When Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order was released in 2019, it proved a surprising success, largely thanks to the simplicity and straightforwardness of its premise.
Finally, here was a Star Wars adventure with no microtransactions, no crowbarred-in multiplayer elements, and no weird central gimmick that threatened to drown everything else out.
Instead, the game was a succinct, enjoyable 3D Metroidvania adventure with Soulslike-esque combat, and it told a perfectly good story as well.
Earlier this year, the sequel, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, was released for PS5. It continues the story of Cal Kestis, who’s still attempting to find a safe haven from which to resist the yoke of the Galactic Empire.
If you were paying attention to gaming news around the time of the game’s release, you may remember its reception was somewhat mixed, so we’re here to answer the following question definitively: is Star Wars Jedi: Survivor on PS5 the adventure you’ve been waiting for?
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is a great followup to Fallen Order
Let’s get one thing straight first of all: if you really enjoyed Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, then you’re almost certainly going to love Survivor.
Conceptually, the two games are very similar indeed. Survivor largely follows the gameplay template established by its predecessor, consisting as it does mostly of climbing sections, combat, and puzzle-based exploration.
This time around, the worlds are bigger, the puzzles are a little more involved, and the combat is against more varied enemies, but for the most part, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is going to feel familiar if you’ve rinsed Fallen Order.
In many ways, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is the perfect sequel to Fallen Order; it’s bigger, more complex, and longer, so if what you want is Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order but with more stuff to do, then this is the perfect adventure for you.
Performance on PS5 leaves a lot to be desired
Much of the criticism surrounding Star Wars Jedi: Survivor’s performance revolved around the PC version, which many players said was unacceptably poor.
Unfortunately, the same could arguably be said of the PS5 version. There are two modes available in the game, as is the case with many modern games, with one favouring resolution and the other favouring performance.
The resolution-favouring mode is fine, although it does lock the action to 30 frames per second, which, for many, will be an unacceptable tradeoff to make.
The performance mode, however, is poor verging on disastrous, with fuzzy textures and lacklustre visuals failing to mask constantly dropping and lurching frame rates.
To put it simply, if what you want is a complete and stable experience that’s going to feel like a modern triple-A game rather than an Early Access title, then it’s safe to wait for Star Wars Jedi: Survivor to get a few more patches, although at this stage, many of the game’s issues feel too deep-seated to be fixed with patches.
The story in Star Wars Jedi: Survivor has proven divisive
One area in which critics and players have been divided over Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is its narrative.
As we’ve established, the game tells the story of Cal Kestis, who’s parted ways with his ragtag band of allies from the first game in order to take the fight to the Empire himself.
As Survivor opens, a mission to steal data from an Imperial senator goes badly wrong, and Cal sets out to find a planet that will keep him and his friends safe from the increasingly long-ranging reach of the Empire.
Those who like Star Wars Jedi: Survivor’s story praise its renewed character emphasis, strong writing, and emotional gut punches, but not everyone is in the game’s corner on this front.
Some criticise Star Wars Jedi: Survivor for an unfocused narrative with no clear antagonist (other than the nebulous Empire), and the quality of the dialogue and ambient writing throughout has also been debated.
Suffice it to say that there’s really no way of knowing whether you’re going to like Survivor’s story until you try it out for yourself, but if you’re looking for something clear and morally unambiguous like the original Star Wars, you may want to look elsewhere.
Customisation in Star Wars Jedi: Survivor has been greatly expanded
It might sound like a frivolous additional element, but Star Wars Jedi: Survivor has massively expanded the number of customisation options you have at your disposal when it comes to changing Cal’s look.
You can switch up Cal’s facial hair, his hairstyle, and various elements of his clothing, and you can also customise both his lightsaber and the way his little robot pal BD-1 looks.
Many of the rewards you’ll get for completing optional platforming or combat challenges are customisation-related, so if this isn’t an area in which you’re particularly interested, then you may find that Survivor lacks meaningful extra content.
However, if you’re looking for more ways to deck Cal out exactly as you want him, then Star Wars Jedi: Survivor has you covered. You’ll likely spend many hours just sifting through the various looks Cal has and picking your favourite.
As ever, it’s impossible for us to directly tell you whether you’re going to like Star Wars Jedi: Survivor or not, but here’s a quick and handy cheat sheet.
You should buy Star Wars Jedi: Survivor if:
- You loved Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.
- You love the Star Wars universe.
- You want a protagonist who’s extensively customisable.
You should not buy Star Wars Jedi: Survivor if:
- You want a stable 60fps gaming experience.
- You didn’t like Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.
- You’re looking for something truly innovative.