Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…
Although George Lucas went quite far back in time by making The Phantom Menace, Bioware takes it a step further.
Knights of the Old Republic (KotOR) takes place 4000 years before the first Star Wars film, which gave the makers the freedom to create a new story.
A wonderful and compelling story by the way, one that would even be worthy of a movie, maybe nice to fill Star Wars Episode ½ with?
You are a soldier of the Republic who is on the ship “The Endar Spire”, too bad for you it is ambushed by the evil Sith while you are sleeping, your task is to get off the ship as fast as possible via one of the escape pods and make your way to Taris, the nearest planet.
Unfortunately you won’t hear more of the story, since I want to give you the freedom to discover everything myself, and that’s how it should be.
Let the dice roll
KotOR is an Action-RPG that uses the old dice system with the Dungeon & Dragons rules.
Although fighting in Knights is turn-based, the eye hardly notices this, because it goes very smoothly, when you hit your opponent’s light-saber with your light-saber you actually have no idea that you work in turn , something wonderfully done by Bioware.
When you encounter an opponent at KotOR, the image “freezes” and you can either choose to perform an action immediately, or take three consecutive actions in a row.
On your turn, in addition to attacking, you can also choose to use an item such as a medical kit, or use a power of the Force.
And all this in a simple but great menu
In KotOR you are certainly not alone, during the game different characters will join your “party”, of which you can always have 2 with you.
While fighting, or just combing through areas, you can choose between these characters by pressing your black button, this is often useful, for example if you want to open a door, but the Security Skill of your fellow member is only good enough to open it.
Choose your path
Knights of the Old Republic actually revolves around one fatal question, do you choose the light or dark side of the Force.
You can talk to hundreds of NPCs in KotOR, to whom you can say different comments, many comments will reward you with Dark Side points (when you kill him for example) or with Light Side points (when you help him for example)
When you have completed Knights for 80% you will definitely have to choose Light or Dark, which also has consequences at the end of the game, think of the ending movie.
This also makes Knights of the Old Republic fun to play through multiple times.
With your very own ship, the Ebon Hawk, you can fly to different planets from the Star Wars universe whenever you want.
What about the desert planet Tatooine, or the home planet of the Wookies; Kashyyyk
In Knights of the Old Republic you come across a thousand and one locations that are all beautifully done, Bioware has certainly put a lot of time into the graphics, there are frame drops in busy areas, and of course it doesn’t look the best, but this had taken too much time for the Canadian developer, that the game would not have seen the light for a long time, all in all, the environments are simply beautiful, and the battles with lightsabers, for example, a feast for the eyes.
Of course Knights is nicely incorporated with the many songs from the official Star Wars soundtrack, which of course sounds nice to the ear.
But the biggest plus in the sound is the voice work, of the many alien NPCs that you come across such as Wookies, Selkath or Duros the sounds are really amazing, in addition the English voice actors have done a much bigger job, every NPC you encounter has something else to say to you, and this is all recorded and neatly synchronized, again you can see that Bioware has done the job perfectly here too.
It should be clear that the Gameplay of Knights of the Old Republic is fine
After times of mediocre to bad Star Wars games, KotOR gives back the real SW feeling that you also got from the first George Lucas films.
While not everyone is fond of turn-based RPGs, anyone who tries this game will be surprised, whether you’re a Star Wars fan, RPG fan, or just a game fan, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic will give you a plenty of drama, action, pomp and pageantry, incredibly compelling, and incredibly addictive, something other Xbox titles haven’t offered me this year, May the force be with you.