Pick your poison.
Fear is a normal part of being human. Some fears are irrational: a fear of spiders, the dark; and others are purely fictional: vampires, zombies, a Rian Johnson Star Wars trilogy, you know things that don't (and never will) exist. However with Respawn Entertainments Jedi: Fallen Order's new update comes the battle grid: a new mode available to all players who have finished the game that allows you to live out your dream battle as well as bring to life your worst, most terrible nightmares.
Before booting the game back up to try it out, I hadn't played it for a good couple of months, so I was rusty to say the least. Jedi: Fallen Order is a game that requires you to learn every move, ability and skill at your disposal and in time master it's simple yet elegant combat system. So, for any normal person you might think of creating a small warm up room to refamiliarise yourself with the game's systems (perhaps filling the room with a squad of stormtroopers or even some low level creatures). However, instead I decided I would fight every single one of the games bosses again...at the same time. This, as you could imagine, was a terrifying and short experience, however one that served as a lesson in why practice makes perfect, and why I love the hell out of this game.
Being cut down by a flurry of lightsabers in mere seconds, is in a way a testament to how brilliant this new update is. The fact you're even allowed to fight every boss in the game at once shows how near endless the possibilities are with Jedi: Fallen Orders battle grid. Really enjoyed fighting a boss in the main game and wish you could do it again? now you can; want to fight a team of inquisitors? now you can; if you want to simply slaughter a group of defenceless astromech droids, well even that's possible (you monster). What makes it better is that its also easy to use. To start, just pick a slot, then choose an arena you want to play in. The mode provides a relatively big slection of arenas to choose from too, all based in different areas and planets featured in the game. Once you've done that choose the size of the arena; which ranges from small, medium and large. After that all you gotta do is pick your poison. Placing enemies in the arena is easy too, as you are essentially placing them like pieces on a chessboard like grid (hence "battle grid"). You're given a menu of all the enemies in the game for you to place in the arena you've selected though it does have its limitations. The way it works is that the grid gives you 100 points, each enemy is worth a certain amount of points (roughly 10 for standard enemies and 20 for bosses) so there is only a certain number of foes you can fight at once. So it tends to be about 10 normal troops at once or 5 bosses/special enemies at once being your limit. This does mean that if one Oggdo Bogdo wasn't enough of a challenge for you, you can take on five Oggdo Bogdo's instead. The battle grid also adds a new boss for you to fight in the form of Inquisitior Cal, who has all the same moves and abilities you do, providing a new challenge for all players. Like Oggdo Bogdo you could even fight five Cal's at once. I would try it, however I'm not a sadist nor do I wish to lose my sanity.
This is by far my favourite part of the update. The freedom it gives you in creating the kind of fight you want is something I felt this game really needed; a way for you to replay that boss battle or fight against a random assortment of enemies of your choosing was exactly what I was looking for from this game upon completion. While the games story is one of the best parts of it, the combat system was the right hand man that brought everything together and made this game fun and unique, and while a release date for the game's sequel is still far, far away, I'm glad I can still go back and enjoy the combat system that made Fallen Order a joy to play.
Alongside Battle Grid also comes combat challenges and a new game plus mode. Combat challenges are preset combat scenarios where you'll face varying waves of enemies in a variety of locations featured in the main game. These challenges tend to be quite unique as well, having you face off against a somewhat random assortment of foes each wave, however these combinations really do challenge your skill at the game so be ready to get your ass handed to you a couple of times. For example, the Kashyyyk combat challenge has you face up against a wave of giant spiders, a slug and a bounty hunter, all of whom bring their own unique fighting style and challenge to the fight. So if you don't feel like having some fun with the battle grid, combat challenges might be for you if you're looking for new ways to play the game, as well as challenge yourself.
It's my philosophy that every good single player game should have a new game plus, and I couldn't be more thrilled to see that Respawn finally decided to give Jedi: Fallen Order its very own. What Fallen Orders new game plus gives you is the opportunity to play through the games fantastic story mode again (given that you've already completed it once before), although this time with all cosmetics earned in your completed playthrough. This includes all lightsaber colours, lightsaber parts, ponchos and skins for BD-1, Cal and the Mantis. It does however remove all of your skills and abilities earned in the previous playthrough; after all you don't want to be too overpowered jumping back in. What it adds however is pretty cool. If you have completed the game (and spoilers ahead if you haven't) then you know that near the end of the game Cal has a vision where he becomes and inquistor, with the uniform and everything. A lot of people in the community had been requesting a dlc or update where we were allowed to play with this unique look and in new game plus, now you can. When starting your playthrough you can go into the customization menu and choose between Cal's normal attire or his inquisitor attire, which was a nice little addition from Respawn. Additionally, you now also have the option of changing your lightsaber colour to the inquisitors red. So if you wanted to look full sith, the opportunity is now yours.
To recap, this update is not only a fine addition to what is one of the best games of the last year, it is a great gift to all players. For me, it was sad finally completing the game as at the time there wasn't much of an endgame, you just finished the story and were free to roam. That was it. But what this update has done is give the game the endgame content it truly deserves, and one that gives you the freedom to choose what kind of endgame experience you want out of it; whether it be replaying boss battles in the battle grid, pushing yourself in combat challenges or experiencing the amazing story mode all over again, it's entirely up to you.
So if you're wondering if it's worth jumping back in to Jedi: Fallen Order the answer is simple; absolutely. And if you haven't played the game before then play it. I don't care if you borrow it off a friend, rent it out or have to raid your partners piggybank to buy it, if you enjoy a good story and video games, I promise you will not be disappointed.
You can buy Jedi: Fallen Order now on Steam, Epic Games store, Xbox One and Playstation 4.