July 23, 2024


Step Into The Technology

History of the Star Wars Role-Playing Video Games

16 min read

Have you ever felt like Star Wars videogames do not dwell deep enough into the lore? Are you tired of Star Wars shooting games that feel like a carbon copy of other franchises? The Star Wars Role-Playing Games are the answer you seek!

For the past weeks, we’ve been covering the best Star Wars videogames for different genres, action-adventure, First-Person Shooters, and this time it’s the turn of RPGs.

Role-playing games have top storytelling, huge locations that are fun to explore and well-written characters. These elements (and more) will make a good RPG game a memorable experience.

Just like with every other genre, Star Wars has us covered. This time, we get to talk about some of the most iconic RPGs ever made, including the Knights of the Old Republic games – two of the best Star Wars games ever made. A remake has been announced so now it’s the perfect time for you to play the original games!

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is regarded as one of the best Star Wars games ever but also one of the best RPGs, it changed Star Wars forever, the story has different layers of depth that you can choose to explore or just stick to the main story, which is still complex. The way it forces you to make decisions that actually matter for the development of the story is something that current Star Wars games rarely do.

KOTOR cover - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

It was developed by Bioware and published by LucasArts in 2003. Originally released for Xbox, PC and Mac OS. It is currently available for PC (steam), Nintendo Switch, Xbox. 

As a role-playing game, most decisions are aligned with the light side or the dark side, so everything you do matters. The game will track your decisions and will adjust accordingly, from small dialogue changes to plot twists that will change the fate of every character involved. If you’ve ever wanted to be a cruel Jedi that uses the dark side to crush your opponents this is the game for you, but I must warn you, once you cross the line, there’s no return from it. 

KOTOR alignment

It all takes place almost four thousand years before A New Hope, in an era of constant conflict between the old Republic and the mighty Sith Empire. If you haven’t played it and decide to, you’ll hear terms and names that you might not be familiar with, so let me give you a quick recap of the events that happened right before the game.

The Mandalorian clans, some of the fiercest warriors of the galaxy decided that they wanted to expand their empire, so they attacked republic worlds. The Jedi Council refused to aid the republic in this war, two powerful Jedi Knights went against their orders and rallied a group of Jedi to help the worlds under attack. They managed to turn the tide of the battle and eventually defeated the Mandalorians, but when they came back something was different. They returned as two Sith Lords, Darth Revan and Darth Malak, the saviors of the Republic were back as conquerors.

SWTOR and KOTOR Malak and Revan - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

In a desperate effort, a Jedi strike team led by Bastila Shan boarded Revan’s ship and when he was about to be captured, Malak turned on him and attacked his master, killing him. Now, Darth Malak is the one leading the Empire and it’s your mission to stop him from taking control of what’s left of the Republic.

The premise of the story is relatively simple, after an attack on your ship, you end up stranded on Taris, a planet under the Sith Empire’s control. You must find an important Jedi Knight that was captured and then leave the planet. Later, you find out about mysterious Star Maps and their connection to Darth Revan and Darth Malak, the former Jedi that turned on the Republic. Naturally, you’ll go search for these maps and find the truth behind known and unknown questions.

KOTOR star map

Things might look unclear at the beginning, but the pieces of the puzzle will start falling into their places as you progress. The story is full of plot twists and events that will blow your mind.

Despite the graphics being completely outdated, all the places have different vibes and characteristics that make them recognizable and memorable. You can interact with something or someone almost everywhere, even less important characters have a story to share and these are some of the little details that make this game feel complete.

The quest will take you to Korriban, Manaan, Kashyyyk, Dantooine, Taris, Tatooine and more locations that I won’t name to avoid spoilers. All of them with unique native species, ecosystems, political structures and ancient dangers within. Each of these places has a historical background, if you pay attention, you will learn some of it. Though it won’t necessarily benefit your gameplay, I’m certain it will help you appreciate the amount of love and effort that was put behind this game. 

KOTOR gameplay - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

I consider characters to be the most important element in a game, if I can’t relate to them, I won’t enjoy a game as much as I could. If you happen to also be like this then you are going to love Knights of the Old Republic. 

Throughout the story, you will meet and integrate new companions to your crew, nine to be precise. Every companion has a very defined personality, a background and won’t hesitate to stand their ground against your orders if they disagree with them. Being aligned to the light or dark side will impact how you interact with them. Your crew is made out of one republic officer, a Mandalorian veteran, a protocol droid, a loyal Wookie, a smart Twi’lek, an assassin droid and 3 Jedi that are very different from each other. 


How you use your crew and their skills is up to you. That’s if you don’t go full Anakin Skywalker and kill them, it doesn’t even have to be intentional, one misclick on a dialogue option and you’ll be a crew member down for the entire game (it happened to me the first time I played it). 

As I just mentioned, you and your companions can learn different skills. These include computer use, demolitions, stealth, awareness, persuade, repair, security and treat injury. Some are useful in combat; others grant you extra dialogue choices or change your approach when infiltrating an enemy base. Not everyone can learn all of them and some of them excel in one particular skill, be mindful of this.


As with any RPG, you can customize your appearance. There are not that many choices in Knights of the Old Republic, lots of the armors are just repaints. Lightsaber customization is by far my favorite, choosing colors and configuration was super fun back in the day. You’ll need to balance aesthetics and stats accordingly.

The combat system is turn-based, I’m not a fan of it but everything else was so good that it really didn’t matter. It still requires a decent amount of strategy when you play against bosses and other force users. One of my favorite things is the number of different types of enemies; Gamorreans, Sith acolytes, Mandalorians, ancient droids, or the mighty Terentateks. They are all unique and using the wrong strategy will prove catastrophic in the later stages of the game.

KOTOR Lightsaber Gameplay - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

You’ll be immersed for hours and hours, especially if you want to explore and discover every hidden secret. The story is unparalleled, with ideas that you might not have considered before when thinking about Star Wars, you even can establish romantic relationships with some of your companions, there’s a plot twist reveal that will blow your mind, I still remember my first reaction when I played it for the first time. Needless to say, this is my all-time favorite Star Wars game and if you haven’t played it, I urge you to do so. I promise you won’t regret it! 

After the success of Knights of the Old Republic, the fans were eager to get a sequel to this masterpiece. And we got what we wanted, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords. This time, Obsidian Entertainment was the studio in charge of the game, it was released on 2004 for Xbox and a couple months later for PC.

Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords takes place 5 years after the first game ended. This time you play as the Jedi Exile, a Jedi that fought alongside Revan in the Mandalorian Wars. A traumatic event that took place in Malachor V at the end of the war made the Jedi Exile sever her connection to the Force. After returning to the Republic, she was banned from the Jedi Order and wandered around the galaxy for almost 10 years.

KOTOR 2 Logo - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

It is a perilous time for the galaxy. A brutal civil war has all but destroyed the Jedi Order, leaving the ailing Republic on the verge of collapse.

Amid the turmoil, the evil Sith have spread across the galaxy, hunting down and destroying the remaining Jedi Knights. Narrowly escaping a deadly Sith ambush, the last known Jedi clings to life aboard a battered freighter near the ravaged world of Peragus…”

This game is tied directly to the first Knights of The Republic, so the game will ask you how the previous one ended. The fundamentals of the game are the same, combat system, skills, customization. There are some new companions but there are a couple returning from the first game, this is very cool as you watch how they’ve progressed. Even the Ebon Hawk is back!

KOTOR 2 Korriban

Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords introduces Kreia, in my humble opinion, the most interesting and complex character a Star Wars game has ever produced.

Kreia is a historian and the last Jedi Master that trained Revan, she questions and views the Force in a very different way. To her, the Force is alive and it controls everyone to achieve some sort of balance, regardless of how many lives or suffering it takes.

If you’ve read Friedrich Nietzsche’s or Carl Jung’s work you might be familiar with the way she questions everything we know about the Force.

KOTOR 2 Kreia

We also get to know two of the deadliest Sith to ever exist, Darth Sion (Lord of Pain) and Darth Nihilus (Lord of Hunger). Darth Sion is a terrifying enemy that was killed a long time ago, however, he’s able to channel his hatred and rage to return from the dead every time that he dies.

Darth Nihilus survived the catastrophic event on Malachor V (the same that cut the Jedi Exile’s connection to the Force) but it left him agonizing, his only way to continue existing is by draining the Force out of living creatures, he’s cursed to a never-ending hunger. 

KOTOR II Nihilus

The locations for this game include Iziz, Dxun, Malachor V, Nar Shaddaa, Peragus, Telos, Dantooine and Korriban. This is one of the few aspects of the game that do not match its predecessor (or at least that’s how I feel about it), don’t get me wrong, they are well made but exploration is limited and there aren’t as many elements to interact with. 

Malachor V, a moment from the Rebels TV Series.

Dialogues are much more complicated and deeper than the first one so I wouldn’t recommend rushing through the conversations, there’s a purpose for them and if you read between the lines, you’ll be able to figure things out before they happen. 

A game that might feel shorter and with fewer features than the first Knights of the Old Republic, but that compensates for it with amazing storytelling and philosophical questions that will give you a different perspective about not only Star Wars but life itself. 

Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords is another incredible game in other ways than the first one. Which makes it feel fresh and different while still capturing the core elements that made us love Knights of the Old Republic. 

KOTOR 2 gameplay

If you haven’t, please go and play this beautiful game. It’s an amazing experience that you won’t forget in the near future. 

Knights of the Old Republic games are incredible and everybody loves them, but they lacked one important feature; multiplayer. The only way to share the experience was by having a friend/sibling watch you play or the other way around, it’s not the worst thing in the world but let’s be honest, it’s not fun to experience a game in such a manner.

This would not be the case with the release of Star Wars Galaxies, the first Star Wars-themed MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game).

Developed by Sony Online Entertainment and published by LucasArts in 2003, SWG defined a new way to connect Star Wars fans from all over the world. After the base game launch, 3 major expansions were released. Like most MMORPGs, a subscription was charged monthly ($14.99 USD).

SWG cover - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

SWG does have a campaign, however, it is nothing too special. It takes place between Episode IV and Episode V and consists of 7 Story arcs that will take you across different planets and locations, you’ll encounter familiar faces and face different kinds of enemies, like most Star Wars games.

The fun part about SWG is the endless possibilities; up to 10 playable species, 40 species that appeared as non-playable characters throughout the game, more than 40 professions for your character to choose from. Players could construct and own buildings, then group them and create a city.

Do you want to be a leader for your fellow players? Well, every 3 weeks you could run to be the Major in the elections. As cities grew, more and better services would become available.

SWG guild - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

A Star Wars game as big as this one wouldn’t be complete with a decent selection of vehicles, more than 35 usable ships and vehicles from different factions were available to explore or battle. Battle? Yes, MMOs are all about grouping with your friends and doing different activities, my favorite one has always been fighting huge PvP battles, SWG made this possible for fans that wanted to try the experience in a Star Wars environment.

SWG pvp - Star Wars Role-Playing Games

The economy of the game was run almost entirely by players; weapons, food, housing, clothes and every useful item had to be crafted using collected materials from different planets.

My favorite feature of this game was the possibility to place a bounty on an enemy player that killed you. Players who picked “bounty hunter” as their profession could pick up that mission and hunt down said player. I really hope to see that game mechanic used in a future Star Wars game.

Chat, guilds, emotes and moods improved the communication between players and allowed it you to express yourself in a very genuine form.

SWG group

Star Wars Galaxies was something special and people spent millions of hours with their friends playing it. It was officially shut down on December 15th,2011. The main reason behind this decision was that Star Wars: The Old Republic was going to replace it. However, people are still playing it! That’s a true testament to its legacy.

This brings us to our final destination, where every good aspect of the previous games combines into a single one: Star Wars: The Old Republic Another MMORPG, was developed by Bioware and LucasArts.

Note: If this is your first time visiting VULKK.com, be sure to stop by the SWTOR Category. We are covering this MMP very thoroughly for years here with in-depth guides, tutorials and news. Whether you are a new player just starting or a veteran of the game, you will likely find a lot of useful content here to help make your journey more pleasant and fun!

With a budget of over 200 million dollars, it’s one of the more expensive games ever made. You can subscribe for $14.99 USD per month or be a free-to-play user (F2P), the limitations for F2P players are considerable so have that in mind.

This game takes place roughly 300 years after the first KOTOR game. The Republic prospered, and peace reigned across the galaxy, but nothing is eternal. The Sith Empire returned and in a smooth offensive they conquered dozens of worlds, the Republic lost thousands of Jedi and soldiers fighting this re-emerging threat.

For twenty-eight years the war dragged on until a powerful sith called Darth Malgus lead an attack on Coruscant, with the planet hostage, they forced the Republic to sign the Treaty of Coruscant, an armistice that established peace between both factions at the cost of the Republic losing control of half of their systems.

SWTOR deceived

Your story begins after these events. You can choose to fight with the Sith Empire or the Galactic Republic, each faction has 4 main classes with a counterpart on the other side; Bounty Hunter-Smuggler, Sith Warrior-Jedi Knight, Imperial Agent-Trooper & Sith Inquisitor-Jedi Consular. Each class allowed you to choose 2 different specializations. However, recent changes made it possible for you to pick any storyline while not having to commit to the combat style of said class.

All class stories are different and while some are better than others, everyone should play all of them, at least once. Depending on which class you choose, different companions will aid you in your quest and prove themselves in battle. If you like drama, romance, treachery and endless fights then you’re going to love it.

It’s safe to say that SWTOR is the Star Wars game with the most content out there. For more than 10 years Bioware has released several expansions and additional content. I spent hundreds or even thousands of hours playing it and I’m not even close to experiencing everything available.

The number of things you can do with a group of friends is crazy. PvE challenges demand different amounts of people and skills, some of them are easy and others will require you and your group to coordinate to avoid getting wiped out by a powerful boss.

If PvP is more your thing, you can have a friendly 1v1 duel with someone, enjoy some open-world PvP or jump into different maps where you can fight in an arena until death or complete the objectives before the enemy team.

Swtor group

There are over 30 planets/major locations that you can explore, all of them have different biomes, world bosses, hidden secrets and missions. The further you advance, the higher chances you get of running into a player of the enemy faction.

As you might imagine, these planets are massive, going from point A to point B can be tedious when you’re starting. Mounts will allow you to finish your missions faster. There are dozens of them; Tauntauns, racer pods, walkers, Rancors, speeder bikes, jet packs, you name it. All of them come in different colors so there’s a perfect mount for everyone.

The customization is unmatched, with hundreds of individual armor pieces, weapons and color dyes the possibilities are endless. If you want to look like Din Djarin, use the mask of Darth Nihilus or wear trooper armor with your friends it is all possible. Even fashion contests are held in SWTOR!

Story classes are super fun, but the expansions took it to the next level. The Hutt Cartel, a legendary warrior that returns from unknown space and an immortal being that will make both the Empire and Republic kneel before him, are some of the things you’ll face in the expansions. If you are subscribed you don’t need to pay extra for them, you can even buy one month sub and they’ll be available after your subscription ends.

Other classic MMO features like housing, guild ships, chat and emotes are present in SWTOR. There are two ways to obtain the more valuable stuff in the game. The first one is buying Cartel Coins with real money and use them to buy the items you want, the second one is earning credits and use those credits to purchase what you want from another player. Gathering materials and crafting items is a very good way to obtain credits.

SWTOR Stronghold

Like KOTOR games, you’re aligned to the dark or the light side. Some decisions aren’t a big deal but you’ll reach a certain point in the story where your actions are definitive and irreversible.

By no means this is a perfect game, there have been some questionable decisions and players have abandoned the game because they don’t agree with how it has been handled. However, it’s still an incredible game and I doubt we’ll get to see something this good in the next 5-10 years. Just like the other games in this article, I believe every Star Wars fan should try it at least once.

SWTOR Setlon

This is the game that I’ve spent the most hours in and I love it with all its flaws. If you decide to give it a chance, I hope you get to enjoy the story, the characters, the music and everything that makes this game the definitive Star Wars RPG game.

In the end, I think it’s worth mentioning a title most of you may have never heard: Star Wars Combine. This browser role-playing game was released in 1998. So, technically, it should have been mentioned before the “Big Four”, but I have never played it before and only came across it while doing the extra research for this article.

Star Wars Combine (SWC) is a real-time massively multiplayer online browser game, set in the Star Wars universe as a persistent world. It was released in December 1998 as a sort of continuation of a game that existed between the mid-90s and summer 1998 known as Star Wars Simulation. When the Sim Master disappeared suddenly – and the servers were shut down soon after – some players of that stranded community decided to create their own version of the game that evolved a lot through the years and took its own path. Combine is not licensed by LucasArts, but is permitted to use the setting. Star Wars Combine was ranked 88th in the Top 100 games of All-Time by PC Gamer in its March 2012 issue.” – from Wikipedia.

Whic Star Wars RPG video game did you enjoy the most? Are you playing any of these titles even today? One way or another, you can enjoy them even in 2022. And with the KOTOR Remake, exciting things are coming for all of us Star Wars fans!

hopeforharmonie.co.uk | Newsphere by AF themes.