The Art of Escaping the Grip

by Dr. Lee

As many of you may know, the Grip is a formidable Force power that may appear “cheap” to many players out there. Let me tell you all something: it’s not. The programmers at LucasArts were not about to go out and make a single, invincible Force power. This would detract from the gameplay, and everybody would use the Dark side.

LucasArts created the game so every power can be countered in at least one way, and the Grip is no exception. The most obvious and common methods of escape are Absorb, Throw, and Blinding. I would not consider the Absorb an effective “counter” because you’re still in the Grip. Although you’re not losing life from Grip damage, your lack of mobility makes you a vulnerable target. Blinding is great, but it’s a hassle because you actually have to find the Gripper and aim it at him. Finding you’re opponent takes too long. By the time you find his location, he might have moved, or you might be dead after couple of rockets. Blinding is not a good method of countering the Grip. Throw is fairly good, considering it damages the Gripper and it releases the Grip at the same time with minimal mana. However, you won’t always be in a position where projectiles are available, and like Blinding, it’s difficult to aim at the Gripper.

There is a rumor out in the JK community that a Force Jump would release you from the Grip. I find that when I have landed, I’m still taking Grip damage most of the time. Of course, sometimes I get lucky and I escape the Grip after I land, but I doubt this had anything to do with the jump. The fact is, you need multiple jumps to remove yourself from the Grip. The number of stars you put into the Force Jump is not a factor, either. So my tip is, don’t charge your Jump all the way, because that’s not going to help.

If you have to use Force Jump, use it with a combination of Force Speed and Jump. Use your multiple jumps to escape the Grip, and use the Force Speed to run out of the Gripper’s sight.

In the panic of being Gripped, most players whip out their Rail Detonators, or Concussion Rifle and do a series of random fire in all directions, in hopes that the splash damage would hurt the Gripper enough for release. Sometimes this works, but there is also the risk of taking a significant amount of splash damage yourself from these weapons, that might just kill you along with the Grip damage. Accidental suicide is not a fun way to die, causing a score reduction. Most of the time, the Gripper (a smart one that is) will simply stay on the move when you fire your rockets or ions. These Grippers will give you a real hard time.

Some people would argue that Deadly Sight is a worthless piece of crap, because it drains almost all your mana, it doesn't drain your target’s life fast enough, and the Force Absorb counters it perfectly. It is also a given fact that if the Gripper loses enough life, the Grip will be released. The Deadly Sight is almost perfect for such an occasion. The damage from the Deadly Sight is inflicted the moment you lay eyes on your opponent. So, just turn on your Deadly Sight and spin around until you’re released. If you’re opponent is smart, he would start running until you’re out of mana. Track him down with the stream of smoke that flows from your opponent, and lay your eyes upon him until his life reduces to zero. This is my personal favorite method of escape. Suddenly, you hold the upper hand. One second you’re squirming in a Grip, and the next second your opponent is running for his life.

The second best method is Protection. Once you have it on, the Grip is a powerless waste of mana for your opponent. You’ll hear the sounds of the Grip, but you won’t feel the effects. A smart Dark Jedi would run at the sight of the Protection, unless he has a concussion rifle or a rail detonator, or if he is confident with his saber.

Remember, if you have Protection, you’re no longer entitled to the Force Pull, and the Protection is partly vulnerable to the Concussion Rifle and Rail Detonator. Any weapons you try to use on them can also be Pulled out of your hand. So maybe you’re the one who has to run, but at least you got out of the Grip, right? If you think you’re good with the light saber, go ahead and slash at your opponent. If you’re lucky, you could get an instant kill with Fire 2.

If you can approximate the position of your Gripper, the next best thing to do (if you don’t have Protection or Deadly Sight) is to fire a Destruction in their direction. The blast radius on this fireball is so big, it will almost guarantee a Grip release if fired in the correct direction. An opponent close in range can take a hit but none of the splash damage will affect your health. In addition, you might actually kill the Gripper with a single hit of Destruction. If you’re playing on the Jedi Lord level, you could fire up to 2 Destructions before you’re out of mana, which increases your chances of escape and kills. However, it also takes time to locate the Gripper’s position, and that time may determine your life and death, so I still prefer Deadly Site over Destruction. Overall, a very useful and powerful escape, but not fast enough for some circumstances.

All of the escapes above require a buttload of mana. What if you just used up all your mana and you’re in a Grip? The next best thing to do is to whip out the Repeater and fire in all directions with Fire 1. The rapid rate of fire created by the Repeater shoots out a dense firing pattern, and thus, your chances of damaging the Gripper are more with the Repeater than any other weapon. An important thing to remember in this strategy, or in any other strategy, is to load yourself with plenty of Bacta tanks. These instant healers will extend your life, and buy you time, when you need it the most. In this situation, you don’t know when an ion will hit the Gripper, so have a Bacta tank hot key readily available next to your hand. The most apparent weakness in this method is that you might not be playing on a level with other weapons, or you just might not have the Repeater, period.

When I first played Jedi Knight, the Dark side used to be the ultimate Force. At least 70% of the players picked the Dark side, because all the powers “looked cool.” After not playing for 2 months, I return and it appears the new trend is the Light side. Players claim “the Grip is too cheap,” or “the Dark side is for losers.” The fact is, hardly anybody knows how to escape a Grip efficiently, and I admit, it’s hard and I’m still practicing. The reason nobody knows how to, is because nobody is willing to use the Grip. Everybody thinks it’s “dishonorable” or “cheap.” What a load of bullshit. The Grip was put in there for a reason, and I’m sure LucasArts didn’t put it there to make the Dark side invincible.

Another apparent problem here is that nobody wants to spend time learning the art of escaping the Grip. If you don’t even attempt to learn escaping the Grip, you have no right to call it cheap. Quit your whining, quit your bitching, and fight like a true Jedi, and have some real “honor.”

-Dr. Lee