With Disney owning the Star Wars license and EA largely in control, it looks like there will be more Star Wars games in the future that are more consistent and of higher quality.
That’s not to say there haven’t been amazing Star Wars games! There have been plenty. But there have also been bad games too.
Here are the three best and worst.
Knights of the Old Republic (KOTOR)
Where else would you put Knights of the Old Republic than the number one spot? We considered knocking it down because Bioware still hasn’t made a KOTOR 3, but it deserves its current spot for being Bioware’s best RPG and one of the greatest pieces of Star Wars media.
After creating your character, the game opens with your character waking up on the Endar Spire, a Republic ship that is under attack and soon invaded by Sith Lord Darth Bandon. The twist? You have no memory of who you are or how you got there. But this isn’t the only twist. We won’t give it away, but you will be in disbelief at the ending.
But back to the game. After escaping the ship, the game really opens up as you explore multiple worlds and develop your newly discovered sith powers. Like most good RPGs, you can put points into different skills and abilities, gain new equipment, and build a lightsaber of your choice.
The Force Unleashed
Blending elements from contemporary successes in the game industry, such as God of War, Uncharted, and other adult-themed, narrative-driven games, LucasArts developed The Force Unleashed. You play the bad guy who is an assassin and Darth Vader’s apprentice. Your character is named Starkiller, and is tasked with hunting down Jedi with the use of a lightsaber and
Suffice to say, The Force Unleashed is a much darker story than you may be used to.
A few highlights of the game were the highly detailed visuals of the time thanks to a collaboration with Industrial Light and Magic, a powerful ending, and exciting combat that blended force powers with lightsabers. Some found the game a little too easy, but for others, it was accessible, and that’s why it is one of many people’s favorite games
We have been waiting for a proper Rogue Squadron sequel for a long time. Star Wars: Squadrons is a sort-of successor but somehow doesn’t capture the magic of the original N64 release.
The reason it is one of the best Star Wars games is that it was also an amazing pilot simulator, blending story, gameplay, and graphics in a way that no other game in the genre had accomplished when released in 1998.
Battlefront II (2017)
What a disappointment. Battlefront II is the culmination of many decisions made within the corporate world of the gaming industry that was trying to find ways to blend predatory free-to-play mobile game buy-in mechanics with cut-back gameplay experiences.
2015’s Battlefront was an excellent game with a good amount of content, a fair progression system, and fun multiplayer battled. In the sequel, most of that was stripped out, with EA offering excessive and distracting loot boxes that let you unlock items, characters, and the ability to continue progressing if you played the game too much during a single play session.
Yup, you bought the full game only to find that so much of the content was blocked off until you spent even more money. What’s worse, progression was tied to how much money you were willing to spend. EA would later back down and remove most of this, but the damage had already been done.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II
In 2010, with the continued advancement of computer technology and a new drive towards “gritty realism” in popular media as a whole (kicked off with Batman Begins in 2005), The Force Unleashed II took things to a new extreme.
With new powers and lightsaber techniques, players could now effortlessly dismember Wookies and Ewoks and deal untold damage to anyone in their path. From a gameplay standpoint, it was a step back. Likewise, the story was much less impressive than in previous versions. Overall, it has been dinged for having too many glitches and being repetitive.
Kinect Star Wars
The bad decision that was including a Kinect with every Xbox One, a console that was more expensive and less powerful than the Playstation 4, was fully realized with the release of Kinect Star Wars. If the Star Wars Holiday Special makes you shake your head, then you will want to stay away from this one.
The Kinect was a solid piece of hardware that combined virtual dot-mapping of you and your environment and a high-resolution camera to accurately capture your movement. With games like Just Dance, we get a great demonstration of the power of the Kinect.
Kinect Star Wars was the opposite. Its motion tracking was spotty, at best. The lightsabers and force powers in the game weren’t fun, and the embarrassing mini-game just put it all over the top. If you don’t want to see Han Solo or Darth Vader dancing, stay far away.