Electronic Arts right now shut down Visceral Games, the studio behind Dead Space and Battlefield Hardline – and that was busy functioning on a brand new Star Wars game by Uncharted director/cowriter Amy Hennig.
That is terrible news for Visceral’s employees, a lot of of whom will likely drop their jobs, joining legions of developers whose studios happen to be purchased SWTOR Credits, restructured, and in the end shuttered by Electronic Arts. But for civilians, the reasoning is just as considerably of a pisser. The decision to close Visceral comes alongside a “pivot” within the design and style of its Star Wars game, based on a statement by EA executive VP Patrick Söderlund:
Our Visceral studio has been creating an action-adventure title set in the Star Wars universe. In its existing kind, it was shaping up to be a story-based, linear adventure game. Throughout the improvement method, we have been testing the game concept with players, listening towards the feedback about what and how they need to play, and closely tracking basic shifts within the marketplace. It has come to be clear that to deliver an knowledge that players will would like to come back to and get pleasure from for a long time to come, we necessary to pivot the style. We’ll preserve the gorgeous visuals, authenticity inside the Star Wars universe, and concentrate on bringing a Star Wars story to life. Importantly, we are shifting the game to be a broader practical experience that allows for much more variety and player agency, leaning into the capabilities of our Frostbite engine and reimagining central components with the game to offer players a Star Wars adventure of greater depth and breadth to explore.
See, what Visceral (also as developers at EA Motive in Montreal) had been operating on was an totally single-player, pretty-much linear experience akin to Uncharted. But that is not where the AAA video game business enterprise is headed right now. Big-budget games right now have to have open worlds, live events, multiplayer, loot boxes, RPG elements, crafting, upgradeable weapons, microtransactions, and pattable animals. (OK, I am not becoming snarky about the pattable animals.) We’ve seen the EA-owned BioWare move from story-driven RPGs to MMOs (Star Wars: The Old Republic) and on the internet loot-shooters (Anthem); Visceral’s Star Wars game will apparently follow suit. It is unclear what shape it’ll eventually take, but it’ll most likely appear additional like Assassin’s Creed or Destiny than Uncharted.
For what it’s worth, here’s the one tiny glimpse EA gave with the new game (amongst its other Star Wars titles) at E3 Expo last year:
Now, the game’s improvement will shift to other EA studios, principally EA Vancouver; its release has been pushed back from “2019” to “indefinitely”. Cherish whatever single-player, story-driven games get cheap SWTOR Credits released by key studios in the coming years. Help them, for the reason that they’re special.