Jedi Knight is primarily a first-person shooter but offers the choice of a third person view. The game consists of 21 levels with objectives that the player must complete before being able to continue to the next level. There are weapons available in each level and after level three the player has the use of a lightsaber, along with the Force. In addition to being an effective weapon, the lightsaber is also a useful tool for the player, providing light in dark areas, deflecting incoming blaster fire and cutting through some obstacles.
A fight with Imperial stormtroopers
There are three types of Force powers; light, dark and neutral. Light Force powers provide nonviolent advantages such as being able to restore health or persuade enemies to ignore the player. Dark Force powers are violent and give the ability to throw objects or choke enemies. Neutral powers enhance athletic abilities such as being able to jump higher or run faster. There are fourteen powers in total, four of each type and a bonus power in each light and dark if the Jedi stays true to that path. Players earn stars to allocate toward Force powers by completing specific levels. By finding all the secrets in a level, a player can also gain one bonus star to use. Between levels, the player can choose which Force powers to enhance by allocating stars to that power. Stars cannot be reclaimed from powers later on.
Levels contain puzzles that may require use of the Force to overcome, or by locating objects in the level. There are a variety of hostile and non-hostile non-player characters (NPCs) within each level that the player can interact with. Other enemies include monsters and vehicles.
There are two endings to Jedi Knight which depend on how the player plays the game. If the player does not harm non-hostile NPCs and focuses on collecting light Force powers then the game will end with the light side ending. Conversely if the player harms non-hostile NPCs and collects dark Force powers then the game will end with the dark side ending.