Star Wars fans expecting upcoming games to closely resemble the film trilogies will need to alter their expectations. According to Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson, future video games based on the franchise will follow the path of the Batman: Arkham series by Rocksteady Studios and Warner Bros.
“What Warner Bros. did with Batman was take core roots of that IP and manifest that inside the walls of Gotham City and delivered an interactive experience that had real ties to what you would see in the films and what you had read in the comics, while having its own life because it could provide such deep and more immersive storylines.” Wilson told Fortune.
Considering that the Arkham series is one of the most widely popular game adaptations from a film or comic book IP, this could be good news for gamers, especially those lamenting the loss of the darker, grittier Star Wars: 1313. The project was lost in the Disney licensing rights deal and was set on Level 1313, a section of the metropolis on the world of Corsucant in the Star Wars extended universe (not depicted in any of the six films).
“Every developer dreams of creating games for the Star Wars universe,” EA Labels President Frank Gibeau said. “Three of our top studios will fulfill that dream, crafting epic adventures for Star Wars fans.”
We already know that DICE is working on a new installment in the Star Wars: Battlefront series for the Xbox One, PS4, and Windows PC that was announced during E3 last year (see trailer below). In addition to DICE, we’ve been told that another EA in-house development team, Visceral Games (Dead Space creator), as well as Star Wars: The Old Republic developer BioWare will be developing future titles for the Star Wars franchise.
While there hasn’t been anything shown off to back this new “Arkham style” direction, there are rumors that EA Canada, possibly in conjunction with Visceral Games, is working on an open-world action game where this new model could make its first appearance.
EA is relatively new to the Star Wars universe, having acquired the exclusive rights to the license from Disney last May in an agreement lasting at least 10 years after Disney axed former game developer LucasArts.
For those not interested in deviating from the films story line, it appears that could possibly only apply to console and PC gaming, as Disney has stated they will “retain certain rights to develop new titles within the mobile, social, tablet and online game categories.”
What do you think? Is avoiding crossover between movie and game a good choice by EA? Would you be happy to experience new immersive Star Wars storylines?