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T (Teen)



March 2002


- Excellently produced everything

- Graphically, Phonically, Sonically - Chronic (that is, excellent)

- Improved scenarios

- Covetable starships



- Not a big enough improvement over last year’s offering

- Same ol’, same ol’



Review: Star Wars: Bounty Hunter (Playstation 2)

Review: Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast (XBox)

Review: Star Wars: Jedi Starfighter (XBox)



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Star Wars: Jedi Starfighter

Score: 8.0 / 10


Many times I’ve found myself pondering just how much fun it would be to live in the Star Wars universe.  Just being aware of intelligible life on other planets with long noses and funny semi-circle piano’s would be enough for me.  Alas, all us mere earthlings have to fall back on is the seemingly endless supply of LucasArts licensed video games, and ya know?.. I’ll settle for that.


jedi-starfighter-ps2-1.jpg (30693 bytes)          jedi-starfighter-ps2-2.jpg (16840 bytes)


Enough with my sentimental waxing, new to the shelf is Star Wars Jedi Starfighter, a near carbon copy of last years Starfighter.  Though this is not all bad, as Star Wars Starfighter was a high water mark in the PS2’s stream of mediocrity last year, it is a bit of a disappointment.  Technically Jedi Starfighter is Starfighter’s recently paroled big brother, of the same gene pool yet just a little cooler.  The visual highlights of last year’s title were the incredibly high draw distance that invoked a huge sense of scale, the awesome explosions and the cool ship design.  This year all these pieces are in place with little improvements in each area.


For starters the first notable improvement is the ship design. No one can argue that nearly every aspect of Episode II seems far superior to Episode I, included in this are the awesome ships.  Though there are two that you will pilot in JS, your main craft is the Jedi Starfighter, an agile weapon designed to be used in conjunction with force powers.  This ship is the coolest, reminiscent of the snow speeder in Episode V (Empire Strikes Back), though sleeker and more space combat ready.  Piloting this experimental ship is Jedi Master Adi Gallia.  Your wing mate and playable counterpart is Nym, the alien space pirate who starred in the original Starfighter.  His ship is similar to the one he had last go-round, a hulking bomber with heavy armor and powerful cannons.  With these two ships you battle a number of Federation star crafts, most plentiful are the scarab drones, though there are also some neat game specific crafts that you encounter throughout the game.





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The fundamental intrigue of Star Wars, which is rooted in believable technology and moody atmosphere, is mimicked perfectly in Jedi Starfighter.  Graphically what returns are the beautiful explosions, epicurean landscapes and the vast sense of scale. Improved are the locals that offer a stepped up level of variety.  One early level takes place on a beach during sunset.  I wanted to land the ship and find a native to smooch, yet there was a base to fortify (where are my priorities!).  As far as 


atmosphere, it is maintained by said visuals and industry standard voice acting – even the Samuel L. stand-in is convincing! The John Williamsesque score keeps everything in perspective.


Control operates identically to its predecessor taking into account the new force powers specific to Adi Gallia.  These force powers, limited to two at first, are a little lame.  They certainly are nothing new, basically supped up attacks and a force field.  They do however impart an added level of mayhem you can inflict on the Federation, all of which plays out nicely on screen.  The control differences between Nym’s ship and Master Gallia’s are appropriately different.  (Who knows how it must feel to pilot a multi-ton bomber in a vacuum? Whoever it is must work for LucasArts.)  The bomber rumbles a little more during speed boosts and turns on a Kennedy as opposed to a Roosevelt.


jedi-starfighter-ps2-3.jpg (21516 bytes)          jedi-starfighter-ps2-4.jpg (17124 bytes)


With all of the nice touches that have been added to JS, it’s replayability remains fairly low.  The developers have, it seems taken this into account by adding seriously desirable bonuses, all of which involve some movie clips of either the game while in development or future LucasArts releases.  Considering the hot streak this production house is on, these items are “must see” material.  What little edge Jedi Starfighter has over its brethren increases when these bonuses are taken into account.


Well, that’s that.  It’s pretty much the same game all over again, just a little better, leaving you to follow the oldest of the consumer wisdoms: “if you want it, get it”.  If anything you’ll further cement yourself in the esteemed society of Star Wars fanboys (or girls).


- Tolkiemingway

(April 26, 2002)

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