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KOTOR I & KOTOR II: - Story Difference

A few days ago, I started to play both KOTOR I and KOTOR II simultaniously. While carefully racing through the levels, I started to understand why KOTOR II's main and side quests feel confined. Now, this doesn't mean thet KOTOR II is bad, but just unique in it's own right. When a writter creates a story, there are different perspective to choose from first, second, or third person.


BioWare & KotOR I: (PNPCs) Side Quests

When you travel with your companions, the various side quests are not related to the main quest. Each individual PNPC has his or her own story. Instead of complete dialogue, BioWare translated their stories to the world around you. By solving their quests, you create an understanding of the people you travel with. Bastilla's mother/father, Mission's brother, Jolee's friend, and Big Z's family issues. Inorder to proceed through the levels, some of their backgrounds are important to solve. However, they are not necessary in the understanding of Malak vrs. Revan.


BioWare & KotOR I: Main Quest

As you travel from planet to planet, you gather both knowledge and Star Maps. Within the main quest, your job is to search for the Star Maps and overtake your old apprentice. In order to complete your tasks, the PC has to find out about what happend to Malak and Revan. As you know, the unknowing twist is that you are Revan.


Obsidian & KotOR II: (PNPCs) Side Quests

While playing KotOR II, there is only one PNPC side quest, which is a very simple task. Mandalore's side quest is to gather Mandalorians. However, there is no personal side quest, which you have to solve a puzzle. Unlike KotOR I, KotOR II doesn't have any personal side quests, which you have to solve anything to find more information about your friends. Instead of moving from place to place, you can sit through hours of dialogue and play around with your PNPC's influence through questions, and in return you learn about your PNPCs and turn them to Jedi/Sith.


Obsidian & KotOR II: Main Quest

While playing KotOR II, the main quest is to find out your own relationship to the world. Instead of a hidden story, which has some twist, you must travel to solve why the Jedi disapeared, the mysteries of the Jedi Civil Wars, what occured at Malacore V, and what has happened to your self. As a bonus, you get to have a history lesson about other events, which caused other Jedi Civil Wars. However the history lesson is not important in the main quest.


Other points:

KotOR I - You have to travel the galaxy and do various tasks to learn about your friends. You get involved with their lives.


KotOR II - You have to keep the dialogue flowing and gain influence to learn about your friends. You sit through dialogue, and converse about their lives.


KotOR I - You have to gather StarMaps, which create a whole map to find a Star Forge and to understand Revan and Malak's thinking.


KotOR II - You have to find the Jedi Masters, to find out why they exiled you.


KotOR I and KotOR II have very uniques styles, which they both have pros and cons. Some people like to read books based upon the first person perspective, and other like to read books designed upon a third peron's perspective. KotOR I is based upon one style, and KotOR II is based upon another. When you lay both games, you are exposed to some really nice graphics and designs. Some of the elements are truely impressive.


(Please feel free to add your thoughts, and add to what I am missing.)

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I really missed the quick transit system from k1... it was cool...

But yea, you could really notice the change from k1 to k2... I guess they missed it all across the board as far as continuity goes, the story and the game play or rather feel of the game, the atmosphere of it...

Big differences in the quests and how they play out through out the game…

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I felt Kotor 2 did the better job in handling NPCs than the original. I found the NPC snippets rather frustrating in the original Kotor precisely because they where so separate from the main story line.


This was amplified because when it came down to it, you could't progress these separate NPC quests without progressing further in the main plot (gaining experience). So you're performig one unrelated task in order to further another. Didn't you find it at all upsetting to continually get the 'we've spoken enough, lets wait till you get more XP before I give you another tiny bit of dialogue' response?.


With Kotor 2, most of the NPC background was able to be discovered at your own discretion. You could not only talk their ears off, but get different reactions from just about all of them based on if they where with you when you did key things in the main plot. The influence meter was an excellent means of drawing out their stories by making you do things in the game world (that they respond to) rather than waiting till the experience meter hit the next magical number. Likewise it was more gratifying to shift their perspective to your own (to varying degrees and with differing difficulty) or antagonise them. How you further the main plot, changed their story... thats engaging.


I felt Kotor 2's NPCs where more directly tied to the main plot(s) (Visas and the Handmaiden for example). I found this a strength rather than a weakness. In dealing with them, you where still dealing with the main story. One progressed the other.


I would much rather delve into an NPC's motivations for adventuring with you and to hear their take on the main plot (this is what they're risking their lives over!) than hear edited, read from a script snippets about a traumatic childhood/defining moment in their past.


Understandably Bastilla kept pretty mum about why she was there for the ride in Kotor. I didn't really buy Carth's Saul Carath routine though. Why would sticking with a couple of novice Jedi *running* from the sith and trying to stay under the radar be the best way for him to get back at Saul? Even when you confront him he won't nick off. Who knows why Canderous sticks around in the cargo hold, unpaid and unused.


Ultimately though I love Kotor II not for its main plot, but for what it gives back to the original Kotor. The biggest mystery in kotor is never addressed in kotor. Star forge carrots aside, as soon as you get 'the twist' wouldn't the first thing on your mind be what was Revan (me) thinking before I got amnesia? Especially if you're playing as a light side character. Revan's motivation, Revan's agenda, its not even looked at. Its just alluded to that as soon as Revan 'fell' to (made use of!) the dark side they became a stupid cliche badie. Kotor II at least hints at deeper meaning and thought behind Revan's actions. The idea is frequently explored that the *stronger* individuals make their own decisions, not let the force dictate their actions (see Kreia's motivation for playing along).

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