Star Wars: Jedi Survivor – PlayStation 5 Review

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The developers at Respawn bring us Star Wars: Jedi Survivor, the direct sequel to Fallen Order which was released back in 2019. Are you Looking to scratch that itch of being a Jedi? Then take the role of Cal Kestis and fight using the force and slicing your way through enemies with your trusty bot BD – 01. Players can grab this game on PlayStation and Xbox for £69.99 or on Steam Store for £59.99. The Deluxe upgrade offers several more cosmetics for Cal and BD-01 for £20.

Great, Kid. Don’t Get Cocky

I enjoyed Fallen Order and loved both Cal and BD as characters. So when they revealed Jedi Survivor, I couldn’t wait to see where these two would end up next. Seeing the addition of new combat stances for more playstyles was a bonus because even though I’m not a fan of the latest trilogy of films, I did love Kylo Ren’s Lightsaber. Let us return to that “Galaxy far, far away” once again.

Gameplay

Set five years after the previous title. Once again, take the role of young Padawan turned Jedi Knight Cal Kestis as he fights back against the evil Empire that continues to threaten the galaxy. Players will wall run, solve puzzles and fight with new allies as they try to uncover a way to the new world of Tanalorr, one of the last sanctuaries for the Jedi Order. Jedi Survivor is more open-world in comparison to Fallen Order which had more of a liner approach.

Cal is talking to a mysterious NPC in the cantina. the character is sitting at a dimly lit booth with their legs up on the table and is surrounded junk.
Not everyone is friendly.

On your journey, players will meet a variety of characters. From the optimistic bartender Monk, or Turgle, the lovable, clumsy amphibious alien, voiced by the iconic Richard Horvitz. One of the main areas in the game is the cantina called Pyloon’s Saloon, Where players will get to talk to NPC who will give lore to the world and provide rumours like the whereabouts of legendary hunts for Cal to take down or ancient Jedi temples to explore.

Combat and What’s New with the Lightsaber

The combat is similar to the previous title. Cal can parry, block, and dodge enemies. Cal and the enemy have a stamina bar. When it’s drained, it will leave them open to attacks. Some enemies have an unblockable attack and will glow red when this happens, and it’s better to dodge. I feel that some of the timing to parrying and dodging is off. When I would parry, the attack would still go through and deal damage.

Menu listing the lightsabre stances that players can equip to Cal. currently the Double-Bladed stance is shown with a brief description and stats.
The main tool of any Jedi.

In Fallen Order, Cal unlocked the Double-Bladed and Dual-Wielding forms of Lightsaber combat, and they do return in Jedi Survivor in the style of Stances. Players can pick what stances best suit their playstyle. If you prefer to be more of an aggressive fighter, then using the Dual-Wielding form will let you attack your enemies with a flurry of attacks but at the cost of less stamina to block with. The new Crossguard stance is the strongest. By making the attacks slower, Cal gets more defence and damage. Only two Stances are equipable at a time which is a shame since the last game allowed you to switch between all three at will. I preferred to use the Double-Bladed Stance since it was the fastest and most balanced for taking on most enemies. Since the standard Lightsaber felt slow and the Dual-Wielding Stance lacked power.

Returning to Previous Areas

As you progress through Jedi Survivor, there will be areas you can’t access without the right abilities. For example, Cal will unlock the power to tame wildlife. Taming wildlife will allow him to use flying creatures to glide over chasms or ride atop large animals and then perform a super jump off them to reach high areas he wouldn’t usually have had access to. In these areas, players can find chests for cosmetics or Force Tears that will teleport Cal to a challenge he will have to overcome.

Merrin and Cal riding on the back of a creature known as a Samel that helps them reach higher up areas and get across the desert much faster.
Do those legs go all the way up?

We can’t forget that the lovable little droid BD also gets some new skills instead of simply being able to dispense health vials and scan. He can now function as binoculars to scout ahead and place markers on the map. Later BD gets a goo cannon that will help Cal with environmental puzzles.

Making Cal Stronger and Look Cool

When fighting and discovering collectables, players earn experience, and once enough is collected, they gain a Skill Point. Skill Points get allocated into one of three skill trees (Force, Survival, and Lightsaber). Putting points into the Survival tree will grant Cal more health and increase the healing properties of the healing vials he uses from BD. The Lightsaber tree is the largest one, as each Stance has its own set of upgrades. These give the Stances new moves, like the standard Saber being able to perform a lunge attack. Finally, by upgrading the Force skill tree player will be able to unlock a group force pull ability for clearing multiple enemies at once.

I am currently upgrading Cals survival skill tree in the game. most of the upgrades have been bought are shown by the yellow filling.
You must get stronger if you wish to succeed.

Just like in Fallen Order, Cal, BD, and his Lightsaber can all be customised with various new outfits and Lightsaber parts found in chests. Instead of just Cal’s poncho being customisable, players can now change Cal’s hair and beard style. From a nice beard to a simple goatee, players can find the best look for their version of Cal Kestis. Shops also provide cosmetics for the player in the game.

Graphics & Audio

The graphics in the game are visually stunning, from the beautiful desert ruins to the intricate designs on the Jedi Temple Walls. The NPCs scattered around look great, but some shine better than others. For example, Turgle and Doma both have a unique and vibrant colour palette. Using the Lightsaber in dark caves was a genius idea in Fallen Order, and it was great to see it return here.

Cal has been caught in a sandstorm, the shot is both dark yet vibrant at the same time this is a treat for the eyes.
The sandstorm really looks beautiful to me.

The sounds for levels are good, but nothing stood out to me. The lip sync was off at times, but nothing too off-putting and a patch can’t fix it. The ignition of the Lightsaber is so satisfying to the ears, and the same for the iconic blaster sound effects. I love the addition of the DJ in Pyloon’s Saloon and being able to buy more music from Vendors for them to play. The return of the Mongolian Folk metal band The Hu was awesome since they did the opening song for the previous game.

Longevity

I have clocked in around twenty hours and have barely touched the story with all the exploration I have done. Players can put a lot of time into finding everything and upgrading all the skill trees in the game. I did hear that an NG+ is available after finishing the story, so players who want to go through the game again as a powerhouse can.

Final Thoughts

Jedi Survivor has been fun to play, I did find some enemies frustrating to fight, such as the Rancor, but it was a fun kind of frustration. The gameplay is simple and not too demanding for new players, and the story has kept me interested thus far. I wish the worlds would maybe have some side quests for players, as the worlds can seem quite empty. I did hear the PC port had a lot of issues, and luckily the PlayStation port runs pretty well. I’ve had one major crash and a few frame drops but nothing too game-breaking.

Respawn has created another great game (now if only we could get Titanfall 3). I give Star Wars: Jedi Survivor the Thumb Cultures Golden Award.

 

Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.

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