EA Shuts Down Visceral Games, Will Redesign STAR WARS Game

I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of pixels suddenly cried in terror and were suddenly silenced. We have some bad news for those of you who have been following Amy Hennig’s hotly anticipated narrative-driven Star Wars game. On Tuesday, Electronic Arts president Patrick Söderlund announced that EA will be closing Visceral Games, the studio behind Battlefield Hardline and the Dead Space franchise. The action-adventure  Star Wars game that was in development at Visceral isn’t dead yet, but it is being delayed until an unspecified date as development shifts to a new team led by EA Vancouver.

In the wake of  Star Wars 1313‘s cancellation, which is chronicled in Jason Schreier’s excellent new book Blood, Sweat, and Pixels, Visceral Games led the charge on developing a single-player, story-focused video game set in the Star Wars universe. To help craft the title, Visceral tapped Amy Hennig, the former head writer and director behind the Uncharted series. Her future with the title is currently unknown and was not mentioned in Söderlund’s post. However, an e-mail to EA employees obtained by Kotaku, revealed that “[EA executive producer] Steve Anthony will lead this team,” and it “will use much of the work that has been done to date by Visceral.” This doesn’t look good for Hennig’s future involvement in the title, which would be a crushing disappointment.

As for the future of the game, Söderlund stated that “in its current form, it was shaping up to be a story-based, linear adventure game,” but that in order “to deliver an experience that players will want to come back to and enjoy for a long time to come, we needed to pivot the design.” The game, which was originally slated to come out in 2019, has no official release window and is delayed until further notice. To borrow another phrase from the galaxy far, far away, “we’ve got a bad feeling about this.”

Image: Visceral Games/Electronic Arts

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Dan Casey is the senior editor of Nerdist and the author of books about  Star Wars and  the Avengers. Follow him on Twitter ( @DanCasey).

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