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Star Wars: Jedi Knight - Dark Forces II (Windows)

88
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.9
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Ashley Pomeroy (233)
Written on  :  Oct 18, 2000

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful

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Summary

Use the fork

The Good

The original 'Dark Forces' was a superior 'Doom' clone, and although 'Jedi Knight' was too late to jump on the 'Quake' bandwagon it's still a superior first-person shooter (this time, with a multiplayer mode as well). At the time, people were ecstatic that you finally got to use a light sabre, and although it's not the most effective weapon in the game, it's great fun stalking around darkened corridors, slashing the attractively-rendered Stormtroopers and cutting the legs off scout walkers. It has lots of Lucasarts 'nice touches' - power droids that go 'gonk', a static AT-AT, and a clever force system that encourages you to hunt for secret areas, and although the graphics are now quite dated, the levels have a great sense of scale, and some seriously huge drops.

There's a decent selection of useful weapons, the various force abilities are great fun to use ('force grip', for example, allows you to choke your opponents), and you can choose to be a villain, too.

Almost best of all, the music is taken directly from the film score, and you can listen to it on its own.

The Bad

Nowadays the graphics are a bit blocky, but they run extremely quickly and at a high resolution. Levels one and two are extremely attractive, but the effect is spoiled by the organic level three, which has lots of blocky trees and doesn't work at all. The gameplay balance is generally good, but some of the boss creatures are unfairly hard. And without advanced warning, it's not at all obvious how to defeat the villain. That said, the only serious deficiency is a lack of character - our hero has a beard but is otherwise bland, whilst the villains are a dull bunch.

The Bottom Line

A superior first-person shooter that has aged gracefully, and has plenty of 'Star Wars' atmosphere.