At the front of the pack for its time
Where are all the FPS gamers, giving credit where credit is due? Jedi Knight was THE First Person Shooter to own at the time, Star Wars fan or not. It excels, like Dark Forces, in level design, though the 3D engine here allowed for a definite increase in geometrical detail. Vast environments also helped achieve that epic Star Wars quality.
The battles were exciting, in no small part thanks to most weapons being beam based (we're talking Slow beams, as in cinematic ones), so you could dodge and leap to avoid fire, and had to lead your targets, as opposed to just laying the cursor over them and squeezing.
Great music, as always.
They took the wrong path by deciding to film the story, instead of portraying it with animation or story book style. It doesn't sit well with the graphical style of the game, and also suffers from mediocre acting and not good enough integration of video and computer graphics. The script was also quite boring. So, don't play it for the story.
its also a pity they allowed for saving everywhere, and designed the levels in light of that decision. As a result, instead of the concentrated, tense challenges that were the Dark Forces levels, which were designed to be playable without saving, we got levels designed on the quicksave/quickload principle.
The Bottom Line
I don't know how it stands up today, but it was a blast to play in 1997, even for a jaded FPS player