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DarthMuffin
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Over the past few days I've been playing the Jedi Outcast single player again. Hadn't done it for a good 3-4 years.

 

In truth, I was rather amazed by the game. I had forgotten how nice it was. I really like how detailed each level is, and how the story is impressively engaging for what is ultimately a FPS game.

 

I don't think I had played JO since the release of Jedi Academy. And from a single player perspective, it really struck me how the JA levels feel dumbed down compared to the JO ones. Sure there are more missions in JA; but each level feels so... simple and unoriginal. Perhaps it's because you get your sabre right away. Or because you can get Heal 3 so soon. Or it could be totally unrelated with the gameplay, and could be because the story is simply not engaging.

 

So yeah, this is pretty much a pointless topic. Or rather, some random thoughts from someone who remembers the release of Dark Forces 1 and just had a nostalgia surge from playing a 2002 game =p

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The levels in Jedi Outcast were much more immersing than Jedi Academy. They were a lot harder to complete, both in puzzle difficulty and surviving enemies. I felt like JA was more about awesome lightsaber combat, which it was, rather than detailed levels and a good storyline.

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JO was so immersing because it had one complete mission built into the story. Its a bit like the SW films; they show the most memorable parts of what is a very long story. Much like the life of a Jedi wouldn't all be battling Sith and duelling JA shows many different missions that aren't all related.

 

JO is only a short part of Kyle's life and centers around chasing Desaan and the final battle with Desaan. All the sub plots in JA just made the game feel like you were living a normal, boring life and then at the end you fought a battle. There is no urgency to the earlier levels and they feel like a warm up for the last level, which, in truth, should be a story of eight or so levels chasing tavion around the galaxy. This would add some drama to the game.

 

I feel a mod coming on...

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All the sub plots in JA just made the game feel like you were living a normal, boring life and then at the end you fought a battle. There is no urgency to the earlier levels and they feel like a warm up for the last level, which, in truth, should be a story of eight or so levels chasing tavion around the galaxy. This would add some drama to the game.

 

I feel a mod coming on...

 

Actually, I reckon JA would have been more interesting if it had been more different. Chasing Tavion would be like chasing Desann in JO. It would have been fine, but it could have been better too.

 

The "normal life" part is boring because it wasn't developped enough in my opinion. If we could wander around the Temple between missions, find goodies/whatevers, actually train like Jedi are supposed to do, pass various tests, etc., and if your mission choice actually meant something, I think it would have been more interesting. In its current state, what they did was to cut out what could have been interesting and unique, and slap random levels of sabre slaughter with a plot hook at the end.

 

Basically, I think JA should have had a persistant-type of campaign with more RPG elements thrown in. Instead of just playing a random guy through the levels, you would play the character you created - a jedi apprentice. For example, after character creation and the prologue you end up in the Temple and when you load the character (instead of just a random save) you pop back there. Your character could develop various stats/abilities in addition to foce powers, etc.

 

Just my thoughts =p

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My idea of JA would be a shooter using exactly the same engine, but with more customisation and a story mode that would actually make you feel like you really are an apprentice. The premise of being able to customise your own character and choose the missions you wanted to undertake was rather misleading considering that the game is basically a totally linear and simplistic succession of levels.

 

No d20 rules that dictate how combat should go, no extensive dialogues, no companions to travel with you. Just *something* to make the whole experience more believable. Heck, a simple "home base" map (temple) instead of the menu-like mission selection would have been neat.

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Actually, I reckon JA would have been more interesting if it had been more different. Chasing Tavion would be like chasing Desann in JO. It would have been fine, but it could have been better too.

Not if there was a good hook to the chase - like you decided where you were looking for tavion or you had several levels trying to stop tavion from reaching Korriban in space battles and boarding. My main problem is you were taken from the pen-ultimate level and then ten minutes later you had killed tavion. You needed more chasing in the end levels not just a message from Luke saying "get here tavion is attacking".

 

The "normal life" part is boring because it wasn't developped enough in my opinion. If we could wander around the Temple between missions, find goodies/whatevers, actually train like Jedi are supposed to do, pass various tests, etc., and if your mission choice actually meant something, I think it would have been more interesting. In its current state, what they did was to cut out what could have been interesting and unique, and slap random levels of sabre slaughter with a plot hook at the end.

I agree in wandering around the temple but building in training would be hard as the whole point of the game is you are supposed to practise your controls to become good with your sabre. I didn't like the level choice as I thought it was a bit silly that you chose and you weren't told to do levels by luke or kyle. Surely you would be sent on the most urgent mission

 

Basically, I think JA should have had a persistant-type of campaign with more RPG elements thrown in. Instead of just playing a random guy through the levels, you would play the character you created - a jedi apprentice. For example, after character creation and the prologue you end up in the Temple and when you load the character (instead of just a random save) you pop back there. Your character could develop various stats/abilities in addition to foce powers, etc.

I recon having more diplomacy would have been good. After all part of the jedi training is to solve problems with words. The missions should have been open ended in how to solve them so you could use violence or talking. You could also have more of an option to go to a certain planet even if it wasn't part of your story line - a bit like obi wan goes looking for kamino even though he doesn't know theres the clones there - bit more like detecting.

 

I agree though it wasn't bulked out enough from JO and once i'd played through the game as a blur of sabre flashes I never went back to a level...

 

...oh except the swoop bike level which was fun for a while.

 

But I can still play the atst level in Outcast, the yavin final level, the bespin level etc

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The main focus of JA is the lightsaber combat, which itself is awesome. The slow motion effects, the cool acrobatic moves, the blur of the lightsaber as you cut apart enemies was very fun. This is pretty much the core of the game and I think the purpose the developers had in making it.

 

It sounds like you guys wanted it to be like KotOR, which would have been cool in my opinion, but that really wasn't the purpose or intention of the game.

 

If you want a game like KotOR, just play KotOR.

 

If you want to go all out in a lightsaber melee play JA.

 

If you want to play a good fps with a decent storyline and great levels play JO.

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All games need a story. Halo for an example is great not just because of the gameplay but because of the storyline. If it was just a normal shooter people would stop before they had to buy a whole new console.

 

A story is essential as it makes the game enjoyable and so makes it sell making the designer money. Win win.

 

The only reason JA sold is coz the rest of the Jedi Knight series had such good storylines.

 

Yes the saber fighting was amazing but lasted all of a month before wearing off on me.

 

Plus what were the designers doing after they'd made the engine.

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There are many games with no story, or a paper thin one, that sell anyway because that is not their point. And Halo sells way more because of the multiplayer than the single player. If it was only SP, Halo would not sell nearly as many copies. If it had just MP, it would still sell a lot.

 

The thing that attracted me to JA was the lightsaber fighting. Sure, I hoped it had a great story as well, but the what differentiates it from JO was the lightsaber combat. That is what makes the game stand out.

 

I am always in favor of a good storyline, but some games don't really need them to be successful. Many MP FPS are like this.

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We proberably think the same thing but from different points of view. I think you're saying the game is good for what it is - that the saber combat is good - and i'm saying that the storyline is a bit boring although the game has a good engine. I dont play multiplayer much so i surpose that's why I think this.

 

One point about the saber combat is that it has become easier by the introduction of special moves. JO didn't have the moves but promoted skills by timing and some people think that the earlier Jedi Knight games are better for the skill needed in them.

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I never played MP that much - only with friends as far as I recall. But I've always thought that JA dumbed down that side too because of dual sabres and staves. Some veterans might say otherwise, but as far as I'm concerned I think that staves and duals turned the sabre gameplay in a button mashing contest.

 

So all in all, I can't say that MP in JA really felt like a leap from JO. Siege was neat though, too bad they didn't develop it more.

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Seige could have been developed more but the really cool things that could have happened (like huge battles of bots with the players playing as heros - Geonosis :D) couldn't happen because the engine lags badly after so many npcs.

 

I recon an advancement of JKA (like JK4) should make it easier to play in large arenas like in battlefront. A combination of JKA saber and gun controls with battlefront map sizes...

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I still love to do saber duels in jk2 sp, only a bit different; I like to call it "jk2sp scenic combat". The point is, I'm trying to make the duels look as good as possible, which means not trying to dispatch your opponent as quickly as possible, but to have a prolongued exchange of blows (like in the movies). That means, you have to try to hit the opponent's saber rather than the opponent himself. I tell you, that is not an easy thing to do; I'd love to have duels that last like 2 minutes ore more, but usually the duels are over before a minute has passed with either me or the opponent winding up dead. The secret is to know when and where to strike with your saber to achieve parrys, knockbacks and all the stuff that make duels more movie-like. Another goal is to include fancy moves and combos, including those that are otherwise not prudent to use because they leave you open; here, you're trying to do those very moves and don't get hit doing them.

Then, after some time duelling, you'll have to try to finsih you opponent with a badass move, like dismembering him or sending him off a ledge or both. BTW, I'm using g_dismemberment and g_dismemberprobabilities instead of g_saberealisiticcomabt, since with the latter it is so much harder to control when to deal damage and when not; and control is everything in scenic comabt; to stiil get the instakill feeling for lightsabers, I'm duelling with 50 health / 0 armor for me, 100 health for the opponent (that way he will not die as quickly if you're htting him unintentionally, but you can still kill him with a single well-placed saber strike combo, if you want to.)

 

If you're doing all that in a decent looking map, with some exciting duelling music and a good saber sound replacement (the default clash sounds are dull, honestly), it can get quite intoxicating, I tell you.

 

Now, to those of you who prefer jk3 over jk2: I've tried the same thing in jk3, but for some reason, the duels never get nearly as good-looking as in jk2; the jk3 AI seems to be inferior to the jk2 one (maybe it's just me, but I think it's spamming rolling stabs; well, the jk2 AI is spamming lunges/ydfas, for that matter, but it still looks better than what the jk3 AI does). And, to be honest, I don't really like the dual saber / staff animations in jk3 anyway, neither the new single saber attacks (except Force Pull Impale), neither the new (for sp, at least) force powers (except Force Long Leap).

 

So, I'll stick with jk2. The only dropback of jk2 is: it's far less open to modding, which is sooo sad. When I come to think of it: jk2 had it's five year anniversary this year, right? Wouldn't that be an ideal time to start a new petition to publish the sp source code?

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  • 3 years later...
The levels in Jedi Outcast were much more immersing than Jedi Academy. They were a lot harder to complete, both in puzzle difficulty and surviving enemies. I felt like JA was more about awesome lightsaber combat, which it was, rather than detailed levels and a good storyline.

 

yeah i actually found out recently that jedi academy was an uncompleted game that they had to release earlier than they expected because lucasarts contract with some company expired a few weeks after jedi academys release. hmm... that explains the rushed and incomplete feeling we got when we played jedi academy as opposed to jedi outcast...

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  • 10 months later...
Actually, I reckon JA would have been more interesting if it had been more different. Chasing Tavion would be like chasing Desann in JO. It would have been fine, but it could have been better too.

 

The "normal life" part is boring because it wasn't developped enough in my opinion. If we could wander around the Temple between missions, find goodies/whatevers, actually train like Jedi are supposed to do, pass various tests, etc., and if your mission choice actually meant something, I think it would have been more interesting. In its current state, what they did was to cut out what could have been interesting and unique, and slap random levels of sabre slaughter with a plot hook at the end.

 

Basically, I think JA should have had a persistant-type of campaign with more RPG elements thrown in. Instead of just playing a random guy through the levels, you would play the character you created - a jedi apprentice. For example, after character creation and the prologue you end up in the Temple and when you load the character (instead of just a random save) you pop back there. Your character could develop various stats/abilities in addition to foce powers, etc.

 

Just my thoughts =p

 

 

My idea of JA would be a shooter using exactly the same engine, but with more customisation and a story mode that would actually make you feel like you really are an apprentice. The premise of being able to customise your own character and choose the missions you wanted to undertake was rather misleading considering that the game is basically a totally linear and simplistic succession of levels.

 

No d20 rules that dictate how combat should go, no extensive dialogues, no companions to travel with you. Just *something* to make the whole experience more believable. Heck, a simple "home base" map (temple) instead of the menu-like mission selection would have been neat.

 

i totally agree; that would have been a really cool premise for a game. i think they really botched what could have been a fun game when they made JKA.

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