May 12, 2013
EA On Star Wars: Chill Out, They Got It
Electronic Arts came out with a statement, just days ago, assuring Star Wars fans that they’ve secured a deal with Disney to produce all Star Wars IPs with their Frostbite 3 engine. This bit of news will bring some comfort to all around Star Wars fans; but to the gamers, EA has breathed a new gust of life into a fan following that I feared would fade into the wind.
I was saddened to hear that George Lucas was selling his Star Wars rights to Disney, the corporation responsible for the 3D animation revolution of the mid-90s to present day. We’ve had this argument before, and according to many of you fans, Lucasarts wasn’t doing anything special with their video games anyway.
I respectfully agree, but my gripe with Lucas wasn’t the lack of awesomeness in his recent video game creations, much less his selling of the responsibilities to another company. He’s an old guy now! The late Ray Harryhausen hadn’t produced a stop motion film since Clash of the Titans in the late eighties, so where exactly was my anger branching from?
The legacy, kids. That is all.
Much to my disappointment, Disney laid off the entire video game sector of Lucasarts, and stated that they would concentrate on selling the Star Wars IP rights to video game companies who were willing to take a crack at it. Who better to sign themselves to the mission than EA?
The publishing giant has received a lot of negative criticism from fans and business analysts in the video game industry for their sheer lack of personal connection to fans (more so in public relations) and seemingly shady business practices that have gone unanswered and unexplained. Be that as it may, we already predicted that EA would be the first to hop on the bandwagon to release Star Wars games. Through this business move, EA might actually get back in the good graces of those millions of angry gamers.
EA has already helmed the reins of their Knights of the Old Republic (Kotor) series with much emphasis and enthusiasm on traditional RPG game design elements, among amazing character design. Because of that record, we’re all assuming that they’ll be concentrating on pushing RPG titles for fans. However, EA shouldn’t be so typical with their Star Wars games.
After all, not everyone liked Kotor.
To truly impress the casual population of the gaming industry, EA would need to pick up the ball that was dropped by Lucasarts on the much anticipated 1313 game that was projected to release later this year before Disney cut the umbilical cord on its development. To do that, EA might have to cut a few corners and introduce their traditional RPG elements in the game’s release. But that would imply that they’re developing the game at all. For now, we can speculate on the prospects of their current plans.
Of course for now, they’re not releasing any news on future Star Wars projects other than the statement that they released to IGN, “[We] will develop and publish new Star Wars titles for a core gaming audience, spanning all interactive platforms and the most popular game genres, while Disney will retain certain rights to develop new titles within the mobile, social, tablet and online game categories.”
Sounds promising, but don’t get too excited, people. They’ve only just begun to push the boulder down the hill.
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