So, the KotOR 2 Restored Content mod
came out a while back, and I’ve finally had a chance to play through the game with it installed. It’s well worth checking out – there’s a few bugs here and there, but it adds back in a lot of stuff that was cut from the game before release. Most significantly, it adds in the HK-50 Droid Factory and as a result the confrontation between Goto and the Remote now actually has a conclusion. There’s also now a lot more bits of dialogue on Malachor V that make the end game feel… well, less unfinished. Plus there are a fair number of other little bits added to the rest of the game.
Of course, it’s still not perfect – the mod team have done a great job, but they’re limited by what resources they have, and a lot of the ‘missing’ content just didn’t exist in the first place. The game was really rushed out the door, and I’m not sure if the designers had ever worked out how the final sections of the game were meant to work. As it is, even with everything added back in, the last few areas of the game are still obviously unfinished compared to, say, the Nar Shadaar section.
Then again, I’ve always felt the increasingly unfinished feel of the game from the return to Dantooine onwards actually sort of works in terms of the story. The game’s story is essentially entirely the relationship between Kreia and the Exile, and it seems to me unintientionally inappropriate that once Kreia leaves the party, the next few sections of the game are so brief and seem so disjointed – defeating Nihilus doesn’t matter, saving the Repubic doesn’t matter to the Exile any more, they’re just delays on the way to confronting Kreia one last time. The tragedy, of course, is that the Exile and Kreia can never face one another as equals, only as deceiver and deceived, betrayer and betrayed… and in the end, as slayer and slain.
Random observation: I’ve always thought it odd that the official position is that Revan was male and returned to the light side, when KotOR 2 by default assumes the opposite on both. Certainly, KotOR 2’s storyline with the Jedi dead and the Republic on the edge of collapse make far more sense if you assume the first game ended with the Dark Side ending. Revan’s gender has les s impact, though if you have her as a woman, there are some lines of dialogue in the sequel that due to the ambiguity of pronouns could be referring to either Revan or Kreia, which I find adds a little interest to things.