EA’s Focus On Games As A Service Behind Visceral’s Star Wars Title Cancellation

During an interview with VentureBeat, Amy Hennig has provided some more details about the reason why Visceral Games was shut down and its Star Wars title got cancelled.

Hennig, who created the Uncharted franchise, first said it was tough to fund Visceral since it was in the San Francisco area, which is rather expensive since there are no tax credits.

On top of that, many of the staff members got hired to build Battlefield Hardline, and once they were asked to work on this Uncharted-like Star Wars game a kind of “cultural shift” was required.

Also, Frostbite was never meant to be used for a third person cinematic action game, so the support to that genre had to be almost built from the ground up.

Finally, considerations about what Electronic Arts ultimately wants its titles to be, as the publisher believes “games as a service” are its priority.

“I think that where EA is at right now, they’re looking more at games as a service, the live service model. More open world stuff, trying to crack that nut, versus this more finite crafted experience,” she said.

“We were trying to make sure that we built in other modes and extensibility and all that stuff. But the fundamental spine of the thing was more like Uncharted than one of these open world, live service games. That’s a big gap to cross.”

In the end, while disappointed at how things ended up with the project, Hennig doesn’t really criticize the publisher for the decision it took.

“It was something we were struggling with the whole time. Does this make sense? Is this something EA really wants to do? I certainly regret the fact that there’s a lot of good game there that I would love to see the light of day. A lot of people would. One never knows what might happen,” she revealed.

Even more disappointingly, the EA Vancouver open world game which was being built based on the Visceral action game’s asset was also cancelled after a few months in the making.

At this stage, the sole Star Wars game officially in the making at EA is Respawn’s third person action game Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, which is set to be revealed this fall.