Prepare for challenges
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is the newest Star Wars game, brought to you by EA and Respawn Entertainment. Fans of the franchise and video games alike will find plenty to love in this title.
Wield your lightsaber
Jedi: Fallen Order is the Star Wars game that fans have been waiting for. Don’t expect to be shooting lightning and pulling down star destroyers, though; JFO is a much more melee-focused Star Wars game than many are used to.
Cal Kestiss passes his days as a scrapper for the Galactic Empire. One day, an accident at the work site forces him to reveal his abillities and true identity: He’s a former padawan of the Jedi Order.
Fallen Order takes place right after the events of Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. The Order 66 purge left the galaxy scarred, and the Jedi broken or dead. It’s in this dark time that the lead character, Cal, finds himself immersed.
The narrative is serviceable enough to push the game forward, but Star Wars titles (and Star Wars in general) have always been filled to the brim with the same cliches. It’s nothing special, but it’s interesting enough to pull you along the path.
Unfortunately, the weak point is the voice acting on the lead character. It feels like something’s perpetually stuck in his throat, but this could be a way of portraying him as an awkward teenager type.
The rest of the supporting characters are great. They’ve got intriguing backstories, but one person in particular has a tragic relationship with their padawan. If you know anything about Star Wars, you can tell where that’s going from a mile away.
The rest is a bit of a treasure hunt; a Jedi left behind an artifact that you can use to rebuild the Jedi Order, and you’ve got to go find it. It makes for good galaxy-trotting, but you’ll find that you revisit the same planets for most of the game.
Fallen Order is absolutely gorgeous, even on lower graphics settings. The animations are incredible as well. If you jump and use force abilities or attacks, Cal will twist his body in a realistic manner, and land a bit awkwardly too.
You’ll only travel to one world familiar to the rest of the Star Wars universe, and that’s Kashyyyk. It’s never looked better; you get a real sense for just how beautiful the Wookie homeworld is, though it’s worth noting that the Wookies themselves don’t look great. The full-body hair doesn’t seem to render well in this engine.
The interface is clean, too. At any given time, you’ll only have 5 items on your screen to give you status updates. Even with the minimalist style, all of that info is clear.
A piece of that interface will hide if there are no enemies around, but it’ll pop up once you’re in trouble. It’s a small thing that goes towards making you feel like a Jedi, because you get the feeling of “sensing” an enemy presence through that UI.
The combat is where the game really stands out. Cal’s stance and swing give a feeling of weight to the lightsaber. In addition, enemies will stagger you every time they hit, no matter what they hit with. You’ll have to respect your enemies to make it through.
For the first time ever, the famous E-11 blaster rifle feels like a weapon that does real damage. Whenever you’re hit with a round, you’ll be staggered back if you don’t block it. It hurts you, and it hurts you a lot.
You’re only given three major force powers throughout the game: push, pull, and slow. Your focus is less on your force abilities and more on melee combat, as would be appropriate for a Jedi Padawan.
Most enemies have a ‘defense meter’ that you’ll need to deplete in order to do damage to them. The best way to do that is by countering their attacks. Depending on your difficulty level, that window can be razor thin and provide a real challenge, especially with boss fights.
A lot of the game throttles you with platforming challenges, which evoke the Tomb Raider similarities. If you’ve played Assassin’s Creed or Uncharted, that’s basically how the platforming works here.
It’s not typical for a Star Wars game, so it does take some getting used to as far as immersion is concerned.
Otherwise, in-game movement is weighted and smooth. Combat movement is a totally different beast, and you’ll need to take advantage of lock-on to get the most out of your acrobatic abilities in combat situations.
The dodge can be finicky depending on context, and sprint is interesting here as well. While there’s a marked increase in your speed, it seems to add very little distance to your jump. It’s mostly used to get in a first attack on an unsuspecting enemy.
Where can you run this program?
Jedi: Fallen Order is available for Windows 7 64-bit and later. You can also get it on Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
Is there a better alternative?
No. It’s rare to find a Star Wars game as good as this one, but it draws comparisons to Dark Souls and Tomb Raider. If you like Fallen Order, try those games.
JFO is a fantastic game with great challenges, beautiful worlds, and engaging map design. The combat will keep you on your toes and satisfied. At a time where good Star Wars games are few and far between, Fallen Order provides fans with a wonderful title filled with good content.
Should you download it?
Yes, you should grab this game as soon as you can.
- Great combat
- Stunning visuals
- Incredible animations
- Good skill curve
- Unoriginal story