Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

aka: KotOR, Star Wars: Caballeros de la Antigua República, Xingji Dazhan: Jiu Gonghe Wushi
Moby ID: 9734
Xbox Specs

Description official descriptions

Four thousand years before the events depicted in the Star Wars movies, the political and ideological situation is not much different from what we have seen in the prequel trilogy: the Republic and the Jedi Order are fighting against two powerful Sith lords, Darth Revan and his apprentice, Darth Malak. It is said that the former was successfully defeated by the Jedi, and that Darth Malak betrayed his mentor and is planning to take on the Republic by himself. His aggression is so successful that some Jedi have decided to join his ranks. A seemingly ordinary soldier of the Republic is traveling aboard a space ship that is attacked by Darth Malak's minions. Narrowly escaping, the soldier meets a female Jedi named Bastila, one of those who have fought Darth Revan in the decisive battle. With her help, the soldier must learn to become a Jedi, stop Darth Malak, and discover the truth about his or her own past.

Knights of the Old Republic is a role-playing game that uses the Star Wars D20 rule system, which is similar to the 3rd Edition of Dungeons & Dragons. Character development and combat are handled similarly to BioWare's previous RPGs such as Baldur's Gate series. Combat engine follows similar "real-time with pause" rules. There are only three active combatants on the player's side (as opposed to six in Baldur's Gate). Several characters join the party and can be switched at the player's will.

Eventually, the protagonist will have to train at the Jedi academy to earn a lightsaber and force moves. Force powers include stun, force pull (which pulls opponents or objects toward the player-controlled character), the Jedi Mind Trick, which persuades people to see things the player's way, and many others. The player has various weapons at his or her disposal, from the lightsaber to blasters, grenades, ion rifles, etc.

Throughout the game, the player will visit many Star Wars locations that appeared in the movies, such as Kashyyyk, the homeworld of the Wookiees, the desert planet of Tatooine, and others. Interacting with characters in various ways and performing side quests influences the protagonist's stand with the forces of Light and Darkness. The player can turn the main character into a flawless Jedi, a ruthless Sith, or anything in between. Some of the player's choices influence major events that occur within the storyline.


  • 星际大战:旧共和武士 - Simplified Chinese spelling
  • 星際大戰:舊共和武士 - Traditional Chinese spelling

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Credits (Xbox version)

293 People (246 developers, 47 thanks) · View all



Average score: 92% (based on 122 ratings)


Average score: 4.0 out of 5 (based on 327 ratings with 18 reviews)

Excellent, if not juvenile

The Good
Clearly SW:KOTOR is one of the best Star Wars games that have been recently released. One had to wonder whether LucasArts had lost their edge, respect, and credibility in game design…that is, until KOTOR hit. They were wise in privileging BioWare as the developers: BioWare is a highly talented design studio who (along with Black Isle) crafted the excellent Baldur's Gate, which this game seems to be heavily drawn from.

The best aspect of this game is the depth of the RPG system, seamlessly presented in an understandable, easy-to-pick-up format. Couple the game with its graphics that can be nothing short of amazing, and one can easily find the value in this title. Subquests are also varied (at one point, I was the lawyer and chief investigator in a murder case) and the minigames refreshing; minigame resembling pod-drag racing and futuristic intergalactic Blackjack fused with a bit of Magic: The Gathering.

Knights of the Old Republic also possesses a strong story that, while clichéd, is compelling and addictive; it will draw you in just as it had with me, complete with several good twists that will have you saying "why didn't I realize this before?". I especially like how thoroughly the designers worked in your actions with the game; I experienced the consequences of my choices hours down the line in several instances. Character interaction is another strong point: not only is every single line of text in the game voice-acted (something surprising for an RPG), but the acting is well done and quite convincing. I especially love Carth's voice; his performance is convincing and emotional and the diction alone lends a unique aura to who you perceive him to be. Equally cool are the alien languages, which are not spoken in accented English but rather their native alien tongues with subtitled text.

Speaking of sound, KOTOR's sound is excellent. The music is original yet retains the Star-Wars theme without sounding too clichéd. Any game I seriously consider hacking into just for extracting the music is surely worthy of a complement. The sounds themselves are pulled straight from the Official Star Wars soundbanks, so everything is realistic.

Another fine point are the character animations. You can tell everything was motion-captured and then refined, as the animations are varied, realistic, and wholly believable to watch. Sabreplay, a critical element of the game, is truly breathtaking to observe in it's full fluidity.

The Bad
That said, KOTOR has it fair share of flaws. Unfortunately, as good as Bioware is at storytelling, and as good, compelling, and solid as the game design is, it is also riddled with cliché dialog and half-baked plot events. The term "Battle Meditation" is used frequently--referring to one character and her unique ability, and you are given no clear indication as to what it specifically does, even to the game's ending.

The game is clearly tailored for the younger teenage audience. Most mature subjects are quickly skirted over, if not completely skipped altogether. While this isn’t such a bad thing, it takes away from the gamer’s experience and feeling of immersion as the superficiality of the virtual world becomes evident. As expected, there's no blood (is there any in Star Wars at all?). The game feels very family-friendly, which I suppose is an asset to many, but as I mentioned before, I see it as a downfall. Also present in are a couple of unnecessary political statements being made: the consequences of following the "right" way seem to be blown out of proportion a little too harsh. At one point, I was permanently banned from one of the game's cities for not acting as the EPA and PETA would have wanted me to act: I chose to play a morally neutral individual, and saw the quickest means to an end in deploying a sort of pesticide to rid the game of an objective-blocking nuisance. This in turn destroyed an entire planet's worth of important material and got me banned for life.

Part of the problem was compounded by the game designers’ city-centric method of designing the game’s location. The entire planet is a barren, useless wasteland, with the exception of the one inhabited city. Even though I was engaging in interstellar travel, I didn’t feel like the planets were truly worthy of their size; as in the above case, I was wondering, “Did I just wipe out the entire planet’s supply of _? Yeesh!”.

I also have a few complaints with the interface, that of which could have been further refined for the PC audience. All interface screens seem to be designed for low-resolutions--a necessity paying homage to the game's Xbox roots. The text inside this interface is extremely large, and on a 1024x768 game resolution I could read no more than two sentences' worth of descriptor text when looking at my inventory. The target size of 640x480 is apparent.

Sound wise, some of the alien voices become redundant. There are only so many suitable clips for each type of dialog, that in some cases, they become audibly redundant and mildly annoying. Also, (and this is just a really minor qualm) the crossbows sound like blasters. They had their own unique sound in every other Star Wars game I can remember, and I think I even spotted the crossbow sound bite being used for another weapon. That said, gunplay sounds are extremely generic: the same blaster sound is used for almost every gun. It just sounds...odd.

Finally, the game should have spent a little more time for debugging, as there were a number of problems I experienced. My system runs dual monitors--something unusual but not as different as you might think--and the game crashed on me constantly. The mouse cursor would not lock onto the monitor the game was running on, so frequently I would click on something on the other monitor without realizing it, and the game would minimize to the desktop. The fix is simple enough; open the game again and everything is fine.... usually. Sometimes, the game would become unbearably slow or just flat out crashed. I also noticed crashes whenever I went to unexplored planets in the first half of the game.

The Bottom Line
Knights of the Old Republic is to Baldur's Gate what Anachronox is to Final Fantasy. Both are Sci-fi RPGs, and both use a gameplay style that is both inherited and simplified from their ancestors. Both are excellent games marred with a few minor flaws.

Once you get past the game's minor quirks, you have a highly enjoyable Star Wars gaming experience. My save file registered almost 38 hours of gameplay from start to finish, and I still want to go through the game again, just explore the possibilities of playing the dark side. I think it falls just a few marks short of “Game of the Year”, but then again most of my complaints are either nit-picking or based on a unique playing style: all problems that are easy to overlook.

High in both fun factor, length, and replay value, KOTOR is a title not to be missed.

Windows · by luciphercolors (67) · 2003

Excellent Star Wars RPG

The Good
You start out being able to choose between three "classes" of characters and whether you are male or female. These classes affect your stats as you level up as well as certain skills your character has. And choosing male or female affects your relationship to certain characters in the game.

Having the ability to choose between the light side and the dark side in the game is a great way to add replayability to the game. I played through as the light side first and had a lot of fun doing so, and when playing through as the dark side, I still had fun even though I already did everything once before.

Upgrading certain weapons and armor, as well as the light sabers, was a nice way to make the weapons more personal to your game. Rather than everyone ending up with the exact same weapons, you are able to upgrade certain things to add a little more variety. Although the upgrades for armor and standard weapons are the same no matter what, the light saber upgrades require you to make a choice as to what properties you would like for your light saber(s). You are even able to choose the color of your light saber(s).

When you become a jedi, you are able to choose what kind of jedi you want to be from three choices. Your choice determines your stats as you level up as well as what additional skills you have for your character.

The graphics were very well done and the cut-scenes of the planets were spectacular. The game allows you to remove most of the user interface from the screen to make the game a more cinematic experience.

The NPCs that are important are usually very interesting to talk to and many of them react based on your own actions. This allows you for a very immersive environment for your character.

The game also offers a VERY unexpected twist to the plot. Although clues are given throughout the game (they are redisplayed to you when the twist happens), someone would have to be very good at noticing subtle clues in order to figure out the twist before it happened unless they know about it beforehand. The twist really adds a lot to the game.

In order to save some time when moving throughout the game, you are able to instantly return to your ship from any "safe" place and then return from your ship to that place. This helps to save some time walking around.

Your party members have interesting (usually) stories to tell you which they will tell you as time passes if you choose to talk to them about it. These stories open up various side quests and can make your party members more interesting.

The Bad
The game was not very challenging. The only part that posed any real challenge was the very end because you can never completely kill off your enemies... you just have to get through to the next area alive. Unless you have a lot of med pacs, or you have three jedi with healing powers and a lot of jedi power available to them, this can become difficult. After getting through that small part of the game, you get to the end where you fight the last character who is very easy to beat.

Some of the side quests were annoying because you are always going back and forth between planets and then running all over the place to complete them.

The Bottom Line
If you like Star Wars and would like to play a jedi in an RPG, this is an excellent choice. The game offers a lot for the gamer and the problems with the game are really very minor. The only real problem is that you are not offered much of a challenge.

Windows · by Riamus (8448) · 2004

Filling the content quota, chunk by chunk

The Good
Note: I played this game on OSX some eight years after it first came out.

KOTOR has a few parts that are extremely impressive. These are scattered among the rest of the content like isolated nuggets of gold. One particular scene stood out to me, where the character is trying to gain access to a computer by mimicking the neural patterns of the last person who accessed it. In order to do so, you need to answer a series of hypotheticals, often against your better judgment.

The computer then gives you a logical breakdown of the reasoning behind the correct answer, in a droning, unnatural voice. For a game that often struggles with the nitty-gritty realization of its design blueprint, this was a rare example of something that succeeded both in concept and practice.

I also give the game credit for having eye-catching and memorable characters. Carth in particular struck me as an interesting subversion of the hero archetype. The game's clever twist and plot line deserves much better than the awkward, serpentine dialog it is delivered in.

The Bad
A large chunk of the game feels very "unambitious", for lack of a better word, like the designers were asked to fill a chinese checkers grid with content. As a whole, it lacks an organic spark of inspiration. The workmanlike, competent execution fails to atone for this greatest of sins.

As a result of this, my time playing KOTOR was spent in a state of emotional limbo, not exactly enjoying the experience but still unable to divest myself of it. The content was consumed instinctually, almost involuntarily, as if I were spurred on by some dark corner of my alcohol-soft reptile mind.

As always, Jeremy Soule's low-rent orchestral muzak retains its peculiarly somnambulant qualities, meandering aimlessly towards a point of no resolution. Similar to Neverwinter Nights, his limp and facile compositions underscore the blandness of the core content. I honestly can't think of a worse composer working in the VG industry today.

The Bottom Line
Bioware's games are always strong visually, and usually succeed at least partly at the conceptual level. But as someone who has no interest in the Star Wars franchise (and played the game years after its presentation went out of date), much of KOTOR's appeal was probably lost on me before I even started the game.

The game is the result of a well-managed, well-organized project, too bad no one really seems to have had their heart in it.

Macintosh · by Ole Olsen (3) · 2011

[ View all 18 player reviews ]


Subject By Date
KotOR for teh cheaps! Should I? Slug Camargo (583) Oct 4th, 2009


1001 Video Games

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


  • Bastila Shan's character was originally meant to be Vima Sunrider, a Jedi from Dark Horse Comics' Tales of the Jedi series. The name Bastila was originally meant for Juhani's character. Eventually, it was decided to create a different character rather than use Vima Sunrider. The new character was named Bastila, while the other character who bore this name was named Juhani.
  • Master Vrook Lamar is voiced by Ed Asner, of Lou Grant fame.


There are two different endings, based on the choices your main character makes. A third, funny ending can be accessed by pressing a button combination just before the final confrontation with Darth Malak.


Despite the nature of Hutts seen in the Star Wars films and various literature, none of the Hutts met in Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is a kingpin of organized crime, and most have almost nothing to do with criminal activity at all.


When the player first meets the female Jedi Juhani, they can choose whether to turn her back to the light side or kill her. When doing the latter, the player will have a showdown with another female Jedi who claims to be her lover (she also makes an appearance later in Korriban in which she makes a final attempt to avenge her lover). Furthermore, when playing as a female character and taking her with, she will occasionally flirt with the player in classic Baldur's Gate II fashion and, by the end of the game, confess to have romantic feelings (which the player can return). These two females are thus the first homosexual characters in the Star Wars universe.

Juhani is actually a boy's name in Finland and Estonia.


Naturally the game features numerous references to the Star Wars movies: * The line "My name's [your character's name], I'm here to save you", which is what was said by Luke Skywalker when saving Leia Organa. * Mission Vao says "I have a bad feeling about this" at least twice. This is an homage to a repeated line in each of the Star Wars films. * Probable ancestors of characters seen in the films can be seen in this game or are at least mentioned in literature. Examples include: Galduran Calrissian - Probable ancestor of Lando Calrissian, Cassus Fett - Probable ancestor of Jango and Boba Fett, Komad Fortuna - Probable ancestor of Bib Fortuna, Admiral Forn Dodonna - Probable ancestor of General Jan Dodonna. The wealthy Organa family is also mentioned early on in the game. * T3-M4 and Ebon Hawk are modeled in part after R2-D2 and the Millennium Falcon respectively. * Darth Malak was modeled in part after Darth Vader. The game programmers wanted to create a Dark Lord of the Sith who would instill images of Vader's character without being a near-complete carbon copy. Malak was given a cybernetic vocal implant, and the rest of his body was left alone. * On Taris, the player has a goal to capture Bendak Starkiller. Starkiller was the name that Lucas originally wanted to use for Luke before changing it to Skywalker.


Some droids are doing the robot dance. They pivot at the waist and jerk their arms in a style that emulates the popular 80s dance.


  • 4Players
    • 2003 – Best Console Game of the Year
    • 2003 – Best Console Role-Playing Game of the Year
    • 2003 – Best PC Role-Playing Game of the Year
    • 2003 – Best Console Story of the Year
    • 2003 – Best Console Voice Acting of the Year
    • 2003 – Best PC Voice Acting of the Year
  • Computer Games Magazine
    • March 2004 - #1 Game of the Year 2003
  • Computer Gaming World
    • March 2004 (Issue #236) – Game of the Year
    • March 2004 (Issue #236) – Role-Playing Game of the Year
    • March 2004 (Issue #236) – NPC of the Year (for HK-47)
    • March 2004 (Issue #236) – Best Story of the Year* GamePro (Germany)
    • February 13, 2004 - Best Xbox Game in 2003 (Reader's Voting)
  • GameSpy
    • 2003 – Game of the Year
    • 2003 – Xbox Game of the Year
    • 2003 – #3 PC Game of the Year
    • 2003 – PC RPG of the Year
    • 2003 – Xbox RPG of the Year
    • 2003 – Xbox Game of the Year (Readers' Vote)
    • 2003 – PC RPG of the Year (Readers' Vote)
    • 2003 - Best Music of the Year (PC)
    • 2011 – #16 Top PC Game of the 2000s
  • GameStar (Germany)
    • February 13, 2004 - Best PC Game in 2003 (Reader's Voting)
    • February 13, 2004 - Best PC RPG in 2003 (Reader's Voting)
  • Golden Joystick Awards
    • 2003 - Xbox Game of the Year
  • PC Gamer
    • March 2004 - Game of the Year 2003
    • April 2005 - #19 in the 50 Best Games of All Time list
  • PC Games (Germany)
    • Issue 02/2004– Best Adventure Game in 2003 (Readers' Vote)
  • PC Powerplay (Germany)
    • Issue 06/2005 - #10 Likeable Secondary Character (for HK-47)

Information also contributed by MegaMegaMan, PCGamer77, piltdown man, Rabbi Guru, Scott Monster and Zovni.

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by JPaterson.

Macintosh added by Corn Popper. iPad added by GTramp. Nintendo Switch added by Rik Hideto. Windows added by Trunks. Xbox One added by Kennyannydenny. Android added by Kabushi. iPhone added by LepricahnsGold.

Additional contributors: Rebound Boy, Unicorn Lynx, Indra was here, Zack Green, Apogee IV, Zeppin, Paulus18950, Cantillon, Patrick Bregger, FatherJack, Evolyzer.

Game added July 16th, 2003. Last modified November 28th, 2023.