EA Cancels Open-World Star Wars Game From Vancouver Studio

According to reports from those close to the studio, publishing giant Electronic Arts has canceled its open-world Star Wars project. Originally developed by Visceral Games, the game has since continued its development under the arm of EA Vancouver.

First reported by Jason Schreier of Kotaku, the Vancouver based studio had been developing the project since October 2017, when EA shut down Visceral, While the project was under development at Visceral at the time of closure, reports suggest that the development of the game had changed quite drastically since the Vancouver studio took control. Code-named Ragtag, the game centered around a linear action-adventure play-style, with Uncharted director Amy Hennig leading the project. Since taken it over, EA’s in-house studio replaced much of the game, outside of a handful of art assets, to fit their open-world gameplay.

EA Vancouver handles support for multiple franchises within EA, including FIFA and Battlefront, with the Ragtag being a main focus with a portion of those within the studio. While it is not clear what EA Vancouver’s next project will be, but Scheier suggests that it may fall within the Star Wars IP.

In 2013, Disney and EA signed an exclusive, 10 year licensing agreement for EA to publish Star Wars games developed by then Visceral Games, DICE, BioWare, and now Respawn Entertainment. While the deal is approaching its sixth year, it has only beared witness to two console experiences (Battlefront 1 & 2), along with the mobile experience Galaxy of Heroes (iOS and Android). With the poor reception to both Battlefield entries from DICE, along with multiple game cancelations for the series, one must ask, at what point does Disney explore its options with the IP, including terminating its agreement with EA?

Respawn Entertainment, an EA owned studio, announced at EA Play event at E3 2018 that they were currently developing a new single-player, narrative driven Star Wars game, titled Jedi: Fallen Order. The game is currently scheduled for a 2019 release, with many expecting to see the game hit store shelves this fall.

We will continue to provide more information as it becomes available.

UPDATE (1/16/19): More details have began to surface since our previous post. Schreier notes those close to the project, codenamed Orca, have detailed that it would’ve set players in the role of a scoundrel or bounty hunter who could explore various open-world planets and work with different factions across the Star Wars universe. He also notes that the game was quite early in development, and that when EA’s top decision maker’s examined their internal road map for the next handful of years, they decided they wanted to get a project out sooner rather than later. Enter a new, smaller-scale project that EA and their Motive studio will be heading, that is planned to launch as early as 2020 (also noting this would line up well with the rumored 2020 launch of next generation hardware, although none of this has been confirmed). Also important to note that EA did not lay off anyone as part of this transition, and possibly rebooting the Ragtag project (technically again) isn’t off the table in the future.

For updates on EA and their canceled Star Wars experience, follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and keep it locked in at Bonus Accessory.

Advertisements

RUMOR: New Details Leak on Respawn’s Star Wars: Fallen Order Game, Launching November

This past June at EA’s E3 2018 Play press conference, Respawn Entertainment’s Vince Zampella confirmed that the studio will be bringing a new Star Wars experience to players in the near future, entitled ‘Star Wars: the Fallen Order’. While no gameplay footage or a release date was revealed during the event, Zampella assured fans that new information would be coming in the near future on the game; and while nothing official has been stated, we may have just landed a plethora of info surrounding what the game truly is and when we can expect to play it.

According to Reddit user u/Xyzsvtabc’s post on the subreddit r/StarWarsLeaks, the game will be coming out in November 2019 and takes place five years after ‘Revenge of the Sith’. He/she stated:

They said this is coming out in November. It takes place about 5 years after Revenge of the Sith and follows the main character whose name is Cal (I forget his last name). He’s was a paduwan that survived the efforts to kill all of the remaining jedi. Not a ton of gameplay info but some of the other story lines are that he has a mentor figure who is a woman named Ceres. The only other thing I remember is them talking about other characters they would come across from some of the comics. The mentioned the 9th sister and 2nd sister? Something about Inquisitors? I wish I could remember more about this. They showed a ton of artwork.

The user states that he was invited to a marketing presentation held by Disney, which provided details on what the Star Wars brand has for the upcoming new year. Along with the details regarding Fallen Order, he/she also provides details on a number of other Star Wars related projects, including the newly announced Mandalorian streaming show and the highly anticipated Star Wars: Episode IX.

Respawn Entertainment, who are responsible for both entries in the Titanfall franchise, have been an EA owned development studio for over a year now, being purchased in November 2017 for an estimated $151 million in cash and $164 million in equity. The studio had also previously worked on the Call of Duty franchise before the implementation of Infinity Ward in 2010.

Many fans hope Respawn’s newest project will be a return to form for the Star Wars IP in regards to video games. This console generation has not been the kindest to fans of the classic space opera, as the franchise’s Battlefront series has negatively swallowed up the majority of the spotlight on its regards to gaming. Littered with loot bozes and microtransactions for basic elements to the gameplay at launch, the most recent entry, Star Wars: Battlefront II, was received an overabundant amount of negative feedback from fans and members of the industry alike; along with one of the most downvoted responses in Reddit history from an EA customer service representative, over 688,000 downvotes at the time of this writing.

Since this is strictly nothing but a rumor at this time, please remember to take this tidbit of info with a grain of salt. With that said, having a major blowout on Fallen Order at next year’s EA Play conference at E3 may tie in well to the 2019 theatrical release of Episode IX, set to release in next December. For now, we must use the force to help our patience while we wait.