Quite fantastic, actually.
STORMTROOPERS NEVER LOOKED SO REAL
This is an example how you can take engine that gave shelter to some of the crappiest games to another level, going beyond the limits of effects, graphic and gameplay. Using first-person mode with every weapon except lightsaber works more than nice, and auto-aiming helps to it, but the real joy is wielding the lightsaber, running on the walls (yup, Sands of Time is about two years late for the effect), and what all not. This is a pretty mighty usage of obviously giving engine.
Variety of weapons is enough for a Jedi to handle, and you get each new weapons your enemy is using whenever the chance presents itself. Most of weapons have already been seen in prequels of this game, but a few are new Kyle didn't yet had the chance to tryout. All the effects and explosions look nice, and rumbling option won't ever leave you in peace. But there are a few interactive weapons you can use, such as mounted cannons for example, but no, you won't be able to commandeer walkers or other imperial vehicles, not in this Star Wars game. But undoubtedly, you'll confront the entire arsenal of those.
This time you get to take control over those small mouse-size bots that you could constantly encounter throughout the Star Wars universe, game-wise and movie-wise. Sometimes you'll use them just for the fun of it, to explore some area, or as a way to proceed further.
PUZZLES ARE FINE
Nothing too complicated, no extra-hard jumping puzzles or something that would turn this first-person shooter into adventure game, it's all fine in place.
IMPERIAL ARMY LOOKS SO KEWL
Imperial Stormtroopers, Swamp-troopers, Imperial Officers, Imperial Commandos, AT-STs, they all look magnificent. Kinda looks like it was much more attention paid to enemy models than your own character. May be 'cos you don't see your character up close too often.
Lightsaber fights are now more real. There is no bit by bit energy takeout, it's who cuts first wins. It's not easy to strike the enemy though, and the lightsaber effects are cool throughout the game, you can throw it on the group of foes, bounce bullets as you regain Jedi abilities, pierce the wall whenever close to it in a flashy effect, and especially great effect when two lightsabres collide.
Story starts as Kyle renounced his Jedi life but due to circumstances he gets back on that track, and that includes coming back to Jedi Academy to meet Luke Skywalker and retest thy own abilities as a Jedi and get your lightsaber back. As always, Jan Ors is still hanging with Kyle.
This game is very dynamic and fast-pacing. Everything moves around you, constant wars are being present, and you hardly ever rest. It's nothing as close to compare the dynamic of C&C Renegade, but it's a fair dose of dynamic events.
CUTSCENES, EVEN A FEW
I didn't think I'll see any pre-rendered cutscenes in this game, so I was pleasantly surprised to see several, even thought they were only with ships and space, no person on such scenes, only present on in-game cutscenes.
EXTRAS TAGGLE ON
There's a fair amount of extras, from being able to see any character model you encountered, see the FMVs, or play the XBox exclusive extra level. Hint: it's actually the same level that was used as PC demo.
POWERS THAT BE
This time you don't get to choose the side and the powers, they choose you. You regain your abilities and more as you progress throughout the game. You get new abilities but your very same also increase, and at pretty incredible rate too. Jumping for instance. This time there is no speed power the way we saw it in Jedi Knight, instead, the time gets slower and that effect is made like sort of quasi slow-mo. This time powers such as push and grip are really expanded when you grow more powerful. You quickly turn into an unstoppable machine, but underestimating your enemy may as easily cost you your life.
The BadSUBTITLES ARE/WERE
At first it will seem alright but as you progress, you may encounter mis-aligned cutscenes with non-synchronized relationship of speech and subtitles. That is really something that game of such tremendous talent is not supposed to have.
SOUND OFF THE ALARM!
Strangely enough, as much as this game is fast as a lightning and nothing chops off the framerate, the sound problems get pretty obvious for unknown and rather mysterious reason. It can't be the DVD reader, can it? It's when you shoot that you hear the actual shot half-a-second later. But that's just the first time as the next shots go fine. It's just as if DVD needs some time to spin which is quite weird. At first I can't say to've noticed it, but later quite regularly. Beats me if I can think of a reason for it. It's almost like the game struggles with that first shot and the graphics and like it all freezes for that moment of synchronization. If anything, XBox was the last console I'd expect something like this to encounter on.
LEVEL DESIGN FALL
Level design is great, but the third level you encounter, the very first one in Jedi Knight for those who played the game, in Nar Shaada city if my spelling is flawless, has too much jumps and falls. You can fall any time you want... and don't. It's quite annoying level in general. Hearing Kyle scream isn't any more fun either.
WHAT HAPPENED TO THE EMPIRE?
It's kinda silly and very discouraging to see hordes of Imperial's finest following some lizard-looking guy called Desann, Dark Jedi or not. I bet he couldn't deal with them the way Kyle does, why even protecting him, kinda looks all the way silly. I mean, those Stormtroopers are still capable of self-thinking.
The Bottom LineGreat game with easy interface and equal advantages for either computer or console, not too short, with variety of locations, things to do, hordes of enemies to deal with, and puzzles to keep you focused. Would seem like a great miss not to have it in thy collection.