Star Wars is a franchise that’s beloved by a ton of people from all over the globe. It’s a series that mixed science-fiction with fantasy, and told the timeless stories of a galaxy constantly in turmoil. A universe where the forces of good always collided with the forces of evil, culminating in a series of struggles that seemed truly endless. It involved magical space knights known as “Jedi”, who often do battle their dark equivalents called “Sith”.
What made Star Wars so great wasn’t just its characters and world, but also its expanded universe. Before Disney rendered 99.99% of the franchise non-canon, Star Wars had a singular continuity that went unchallenged by most modern media. A lot of Star Wars material was considered canon, and you had people working around the clock to make sure that almost everything could fit within this large universe.
I imagine one of the easiest things to fit into the timeline would have to be the “Star Wars: Knights of The Old Republic Series”. This was an RPG series, one that focused on the trials and tribulations of your custom character. You’d journey through the galaxy in well-written Star Wars adventures, coming face to face with the inner darkness of the universe. Ultimately, your choice would come down to either joining or destroying said darkness.
Come July, this sub-section of the franchise will be 15 years old. Despite this, it’s one of the few Star Wars games to be considered a true cult classic. Why is that? A lot of this comes down to who made the game. The game was developed by Bioware, and was developed using an engine similar to their Neverwinter Nights game.
Using this engine, they were able to craft a Star Wars game unlike any other. It was an RPG, one that focused on being the kind of Jedi you wanted to be. You could wield lightsabers, hurl grenades, fight hand-to-hand, or focus entirely on using Force powers. The story told by the game was also immensely entertaining.
It focused on your own custom character and how he goes from a common rebel soldier, to one of the most powerful beings in the galaxy. Along the way, you choose to follow the heroic ways of the Light Side, or the evil ways of the Dark Side. The game also does a good job of painting both sides of the force in shades of grey, showing that even the most powerful and kind Jedi can give into their dark urges, or vice versa.
Now, KOTOR 1 was a fantastic RPG, but KOTOR 2 was better! True, if you want a solid experience with KOTOR 2, then you have to download the “Restored Content” mod. However, it’s totally worth it, since it adds in a ton of additional cut content into this already amazing experience!
The game plays the same as the first game, but features a much darker story. The game does a better job of showing the grey morality of both sides of the force in this game, as well as giving us one of Star Wars’ greatest characters: Kreia. She’s a character who really makes the player think about what it truly means to be “good” and “evil”. Her philosophy really makes you question the whole of Star Wars’ canon, while featuring some of the best writing the series has ever had.
Sure, it doesn’t have an amazing plot twist like the first game, but it has an amazing story all the same! On top of this, the game also brought in new force powers, like the ability to shoot lightning or throw your lightsaber. The game also brings in the badass Jedi robes from the prequel movies, which were more authentic to the movies than the previous game’s attire.
After 15 years, these games still hold up. Sure, they graphically look like garbage, but they are still fun experiences with solid performances! The thing about KOTOR games is that they age like fine wine. No matter how advanced games get, experiences like the KOTOR series end up being timeless. With the May The 4th sale coming upon Steam, now is a good time to pick up these Star Wars games if you haven’t already! Also, grab some Dark Forces games, because those are some awesome titles as well!