According to reporting by the excellent Jason Schreier, EA CEO Andrew Wilson was never a huge fan of the deal his predecessors made to acquire the Star Wars license. I can’t say one way or another if this is true, but EA’s demonstrable underutilization of the license over the years definitely makes sense with that context in mind.
Earlier this week, Electronic Arts announced that it plans to ‘double down’ on Star Wars going forward. Has Andrew Wilson had a change of heart? It sure seems like it.
Between Jedi: Fallen Order and now Star Wars: Squadrons, EA appears to be taking an entirely different tack with the license, allowing for projects that don’t necessarily need to take over the world with each release. JFO was a single player Star Wars project without any games-as-a-service trappings or anything else attached to it. What you bought at launch is what you got and the game did well for EA. The company is now taking the same sort of old school approach with Star Wars: Squadrons. Taking a bit of the pressure off of the license’s use at the company could potentially lead to the sort of Star Wars gems we saw in the LucasArts days, where each game had its own identity and appeal.
EA only has the license until 2023, but it’s my view that this change in approach is a signal that the company would like to keep the license, so I expect to see quite a few projects pop up between now and then to make up for some seriously lost time.
With that in mind, if EA is going to be doubling down on Star Wars, these are some of the games I’d like to see.
Multiplayer Jedi Knight “Sequel”
I don’t know that a traditional Jedi Knight game makes sense in EA’s portfolio of Star Wars games with the Star Wars: Jedi: games now becoming a series after Fallen Order. The Jedi Knight games were great single player stories, but their deep combat systems kept players playing in multiplayer for years and years after their release. The combat systems of Jedi: Fallen Order are fine for a single player series, but wouldn’t recapture the magic of the Jedi Knight games in multiplayer, so if the two series can’t co-exist, then I’d at least like to see the series’ gameplay live on in a brand new multiplayer title.
Empire at War Sequel
This one is kind of a layup. Empire at War was a pretty great Star Wars RTS (well, except for the ground combat) developed by Petroglyph Games and it’s in desperate need for either a remaster, remake, or full on sequel. EA tapped Petroglyph for an excellent remaster of Command & Conquer and Red Alert, so if possible, why not bring them back to do the same with Empire at War? Or even get them to do a sequel?
RTS games are a niche these days, but so are space sims and EA somehow greenlit one of those, so anything’s on the table as far as I’m concerned.
Star Wars “Hitman”
This one is super unlikely given its focus on violence, but I’d like to see something along the lines of a Star Wars Hitman game where you’re playing as an Imperial Intelligence agent (or Rebel Spy) or even a Bounty Hunter.
Star Wars “XCOM”
Fantasy Flight Games essentially has a tabletop version of this game called Imperial Assault and it’s awesome. The possibilities here are easy to imagine and there are enough units and equipment in Star Wars to make for a viable XCOM-like.
Star Wars Digital Card Game
Sony Online Entertainment did a pretty decent job of this idea as an add-on to Star Wars Galaxies many years ago. If it worked well then, why not now? Sith, Jedi, Empire, Rebellion, Droids, Underworld, and Nightsisters could all fit into various typical card game archetypes.
Knights of the Old Republic Remake & Sequel
This one is the most obvious and it’s something fans have been wanting forever. KOTOR is certainly playable these days, but it could definitely use a remaster at the very least. Star Wars: The Old Republic could be considered a KOTOR 3 of sorts, but I’d still like to see a proper sequel. The only issue is that new Star Wars media needs to fit into canon and KOTOR, small bits and pieces aside, is firmly in Legends territory.
A New Racer
Episode I: Racer is still one of the most fun racing games around and the recent release on the Nintendo Switch has me jonesing for a new entry. This is completely doable with a smaller team and I can’t imagine why EA wouldn’t pursue a project like this given its recent moves.
Star Wars ARPG
I kind of waffle back and forth on this one because I’m not sure if the IP is a good fit for a fully-fledged ARPG, but after I played Kabam’s Star Wars: Uprising, a mobile ARPG released in 2015, I was a bit more convinced that it could work.
What sort of Star Wars games would you like to see? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!