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Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

by Doc M

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Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is a 2003 role-playing game developed by BioWare and published by LucasArts. It's also one the best Star Wars games out there and one of my favorite games of all time. Seriously, I've played through this game probably 20 times over the years, although most of those runs were between 2004-2006 and it's been a pretty long while since my last complete playthrough. Knights of the Old Republic takes place approximately 4,000 years prior to the rise of the Empire (3,956 years before A New Hope), in a time period previously explored by the Tales of the Jedi comics in the 90s, although the overall presentation is still closer to "modern" Star Wars than the far less technologically advanced style seen in Tales of the Jedi. Setting the story so far back in time, BioWare didn't have to worry about movie continuity or anything of the sort, and were able to create a Star Wars adventure that feels familiar in many ways but still has its own distinct feel.

KotOR was followed up by a sequel, 2004's KotOR II: The Sith Lords by Obsidian Entertainment, which is also an amazing game but very different in tone. The Sith Lords is probably the better game of the two and holds up better in retrospect, especially with the first game being the origin point of many of the BioWare cliches we know and love today, but the original was still a Big Deal when it came out and was just what Star Wars fans needed at a time when the most recent Star Wars film was Attack of the Clones. The KotOR games were eventually followed up by an MMO called The Old Republic, but we don't talk about that one.

The basic story is still rather familiar to any fan of Star Wars. It is a time of galactic civil war as the Sith, portrayed here as the ancient precursors to the Empire, are terrorizing the galaxy and the Galactic Republic is doomed unless someone manages to defeat the Sith and their seemingly undefeatable fleet led by Darth Malak, who took command after the recent death of his master Darth Revan at the hands of a Jedi strike team. The Jedi who took down Revan, Bastila Shan, is a key part of the Republic's war effort due to her expertise in Battle Meditation, a rare and incredibly powerful Force skill which can completely turn the tide of any battle. As you might expect, the Sith want this power for themselves to land the killing blow on the Republic once and for all. The player character, on the other hand, is no Jedi or war hero. They're a recently recruited Republic soldier, assigned aboard a cruiser named the Endar Spire which just so happens to be transporting Bastila when the game's story kicks off...

KotOR was initially released on the original Xbox and PC, with later ports to Mac, iOS and Android. I am playing the Xbox version on Xbox One X, because the PC version is kind of a pain to record reliably (last time around, I was literally grabbing screenshots in Fraps while playing the game, and I'm NOT doing that again). Playing on BoneX means the game is running at a rendering resolution close to 4K and adds 16x anisotropic filtering, so it looks almost as nice as the PC version and also runs really nicely compared to the often sluggish performance on original Xbox hardware.

This is a light side playthrough with a story focus. In this case, story-focused means that this absolutely should not be used as a guide for any character builds, because despite all the hours I've put into this game I never really learned the best ways to build a character and still make some completely idiotic decisions on that front every so often. I apologize in advance to any D&D fans out there (the game uses the d20 system).

Table of Contents

Part 1: The Fallen Spire
Part 2: The Mysterious Stranger
Part 3: Friends in Low Places
Part 4: The Mandalorian
Part 5: Wanted Dead or Alive
Part 6: Ghouls' Night Out
Part 7: Obligatory Sewer Level
Part 8: Super Charger Heaven
Part 9: Queen of the Death Match
Part 10: Wings of the Hawk
Part 11: The Three Trials
Part 12: The Grove
Part 13: Family Feud
Part 14: The Overseer
Part 15: Communication Issues
Part 16: Anchorhead
Part 17: Ghosts of the Sand
Part 18: The Storyteller
Part 19: Family Matters
Part 20: The Madclaw's Return
Part 21: The Ritual Beast
Part 22: Behavioral Reconfiguration
Part 23: Post-Kashyyyk Roundup
Part 24: The Sith Academy
Part 25: The Double-Double-Double-Cross
Part 26: Valley of the Dark Lords
Part 27: Something Left of Me to Save
Part 28: The Leviathan's Prey
Part 29: A Shattered Memory
Part 30: The Aftermath
Part 31: Let's Break KotOR
Part 32: Riddles in the Light
Part 33: Sunry vs. The Sith Empire
Part 34: Ahto Confidential
Part 35: The Verdict
Part 36: Minor Diplomatic Incident
Part 37: Deep Fear
Part 38: Deep Hurting
Part 39: Unknown World
Part 40: Council of Elders
Part 41: The Temple Summit
Part 42 (FINAL): The Star Forge

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