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Star Wars made a massive return to the big screen with the sequel trilogy. It came became appointment television with The Mandalorian. Just recently Star Wars launched a new publishing initiative with The High Republic. Generally speaking Star Wars has owned basically every media environment it has entered, but one exception to that rule has been video games. New Star Wars games have come out in the Disney era, and some of them have even been well regarded, but today the newly formed Lucasfilm Games announced a brand new video game project that's a huge deal, because it will mark the first open world Star Wars, game, and it's also being developed by the French developer Ubisoft, not Electronic Arts, who previously had the exclusive on console Star Wars games.
Disney claimed to have signed a 10-year exclusive deal with EA about eight years ago, but the announcement today that Ubisoft Massive is working on an open world game set in the Star Wars universe, which follows a day after the news that developer Bethesda is working on a new Indiana Jones game, is a clear indication that exclusivity is a thing of the past for Lucasfilm. While EA will continue to make Star Wars games, a sequel to the successful Jedi: Fallen Order is reportedly in development already, it now appears any studio could potentially make a Star Wars game if it has a solid idea and Lucasfilm Games gives the green light.
This is big because, if we're being honest, the legacy of the Lucasfilm/EA relationship hasn't been great. The last eight years have seen the release of four big games, two in the Star Wars: Battlefront series that saw significant criticism, the first for being a multiplayer-only title, and the second for leaning so heavily into its microtransaction economy that paying extra money was essentially necessary to play the game. The more recent titles have been better received, but EA also cancelled a number of Star Wars projects that were hotly anticipated, including a title by the creator of the Uncharted franchise.
The game from Ubisoft is reportedly still staffing up according to Wired, so the game itself is still years away, but Ubisoft is known for making open world games, every franchise from Assassin's Creed to FarCry to the endless stream of Tom Clancy branded titles uses a similar structure, a massive map that a player usually has complete freedom to move around in, with an endless stream of missions and collectables to discover throughout the world. It's certainly exciting to consider an open world game set on a planet in the Star Wars galaxy, or possibly more than one. Who wouldn't love to fully explore Coruscant as a young Jedi Knight? Of course, since its Ubisoft, we can also assume plenty of microtransactions.
With more developers having a chance to work on Star Wars games we will almost certainly see more of them in general, and even if not every game is a winner, we will likely see more good games. What sort of Star Wars game would you like to see somebody make?