Single Player Star Wars Game Shelved After Uncharted Creator Leaves EA
In May 2013, following the sale of the franchise to Disney, EA acquired the license to make Star Wars video games. They announced this to a great deal of fanfare, too, which I think it’s safe to say they’ve not lived up to.
The multiplayer-only Battlefront felt like a barebones tech demo and its sequel has become a byword for predatorily gouging money from gamers. The days when we’d get regular single player action adventures in the universe seem like a distant memory (the campaign in Battlefront II felt like a hastily shoved together afterthought), and that memory looks like it’s going to fade even further now that Uncharted creator Amy Hennig’s Star Wars game is apparently on ice.
The title was in development at EA Vancouver and given the pedigree of its creative head, most were hoping for an exciting single player shooter in the vein of the Uncharted series that its creator piloted. A game like this has been a long time coming, too, with fans first being hyped up for Star Wars 1313 before its cancellation in the wake of the Disney deal and then this project, which was initially being developed by Dead Space developer Visceral with Hennig at the helm.
Then, in October 2017, we got some ominous news. EA was shuttering Visceral and refocusing the title away from a “story-based, linear adventure game” and towards a “broader experience.” Knowing what we do about EA, we can safely assume that this broader experience will be something jam-packed to the hilt with micro-transactions, loot boxes, crowbarred-in multiplayer and all manner of useless cosmetic tat.
In an interview with Eurogamer, Hennig explained the following:
“I’m not doing anything Star Wars, and, who knows what the future may hold, but that project is on the shelf now. The Vancouver studio is working on something pretty different. It’s really not… Y’know, once you go more open world it’s such a different game to the one we were making. Everybody loved what we were doing and I’d love to see us resurrect that somehow, but it’s complicated.”
Read between her carefully chosen words and it’s not particularly difficult to realize that EA was dead-set on making this game something it wasn’t designed to be.
Of course, the publisher diplomatically responded with the following:
“Yes, Amy Hennig has moved on from Electronic Arts. Amy is an amazing storyteller — a crafter and a creator. We have so much respect for her and the creative spirit she brought to the teams and projects she worked on at EA. We wish Amy all the best with what comes next, and we will all be watching with excitement.”
So, what’s next? Well, apparently Titanfall developers Respawn are working on a single player game called Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Let’s just hope it delivers the experience we’re all so desperately craving.