24th Oct, 2022
Star Wars Knights Of the Old Republic 2 : The Sith Lords, or Kotor 2 for short, takes place a few years after the first installment. You play as a jedi exile traveling through the galaxy when you find yourself aboard the republic ship Harbinger. After a while the legendary ship from the previous game the Ebon Hawk(obvious nod to the millennium falcon) is found and captured and with it the harbinger gets followed by the sith, who don't seem like your usual run of the mill sith as well as the fact that canonically Darth Revan from the previous game was supposed to annihilate them at the Star Forge. You find yourself fleeing on the Ebon Hawk and being pursued by them. Being knocked unconscious your trusty droid fixes the ship well enough to get you to Peragus, a mining facility where the miners place you in a kolto tank.
Engine is very similar to the previous game, it still uses the modified ad&d engine with dice rolls governing the success of your every action and your skills imposing benefits and penalties. A bit has changed with the feats where its now supported to play as a 1 weapon carrying duelist, which has a lot more of a jedi feel than the previous game.
Graphics are pretty much the same as the predecessor, they are quite aged for the modern day, but were adequate at the time. You shouldn't expect too much, but then again these types of games aren't generally played for their graphics,
The main draw of kotor games is obviously the story, with the previous installment setting up the story with Revan going to the unknown region, to deal with the “true sith” and leaving behind quite a mess logistically speaking. The republic is pretty fractured and there are only threads still keeping it together. With the jedi all but gone, you will find yourself in a galaxy with a huge void power-wise and most importantly with the sith running around you will be hounded on every step. The antagonists in this game are much more hidden in this one, as opposed to Malak who was pretty much in your face the archetypal bad guy with his army of sith.
The obvious gem of this game are the companions, who tend to be extremely fleshed out and human-like. They arent clear cut good jedi and bad sith, with kreia being the crown-jewel of writing, being the protagonists foil no matter their light-dark side tendencies.
Obviously we can't talk about kotor 2 without mentioning the cut content and the state of the game at release. No Obisidian was obviously pretty pressed for time and EA pushed them pretty hard to keep to their release schedule. However all is not lost, there are plenty mods which restore the cut content and finish it off the way the developers meant it to end.
All in all kotor 2 is more than a worthy successor and in many ways eclipses the first installment, save for the buggy mess its release state was.