Review | Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order for Xbox One
Posted on: 2019-12-02
"A great story, immersive gameplay and an innovative and rewarding emphasis on exploration."
The Star Wars franchise has been somewhat sparse with its releases in recent years. Since 2013 the only two titles bearing the Star Wars name have been reboots of the beloved Battlefront series, both of which were good but not groundbreaking, and many have been craving a solo experience. Respawn Entertainment has answered thousands of calls around the world with the release of Jedi Fallen Order.
In my opinion, this is one of the best Star Wars games to hit the shelves since The Force Unleashed way back in 2008 - it blends a wide range of gameplay styles from several other games and genres, creating a refreshing and genuinely unique experience.
Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order takes places after the events of Episode 3, where the remaining Jedi have scattered across the galaxy to go into hiding from The Empire. You play as a young Jedi named Cal fronting as a scavenger, who's going about his life in exile until The Empire's forces discover his presence and he's forced to go on the run. The game's storyline starts brightly - the characters are likeable, the script doesn't take itself too seriously, and the whole thing is pulled together by excellent performances from the voice actors.
Combining a methodical and slightly slowed-down pace of combat of a game like Dark Souls with the sense of exploration you can find in Metroid Prime and the mechanics from the Uncharted series, Jedi Fallen Order is a masterclass in variation. The combat, specifically, feels weighty and satisfying. You can't just mash buttons and flail your characters arms around in the hope he'll get it right for you, you have to tactically parry attacks and time your moves perfectly to execute specific moves. It feels great for the player, and carries with it just enough of a challenge to make it fun - think Dark Souls without the controller-smashing difficulty.
The expansive nature and the sense of exploration on Jedi Fallen Order feel almost limitless. Inviting you to explore a huge range of planets, each with their own distinct features, the game rewards curiosity and doesn't feel pushy in its encouragement to unlock new character customisations and features.
The graphics, while admittedly gorgeous in places, look washed out at times which is a shame. Character models are frustratingly hit and miss too - protagonist Cal looks fine, as do the Stormtroopers, but some lack detail.
I found the framerate to be an issue at times, and wondered if running the game on a standard Xbox One may have been the problem. During intense action sequences, particularly those with a load of things happening at once with light sabres swinging and groups of stormtroopers in the frame, the gameplay stutters quite dramatically. Thankfully it's not a common occurrence, but it can make the combat a chore to get through and kills the immersion at crucial points.
All things considered, I feel comfortable asserting that Jedi Fallen Order is one of the best Star Wars games we've had in a decade. Admittedly there are technical issues, particularly if you're playing on a standard Xbox One. But, if you can look past that, it's got a great story, immersive gameplay and an innovative and rewarding emphasis on exploration.
Review | Yakuza 4: Remastered for PS4
Sam has lived in Bristol all his life. A keen cyclist he speeds around the city but video games are his bread and butter. Whether the old Nes and Snes games or the XBox One and Playstation releases he loves them all. Sam runs his own gaming blog called Bristolian Gamer where he had been reviewing indie games, doing retro reviews and venting his anger at the industry when it does wrong since 2010. Sam joined the 365Bristol team in December 2014.