Why Star Wars Jedi: Survivor was the game I needed in 2023

Greez Dritus is back in action in Star Wars Jedi: Survivor - Image courtesy Respawn Entertainment, EA, and Lucasfilm Games
Greez Dritus is back in action in Star Wars Jedi: Survivor - Image courtesy Respawn Entertainment, EA, and Lucasfilm Games /

Star Wars Jedi: Survivor came out almost exactly a week before my May 4 wedding. This meant two things: One, that I didn’t have the time to sit down and start it until a week after release — but two: We used some of our wedding money to impulse-buy a PS5 so we could play it as soon as we got home. It was, as you can probably guess, 100% worth the wait.

I’m not a great gamer — I raised myself on Zoo Tycoon and The Sims, and anything more action-heavy than that can get a little overwhelming. So my husband and I play together — he does most of the work, let’s be honest, but I help him out with puzzles and cheer him on (you really do need a cheerleader for those godforsaken Force Tears). This allows me to fully absorb and marinate on the story, which really sent me on an emotional journey with Survivor.

Cal is a character who lost everything once, and continues to lose the people he loves in ways he doesn’t expect. He’s also on this spiritual journey throughout both games, trying to figure out who he is and what he wants to give back to the galaxy.

It’s me, hi, I am Cal Kestis. I’m a survivor of many things I don’t like to talk about, but I’m also a wanderer. I don’t know where I’m supposed to be going or where I’m going to end up as a result. I miss the people I’ve lost. I’m constantly afraid of losing the people I still have.

There’s a point in this game where Cal just loses it. He can’t take it anymore. Nothing is going the way he planned. Everything is too hard. He completely loses control.

Every low point I’ve hit this year, I’ve thought about Cal, and how he’s been through it all and he’s gotten through it before — how he’ll get through it again.

I know this is just another Star Wars video game to some people. But to me, it’s a near-constant reminder that no matter where I end up, I won’t be alone.

Fingers crossed for more Star Wars games like this in the years to come — games that are not only fun to play, but also make us think deeper about the meaning of life. Finding purpose. What it looks like to grieve. Who matters most to us. What it means to find a family when it feels you’ve lost the only one you’ve ever known.

Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is available to purchase on PlayStation and Xbox consoles and PC.

Next. Is Jedi: Survivor the Empire Strikes Back of its own trilogy?. dark

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