• Disney Shutting Down LucasArts, Canceling SW 1313

      Reports are coming out that Disney has shut down LucasArts this morning and laid off its 150 employees, and that the next big LucasArts game, Star Wars 1313, has been canceled - although it may have a future release as an outside licensee-developed game. The writing has been on the wall with LucasArts ever since the Walt Disney company bought Lucasfilm and its subsidiaries late last year - first through a hiring freeze, then talk of games being developed by other studios, and now through LucasArts and Disney representatives.

      GameInformer has received this official statement from Disney:
      "After evaluating our position in the games market, we've decided to shift LucasArts from an internal development to a licensing model, minimizing the company's risk while achieving a broader portfolio of quality Star Wars games. As a result of this change, we've had layoffs across the organization. We are incredibly appreciative and proud of the talented teams who have been developing our new titles."

      Star Wars 1313 was being developed as the next big Star Wars game, taking on the role of a bounty hunter delving down to Coruscant's depths - level 1313 specifically, which got a bit of a preview in the last few episodes of The Clone Wars cartoon where it visited nearby levels. The game was shown to have a lush look and gameplay style akin to the popular "Uncharted" game series of action adventure platformers, a promising region of gaming for Star Wars to move into.

      Disney's representative said of 1313 to GameInformer: "There's always a possibility that it [Star Wars 1313] can still come out via licensing."

      The closing of LucasArts comes on the heels of Disney shuttering Lucas Animation and the Star Wars The Clone Wars team. LucasArts was founded in 1982 and produced many Star Wars games, and also other titles such as Maniac Mansion, Sam & Max Hit the Road, and the Monkey Island series.

      via GameInformer.com
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      Comments 8 Comments
      1. JediTricks's Avatar
        JediTricks -
        "This deal's getting worse all the time!" I'm getting sick of quoting Lando in this Disney deal, sick of it fitting so darned well. I was really looking forward to playing 1313 too.
      1. Lord Malakite's Avatar
        Lord Malakite -
        So JT, are you alienated yet?
      1. Snowtrooper's Avatar
        Snowtrooper -
        I fear we may be watching Star Wars die before our very eyes. I hope I'm wrong, but these aren't promising signs.
      1. Darth Metalmute's Avatar
        Darth Metalmute -
        The mods should open up and allow swearing now, because news like this is going to keep on rolling in.

        I would love to hear GL's comments on this. It's nice that he gave the sale money to charity, but it's costing lots of good, hard working people there jobs...
      1. bigbarada's Avatar
        bigbarada -
        Disney wants their $4 billion back as quickly as possible. I think they are going to continue to "streamline" the Lucas properties in order to maximize their profits.

        Since I have zero interest in Star Wars video games, this is really not a big loss for me. Maybe we can actually get some GOOD Star Wars video games made for a change. If Star Wars Kinect was any indication, then I think shutting down LucasArts was a long time coming.

        So, what's this going to do for TOR? Not that I care, but is that online game going to continue to be supported?
      1. Neuroleptic's Avatar
        Neuroleptic -
        Quote Originally Posted by bigbarada View Post
        So, what's this going to do for TOR? Not that I care, but is that online game going to continue to be supported?
        TOR is run and developed by EA and Bioware, and they have a contract for a set time to be able to run the MMO. I'm not sure what the time on the contract is, but I know the game was designed with the goal of having it run for 10 years.

        As long as it continues to make money, it will probalby continue to opperate.
      1. Darth Metalmute's Avatar
        Darth Metalmute -
        Any word on how or if this affects Angry Bird Star Wars or the new pinball game?
      1. JediTricks's Avatar
        JediTricks -
        Quote Originally Posted by Darth Metalmute View Post
        I would love to hear GL's comments on this. It's nice that he gave the sale money to charity, but it's costing lots of good, hard working people there jobs...
        I'd really love to hear what Lucas has to say on this matter. Then again, some of this is his fault by letting his companies get mismanaged and dwindle away funds on vaporware and crap well before Disney came along. Those people might not have lost their jobs had LucasArts been putting out games and more IP instead of sitting around doing almost nothing for the last decade.

        Quote Originally Posted by Darth Metalmute View Post
        Any word on how or if this affects Angry Bird Star Wars or the new pinball game?
        It shouldn't affect them at all as they're both licensed and only should have minimal LucasArts input.
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