Star Wars KOTOR 3 unlikely to continue at this point

Star Wars: The Old Republic.. Image Courtesy BioWare, EA GAMES
Star Wars: The Old Republic.. Image Courtesy BioWare, EA GAMES /

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic has been a fan favorite in the gaming community for the last 20 years. KOTOR was one of the first games to implement a play-as-your-own style game and gave us RPG elements that are still in use today. Games like the Jedi series and even Assassins Creed and open-world games such as the Horizon series give us what KOTOR built.

This being said getting a remaster of the game has been a tumultuous path as there have been rumors circling that Bioware was developing the remaster. The rumors started in 2019 while EA still retained the Star Wars exclusive deal. However, for reasons still unknown, EA never gave the green light for Bioware to develop the game. Surprising since Bioware is the developer of the critically and fan-loved series of Mass Effect, another open-world game with a deep storyline and rich characters, something KOTOR is known for. Even the follow-up of Knights of the Old Republic 2 was received with high praise.

This brings to question why EA, a company known for milking a franchise, would refuse to make a game that is so beloved by fans.

The first could be that Electronic Arts CEO was never “entirely thrilled” with the EA exclusive deal in the first place. First reported by Kotaku in 2019 (if you’re keeping track, the rumor Bioware was working on KOTOR 3 was in January of 2019), some former employees expressed Wilson’s dissatisfaction with the Star Wars deal. However, when a spokesperson for EA was asked to comment they refuted this claiming it was entirely false. The exclusive deal was signed in May 2013 and Wilson took over in September 2019, giving credence to the idea that at least the deal was signed before he took over. This being said, in 2013 Disney had just purchased Star Wars for a whopping $4 billion and was still regarded as one of the most beloved franchises.

During the exclusive deal in the first place, EA’s business model seemed to mainly follow first-party games such as Mass Effect, Titanfall, Battlefield, and Dragon Age, all of which came out during the 10-year deal with Star Wars. Most of these first-party games were received better than the Star Wars games. Titanfall 2 is regarded as one of the best shooters; Dragon Age is still played to this day; Mass Effect was full of bugs but still was received well; and Battlefield, despite all the issues, gave fans a look back to the previous Wars and gave updates to Multiplayer. However, Battlefront was rushed out to fit in with the release of The Force Awakens, and Battlefront II was a pay-to-win game behind a paywall of $60. Jedi: Fallen Order and Jedi: Survivor were really the only games that were worth playing, and that was because they were made by Respawn, the same developers who made Titanfall and Titanfall 2.

What is the future of a KOTOR game?

With the EA deal ending and publishers like Ubisoft making Star Wars: Outlaws, one can only hope we will get a new KOTOR game. With the rise of RPG games such as Elden Ring, the new Assassin’s Creed titles, and even the Jedi games, now is the time to make a KOTOR game again.

We could also look at a remaster, and FromSoftware has shown that a remaster from a quality third-party studio can work with Demon Souls and Dark Souls Remastered. EA has made it clear that they have no intention of making a KOTOR game, so this leaves the door open for another publisher to swoop in.

Would a KOTOR 3 game sell well? Considering that quality Star Wars games have been few and far between these past few years, I’d say there is a market for the said game; just the nostalgia alone would be worth the money too. KOTOR 2 left us all hanging on a cliffhanger, and the 2011 MMORPG didn’t scratch that itch.

The other issue is the almost magical name KOTOR 3 has behind it. Fans have desired this game for so long that it’s almost a given that any product given to us would be a disappointment.

In the end, KOTOR 3 is a mythical idea that has been lost to the sands of Tatooine. Maybe sometime in a galaxy far, far away, a game developer will give us a true KOTOR 3.

One thing is for certain, that is the Force will always be waiting for those who seek it.