased difficulty as the enemies and bosses this time around will be more difficult to contend with.
Should You Play Jedi Survivor?
Star Wars Jedi Survivor takes everything that made Jedi Fallen Order great and maximizes it. Respawn did an excellent job listening to the fans and fixing the issues the previous game struggled with. Along with its engaging and gut-wrenching main plot, Jedi Survivor immerses its players even more into the Star Wars universe with its numerous side quests and endearing characters. If you had any doubts or concerns about the quality of the story or gameplay, you can lay them to rest. This is hands down a Star Wars game by the fans and for the fans.
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is available on PC, PS5, and Xbox Series X|S
- THE GOOD
- Engaging Story
- Addicting Combat
- Beautiful Environments
- Colorful Cast of Characters
- THE BAD
- Bad PC Port
- Glitchy Camera and Enemy AI
Respawn’s Star Wars Jedi: Survivor delivers a more than worthy experience to Star Wars fans old and new.
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