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Best characters in Star Wars video games

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Even though Disney threw the Star Wars Extended Universe straight into the strongest trash compactor in the company’s possession, I believe even many lovers of the original Star Wars trilogy would agree that some Star Wars video games feature some characters more compelling than anything seen in a lot of what Disney considers canon.

Let’s look at some characters that could go toe-to-toe with Han Solo popularity-wise, shall we?

Sion in Kotor 2
Image by Obsidian

Darth Sion

The Star Wars extended universe has seen many characters using The Force in peculiar ways, but I doubt you’ll find a Star Wars story where characters make more interesting use of it than in Knights of the Old Republic 2.

Darth Sion is literally holding himself together through the force of his spite. Though his mind is nearly lost, this hamburger of a man makes great use of his anger not just to prevent his broken body from crumbling into tiny pieces, but to become physically indestructible. Sion is both a great addition to the Dark Side of the Force, as well as a great allegory to the real dark side of man.

The only way to beat Sion is by talking him out of his hatred, which plays like the antithesis to Monkey Island‘s insult sword fighting. Is this a mere coincidence, or is it the best easter egg in the history of Lucasarts?

Nihilus in Kotor 2
Image by Obsidian

Darth Nihilus

Nihilus is likely the strongest Sith to ever exist, but his life’s story could serve as a cautionary tale insightful enough to make any young Jedi give up on the idea of messing with the Dark Side.

Though he’s somehow achieved Force powers that give him the ability to render an entire planet devoid of life, he can’t do much more than roam the galaxy in search of the next planet to devour. He can’t even really speak anymore, but he does command a derelict ship that looks like the Star Wars version of a ghost pirate ship, so maybe his life is not that bad…

Bastilla Shan

Bastilla Shan introduces us to what it means to be a Jedi in Star Wars Knights Of The Old Republic. There’s one twist, however. Instead of being a master like Obi-Wan who’s already completed their training and character arc by the time they meet Luke, Bastilla’s a prodigy on the Light Side who’s still susceptible to the lure of the Dark Side.

Though she acts very sure of herself at all times and offers great help and advice, it’s clear that she is still finding her path. She makes for the most compelling companion as the player determines what side of the Force they want to fall under.

Kyle Katarn in Jedi Outcast
Image by Disney

Kyle Katarn

Katarn was the first character in Star Wars video games to express his insecurities about The Force, and that alone makes him one of the series’ all-time greats. Even though he’s inevitably a good guy in Jedi Knight 2, the original Dark Forces 2: Jedi Knight allowed players to pick between Light and Dark Side abilities, as well as between a Light and Dark side outcome. Katarn isn’t one of the most interesting characters due to his dialogue, but due to the branching pathways he opened for the entire franchise.

Revan in Kotor
Image by Disney

Darth Revan

Revan is likely the Sith lord with the most interesting life story, and the less I spill about it, the better.

If you’re a fan of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, you likely know exactly why Revan is here. If you’re not, even though we’re talking about a game that’s over two decades old, I’d still like to ask potential fans to trust me when I say that this is one of the most interesting characters in the series.

Yes, I’m being secretive because his name is tied to a big reveal in the original Knights Of The Old Republic. And, while I don’t think that spoiling it would ruin the character or the game, I believe you should get to learn about Revan as BioWare intended: by playing KOTOR.

Dagan Gera in Jedi Survivor

Dagan Gera

Whereas most Star Wars Extended Universe tales try to come up with a new Darth Vader, the people behind Star Wars Jedi: Survivor at Respawn seemingly decided to come up with a new Sephiroth. While far from the most interesting villain in the series character-wise, Dagan Gera has something really cool going for him.

Gera isn’t a One-Winged Sith, but a One-Armed Outcast of the Jedi Order whose fighting ability remains unmatched. He proves a formidable opponent for Cal, making him an easy lock for this list.

Darth Malak

Darth Malak from the original Knights Of The Old Republic is the quintessential Sith lord. He acts like a friend to the most powerful Sith in his vicinity, but it’s naturally nothing more than a ruse to wait for the right moment to strike and take over. Much like the Emperor, he can convert Jedi to his cause but, unlike the Emperor, he actually looks like someone who could wield a lightsaber.

Another unique aspect of Malak is how you can have this apparent beacon of pure evil see the error of his ways out of common sense, and not just due to family ties. At the end of the game, Malak can feel more like a tragic figure than an all-out villain — unless his master plan was making us feel sad for him.

HK-47

I believe even fans wouldn’t diss me for saying that writers come up with some of the names of their Star Wars characters by recording and then writing down random noises. That doesn’t seem to be the case with HK-47, as its name originates from both a billiards team name and the real-life AK-47.

As it turns out, HK-47 is an all-out psycho whose dream is to kill as many organic lifeforms as possible. He’s the exact opposite of C-3PO, an incredibly courageous thing to put in a Star Wars property, and one of the coolest companions an aspiring Sith Lord can have.

Canderous Ordo in Kotor
Image via Steam

Canderous Ordo

Something went awry during the process of creating the Mandalorians we see in The Mandalorian TV show. What began as just a throwaway name used to describe the kind of armor Boba Fett wore in Empire and Jedi grew to become a race of zealots who see removing one’s helmet as the biggest sin in the galaxy.

The Mandalorian TV show makes me miss the good ol’ Canderous Ordo from the original KOTOR, a Mandalorian who was equally loyal and uninterested in helmets — even in battles where wearing one would’ve made sense. He returns in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo on KOTOR 2, and I challenge you to find who he is.

Kreia in Kotor 2
Image by Obsidian

Kreia

While KOTOR 2 couldn’t measure up to the original because of the buggy and unfinished state it came out in, there’s no denying that the devs at Obsidian surpassed all expectations regarding Star Wars characters. Instead of being an almost saintly Jedi, or a cartoonish Sith monster, Kreia is a being of immense power and knowledge who just wants to break the cycle.

She has a bone to pick with the Force and its apparent will, but instead of creating a big dumb space weapon to destroy it, she attacks by offering a counterpoint to all of the player’s ideas. She manages to create doubt where there used to be none, and does so in a way that you’ll wonder if it’s manipulative or actually honest.

When I first played the game, I found most interactions with Kreia excruciating. Still, I’ve grown to learn that Kreia’s way of subverting expectations by questioning everything the series seems to stand for makes her the most interesting character in Star Wars games.


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