Please fans of Star Wars it is certainly not a simple undertaking. In fact, it has gotten more and more complicated over the years. Over time, in fact, the products linked to this iconic saga have increased dramatically: more films, more books, more video games, more TV series – including animated ones -, more comics… And – let’s face it – the results are fluctuating. It is therefore no wonder that fans of the George Lucas universe have become more biased and more demanding.
We admit it: we are going to place ourselves precisely in that range, that of the fans who cross their fingers every time hoping that the result is at least decent and coherent.
Four years ago a video game was released which, surprisingly, managed to convince everyone: followers of Lucas, newbies, the press… That game was Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. The work, by Respawn Entertainment, proposed an original story, an unpublished protagonist and mechanics that expertly mixed fights and platform elements. It was a success. A success that the software house has tried to replicate with the sequel, available from April 28 on PC, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series S|X.
“Proven” is perhaps not the correct term. Star Wars Jedi: Survivor – this is the title of the newcomer – is the worthy sequel to Fallen Order, despite some technical flaws that Respawn has tried to correct with the update released on May 2nd.
However, we want to reassure you: aside from some inexplicable crashes, we had a lot of fun.
The return of Cal Kestis
The first minutes of the game will take you a bit by surprise: Cal Lasted, considered by many to be the last of the Jedi, he was captured.
Thus we find him aboard an aircraft headed up Coruscant, visibly changed compared to the past. The somatic features are obviously the same – also because, we remind you, behind Cal there is a real actor, Cameron Monaghan – but our hero has grown up. He is no longer a kid starting to master the Force but a man who has decided to use his skills to fight the Empire. In a few years Cal Kestis has become the number one enemy of the imperial forces, participating in clashes, attacks, theft of information and much more.
All finished? Obviously not. This is just the beginning of a new adventure filled with friends old and new, planets to explore, new abilities and an unexpected villain.
Of course we don’t want to spoil anything for you, leaving a Respawn Entertainment the task of transporting you within a story that is really well thought out. In fact, the developers managed to insert some interesting twists, to maintain the right link with tradition, to give us references and connections with the High Republic, thus enriching the already vast universe of Star Wars.
But that’s not all: the software house has masterfully balanced the flow of the main story with combat, exploration and environmental puzzles. The pace is never too slow, there are never dull and uninspiring moments. And all of this is condensed into about twenty hours of playwhich rise to 30 by deciding to complete the side quests and to return to visit those areas that, at the beginning, could be inaccessible to you.
The skills of the hero
“At the beginning” why Cal Kestis will develop new skills over time.
The starting point is that of Fallen Order so you can handle one or two swords, you can use force to move some element, you can run along walls and double jump. Then there are two new entries that you can take advantage of right away: the possibility of slow down time using the Force and that of confuse your enemies, making them fight with each other.
As the hours go by you will then take it home new skills, like sprinting while in the air to reach holds and ledges that were previously elusive.
And then there’s the skill tree, divided into 3 groups: Defense, Lightsaber and Strength. You will then be able to decide what to enhance gradually, which skills to develop, adapting the development of the character to your fighting style.
We then have an interesting – albeit not decisive – addition: Cal Kestis can now equip two different fighting styles to switch between during battles. They range from double sword to double blade up to the combo falls + blaster which yes, it’s a little less canonical, but it allows us to attack from a distance by offering an additional tactical option.
But be careful: you have to choose the styles by stopping at one of the numerous save points present, points also necessary to recharge your energies, to carry out the training, to invest the skill points and to choose the benefits. The latter – an absolute novelty of Star Wars Jedi: Survivor – allow you to have advantages such as dexterity and greater resilience.
An important note: no matter how many skills our protagonist gains, the level of challenge will still remain interesting. Obviously you can choose the difficulty but, even with the less demanding modes, you will have to be careful: a distraction could be fatal even against normal stormtroopers.
I am the platform phases are also challenging, which will require just as much attention to complete. In fact, it takes very little to fall and be forced to start all over again.
The puzzles, on the other hand, are well studied but never too difficult, not to mention that, as soon as the game realizes your difficulties, it sends BD-1 to help you, but only if you wish. What does it mean? That in essence you can decide whether or not to accept the help of your little robotic companion. Don’t worry, he won’t be offended by a refusal, also because you will exploit his abilities on many other occasions: BD-1 opens doors for you, unlocks shortcuts, allows you to slide along cables and scans the environment to provide you with valuable information .
The droid isn’t Cal’s only companion in this Star Wars: Jedi Survivor. Occasionally you will be accompanied by an ally who will provide you with support during fights. You will also have the possibility to indicate a target to him and you will be able to ask for his help to be able to overcome the obstacles scattered along your path.
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor Review – Luckily there’s the map!
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor it’s not an open world but Respawn Entertainment has done everything in its power to give the player a greater feeling of freedom.
The planets that can be visited are not many but some include huge play areas characterized by really inspired level design. Koboh and Jedha, in particular, will force you to massive use of the map: without consulting it, you risk getting lost and moving away from your true goal.
The map then manages to show you quite clearly the elements with which you can interact, helping you to understand where to go even when you feel lost and confused.
Don’t want to go back after spending precious minutes getting to your destination? Now there’s fast travel. You can then teleport from one save point to another to save some time.
What about backtracking? Here, too, there are clear improvements. It is not repetitive and boring as in Fallen Order but, thanks to the gradual acquisition of skills, it is stimulating and fun.
To this you must then add the always remarkable glance: graphically Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is remarkable. We go from the metropolis to the desert, from wild nature to underground shelters, with the cut scenes that certainly benefit from a higher graphic quality than that offered by the game itself, without however failing to stop and admire your surroundings once in a while.
Surely something more could have been done in terms of optimization, also because the Performance mode – selectable before starting – does not guarantee 60 fps while the Quality mode it does not always give us the best possible graphic rendering. To this we must add some annoying bugs which, on at least 4 occasions, forced us to close the game and restart from the last save. The reason? Our Cal froze and it was impossible to unfreeze it.
Not exactly what we would expect from a title of this caliber but there is certainly still room for updates and filings.
Promoted with flying colors the sound sector which combines famous tunes with unpublished songs and excellent dubbing.
A touch of customization
There is only one hero here: Cal Kestis. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make the protagonist a little more like you and your personal taste. The game world is littered with cosmetic items which you can use as you please.
You want to cut Cal’s hair? You can.
Want a different jacket? You change it.
Don’t you like the pants? There are many others.
Il Work station it then lets you swing your lightsaber and blaster to switch pieces, choose the color scheme, and even change the hue of the laser. Who says it has to be blue?
Even BD-1 can change its appearance using the components recovered during the adventures.
In short, there is room to add a personal touch if you wish.
The review of Star Wars Jedi: Survivor – Conclusions
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is the sequel we wanted. The story is exciting, the gameplay has been improved and enhanced, the defects of the…