Most of the time, exploring A Galaxy Far, Far Away in Respawn Entertainment’s Star Wars Jedi Survivor has been a true delight – a highlight of my year so far. It’s a fantastic sequel that builds on everything good about its predecessor to deliver a blockbuster adventure that everyone can enjoy – Star Wars fans and non-Star Wars fans alike. However, as we all know, it isn’t perfect. Performance issues aside, I can’t help but feel as though the Apex Legends developer has really dropped the ball when it comes to making the most of a seemingly small but very noticeable Star Wars Jedi Survivor feature: the title menu screen.
Sure, it does the job of a main menu, but it really does feel like Respawn Entertainment has just forgotten about it – just like it forgot about it in Jedi Fallen Order.
If you’re not quite sure what I am talking about, allow me to explain. In Jedi Fallen Order, the main menu title screen shows us an image of an escape pod hurtling away from a Venator-class Star Destroyer that has been cracked in two. This is a reference to Cal’s escape from the Albedo Brave and the Clone Troopers of the 13th Battalion during the infamous Order 66. Cal – and his dying master Jaro Tapal – were shot from the Star Destroyer in a desperate attempt to avoid death above Bracca; this is where the early stages of Jedi Fallen Order take place.
If you fast-forward a handful of years to Star Wars Jedi Survivor, you’re met with an image of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant when you open up this sequel’s main menu title screen. Showing this iconic landmark draped in crimson banners displaying the insignia of the Galactic Empire, this image is an obvious reference to where we’re picking up Cal’s story in Jedi Survivor. The game itself begins on Coruscant and, not long into this opening segment, you can hear Cal reference the fact that The Emperor has turned the Jedi Grand Temple into the Imperial Palace following the fall of the Jedi and the building’s abandonment.
This is, just like it was in Jedi Fallen Order, a clever way to use an often-overlooked feature to establish your narrative and set the tone for the story unfolding throughout your game. Respawn Entertainment has clearly put some thought into what it wanted to depict on the menu screen on both games, with the image of the Imperial Palace in Jedi Survivor showing how far-gone the life Cal knew growing up is. However, the fact that Respawn still doesn’t update this screen alongside your story progression is a disservice to the concept. Quite frankly, it’s a total waste of what could be a fantastic addition to an already excellent game – something you can read more about in our Star Wars Jedi Survivor review right here.
Without delving too deeply into anything that could be considered a spoiler, Star Wars Jedi Survivor doesn’t take place on Coruscant alone. In fact, in a similar fashion to what happens with Bracca in Jedi Fallen Order, you’re only there for the story’s opening chapter. Then, you’re whisked away to other locations far larger and more interesting to explore.
That’s left me asking one question: why doesn’t the main menu title screen change to reflect that? Coruscant is an interesting location, sure, but Respawn is taking players on a journey across the stars with a story full of twists, turns, and epic moments that deserve to be represented on this rather prominent screen. You do see it every time you load up the game, after all. The tone this image of the Imperial Palace sets is a good one when it comes to the introduction of the game, but it’s far from appropriate when you get a few hours into things and it’s a far cry from where the story is half-way through – let alone even further.
While it is exciting when you see this image for the first time, it loses its charm after a while. Not only this, but the main menu title screen itself could be so much more engaging, immersive, and in-tune with where you are in the game currently.
Titles like Red Dead Redemption 2 and Hogwarts Legacy feature dynamic main menu title screens that change as you progress through the story and shooter Spec Ops The Line showcases the deterioration of Dubai as you play through its’ provocative narrative. So, why can’t Respawn Entertainment reflect Cal’s journey throughout A Galaxy Far, Far Away?
I was already disappointed to learn that Star Wars Jedi Survivor abandons my favourite Fallen Order feature, and now I’m even more disappointed that Respawn hasn’t shown Jedi Survivor’s title screen the same love it’s shown the rest of this epic experience. You can recreate this iconic Jedi Knight in-game though, so it’s not all bad.
Star Wars Jedi Survivor is one of the best Xbox Star Wars games available at the moment and one of the best PS5 Star wars games too, but will it be able to compete with what’s to come? Well, we know the upcoming Star Wars FPS game could very-well see a certain Kyle Katarn make a comeback. However, we’ll just have to wait and see whether that’s true.