Star Wars: Dark Forces

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
(Redirected from Dark Forces Saga)
Jediknight 335.jpg
I'm no Jedi, just a guy with a lightsaber and a few questions.
Kyle Katarn

A series of Star Wars-based First-Person Shooter Video Games, with accompanying novellas. They take place during and after the original trilogy, and revolve around Kyle Katarn, a Stormtrooper-turned-mercenary-turned-Jedi who roams around the seedy side of the galaxy. Kyle is one of the most popular Expanded Universe-only Star Wars characters, due to his Deadpan Snarker dialogue combined with fun Badass qualities.

Dark Forces (1995), the first game, is a standard first person shooter. The beginning levels introduces Kyle as the one to steal the plans for the first Death Star and transmit them to the Rebel Alliance, thus leading into A New Hope. After that, it jumps after the Death Star's destruction and goes into its own story involving The Empire's secret "Dark Trooper Project". The game was a dramatic leap for graphics and level design, being one of the first to feature multiple floors. It was also one of the first successful uses of looking up and down, as well as jumping.

Dark Forces 2: Jedi Knight (1997) was the first game to feature first-person lightsaber battles. This story takes place after the events of the original trilogy. Here, Kyle learns of his Force potential and receives his own lightsaber, once owned by a Jedi Master named Rahn, whose spirit occasionally guides him in dreams and visions. He follows a lead to the Dark Jedi Jerec, with the intent to avenge his father's murder (which he recently learned was not done by the Rebels, as the Empire had told him, but by an agent of the Empire itself). Jerec seeks for a mysterious Valley of the Jedi that legend tells has monumental power, providing additional incentive to stop him. Part of the feature is a light side/dark side progression, where your actions (kill innocents or protect them) and choices and uses of Force power dictate which side you will lean to. There are two endings, light side and dark side. Word of God (and future games) say that the light side ending is Canon. Live action cut scenes moved the plot along, elevating the game to an almost movie-like experience (albeit with daytime-soap-opera-level acting).

  • Dark Forces: Mysteries of the Sith (1998) was an expansion game, telling some of Kyle's story after he has become a full Jedi Knight. The player soon takes control of Kyle's "reciprocal apprentice" (as in, they're teaching each other), Mara Jade (who becomes Luke Skywalker's wife in canon some years later), as Kyle goes off to find what may be the remnants of a Sith temple. He disappears from all contact, however, and you have to track him down, only to discover him skirting dangerously close to the dark side. After the events of this game, Kyle swears off the life of a Jedi and returns to being a hired mercenary (for the New Republic, at least).

Jedi Knight 2: Jedi Outcast (2002) is a continuation of the series, though notice the lack of "Dark Forces" in the title. Here, Kyle is persuaded to reclaim his lightsaber to battle against Desann, a former student at Luke Skywalker's Jedi Academy. He also discovers that the Imperial Remnant is gathering forces to strike against the fragile New Republic as well as the Jedi Academy. In the end, Kyle decides he can't abandon his responsiblities and becomes a dedicated Jedi.

Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy (2004), essentially an Expansion Pack in the body of a true sequel, featured a brand new character, Jaden Korr. This character is customizable, with male/female voices for several species as well as hair and clothing variations (though later novels pin down canonical species and gender as human/male, respectively). You can also choose from a selection of lightsaber hilts and colors, and later in the game can upgrade to dual wield or use the double bladed version. Jaden has somehow constructed a lightsaber without any prior Jedi training, and news of this remarkable feat results in being transported to the Jedi Academy, where you become the apprentice of Kyle Katarn. The game consists of progressing through missions assigned by Luke or Kyle until you become a Jedi Knight. Unusually, the game takes a free-form yet tiered approach—as an initiate, you can pick any of five missions to take in any order; at apprentice level, you gain a set of five new missions; and at Jedi Knight level, you get five more. Also noteworthy is that you need finish only four missions to progress to the next level, though as you get more powers with each of these missions it's in your best interest to do them all. In between each level of difficulty is a compulsory mission, linked directly to the main story. The story involves a group of Sith Cultists seeking to resurrect an ancient Sith Lord, Marka Ragnos. Like Dark Forces 2, there are two endings, one for each side of the Force (as usual with LucasArts, the light side one was eventually determined to be canonical).

The entire series is now available on Steam.

For more information see another wiki. Not The Other Wiki, but another wiki.

Tropes used in Star Wars: Dark Forces include:
  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Available in several shapes, sizes and colors throughout the series, although the sequential sluice gates in the third level of Dark Forces will probably haunt your nightmares the longest.
  • Action Girl: Jan Ors, Mara Jade in Mysteries of the Sith, and finally your own character in Jedi Academy if you choose.
  • Always Over the Shoulder: Dark Forces 2, the first game in the series with a third-person camera, has a setting to automatically change to third-person when switching to the lightsaber. Jedi Outcast singleplayer defaulted to this, while its multiplayer and Jedi Academy don't even allow the player in first-person mode while using the lightsaber.
  • Appropriated Title: The Dark Forces title was replaced with Jedi Knight when the second game (Dark Forces II: Jedi Knight) proved more popular.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Often, after an Imperial officer commands his troops to attack you, shortly before being killed himself, a stormtrooper will say something like "Let's see some ID!"
  • Artifact Title: "Dark Forces" refers to the Dark Trooper project, which would make its presence in Dark Forces 2: Jedi Knight, about a guy become a Jedi and fighting a group of Dark Side users along the way rather irrelevant...were it not for the implications of the term "Dark Force" in the Star Wars universe.
  • Artificial Stupidity: The stormtroopers in Outcast are pretty stupid in general. More enemies end up like this in Academy, which leads to a Good Bad Bug where you can kill multiple bosses by simply standing where you start the battle at and firing a Sense-enhanced E-11 into their faces until they die.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Kyle and Luke, Jedi Outcast.
  • Badass: Kyle Katarn.
    • His most notable accomplishment is beating at least one Kell dragon to death. with his fists. Note that each Kell dragon is as tall as a human, at least three times as long, and normally eats humans for breakfast (at least the one Kyle fought did). And he did this before learning to use the Force.
    • He's so badass that if you take the Dark Side route in Academy and fight him as the final boss, you aren't fighting to kill him. "Winning" involves you crashing the ceiling on him for a distraction and running away.
      • And in said final boss fight, he can do something that cannot be done by you or any other character in the game. He can actually pull away your lightsaber! For any other character, The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard would apply. Kyle is simply just that badass.
      • Don't forget that he also will sometimes not even bother with the lightsaber, but will instead grab you and start punching you!
  • Bag of Spilling: Jedi Academy's missions are implied to take place several days or even weeks apart, and you requisition weapons rather than owning them anyway, so it makes a kind of sense. In any case, starting with your first real mission you always keep your lightsaber, a sidearm, two heavier weapons, and one explosive with you (not that it ever matters; nothing beats your trusty lightsaber).
  • Batman Gambit: Desann manipulates Kyle quite handily near the beginning of Jedi Outcast. He lets him try to beat him without Jedi abilities to show how impossible it is, and apparently kills his girlfriend, all just to make him return to the Valley of the Jedi to regain his powers for purposes of revenge so that Desann can follow him there.
  • BFG: The Concussion Rifle.
    • The first game also had the Assault Cannon.
  • Black and White Magic: In Jedi Knight, Kyle can use the light side (healing and support skills) or the dark side (only does damage and instant death). In Mysteries of the Sith, Kyle becomes The Red Mage (although he can use all the available powers) because the plot requires him to do a quick Face Heel Turn, only to be redeemed by Mara.
  • Bonus Boss: Kyle replaces the final boss in Academy if the player takes the dark path.
  • Bonus Stage: At least two:
    • Mysteries of the Sith: A downloadable extra level unrelated to the main story, featuring Luke Skywalker arriving at Cloud City during The Empire Strikes Back, for a final confrontation with a dark-side Kyle (standing in for Vader).
    • Jedi Outcast: The Pit, used as the demo to Jedi Outcast, featuring a non-canonical battle to the death against Tavion in an inescapable pit arena.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Despite appearing as a common enemy, we have the Kell Dragons and the Vornskr: both are quite fast and can kill you in two or three bites. If you're underwater there's the large Drugon, who's quite fast and deals a lot of damage.
  • Bounty Hunter: Boba Fett shows up twice in the series, first in Dark Forces to confront Kyle on Coruscant, and the second time in Jedi Academy running into Jaden.
  • Can't Stay Normal: After his brushes with the Dark Side in Jedi Knight and Mysteries of the Sith, Kyle gave up his lightsaber and the Force, only to come back to it in Jedi Outcast after certain plot developments.
    • And resumes life as a Rebel agent in the meantime.
  • Capulet Counterpart: Kyle and Jan in the prequel novel Soldier for the Empire.
  • Chewing the Scenery: Jaden's performance in Jedi Academy if you choose to turn to the Dark Side consists of this, with every single word fairly bursting with emphasis, passion, and perpetual rage at everything.
  • Collapsing Ceiling Boss: Inverted. Despite Desann's difficulty as a boss, the fight can be ended instantaneously by hacking through one of the three stone pillars around the arena. If the collapsing pillar falls on Desann, he dies instantly.
  • Colon Cancer: The full title of the latest installment should arguably be Star Wars: Dark Forces IV: Jedi Knight III: Jedi Outcast II: Jedi Academy.
  • Color-Coded Wizardry: Desann's Reborn and Tavion's cult members adhere to this trope.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Most notably, enemy force users' perfect reflexes and control with their powers: they always push-deflect missiles and concussion blasts, straight back at you and with perfect accuracy.
    • As a boss in Academy, Kyle can force pull your saber clean out of your hand, something that's impossible for anyone else.
    • Desann takes this to a whole new level in the final duel of Outcast. Not only does he have his own unique saber style that does as much damage as the Strong style (killing you in just 2 or 3 hits on medium difficulty) and is as fast as the Medium style, but his Force powers are insanely stronger than any other NPC in the series, most notably his nearly unbreakable Force Choke.
      • If you use console cheats and set your Jedi Mind Trick to level 4 you can mind control Desann to see how broken he really is. He'll block blaster fire and force push stuff like rockets back at opponents automatically, and some times he'll force choke or push/pull enemies on his own without you even inputting any commands. Hell, try mind controlling him and spawning five or ten high-level Jedi enemies and see how easily you turn them all into Jedi sandwich spread.
    • Rodians carrying disruptor rifles can often fire multiple shots with less than half a second between each.
    • In Academy, each type of saber and style comes with its own energy-expensive sequence of unblockable swings, some more useful than others. Reborn can use any of these with any style, including a two-bladed version of ones that are only available to you when you have one sword.
      • Some enemy Force users have limitless Force energy, allowing them to break free from drain and grip at any moment. They can actually abort their special swings to avoid attacks and tend to aim at your model - sometimes killing you by hitting something that seems empty space for the player (oh yeah, they also invisibly "evade" your attacks - slashing their face will occasionally leave them unharmed except for a visible burned mark in the middle). Their Force Throw is perfectly targeted - it will stop right where you stand and keep swinging until it kills you or is parried. Yours, on the other hand, will pass further and stop at maximum range.
  • Continuity Nod: Jedi Academy features not only Vader's fortress from the Dark Empire II comic, but the toppled Darth Vader statue.
    • In Outcast, Kyle comes across prototypes for black cortosis armor (capable of resisting lightsabers and used by Elite Mooks). He replies, "Black armor...not again." referring to the Dark Troopers of the first Dark Forces.
    • In Academy Kyle mentions he has seen chutes like the one the one he just jumped into before; the same type of chute was also present at Cloud City in Outcast
    • Luke's office/training chamber/whatever is the throne room from the original movie where the heroes get a medal at the end.
    • Several of the Jedi Masters mentioned in Academy are actual characters from the Expanded Universe.
    • In Jedi Knight, Kyle says to 8t88, "The dark side? I've been there. Do your worst." This is referring to dialogue in Dark Forces where Kyle says "I'll see you on the dark side." just before launching to the Executor. It may also be reference to his previous occupation as a stormtrooper prior to the series.
    • Kyle makes reference to his battle with Boba Fett in Dark Forces after Jaden goes against him in Academy.
  • Charge Meter: Certain Force powers in Jedi Knight; the scout pistol in Mysteries of the Sith; the Bryar pistol in Jedi Outcast and DL-44 in Jedi Academy
  • Cranium Ride: A ridable Rancor can be summoned via cheat code on the PC version of Jedi Academy.
  • Dark Action Girl: Sariss, Tavion, and Alora are all female dark Jedi who are among the most dangerous characters in their respective games.
  • Death Course: A staple of the series, frequently in the form of a Corridor Cubbyhole Run or Conveyor Belt O' Doom.
  • Decapitation Presentation: Maw mentions doing this to Kyle's father in Jedi Knight: Dark Forces II, but the actual decapitation and subsequent public display of the head on a spike occurs offscreen. Unless you have the book...
  • Demonic Spider: The Shadowtroopers
  • Disc One Nuke: Level 3 Force Lightning in Jedi Academy, if you level it up early enough. (BOOM!) Or Grip (toss troopers around like rag dolls!). Or Healing (INVINCIBLE!).
  • Disney Death Jan Ors in Outcast, part of a Batman Gambit on Desann's part to get Kyle to reveal the Valley.
  • Down the Drain: "Well, let's go; no one ever said being a Jedi was glamorous."
  • Dragon Ascendant: Tavion, The Dragon in Jedi Outcast, becomes the Big Bad of Jedi Academy.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Mara steals a Tusken Raider outfit in order to infiltrate Ka'Pa's palace in Mysteries of the Sith.
  • Dual Boss: Gorc and Pic in Jedi Knight, though this is less of a dual boss and more of a meatshield combined with a Goddamned Boss.
    • Also the duel against Rosh and the 2 Reborn Master twins in Jedi Academy.
  • Dummied Out: Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy both have unused programming for level 4 Mind Trick, which (when enabled through console) lets you directly mind control enemies. Its incredibly glitchy, but still has its moments of hilarity (such as jumping Reborn off cliffs, or shooting stormtroopers in the back with rocket launchers).
  • Enemy Chatter: Done to a considerable degree in Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy.
  • Emergency Weapon: Your fists in Dark Forces and in Jedi Knight prior to receiving your lightsaber (though you still have the option of using your fists).
    • The DL-44 blaster pistol in Academy gets this treatment in multiplayer mode - its fire rate is halved in exchange for unlimited ammo. Its alt-fire can still potentially kill unshielded enemies in one shot, though.
  • Enemy Civil War - Mostly averted, in relation to your Imperial foes, save for some hints that stormtroopers were fed to or accidentally happened upon some kell dragons in Jedi Knight. Also, in one case in Jedi Outcast's second level, some turrets in one room appear to be programmed to kill stormtroopers, as well as the player. Mooks working in the underworld seem much more prone to this sort of behavior, however. One notable example is a Bar Brawl between a number of Grans in Baron's Hed in Jedi Knight. In Mysteries of the Sith, the palace of Ka'Pa the Hutt also has a few sequences in which Mooks attack one another.
    • A side effect of the Mind Trick power (at least in Jedi Academy) is that enemies will continue to shoot at one another even after the effect wears off. It's particularly amusing to watch a pair of jetpack-equipped stormtroopers spiral off into the sky, locked in their own private duel.
  • Epic Tracking Shot: A particularly good one appears in Jedi Knight's introduction to Nar Shaddaa.
  • Escort Mission: Occurs a few times in Outcast.
    • In the first mission, Jan either manages to hold her own (although she can die, especially if you hide behind her instead of taking the lead), or the enemies are all too busy focusing on you, though at one point, you leave her behind and have to rush back to rescue her.
    • The second of these is somewhat novel, in that you get the commander of an Imperial prison from Point A to Point B by pointing your gun at him. You have to save him once from the level-specific crab-things, and after he's done what you want at Point B, he summons some stormtroopers and starts shooting at you.
    • In Nar Shaddaa, you are accompanied by Lando, but resistance towards him after you split up is minimal. However, at a later point, he ends up getting pinned down by a Weak Turret Gun and you have to save him. Later in the mission, you have to fight off a couple waves of attackers coming for Lando's Lady Luck, and even that is easy with application of the Force Speed power.
    • The last scenario involves escorting what has to be the dumbest droid in the quadrant through the streets of Cloud City. Killing the snipers who want to destroy the droid, destroying laser mines before the droid barrels through them, and otherwise moving heaven and earth to prevent the destruction of said droid is a rather grueling task.
      • Not as hard if one thinks outside the box. Once you realize that Force Pull and Force Push work just as well with the droid as with any other mook, you can simply steer it around without putting it in danger or having a time limit.
    • Also, in Jedi Academy, Kyle Katarn accompanies you for most of the second of the game's three main story missions. Subverted in that he's capable of almost effortlessly obliterating the small army of Imperials and Sith that appear throughout the level, without needing any help from you. If you want, you can just lead him from point A to point B and watch him kick ass. One of the few (and welcome) times in a video game where it's practically the player who's being escorted.
  • Evil Gloating: In Jedi Outcast, Fyyar goes off on a monologue lacking only maniacal laughter. Kyle interrupts in a Genre Savvy manner to provoke the boss battle and finish the mission.
  • Evil Laugh: Galak was interrupted before he could in Outcast, but Desann more than makes up for it.
  • Eye Beams: The Dark Side power "Deadly Sight" could be considered this.
  • Fake Kill Scare: This is how Desaan tricked Kyle Katarn into leading him to the valley of the Jedi. In retrospect, this was a very, VERY BAD IDEA! .
  • Five-Bad Band: The Dark Jedi in Dark Forces II:
  • Game Mod: All the games have had many.
    • The Crow's Nest and the DF-21 Hall of Fame showcase some of the best for Dark Forces.
    • The Admiral's Command Chamber has reviews of mods for Dark Forces through Jedi Outcast, although the latter section didn't get far before reviews were discontinued.
    • The Dark Forces Mod is an upgraded port of Dark Forces to the Jedi Academy engine, with 6 levels released as of 2010.
    • The Massassi Temple is the largest website ever dedicated to Jedi Knight and Mysteries of the Sith. New levels have been released for them as late as January 2010.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Force Destruction in the capable hands of Jerec is shown to be powerful enough to fatally cripple a docked capital ship, but in actual gameplay it doesn't do much more than hit really hard.
    • Speaking of Jerec, he is shown to be without eyes, but yet Force Blinding works on him perfectly fine in-game (although I guess you can argue that Force Blinding would cut off his ability to see through the Force as well)
    • Kyle tells you that powers are not necessarily good or evil in the training level of Academy, and regardless of your selected powers you can choose dark or light side in the game, but he and Luke still worry about you if you focus on dark-side powers. Taken a step further in multiplayer, where you're only allowed to pick one side's powers.
  • Fisticuffs Boss: In one level of Dark Forces, Kyle is captured and stripped of his weapons by Jabba the Hutt, then forced to fight at least one kell dragon unarmed. After he is done punching it to death with his bare hands, another kell-dragon infested part of the level opens up, but the odds can end up a little more balanced in his favor if he chooses to force some grenade-carrying Mooks to part with their weapons.
  • Genre Savvy: Kyle.
  • Giant Space Flea From Nowhere: In Dark Forces II, there's a Drugon in Barons Hed's main pool for some reason. Two levels later, you can (optionally) stumble in a room of Jerec's Palace.... which, for some reasons hosts a Kell Dragon.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: In Academy, Kyle Katarn gets a lot of unique moves if you fight him after going Dark Side. One is to grab your sword arm with one hand and punch you in the face with the other; it's unblockable and delivers a knockdown.
    • These can be given to the player by using the console commands "give weapon_melee" and either "meleedebug 1" or "debugmelee 1" (it's one of the two). iknowkungfu also works, but gives max force powers, breaking the game (by locking you in the next coming level-up screen, because you don't have anything more to level) in single player.
      • To avoid breaking the game, make sure to reduce one force power after iknowkungfu, for example: setforceheal 2.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: In Jedi Outcast, when Desaan seemingly kills Jan Ors. Tavion later reveals the truth, lampshading it with "What did you really see? What did you really hear?"
  • Gravity Is a Harsh Mistress: Kyle actually uttered this very sentence at least once in "Mysteries of The Sith".
  • Guns Are Useless: Once you get your lightsaber, you will only ever use 3 guns again, one for stealth kills, one for long range kills and one for robots.
  • Half the Man He Used To Be: Maw is cut in half at the waist by Rahn during the opening cutscene of Jedi Knight. He spends the rest of the game without his legs, using telekinesis to get around. In the instruction booklet, he's described as "a levitating incarnation of rage".
  • Harder Than Hard: Jedi Master difficulty. In Outcast and Academy, you have 50% health and 50% shields, and enemy Force Users are much smarter. Also, in Academy, major bosses like Alora, Tavion, and Marka Ragnos can take 4 times as much damage as they normally can.
  • Heel Face Turn: Yun, over the course of the entire Jedi Knight game, as detailed in the novellas that were based on it. Which leads to his Redemption Equals Death.
  • Hey, It's That Voice!: Rosh is Max Goof.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Desaan, early in Outcast.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal
    • Hammerspace: Where exactly does Jaden keep all of those large bombs when blowing up the weapon caches? (For context, the bombs are about half his/her height and wider than him/her)
  • I Can Rule Alone: Kyle to Jerec in the bad ending for Dark Forces 2. Likewise, Jaden to Tavion and Marka Ragnos in the Dark Side path of Jedi Academy.
  • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: Discounting Dark Forces, Jedi Knight has Apprentice (easy), Jedi Knight (medium), Jedi Master (hard), and Outcast and Academy had Padawan (easy), Jedi (normal), Jedi Knight (hard), Jedi Master (very hard).
  • Idle Animation: Further establishing that he is unquestionably badass, one of Kyle Katarn's idle animations is to shave his beard... with his lightsaber!
  • I Sense a Disturbance In The Force

"You always sense a disturbance in the force. But yeah, I sense it too."

  • I'll Kill You!: Thrawn, in his pre-Grand Admiral days, briefly features in an audio drama of this series, when he sends out a commander who hates nonhumans. Thrawn's not human.

Thrawn: "Your xenocentric chauvinism is no concern of mine. I care about performance and results, and your record is exemplary. I do not care about your petty bigotry. Understood?"
Commander: "Understood, Captain."
Thrawn: "Oh, and Commander, if I ever find out that your bigotry is affecting your performance, I'll have your carcass ejected with the next garbage load. Understood?"

  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: An offshoot of the Trope Namer. Averted in Outcast, though, in which stormtroopers are much smarter and deadlier (not helped by the engine's fuzzy blaster hit detection). The levels taking place before you get Force powers will leave you in tears.
    • Interestingly, in the level where you take an AT-ST through a canyon the stormtroopers firing rockets at you have horrible accuracy, almost never hitting you in your 20 meter tall vehicle. However if you exited the AT-ST every rocket would fire straight at your character.
      • A less subtle piece of Lampshade Hanging is a sample of Enemy Chatter in Outcast where a Stormtrooper will express his frustration over the armor's helmet, claiming that it obstructs his sight.
      • And again in Academy: in the mission in which you infiltrate some catacombs, you can overhear two mercenaries talking (providing that you don't kill them as soon as you see them), with one of them complaining about how his helmet obstructs his sight, much like back when he was a Stormtrooper.
      • Another variation in Jedi Academy, where a snowtrooper in the first main story mission mentions that he was selected to be a scout trooper, but couldn't see out of the helmet, caused a pile-up that destroyed about a dozen speeder bikes, and was immediately kicked back out.
      • All of which can be considered a call-back to Luke's (possibly ad-libbed) complaint in A New Hope: "I can't see a thing in this helmet!"
  • Inconveniently-Placed Conveyor Belt: Since half of Dark Forces is spent slogging through the various construction facilities of the Dark Trooper project, these are available in all shapes and colours, culminating in a horrific sequence made up entirely of these and long falls in the final two levels.
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: Half of the first part of the final level in Academy is spent getting around an old rusty gate by breaking the chains holding it in place from the other side. Did we mention that you have a lightsaber and Force powers?
    • Also, in Outcast, retrieving your lightsaber involves a combination of depressing a switch, using force speed, and force pulling it to you, even though the gaps in the bars are huge and Kyle could realistically just reach in and grab it.
  • Jedi Mind Trick: A usable power in Jedi Knight, Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy.
  • Just Toying with Them: When Desann challenges a de-powered Kyle to a fight in Outcast. He mostly just stands there and lets him try to hurt him.
  • Karma Meter: A major element in DF2. You can fall to the Dark Side in two ways: allowing or causing the deaths of noncombatant individuals and droids, or investing too many ranks in Dark powers.
  • Kill Him Already: After their respective defeats, Yun, Maw and Jerec each try this on Kyle. Maw succeeds.
  • Kubrick Stare: Jaden in Academy's dark side ending.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Many times, as Kyle is quite Genre Savvy.

Kyle: They always lock the door. You'd think they'd have learned by now. Doesn't look like there's a key. That would be too easy. The console to unlock the door is probably hidden in some room twelve floors up or something... how does that make sense?

  • Last Villain Stand: Desann in Jedi Outcast still chooses to duke it out with Katarn, even after he loses his entire fleet and most of his strike troops are wiped out by the Jedi.
  • Locked Door: Used often, and spoofed (as noted above) in Academy.
  • Magikarp Power: Most of the Force Powers in Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy are like this, but Force Lightning is the most notable. At level 1, it fires a single weak bolt that can barely kill a single stormtrooper using your entire Force bar. At level 3, it fires a massive arc of lightning that can wipe out an entire roomful of stormtroopers in a second or two. It also sends them flying. You can even pin them against walls by maintaining the attack.
  • Malevolent Architecture: Between the No OSHA Compliance and more Bottomless Pits than you can shake a lightsaber at, the architects of the majority of Imperial bases must have been strange, strange men. Lampshaded at one point by Kyle: "Not another thing to fall from!"
    • The Jedi tomb in Academy is composed primarily of bridges, platforms and ledges over a Bottomless Pit.
    • The absolute standout is the gas mining platform in Academy. Apart from the hangar and inside of the command tower, there is no part of the level where you and/or your enemies are not near a lethal drop. If you have Level 3 Force Grip (which is very doable), this will be your favorite level in the game.
  • Mana Drain: Force Drain on the player; the player's Force Drain instead targets health.
  • Meaningful Name: Alora's skin tone closely matches the dye Allura Red (AKA Red Dye #40).
  • Mook Face Turn: The temporary effect of a third level Jedi Mind Trick in Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy. Essentially Set a Mook to Kill a Mook in the end.
  • Multiple Endings: In Jedi Knight and Jedi Academy.
  • Nerf: The progression of the concussion rifle from game to game is a study in gradual nerfing. It doesn't even make it into Outcast, although it returns (much improved) in Academy.
  • Never Trust a Trope: The famous "Never trust a bartender with bad grammar."
  • Nintendo Hard:
    • Jedi Outcast, generally.
    • Concussion rifle-armed Hazard Troopers in Academy.
  • No-Gear Level:
    • Dark Forces had a level where Kyle had all the weapons he'd been acquiring throughout the game taken away, and had to fight with what he could scrounge off killed enemies until he could locate his weapon stash.
    • Jedi Academy features a mission where Jaden's lightsaber is stolen by an Imperial officer at the very beginning, forcing him/her to fight through the level with nothing except Force Powers and any weapons he/she could get off killed stormtroopers.
    • Happens twice in Mysteries of the Sith. First in Takara's stronghold, where Mara must fight her way through Gamorrean guards and must evade (and later kill) a rancor before finding her lightsaber. Then, when you reach the final levels on Dromund Kaas most of her weaponry is useless, and she's forced to focus on her lightsaber.
  • Taken For Carbonite: Mytseries introduces a special carbonite rifle that freezes enemys in, well, carbonite.
  • The Obi-Wan: Rahn in Knight, Kyle in Mysteries, Luke in Outcast and Kyle again in Academy.
  • One-Man Army: Kyle Katarn. Notably, in the first game, before he gets any force powers, he sneaks (i.e. shoots his way through) on board the Executor (Darth Vader's personal flagship!), just so that he can get on board an inter-ship shuttle to the Arc Hammer, where the Dark Troopers are being created. He then shoots his way through the entire ship (which is about half the size of the Executor, but still larger than a Star Destroyer), kills a dozen Dark Troopers (six of which were enough to take out an entire colony's defenses), destroys the most powerful Dark Trooper yet made, then destroys the Arc Hammer. While Vader, apparently unaware until now, watches from the bridge of the Executor. Then he got force powers!
    • His apprentice, Jaden Korr, hacks his/her way through an entire Sith cult in Jedi Academy.
  • Powered Armor: Appears several times throughout the series.
    • The final boss of the original Dark Forces, the Dark Trooper Phase III, is General Mohc wearing a specially designed Dark Trooper exosuit.
    • Admiral Fyaar fights Kyle wearing a large suit of Powered Armor as a boss battle about 3/4ths of the way through Jedi Outcast.
    • A couple classes of Powered Armor wearing stormtroopers appear as giant mooks in Jedi Academy. Namely, the 7-foot tall Rocket Troopers, who had jetpacks and heavy armor, and the 9-foot tall Hazard Troopers, who wear extremely heavy powered armor and are armed with BFGs.
  • Precision F-Strike: Luke, of all people, drops a quiet "Damn" in one of the latter levels of Outcast after learning that the villains are stockpiling a rare mineral that can deflect lightsabers.

Luke: Damn. That's not good.

  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: The most Jaden's gender will effect is pronouns.
  • Puzzle Boss: The Mutant Rancor in Jedi Academy.
  • Real Time Weapon Change: It is a PC game, so weapons and force powers are switched on the fly.
  • Recovery Attack
  • Redemption Equals Death: Yun. He has just enough time to complete his Heel Face Turn before being cut down (intentionally or unintentionally, depending on the source) by his mentor.
  • Restart At Level One: Invoked by Kyle Katarn in Jedi Outcast; he cut himself off from the Force so he wouldn't fall to the dark side again.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: In Jedi Outcast, after Jan is "killed" by Desann, about half the entire portion of the game where you have a lightsaber was fueled by a need for revenge... and about half of the remaining game is still simmering anger, as you're not certain.
  • Sand Worm: The Sand Burrowers on the Blenjeel level in Jedi Academy.
  • Second-Hour Superpower: Jedi Knight and Outcast initially start out like a shooter, but a few levels in, and you're a Jedi. Academy thankfully averted this: you get your lightsaber from the get-go, apparently because your character was smart enough to build one unaided.
  • Sequel Hook: Tavion was supposed to die in Jedi Outcast, but was kept alive to continue on to the next game.
  • She Fu: Alora's acrobatic fighting style the second time she faces Jaden Korr.
  • Shoot the Medic First: The boss battle with Rosh in Jedi Academy uses this. He sucks compared to you, so two Force healers will follow him around and heal him every time you damage him enough. You have to kill them to win. Made even worse by the fact that they have fully-decked out Force powers and thus are nigh-impossible to kill unless they're in the process of healing the boss.
    • Or unless you have maxed Force Lightning or Absorb.
  • Shout-Out: Max from Sam and Max Hit The Road makes an appearance in the Dark Forces game. A demented, pint-sized lagomorph received official mention in one of the online RPG supplements.
    • Some Enemy Chatter from the Academy level on the hovertrain copies a cutscene from Raven Software's earlier Soldier of Fortune series. That particular character is the only one of his type in the game to carry the Heavy Repeater (i.e. machine gun, as opposed to energy weapon).
  • Simultaneous Warning and Action: Played hilariously straight.
  • Soft Water: Mostly played straight in Jedi Knight save for at least one occasion, such as when the player is required to navigate a metal grid suspended over a rather distant body of water on his way to an aqueduct. In this case, if Kyle falls, he exhibits an anomalous case of Super Drowning Skills. This is played straight in Jedi Outcast's "Bespin Streets" level, in which a fall from a height that would normally hurt Kyle is made harmless by a shallow pool of water.
  • Strange Syntax Speaker: The Chiss bartender Baldarek on Nar Shaddaa in Jedi Outcast has problems speaking Basic and constantly confuses singular and plural nouns.

Baldarek: (with Kyle holding a lightsaber to his face) Please! Noble Jedis! Not in the faces!

  • Superpowered Mooks: Reborn, Shadow Troopers, Sith Cultists
  • Take That Us: The Lampshade Hanging quote about the door mocks how similar situations would pop up in older Dark Forces games. Notably, Academy itself is a lot more linearly designed.
  • Traintop Battle: One level in Jedi Academy takes place on a cargo tram. A cargo tram that's moving really, really fast. It's actually very cool.
  • Unique Enemy: The Rancor in Mysteries of the Sith.
    • Jedi Academy has quite a few. For example, Howlers are only fought on Yavin, Sand Creatures are only seen on Blenjeel and Interrogator droids are only seen in a single room in Vjun. There are a lot of other enemies limited to one or two levels as well.
  • Unholy Nuke: In Jedi Knight, Jerec can use the "Destruction" Force Power. It's a Dark Side attack that consist in a fiery ball of flames and negative energy that destroy everything on its path.
  • Unusual Euphemism: Borrowed from other parts of the Star Wars EU.
  • Variable Mix: From Jedi Knight II and onward, whenever you get into combat in a level, the music changes to more action based music, straight from the Star Wars OST. There was also a special tid bit whenever your character ever died.
    • Dark Forces did this with MIDI using the iMuse system, previously used in LucasArts adventure titles and the Star Wars: X-Wing/TIE Fighter series.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Force Grip + Malevolent Architecture = Pure Bastardosity.
    • In an apparent nod to this, an AI-controlled Kyle Katarn in Jedi Academy will have a field day dropping stormtroopers down elevator shafts, bottomless pits, and what have you during the missions in which he escorts you. Made even more awesome by the fact that he is the only non-player character in the entire game capable of doing this.
  • Wasn't That Fun?: Kyle Katarn says this word for word in Jedi Academy, often after having escaped some incredibly hazardous situation.
  • Wham! Line: "On second thought, Tavion... kill her."
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: Especially from Outcast onwards.