EA no longer holds exclusive rights for the property, but will continue to be an “important partner.”
The newly resurgent Lucasfilm Games label is certainly making some big moves in the industry right now. Yesterday, it was announced that Bethesda’s Wolfenstein studio, MachineGames, had begun development on an Indiana Jones title. Now, it’s been announced that Ubisoft’s studio Massive Entertainment, developers of The Division, are working on a Star Wars game.
Development on the game is in its early stages right now, and Massive are currently recruiting staff for the project. Julian Gerighty, creative director of The Division, will lead up the game, which is being developed on the studio’s Snowdrop Engine. Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot says it will be an original story, and will be “different from anything that has been done before.”
“The Star Wars galaxy is an amazing source of motivation for our teams to innovate and push the boundaries of our medium,” says Guillemot. “Building new worlds, characters, and stories that will become lasting parts of the Star Wars lore is an incredible opportunity for us, and we are excited to have our Ubisoft Massive studio working closely with Lucasfilm Games to create an original Star Wars adventure that is different from anything that has been done before.”
This might come as a surprise to some, considering the fact that EA acquired the Star Wars license from Disney eight years ago, and the deal was supposed to run for at least a year. It seems the exclusivity terms of that deal have ended prematurely, though Disney says EA will continue to be an important partner as far as Star Wars is concerned.
“EA has been and will continue to be a very strategic and important partner for us now and going forward,” Sean Shoptaw, senior vice president of Global Games and Interactive Experiences at Disney, told Wired. “But we did feel like there’s room for others.”
EA said a few months back that it would “double down” on its Star Wars license. They’ve positioned Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order as the first game in a new series, and work on a sequel seems to be underway as well.