Knights Of The Old Republic Revisited Review for PC (Steam Edition)

With Knights of the Old Republic came acclaim, countless awards, outstanding reviews and affirmation, for many this ment Bioware was still one of the premier Western styled RPG video game makers. So how has it held up in the 7 years since it’s launch?

Well unfortunately, not that great, as a PC gamer, it is not a matter of plugging in your old X-Box and thinking about the old memories. Instead, I saw the game on sale from steam for a very reasonable $2.50. (no, that is not a typo) With fond memories of Star Wars Kotor popping into my head, I anxiously launched the game thinking to myself how I probably would not sleep tonight.

At the game’s launch in 2003, the visuals were quite good even for PC standards. As a fan of Never Winter Nights, I found the up close and personal camera angel quite refreshing. The game play mechanics were almost identical, except magic was now replaced with ‘force powers’. Any NWN veteran could jump into KOTOR without even batting an eye. For those unfamiliar with NWN or D&D (KOTOR is built on a modified D&D rule set) the character creation screen was still easy to navigate and understand.

Unfortunately this is 2011 and my biggest problem is that I play on a 40″ 1080P television. KOTOR is from a time where people didn’t have high definition screens, or even wide screens for that matter. So while the entire game has to be played on a 4:3 aspect ratio, common for games of its time, all cutscenes are rendered in 640×480, which causes my screen to flicker for a split-second while the TV resolution is adjusted out of it’s 1280×1024 and back to the 640×480 for the pre-rendered cutscene. This of course is a technological issue that didn’t exist back in those days, but it sure puts a bit of a damper on the game now.

Aside from resolution issues, even running every setting completely maxed, it still looks very dated at this point in time. Once games reach a certain point, it is fun to have poor quality graphics, such as my old SNES. I don’t expect anything to look good compared to modern games, but there is an old charm to it. Unfortunately the Knight of the Old Republic game isn’t quite old enough to be in the cool old graphics stage, and it simply looks dated.

However, that’s not the biggest problem, this game had some bugs on launch, while they were not horrible, they could be a bit frustrating. Well somehow, during the steam port, it’s managed to pick up MORE bugs from all that time ago. I would have really appreciated a bugs patch since it was a steam re-lease, however now my main character constantly gets ‘stuck’ and cannot move in any direction. If you tab to a 2ndary character, they can move without issue and allows you to ‘unstick’ your main character. This is extremely problematic if everyone but your main character dies, forcing you to reload the game.

I think I’ll uninstall the game for now and continue drooling over videos from Knights of the Old Republic. For your Bioware fix, check out the Dragon Age series.

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