Star Wars: Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast is a first and third-person action game released for the GameCube and Nintendo Switch. The game primarily revolves around ranged and melee combat, with the player capable of wielding classic Star Wars weapons such as blasters, lightsabers and Force powers.
The game features both single-player and multiplayer modes. The story-driven single-player campaign is set in the Star Wars expanded universe two years after the events of the first Jedi Knight. The plot follows Kyle Katarn as he fights against the Dark Jedi Desann and his followers.
Jedi Outcast allows the player to wield a variety of firearms from the Star Wars franchise, as well as lightsabers and Force powers. The player can choose whether to use first or third-person perspective for each weapon, including the lightsaber. Combat is standard for the shooter genre, offering players an array of energy and projectile weapons, plus a variety of explosives. Players have health and shield meters, each of which is replenished separately.
Jedi Outcast places a strong emphasis on lightsaber combat. As in the films, lightsabers can be used to deflect shots from blasters. The game offers three lightsaber styles; fast, medium and strong, with each style differing from the others in terms of the speed of attacks and damage dealt. There are also a number of combos, many of which are unique to the selected saber style.
Force powers (such as Push, Jump, and Lightning) are available in both single-player and multiplayer modes, but more powers can be used in the latter. The use of powers is restricted by a "Force Meter", which depletes with each use and gradually refills over time. The "level" of a Force power determines the strength of that power and the amount depleted from the Force meter during its use. The multiplayer mode divides players into Light Siders and Dark Siders, pitting each side against the other in team battles. Each side has access to both shared "Neutral" Force powers, which are mostly focused on increasing speed and athletic ability. There are also numerous powers unique to both Light and Dark sides. Light Side powers are mainly focused around protection and healing, while Dark Side powers are openly aggressive.
The game begins with Kyle Katarn and Jan Ors investigating a supposedly abandoned Imperial outpost on Kejim. However, when they arrive, they find the base crawling with Imperial forces. They fight their way through the base, discovering a research center studying crystals similar to those used to power lightsabers. Tracing the crystals' origin, Kyle and Jan travel to Artus Prime, a mining colony turned into an Imperial stronghold, where the miners have been enslaved and experimented upon. Katarn thwarts the Imperial operations, but not before Jan is captured by the Dark Jedi Desann and his apprentice Tavion. Kyle tries to rescue her, but, having forsaken the ways of the Jedi, he is easily defeated by Desann, who orders Tavion to kill Jan before they leave the planet.
With Jan dead, Kyle travels to the Valley of the Jedi to regain his Force powers, and then to the Jedi Academy to get his lightsaber. There, he learns of Desann's origins from Luke Skywalker. Luke offers Kyle his lightsaber back if he can complete a set of trials. Kyle completes the trials easily, so easily that Luke quickly deduces Kyle has returned to the Valley. Sensing Kyle's anger about the death of Jan, Luke warns Kyle that the path he is walking is a dangerous one, but he nevertheless gives Kyle the information he seeks, linking Desann to Reelo Baruk, a Rodian crime lord on Nar Shaddaa. Reelo proves to have little information, but Kyle stumbles upon Lando Calrissian, who has been imprisoned in Baruk's dungeons. From Lando, Kyle learns that Desann is a part of a huge operation smuggling cortosis, a lightsaber-resistant material, through Cloud City. Escaping from Reelo, Kyle and Lando then head for Bespin.
Lando drops Kyle off at the bottom of Cloud City, and as he works his way up the structure he has his first encounter with a Reborn. He subsequently fights several Reborn, plus numerous Remnants, until he eventually encounters Tavion, who is about to board a ship headed for Galak Fyyar's Star Destroyer, the Doomgiver. Kyle defeats Tavion and threatens to kill her, but Tavion pleads for her life, telling Kyle that Jan is alive and on board the Doomgiver. Jan's faked death was just a ploy to trick Kyle into going to the Valley of the Jedi in order for Desann to follow him there and tap its power. In exchange for her life, Tavion lets Kyle use her ship to travel to the Star Destroyer.
After fighting his way past some stormtroopers at the Cairn Installation - an Imperial base hidden on an asteroid in the Lenico Belt, where the Doomgiver is docked - Kyle meets up with Luke Skywalker. From Luke, Kyle learns that Desann has found the Valley of the Jedi, and used its energy to empower an army of Reborn which could number in the thousands. After battling several Reborn together, they part ways. Kyle then sneaks across the Cairn base and finds out it is also a large assault ship construction facility, which is preparing for a full-scale planetary assault. Kyle confronts more Reborn, including "Shadowtroopers" - Reborn equipped with armor which is both lightsaber-resistant, and allows a measure of invisibility. Kyle manages to sneak into the Doomgiver before the ship leaves Cairn, but Luke is left behind. After the Doomgiver completes its jump to hyperspace, Kyle uses the ship's communications array to contact Rogue Squadron. He finds Jan in the detention block, but then learns that Desann was not specifically interested in the Valley of the Jedi - instead his goal all along was to invade the Jedi Academy. Kyle destroys the Doomgiver's shield reactor, and kills Galak Fyyar. Narrowly escaping the ship's destruction, Kyle and Jan use an escape pod to land on Yavin IV.
With the invasion fully underway, Kyle heads to the Jedi Academy, while Jan goes to a hangar to assist in the aerial battle. Kyle soon finds the academy overrun with Imperial forces, but with the help of the New Republic troops, he fends them off. Together with Jedi Academy students, he engages in a fight against Reborn warriors and Shadowtroopers. After crossing underground tunnels, Kyle finally confronts Desann. He reveals the Doomgiver's destruction and the defeat of the Imperial forces, but Desann rejects Kyle's offer to rejoin the Jedi and they engage in a lightsaber battle. Kyle prevails and kills Desann. He subsequently reunites with Luke and Jan, and politely rebuffs Luke's offer to safeguard his lightsaber, saying he is not ready to forsake the Force again.
Differences between GameCube and Switch versions
- The GameCube version features multiplayer which is absent from the Switch release.
- The cutscenes in the GameCube version are FMV of the PC cutscenes, whereas in the Switch version the cutscenes are in real-time.
- The GameCube version features a character biographies section and concept art gallery which is absent from the Switch version.
- Official website (Archive)
- Star Wars: Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast on Nintendo.com (Archive)
- Star Wars: Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast on Wookieepedia, the Star Wars wiki