I rate it at a 9.75 - my favorite game ever *SPOILERS*
I am compiling a 'mini-review' from a few posts on the 'other' JKII forums ...
I have yet to meet something that is absolutely perfect ... or really even perfect in context. However, within its' context (FPS for 2002) I scored JKII as a 9.75 out of 10. FPS is my favorite genre (by far) and JKII now stands as my favorite FPS ever.
Let me run down where I took away points:
-1.5 for the graphics slowdown at the Yavin Swamp level. I am playing on a high end laptop (Dell Inspiron 8100) and at the 'high' default level trweked up a bit. I was at >60FPS through the whole game until that level, then down to ~10 - 15. Now I love the level, it is truly amazing ... I just couldn't tolerate the drop in framerate, and as a result just wanted out of the level.
-0.5 for the plot inconsistencies and the ending. The Valley thing with Morgan. Agree with the Kyle fights alone thing - he should fight alone, but it should be clearer *why* Skywalker isn't there. The ending cutscene should have been longer and more detailed.
-0.5 because Kyle, a merc with no force usage, goes on a run with a stun baton and pistol, depending on picking up a stormie rifle for more firepower?!? That bugged me - still does. I would rather see a 'what are you bringing' scene, with your choice of the bowcaster, disruptor, or stormtrooper rifle as an additional weapon (ala SOF 'stockups')
What about the early levels, you ask? Loved them! Reminds me of Dark Forces. Playing them again now. Dessan - killed him 3 times using similar methods. Galak ... reminds me again of Dark Forces, not my favorite part, but his 'superboss' fits in the story.
I agree that the force and saber change the game completely ... and make it simply amazing. I have played some different points again and again because they were just so much fun!
I enjoyed RtCW and MoH:AA, but for me this game leaves them in the dust. They are comparable to the first 5 levels, but without the thinking and skill. Get the saber and force ... like nothing I've played before.
I mentioned how much I liked the first few levels. Sure they were frustrating at times, but it was - to me - a compelling frustration, "I'm going to find that, solve that, whatever ..." type of thing. That, again to me, was missing in the games like RtCW and MoH:AA - in MoH you could just follow your compass. No clue where to go - look for the arrow. Don't know where the enemy is - look at the indicator. Your player never really grows during the game - you just get bigger guns.
On the subject of weapons, I have mixed feelings about the rocket launcher. I like it as something you have to contend with - how you need to push it away at one point, and just be aware of it elsewhere. It is nice to have weapon hazards the saber doesn't just reflect away.
The one force power I found missing was something mentioned way back about 'force sense', which would give you a better idea when someone is coming, what's on the other side of a door, and so on. It would be good, since you can deflect 100% of shots from 2 of those walking droids attackign you simultaneously, to at least *sense* you are about to be toasted by a rocket, or that Greedo's cousin has a disruptor lock on you ...
Another nice thing ... after getting force pull, I noticed some troopers re-arming themselves. That is such a nice touch. Also nice that the officers don't drop their weapons. Lots and lots of little things ...
OK ... another thing I'm reminded of as I play through again. People complain about the 2 weapons you start with - the Bryar and E11. I appreciate those complaints, but don't mind those very much. However, I hated the Bowcaster in JK1, and despite it being more powerful now, I still hate it in JKII. It is only because of ammo issues (many related to the E11 accuracy issues) that I EVER hit the 5 key.