The Ten Best Star Wars Video Games

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The Star Wars franchise is best-known for its massive blockbuster films, full of movie magic and eye-catching spectacle. The fan-favorite film series has spawned countless video games, ranging from old-school platformers to first-person shooters and everything in between. Many Star Wars fans got into the galaxy far, far away by falling in love with a cult favorite game like Knights of the Old Republic or Republic Commando.

Star Wars Squadrons
A screenshot from ‘Star Wars Squadrons.’ Image Credit: EA | Disney

Today, we’re counting down the ten best Star Wars video games ever made. Some of these titles task players to save the galaxy as a noble Jedi Knight, while others set the player behind the controls of iconic starfighters. 

Whether you’re a longtime fan of Star Wars or a newcomer to the franchise, these are must-play games. The only thing better than watching a Jedi save the galaxy is holding the lightsaber yourself when the Sith arrive!

If you’re curious about other excellent video games, check out our list of the ten best indie games you probably haven’t played.

10. Star Wars Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast

Kyle Katarn made his first appearance in Dark Forces, but he came into his own in the Jedi Knight series. The once-unscrupulous bounty hunter gave up his fortune-hunting career as a mercenary and embraced the way of the Force in the first Jedi Knight title. The series hit its high mark with Star Wars Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast, which LucasArts released in 2002 for the Xbox and GameCube. 

The game introduced players to some of the best video game lightsaber combat ever released. Plentiful Force-empowered Sith warriors block Kyle’s path through the course of this third-person adventure, offering players a chance to prove their mastery of various lightsaber forms. 

Fighting against cannon-fodder enemies like Stormtroopers is a blast thanks to the game’s deep Force power system. Jedi Knight 2 features a suite of classic Force powers, like Force push and speed boosts. 

9. Star Wars: Dark Forces

Dark Forces is notable for introducing the Star Wars universe to the FPS genre. Players control Kyle Katarn, a bounty hunter who takes up arms against the dangerous Galactic Empire. The game was a popular early “Doom clone,” a shooting game presented from a first-person perspective.

Despite the moniker, Dark Forces was far from a clone of Doom. It ran on a unique bespoke Jedi Game Engine, created by LucasArts for the project. The engine allowed players to explore levels with multiple floors and the ability to look up and down. This advanced tech set it apart from other “Doom clones” of the era and marked it as a technologically advanced evolution for the FPS genre.

Dark Forces’ story sees Katarn uncovering a dangerous Imperial experiment: the Dark Trooper project. Fans of The Mandalorian will recognize Dark Troopers as the unstoppable droid antagonist from the show’s second season.

8. Star Wars: TIE Fighter

Star Wars: TIE Fighter is the grandfather of modern flight sims. LucasArts released the old-school dogfighting title in 1994 to rave reviews. Flight simulator aficionados adored the game’s deep gameplay systems, including the ability to pilot numerous Imperial craft.

In the single-player story mode, players control an Imperial TIE Fighter pilot in missions against the Rebel Alliance. Before each flight, the player receives an in-depth briefing from an Imperial officer, preparing them for the various conditions that pilots find in each scenario.

Gameplay is fast-paced and frenetic, with dogfights demanding fast reflexes and split-second decision-making. TIE Fighter is a fan-favorite flight simulator and is considered one of the best dogfighting video games ever made. 

7. Star Wars Battlefront II (2017)

The 2017 Star Wars Battlefront II had a rocky launch. It sported an egregious monetization model, locking named characters like Yoda and Darth Vader behind paid loot boxes. The game was at the center of a firestorm in video game discourse regarding “pay-to-win” mechanics in online games. Publisher EA received negative press as a result of Battlefront’s loot boxes and eventually overhauled the game’s progression system.

After a series of updates, developers DICE transformed Battlefront II from an offensive cash-grab into an excellent multiplayer title. The game is gorgeous and sports an incredible selection of maps from all three eras of the iconic films. 

Battlefront II, as it currently stands, is a treasure trove of content for fans of the entire Star Wars saga. It’s the only game that lets you play as a clone trooper in one match and as Kylo Ren in the very next lobby. It’s all the fun of playing with a chest full of Star Wars toys but rendered in glorious 4K definition.

6. Star Wars: Republic Commando

If Dark Forces introduced Star Wars to the FPS genre, Republic Commando perfected the mechanics of toting a blaster in a Star Wars game. Players control a specialized clone commando and lead a tight-knit four-man squad through dangerous black-ops missions.

The game’s best moments emerge during tense firefights. Players can issue commands to their squadmates, having them take up tactical positions around the map to flank swarms of enemies. 

The game is notable among Star Wars fans for introducing players to the clone trooper’s personalities more deeply than the prequel films. Republic Commando treats the clones as more than expendable cannon fodder, fleshing them out as realistic characters with distinct personalities.

5. Star Wars Episode 1: Pod Racer

Who would have guessed that one of the best Star Wars games ever made would be a racing game based on The Phantom Menace? Unlike the disastrous 1999 movie, the tie-in game Star Wars Episode 1: Pod Racer is fantastic from start to finish. Players choose their favorite futuristic pod racer and take on opponents across multiple alien environments. 

All of the characters seen during the Episode 1 racing sequence appear in the game. Each has unique handling and stats, encouraging players to experiment with different pilots to find their favorite.

The game is the best-selling sci-fi racing title ever released, beating out cult classics like F-Zero and Wipeout. It received an excellent HD port in 2020, so players who missed the original can check it out on modern systems like the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.

4. Star Wars Battlefront II (2005)

The original Star Wars Battlefront II, released in 2005, is one of the best multiplayer shooting games ever released. It features a third-person perspective and a sprawling single-player storyline that fleshes out the various battles of the prequel era. 

The game is best remembered for its multiplayer battles, though. It allowed players to control countless clone trooper varieties and pilot vehicles like the Saber tank and BARC speeder. Likewise, players could take the role of battle droids like Droidekas and B2s during large-scale assaults on enemy ships. Battlefront II is a fan favorite thanks to its attention to detail and countless player options.

3. Star Wars Squadrons

Star Wars Squadrons is a spiritual successor to TIE Fighter, streamlining the flight sim genre for a modern audience. Players control a custom character and choose to be either New Republic or Imperial pilots, taking on other players in chaotic multiplayer dogfights.

The game features numerous ship options, from lumbering Y-Wing bombers to agile A-Wing interceptors. Players can customize their load-outs to specialize their ships for specific roles in the wide-ranging multiplayer modes.

A short-but-sweet story mode allows newcomers to familiarize themselves with the basics of flight simulation gameplay. Squadrons is a must-play game for fans of space battles and high-octane multiplayer contests.

2. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is a sublime video game. The first time protagonist Cal Kestis ignites his lightsaber, the blade sizzles to life in a torrential rainstorm. Raindrops pop and hiss off the laser, and the stoic former Padawan faces off with the villainous Second Sister in an unwinnable duel. 

Fallen Order marries the classic combat formula of games like Dark Souls to the upgrade-based exploration of Metroid and Castlevania. Cal is an endearing protagonist who brings optimism tempered with a world-weary mistrust of authority to the proceedings. Supporting characters like Cere Junda illustrate how the survivors of Order 66 made their way through a galaxy without the Jedi Order.

Star Wars Jedi focuses on exploration and combat in equal measure. Some have called the game “Tomb Raider with lightsabers.” Fans of single-player adventure games love Star Wars Jedi for its old-school level design and plentiful collectibles. Completionists will find a title with dozens of hours of content for them to lose themselves in.

1. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

Knights of the Old Republic is a beloved RPG, developed by the legendary studio BioWare. While modern fans might recognize BioWare as the developers of Dragon Age and Mass Effect, Star Wars fans will always remember the studio for KOTOR. 

In KOTOR, players create their custom characters and choose to follow either the Light or Dark Side of the Force. Critics lauded the game on release for offering players the freedom to forge their narrative in a unique era of the Star Wars saga.

The game takes place thousands of years before the events of The Phantom Menace, giving BioWare space to tell a unique story outside of the confines of the movies. This fresh direction and emphasis on players’ choices make KOTOR one of the best Star Wars games ever made.