EA cancels open-world Star Wars creating a disturbance in the force


Electronic Arts recently cancelled the development and release of an open world Star Wars Video Game. Here’s a breakdown of what happened and the future of Star Wars games.

After rumors circulated of the demise of the open-world Star Wars game, Electronic Arts (EA) officially confirmed it has ended the development of an open-world Star Wars game by EA’s Vancouver Office. The game was first announced back in 2017 with the working title of Ragtag, and its cancellation is another hiccup in EA’s relationship with Disney and Lucasfilm.

Since 2013, after Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm and the Star Wars properties, EA has held the exclusive rights to make and produce Star Wars video games.

Since the deal was struck, EA has produced several games on a variety of platforms, including mobile games, such as Galaxy of Heroes, as well as PC games such as The Old Republic.

Unlike those games, two biggest games that EA has released under its agreement with Disney were the console games Star Wars Battlefront and Star Wars Battlefront II, which were developed by EA DICE.

The first Battlefront was released in late 2015 and received mixed reviews, most praising the game’s graphics and game play, but criticized it for being repetitive, lack of maps and no campaign mode.

Having played the game myself, I for one enjoyed it initially, but there were only a few popular playable game modes and the game tended to feel very repetitive at times. It was also frustrating that to play as a hero character such as Luke Skywalker or Darth Vader, this was simply by random chance of finding a “hero token” allowing you to access them.

Battlefront II was released in 2017 and looked to rectify the mistakes of the first game. This one included an original campaign, as well as an improved multiplayer with better maps, and improved way of unlocking heros based off of in-game performance.

However, this game was critically panned due to its use of in-game micro-transactions and “loot crates”. For those unaware of what this is, loot crates can be bought with real money in order to randomly unlock game play features such as weapons and playable characters.

EA and DICE were criticized for this because it was much more difficult to unlock the game’s features through gameplay only, encouraging players to spend more money to buy these loot crates and get unlockable features that way instead. The game under sold projections by over 1 million copies and EA cites this as the main reason.

Naturally, after this happened, the fan base lost a lot of faith and trust in EA to make a Star Wars game worth buying. With the cancellation of another game two years after is was announced, this has not helped to mend the relationship between EA and Star Wars fans.

After rumors of Ragtag’s cancellation, EA released the following statement earlier today, stating the following:

"There’s been speculation overnight about one of our Star Wars projects. As a natural part of the creative process, the great work by our team in Vancouver continues and will evolve into future Star Wars content and games. We’re fully committed to making more Star Wars games, we’re very excited about Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order from Respawn, and we’ll share more about our new projects when the time is right."

According to EA’s website, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order  will be a role-play game following the story of a surviving Padawan set shortly after the events of Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, and that the game will be releasing in late 2019.

Reports of this game state that it is unlikely to include a multiplayer, and will play similar to the Star Wars: The Force Unleashed games originally developed by LucasArts.

While it is upsetting that we will not be getting an open-world game in the near future, it is still possible that this was a good decision. If EA has learned from its past mistakes, and more importantly, their under performing sales, then if they felt that the game was not living up to expectations, canceling it in order to focus on a potentially better game would be a better decision.

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Hopefully, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order will turn out to be a successful game, and if it is and EA gets back on the right track, then we may a new open world game may resume development, and we hopefully get one that the fan base deserves….Hopefully.