James Rawlinson was lucky enough to get a look at the RAVEN / LucasArts' presentation of Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast at this year's Quakecon. In fact, James was able to see the demo level twice. James was also kind enough to send in his thoughts about what he witnessed. I have to admit, James has got me even more pumped up about the game than ever before just by hearing how he describes Jedi Knight II. Here's his thoughts:
I have never been so excited to buy a game before in my life! I mean it, there were two presentations today (thursday) and I sat through them both! This game is simply UNREAL (no pun intended). I can't believe that what we saw was only roughly six months development.
Anyway, I'm sure you want to know what we saw. It was basically the E3 demo with a few additions. A demo level that looked to be some form of Imperial installation on an ice planet (not sure if it was supposed to be Hoth but I kinda doubt it). As far as weapons are concerned, they only showed the Bryar pistol, the Stormtrooper rifle, the Wookiee bowcaster, and Lightsaber. The Lightsaber is just amazing. Everytime that sucker was ignited, my jaw dropped and everyone viewing the presentation cheered. The way Kyle would swing it and hack off Stormtrooper arms was too cool. Also, the Stormtroopers would run and find a better firing position if they saw you pull it out. If you only had a gun, they would stand and fight. At the end of the demo level there is a big hangar where a duel would take place with some unnamed dark jedi. This, also, was stunning. It literally looked like the duel from the end of Episode 1.
They also showcased some of the force powers. We were able to see Kyle use force jump, force lightning, force grab, force push, Saber throw, and the infamous jedi mind trick. Force jump seems to be about the same as the original game except that there is a cool new flip animation thrown in for that added *cool* effect. Force lightning looks sooooo much better than it did in JK and MotS, it looks like it did when the Emperor was frying Luke in Jedi. Force grab could be used to pull weapons to you as well as enemies. Seriously cool when a Stormtrooper in a pesky position was jerked out of it and brought into saber striking distance. Force push is basically what it appears to be (works on droids too). The Jedi mind trick was the shit! If it was cast on a stormtrooper, you would see stars blinking around his head and you were basically invisible to him. Also, you could cast the mind trick next to the Stormtrooper and it would distract him causing him to investigate (ala Obi! Wan in ANH). During the Lightsaber duel at the end of the level, the dark jedi being fought used force choke on Kyle and hit him with lightning while choking.
They also dropped in some NPC jedi into the duel and at one point had three independant duels going on. Each of the NPC's seemed very intelligent as they all used the force powers, the all blocked attacks, and took advantages of openings in their opponent. Also shown to use was part of a new level that had never been seen before. It was the Hangar on Yavin 4 complete with war room This is what the new screenshot is from.
I had also recently read that there will be no bot support with JK2 (I don't remember where I read this) but they clarified that it WILL have full bot support. No word yet on whether or not there will be any dual ended Light sabers (ala Darth Maul) or not, and they are not sure if there will be a Linux port just yet. The projected release date is Spring 2002.
I don't think I've left anything out but if I remember something later, I'll let you know. There will not be anymore presentations until Saturday at 3:00pm and if you can, BE THERE. I plan on going back to watch it again. I soooooooooo can't wait for this game.