riostarwind's Star Wars: Jedi Starfighter (PlayStation 4) review

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Adding Star Wars to a vehicle based action game doesn't change the fact that it is very repetitive

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Around the release of this game was when vehicle based action games started to become more scarce. After deciding to replay this I started to see why that was the case. Nothing wrong with this style of game but it certainly follows a formula that never managed to change. Without anything new brought to the table the one thing left that can still work in a game like this is the setting.

Pretty much impossible to make old CGI look good now.
Pretty much impossible to make old CGI look good now.

The story starts off my introducing Adi Galdi one of the Jedi Masters on the council that didn’t get much screen time so they could have her star in her own little adventure. After being sent to recruit Nym a pirate captain that has helped the Republic in the past random bad guy #3 shows up to test out his new weapon on a nearby city. Soon it becomes a two pronged assault as Nym tries to retake his planet while Adi attempts to stop any villain that stands in her way. Not the most interesting story but it does a good enough job of setting up a bunch of ships that must be blown up to save the day.

Each level starts with a quick setup to tell the player what they need to do. Like stop a ship from leaving the sector etc. Other than the standard vehicle controls the devs did add some special moves and a wingman to changes things up a bit. With one of the characters being a jedi that does mean you get some fancy moves. Like using force lightning to fry a row of ships or a shield to take a few blows if your normal shield is down. Commanding a wingman just consists of telling them to protect or shoot any targeted object. Both of these are cool but they do just feel like something that would just be in a game like this.

Blow up that thing and do it fast! That is 90% of all the objectives.
Blow up that thing and do it fast! That is 90% of all the objectives.

Plus the mission design starts to bog down any interest I had in revisiting this title. Protecting or blowing up a bunch of spaceships quickly starts to get boring when that is extent of the level design. Sure each level is different and someone else is on the com yelling at me to save them from bombers. Yet thanks to time this isn’t as compelling anymore. With Star Wars Rogue Squadron this style of game was fresh and then the sequel brought the graphics up to keep us entertained. At this point this is just another one of those and it’s hard to see any worthwhile elements anymore.

Sadly the one thing that might make it playable isn’t easily accessible currently. Which is the coop mode that lets a friend join in to play through the campaign. Feels like that would make each mission more fun to take on plus escort missions wouldn’t be as much of a pain with two players. Additionally a bunch of bonus objectives adds a good amount of replay value if unlocking secret missions and different pilot-able ships sound compelling to you. So I can’t say they didn’t add in enough content to keep the player busy if this was one of the few games they got in a year.

Having only two spaceships during the entire campaign is a bit of a bummer too.
Having only two spaceships during the entire campaign is a bit of a bummer too.

Yet it is hard for me to overlook the repetitive nature of this entire game. None of the encounters feel unique or fun to overcome. Especially since higher difficulty just means extra damage to my ship with the encounters being exactly the same. I’m sure it’s just thanks to the PS2 not being able to handle it but giant space battles would at least give the game some life via spectacle. In the end I just don’t think this game holds up at all. Not worth playing even for the most hardcore Star Wars fan.

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