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Small details you missed in the Fallen Order trailer

On April 13, Respawn shared the first trailer for Star Wars: Jedi — Fallen Order during a panel at Star Wars Celebration. Though it's just under two-and-a-half minutes long, the video has a lot to offer, providing a fast-paced look at the game's setting, characters, and story. Respawn drives home Fallen Order's core themes within the first 40 seconds. "There are three rules to survive: Don't stand out. Accept the past. Trust no one." Filtered through the game's protagonist, you glimpse the ugly world left in the wake of Order 66.

Fallen Order releases for the Xbox One, PC, and PlayStation 4 on Nov. 15. The trailer does not contain any gameplay footage, much to the disappointment of some fans, yet it's not lacking in value. While it features several big, in your face moments, a host of subtler elements enrich the experience, providing context and intrigue. With so much happening from frame to frame, some elements are easier to spot than others. Here are the small details you missed in the Fallen Order trailer.

Joker turned Jedi

The trailer introduces Fallen Order's red-headed protagonist, Cal Kestis, through a series of moody, action-packed scenes. While a new addition to the Star Wars universe, Cal might seem familiar to Batman fans. The padawan is voiced by and modeled after actor Cameron Monaghan. Monaghan made a name for himself playing the Joker in the Batman prequel series, Gotham. This followed his breakout role as Ian Gallagher, a gay teenager coping with bipolar disorder, in Showtime's Shameless. Cal, another character struggling to hold on to hope in a time of great adversity, fits right into his wheelhouse.

Monaghan is not the first actor to have portrayed both the Joker and a Jedi Knight. After appearing as Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars trilogy, Mark Hamill voiced the Joker in Batman: The Animated Series and a variety of other media. This included Rocksteady Studios' iconic Batman: Arkham Asylum and the 2011 sequel, Batman: Arkham City.

The Second Sister

Alongside Cal Kestis, the Fallen Order trailer unveiled the game's antagonist, an inquisitor called the Second Sister. Though impossible to miss here, you may not have realized that she has appeared in the Star Wars universe before. A cunning member of the Inquisitorius, the Second Sister debuted in the comic book Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith 19 — Fortress Vader, Part 1. According to Lucafilm's Steve Blank, the Fallen Order team created the Second Sister. Her placement in the comic book was part of a collaboration designed to plant "the seeds for what will ultimately pay off in this game".

Though she has a minimal amount of screen time, the trailer offers a taste of the Second Sister's capabilities. In pursuit of Cal, she clings to the outside of his escape ship, using the Force to manipulate the flight stick and spin the craft out of control. Respawn narrative lead Aaron Contreras described her as "exceptionally intelligent" during the trailer's reveal panel at Star Wars Celebration. If these initial impressions hold weight, she will present players with a formidable foe to overcome when the game launches.

Purge troopers

Though the standard-fare stormtroopers put in an appearance, fans may have noticed the presence of a new type of melee enemy: the purge trooper. Part of a specialized group, purge troopers are trained to to fight Jedi and act as "first responders" in Force-based investigations. Based on the depicted battle with Cal, some purge troopers appear to wield electrostaffs, prominent weapons during the Clone Wars. Designed for single-combat against Force users, electrostaffs can block lightsaber strikes. General Grievous's bodyguards, the IG-100 MagnaGuards, wielded electrostaffs to great effect during their encounters with the Jedi.

There's more to this story than you might have noticed. Like the Second Sister, purge troopers debuted in the Darth Vader comic book series, appearing on the cover of Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith 7 — The Dying Light, Part 1. The Respawn team designed the purge troopers, which Marvel and the developer used to meet the story needs of both Fallen Order and the Vader narrative.

A boy and his droid

It's easy to miss one of Fallen Order's most important characters amidst the trailer's flashing action sequences. You first see BD-1, Cal's droid companion, lighting the cavern where he discovers the body of a clone commander. The scene quickly shifts, showing BD-1 gazing at the troubled Padawan as he stares into a campfire. These moments, though they last only six seconds, hold hidden depth. Stig Asmussen describes BD-1 as the light of the story, both in a literal and figurative sense, helping guide Cal through the dark times. "They're best friends. I would not consider BD a sidekick at all. They're equals," said Asmussen at the 2019 Star Wars Celebration. Cameron Monaghan echoed this sentiment, describing the relationship between Cal and BD-1 as a "boy and his dog situation."

Though not depicted in the trailer, the reveal panel shared that Star Wars sound legend Ben Burtt created BD-1's vocalization. Burtt is known for establishing many of the series' iconic sound effects, including R2-D2's vocalization, the hum emitted by activated lightsabers, and Vader's heavy breathing.

A not-so-mysterious companion

Cal Kestis is not the only familiar face you might have overlooked in the Fallen Order trailer. A mysterious woman comes to Cal's rescue, extending her hand from the ship he boards to escape the Second Sister. Fans of Wolfenstein 2 might recognize the woman as Debra Wilson. Debra voiced and provided motion capture for Grace Walker, resistance leader and director of the FBI. No stranger to the gaming scene, she has worked on several other titles, including Far Cry: New Dawn, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, and The Walking Dead: The Final Season.

Though the trailer gives little away, the reveal panel provided some insight about Debra's Fallen Order character, Cere. According to Monaghan, she is a former Jedi Knight who acts as a mentor for Cal, though "it's not the traditional Padawan-Master sort of relationship." Instead, they're part of a "strange family" that comes together as the story progresses.

The Clone Wars

Respawn has scattered references to the Clone Wars throughout the trailer. First, Cal discovers what looks like a jedi starfighter within the hold of a larger ship. Later, the trailer shows the Scrapper Guild dismantling a Venator-class Star Destroyer. This is a standard day on the job for Cal and his fellow workers who tear apart "mostly decommissioned capital ships from the Clone Wars." In the cave scene with BD-1, Cal discovers a dead clone commander bearing orders from Palpatine to carry out Order 66. As highlighted before, the electrostaffs also emerged during that period.

It's clear that the recent atrocities orchestrated by the Empire play a large role in shaping the narrative and Cal's journey. Matt Michnovetz, a head writer from Star Wars: The Clone Wars, is a key member of the Fallen Order writing team. With Michnovetz involved, you can expect more historical details to surface in the game, callbacks to a time before the galaxy had completed its descent into darkness.

Bracca

Though Cal serves as the focus, the trailer offers brief glimpses of Bracca, the planet on which the game takes place. According to the reveal panel, Bracca is located in the Mid Rim. The planet appears to be a diverse landscape for the player to explore. You first see Cal in a crowded city complete with neon lights, a thriving nightlife, and its own transit system. A later scene depicts an occupied outpost of some kind, nestled amidst snowy mountain peaks. A waterfall is visible in the background. This area matches the scene portrayed in the Fallen Order poster shared by EA during Star Wars Celebration. Beyond the mountains and river, the artwork features a crashed starship and symbols etched into the cliff side.

Two nighttime shots feature what looks like a glowing, red moon. During Cal's fight with the electrostaff-wielding purge trooper, a forested area is visible in the background. It's filled with massive trees and vines, hinting at a rainforest or swampland. The final moments of the trailer show several large ships atop massive cliffs, separated from one another by mist or dust-filled ravines.

Damaged goods

The climax of the trailer shows Cal holding a blue-bladed lightsaber. Though the color will, no doubt, have a greater meaning, the weapon's most interesting detail is easy to miss. A close examination of the hilt reveals that the lightsaber has gone through the ringer, displaying clear marks of damage. A teaser image shared by EA before the trailer's release confirms this, revealing that the base of the weapon has splintered.

The lighstaber's poor condition raises a lot of questions. When asked about the weapon at Celebration, Stig Asmussen responded, "How do you know that's Cal's lighstaber?" He refused to give any further hints about the lightsaber's origins, saying, "It's so intimately tied to the story. It's just full of spoilers." While Respawn has chosen to leave this part of the story to the game's release, it's possible to make initial speculation. While Cal wields the blade in the trailer, it's state implies that it had a previous owner. As a former Jedi, Cere presents a possible candidate. Also, based on the appearance, the lightsaber could be the remaining half a double-bladed model. Though associated with the dark side of the Force because of the films, some Jedi wielded double-bladed lightsabers in the Clone Wars series.

Who put this sarlacc here?

A dreaded Star Wars monster rears its head in the Fallen Order trailer. When the cables holding it in place split, Cal's friend falls from a portion of the ship they are salvaging. As he plummets, you see a brief flash of what appears to be the massive toothy maw of a sarlacc, prompting terror, then confusion. The sarlacc first appeared in Return of the Jedi, occupying the Great Pit of Carkoon in the Dune Sea of Tatooine. Sarlacci have since shown up in other Star Wars media. Essentially pit monsters, most of their bodies are entrenched underground, leaving only their mouths exposed. They tend to inhabit isolated areas, relying on unsuspecting prey to stumble upon them. 

With these details in mind, it seems like an odd choice to dismantle starships on top of a sarlacc lair, though too specific to be coincidental. In the moments prior, you can spot at least one other decommissioned ship in the background, suggesting two potential explanations. First, the ships could have crashed in the area during the Clone Wars, causing the Scrappers to work on-location. It's also possible that the Guild uses the sarlacc to dispose of unwanted parts, and transports ships there to complete the dismantling process. Either way, the scene in question is shaping up to be the stuff of nightmares.