With Star Wars Day upon us, now seems perhaps the best time to reflect upon the fact that the franchise George Lucas built has given rise to some rather belting PC games over the years. From Dark Forces to Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and everything in between, we take a dive into some of the best games from a galaxy far, far away.
Star Wars: Dark Forces
Despite DOOM’s seemingly wholesale dominance and definition of the first-person shooter genre by the mid 1990s, it wouldn’t be long until someone else would attempt to take a pop at the throne. Armed with the formidable Star Wars license, Lucasarts did just that with Star Wars: Dark Forces.
Powered by the bespoke Jedi Engine, Dark Forces brought a whole heap of innovations to the genre which had previously not been seen, such as the ability to look up and down and levels that are built over multiple floors. Throw in an iconic audiovisual presentation that pulls lovingly from the old trilogy, a plot about the fearsome Dark Troopers (who would later get their own recognised lore) and the debut of a new Star Wars hero in Kyle Katarn, it becomes clear that Star Wars: Dark Forces was much more than just a ‘DOOM clone’.
Star Wars: X-Wing Vs Tie Fighter
Beloved by so many and widely regarded as the best space combat simulation to ever leverage the Star Wars license, Star Wars: X-Wing Vs Tie Fighter is the stuff of dreams for anyone who ever fancied themselves hopping into the cockpit of the saga’s greatest space fighter craft.
With a dual campaign that allows players to experience the narrative from either the Rebel or the Imperial side, in addition to a wealth of LAN multiplayer modes, remembering Star Wars: X-Wing Vs Tie-Fighter is somewhat painful thanks to the fact that we’ve never really had anything like it since.
Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy
Better in every way that a sequel can be when compared to its predecessor, Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy was an action adventure effort that cast players as a trainee force user under the tutelage of Luke Skywalker. Tasked with taking down a rogue Sith Lord, Jedi Academy was a pitch perfect mixture of lightsaber combat, first person shooter tropes and force power shenanigans. More than that, Jedi Academy’s online multiplayer is so great that nearly 20 years on from release, it still has a committed player base that is hosting and playing games every day of the week.
Star Wars: Knight of the Old Republic
At its heart the Star Wars saga has always been an adventure, so who better to adapt such a sprawling property into the RPG genre than Baldur’s Gate and Dragon Age developers Bioware?
Weaving a sophisticated and twist stuffed story that stands alongside the movies in compelling grandeur and is stuffed with all manner of interesting characters (the fiendish HK-47 murderbot being a particular favourite) Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is quite simply a masterwork that everyone should experience.
Star Wars Battlefront II
Despite a launch that was fraught with microtransaction troubles, Star Wars Battlefront II nonetheless managed to leave its questionable origins behind and blossom into a formidable shooter to say the least.
Though it boasts an entertainingly epic campaign that provides a neat narrative bridge from Return of the Jedi to The Force Awakens, Star Wars Battlefront II’s online multiplayer is where the DICE developed title really soars, as it perfectly encapsulates the intergalactic war between good and evil across air, land and space.
Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
Coming from the same folks that developed Call of Duty and Titanfall, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order ended up being something that many of us didn’t expect. Sure, it looked like a perfectly good action adventure, but few would guess just how well it would combine Dark Souls style combat and Metroid esque exploration into a satisfying whole.
As gifted Jedi Padawan Cal Kestis, Fallen Order whisks players from planet to planet in a showdown with Imperial Inquisitors that eventually leads to a confrontation with one of the franchise’s most recognisable villains.
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