Biden's $400B vaccination plan Galaxy S21 preorders Google Doodle celebrates basketball inventor Drivers License breaks Spotify records WandaVision review Oculus Quest multiuser support Track your stimulus check
CNET editors pick the products and services we write about. When you buy through our links, we may get a commission.

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order sequel is looking likely

EA CEO Andrew Wilson referred to the game as the "first title in an entirely new franchise," hinting at further plans.

Electronic Arts released Star Wars: Jedi: Fallen Order on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC last November, and Google revealed in April that the game will come to cloud-streaming service Stadia sometime in 2020. Developer Respawn also dropped a surprise update on May the 4th (aka Star Wars Day) that adds a bunch of content, and EA's boss hinted at sequel plans in the company's earnings call.

EA created plenty of buzz when it teased this action adventure game from the beloved developer behind Titanfall and Apex Legends during the 2018 E3 video game conference. It was the publisher's first PS4, Xbox One and PC Star Wars release since Battlefront 2 came out in 2017 (with a bitter side dish of controversy). 

It tells the story of Cal Kestis, a Jedi Padawan who went into hiding after nearly all his comrades were killed at the end of the Clone Wars, between The Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope

ea-starwars-jedifallenorder

Cal takes on a Purge Trooper.

EA

What were the reviews like?

Jedi: Fallen Order was positively received last November and holds a Metacritc average of 79/100. Here are some snippets of the reviews (including mine!):

CNET -- "Despite some graphical oddities and questionable traversal choices, Respawn's game offers gripping narrative, intense lightsaber combat and wonderful worlds to explore."

GameSpot (CNET's sister site) -- "Even with some rough edges, Fallen Order represents one of the most compelling game additions to the Star Wars franchise in years."

Destructoid -- "You're going to occasionally roll your eyes at a cheesy moment or groan at a technical issue, but Respawn did right by Star Wars."

IGN -- "Fallen Order makes up for a lot of lost time with a fantastic single-player action-adventure that marks the return of the playable Jedi."

Kotaku -- That Fallen Order is a very straightforward and unremarkable ... sci-fi adventure makes it feel slight. But the fact that it adopts … the third-person, exploration-based action of games like Dark Souls feels radical.

Eurogamer -- "Fallen Order has an incredible gameplay experience at its core, with fantastic environments and well-directed action sequences. Yet it's unable to sustain this thanks to some fundamental design problems."

Polygon -- "Fallen Order is a flawed, sometimes messy game, but it's a Star Wars experience I didn't know I wanted. And after finishing it, I definitely want more.

swjfo-inline-media-free-content-update-4-jpg-adapt-crop16x9-1455w

You can dress Cal Kestis up like a bad guy and give him a sweet crimson blade after the free May 4 update.

EA

What was added in the May the 4th update?

The free update added a New Game Plus mode, which lets you to replay the campaign with "unlocked cosmetics." It also introduced "unique combat challenges" that let you battle enemies in an arena, as well as the ability to create your own challenges by placing enemies on a grid-based arena.

Read more: Best TVs for gaming in 2020: Low input lag and high picture quality

Along with those features, you get more cosmetics for Jedi hero Cal, including a dark side Inquisitor outfit and a matching red lightsaber option. You also have more color choices for his droid pal BD-1 and a few extra lightsaber hilts to choose from -- those are modeled on the kinds you can construct in Galaxy's Edge at Disney Parks.

Any chance of a sequel?

Nothing's been announced, but it's a near certainty. The game's ending leaves the door open for a sequel, and sales were high enough to warrant it -- EA CEO Andrew Wilson noted that "more than 10 million unique players have joined the game since launch" during the company's Q4 2020 earnings call. He also referred to the game as the "first title in an entirely new franchise," hinting at further plans.

We might learn more during the company's EA Play Live 2020 livestream event on June 11.

jedi-fallen-order-2

Cal and BD-1 stick together for the whole game.

EA

What's the deal with Cal Kestis?

Cal Kestis, played by Cameron Monaghan of Gotham and Shameless fame, is a Padawan who survived Order 66 at the end of the Clone Wars and is living under the radar between The Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope

"He's good-hearted, but he has a bit of emotional wall up," Monaghan told the official Star Wars Show on Nov. 6. "And he also has a very volatile relationship to being a Jedi and to the Force itself."

The game sees Cal living the quiet life on the planet Bracca in the galaxy's mid rim and working for the Scrapper Guild. He's helping to pull apart old capital ships from the Clone Wars.

"Don't stand out, accept the past, trust no one," Cal says in the trailer. "Trust only in the Force."

Unlike many Jedi-focused Star Wars games, you can't choose between the light and dark sides of the Force. Cal's path is set.

Now playing: Watch this: Disney Plus recognizes Star Wars Day, big tech companies...
1:30

Does Cal have any friends?

The Jedi might be pariahs under the Imperial regime, but Cal's not a total loner. BD-1, a droid ally remains by Cal's side (and on his back) for the whole game. Legendary sound designer Ben Burtt, the man who created the lightsaber's iconic hum, Darth Vader's breathing and R2-D2's beeps, voices BD-1.

Cal has former Jedi Knight Cere Junda, played by Debra Wilson of Madtv and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, as his mentor. Her early days are revealed in the comic series Jedi: Fallen Order -- Dark Temple. Their pilot is Greez Dritus, the Latero captain of the Stinger Mantis -- the ship Cal uses to get around.

Our Padawan runs into Saw Gerrera, the leader of the Partisan extremist rebel group from Rogue One (which takes place in the years after this game). This guy is voiced by Forest Whitaker, who played him in the movie and in the Rebels CGI animated series.

star-wars-jedi-fallen-order-inquisitors

The Second Sister leads a pair of purge troopers.

EA

Who are the bad guys?

The Second Sister, a member of the Jedi-hunting Imperial Inquisitorius, is on Cal's tail during the game. In the trailer, we see her hanging off a ship's viewport and impressively using the Force to control its flight stick and pull it off course.

This character previously appeared in the 19th issue of Charles Soule's amazing Darth Vader comic series, but that was just a cameo. She's the second-highest-ranking Inquisitor, a group introduced in the Rebels CGI animated series, so expect her to be pretty deadly.

Read more: The best wireless gaming headsets for 2020: PC, PS4, Xbox and Switch

Cal will also battle the hulking Ninth Sister, another Inquisitor seen in the Vader comics, in a boss battle.

The dark side users will be backed up by purge troopers, who investigate Jedi sightings and are trained to fight them using electrostaffs. If they can't get the job done, they summon the Inquisitors.

These guys also showed up in Vader comics, first appearing in No. 13, where it was revealed that they were from the last generation of clone troopers produced from Jango Fett's DNA (as seen in Attack of the Clones).

Do we know the PC spec requirements?

We sure do, the minimum requirements are:

  • Operating system: 64-bit Windows 7/8.1/10
  • Processor (AMD): FX-6100 or equivalent
  • Processor (Intel): i3-3220 or equivalent
  • Memory: 8GB
  • Graphics card (AMD): Radeon HD 7750 or equivalent
  • Graphics card (Nvidia): GeForce GTX 650 or equivalent
  • DirectX: DirectX 11 Compatible video card or equivalent
  • Hard-drive space: 55GB

Read more: Best gaming laptop performers in 2020: Alienware, Origin PC and more compared

Expect some pared-down visuals at that level. For the full visual experience, EA recommends:

  • Operating system: 64-bit Windows 7/8.1/10
  • Processor (AMD): Ryzen 7 1700 or equivalent
  • Processor (Intel): i7-6700K or equivalent
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Graphics card (AMD): RX Vega 56 or equivalent
  • Graphics card (Nvidia): GTX 1070 or equivalent
  • DirectX: 11 Compatible video card or equivalent
  • Hard-drive space: 55GB

Read more: Best gaming PCs for 2020

20190926-163741

Hasbro's Black Series Cal figure was revealed on Sept. 26.

Sean Keane/CNET

Will there be any sweet, sweet merch based on this game?

Oh yes, Star Wars and merch are like the prequels and gloriously awkward lines. You can't have one without the other. Cal with BD-1, the Second Sister (who has a shiny Carbonized variant) and the purge trooper are available in Hasbro's six-inch Black Series figure line.

91ddb51cfbl

The art book will include concept art, which is always cool to see.

Lucasfilm

Is there going to be any tie-in media?

Hope you like comics because Marvel revealed what Cere got up to as a Padawan, along with her master Eno Cordova, in a five-issue prequel comic miniseries. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order -- Dark Temple is written by Uncanny X-Men scribe Matthew Rosenberg, with art from Paolo Villanelli (who did the first issue of Vader: Dark Visions).

Dark Horse published a fancy art book -- The Art of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order -- detailing the game's development. It'll come out Nov. 19 and set you back $40.

"With detailed concept art of all-new characters, exciting weapons and equipment, and locales both familiar and new, this tome offers a behind-the-scenes look at the production of a hit game -- all accompanied by intimate artists' commentary that reveals how this incredible universe is brought together," reads the publisher's blurb.

Are there any other Jedi games?

So many, but only a few are single player adventures. If you're looking for a few bites of Force-wielding action to tide you over until November, these are good options. Keep in mind that none of them are part of the Star Wars canon anymore. They were swept aside when Lucasfilm Order 66'd everything but the movies and The Clone Wars CGI animated series in 2014.

Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast came out in 2002 and put you in the role of Kyle Katarn, a conflicted Jedi who's basically the Chuck Norris of the Star Wars universe, in the years after Return of the Jedi. This amazing game is pretty dated at this point, but the lightsaber combat is a delight. It came out for PC, GameCube and the original Xbox, and was rereleased on Nintendo Switch and PS4 last year.

Its 2003 sequel, Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy, is excellent too. You don't play as Kyle, which is sad, but you do get a customizable lightsaber with double-bladed or dual wielding options, which is awesome. You can play it on PC and Xbox, and came to Switch and PS4 in March 2020

the-force-unleashed

The Force Unleashed was a big deal in 2008.

LucasArts

The Force Unleashed, which came out in 2008, is a very similar game to Jedi: Fallen Order. This one sees you playing as Galen Marek, the supersecret apprentice of Darth Vader in the time period between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Needless to say, he didn't stay a secret for long and ended up more Jedi than Sith.

It's a short but decent action game that had staggering production values for the time and hit pretty much every gaming system on the market. The Xbox 360, PS3 and PC versions are the best, though.

Now playing: Watch this: Your guide to Star Wars lightsaber colors
2:16

The 2010 sequel, The Force Unleashed 2, isn't quite as well designed and ends on a cliff-hanger that'll be never be resolved since the third one was canned.

Knights of the Old Republic (aka KOTOR) remains the greatest Star Wars game ever made, but this 2003 classic -- set thousands of years before any of the movies -- is more of a role-playing game than an action title. Still, you absolutely must play it and its 2004 follow-up, then demand another sequel from EA.

There, that'll satisfy your urge for Jedi action.

Originally published May 22, 2019, and updated as we learn more.