LucasArts Officially Shuttered by Disney

Posted by Alex (2293 posts) -
The once promising looking Star Wars: 1313 will not continue development, it seems.

Word surrounding LucasArts, the once dominant, but more recently dormant video game publishing and development arm of the house that Star Wars built, had not been good of late. After a strong showing at last year's E3 with an intriguing new Star Wars project, 1313, radio silence kicked in immediately following the sale of all things Lucasfilm to Disney late last year, and rumors began to swirl that the project was dead. That news has been all but confirmed, alongside news of the publisher's effective closing today, as announced by Disney in a brief statement.

"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."

LucasArts of the modern era hardly reflected its once dominant days as a publisher and development house. Apart from having total access to the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises--for each of which it produced countless memorable games--it also held court as one of the great producers of adventure games back in the 1990s, hosting burgeoning talents like Tim Schafer and Ron Gilbert, who produced such classics as Grim Fandango and The Secret of Monkey Island.

Unfortunately, those days were largely in the past. Recent sequels in the Star Wars: Battlefront and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed franchises failed to gain much momentum; EA's Star Wars: The Old Republic MMO ended up going free-to-play inside of it's one year anniversary; and the dismal Star Wars: Kinect is all but assured to be LucasArts' publishing swan song. Still, the company at least showed signs of life with an impressive demo of Star Wars: 1313 to select press at last year's E3. Though it was exceptionally early in development, it showed a great deal of promise, and seemed like just the kind of thing that could have renewed a bit of interest in Star Wars video gaming in the next console generation. Sadly, that was not to be. Layoffs have been reported at LucasArts, and it seems the brand is set to be little more than a publishing stamp to be attached to licensed products.

We'll bring you more on this as it becomes available.

#1 Posted by mrfluke (5265 posts) -

wow

#2 Posted by psylah (2181 posts) -

Trek wins again.

#3 Posted by daggon55 (114 posts) -

Pour one out for TIE Fighter

#4 Edited by MooseyMcMan (11273 posts) -

I'm quite bummed at this news.

I never really had the chance to play any non-Star Wars LucasArts games, but I played a ton of the Rogue Squadron games back in the day. Rogue Squadron II was such a fantastic game!

And all those people that are out of jobs. I hope they find work soon.

Moderator Online
#5 Posted by Xearo (55 posts) -

1313 looked really interesting.

#6 Posted by MachoFantastico (4786 posts) -

Shame for all those working there, and a shame for 1313. Thought it had potential to be at least interesting.

Have to say, I'm not loving the way Disney have handled Lucas stuff so far. Though one might argue that LucasArts weren't doing to good before the buy-out.

#7 Posted by Brodehouse (10066 posts) -

Star Wars 1313 will be coming out in 13... Dammit that one doesn't work.

3131?

#8 Posted by Saganomics (209 posts) -

@mrfluke said:

wow

Yep, pretty much sums it up.

#9 Edited by Atwa (622 posts) -

Really shocked by this.

#10 Posted by Theory (85 posts) -

maybe someone else will pick up 1313 and its team... otherwise it'd be quite a shame.

#11 Edited by soralapio (261 posts) -

Fucking Disney.

#12 Edited by pbhawks45 (736 posts) -

Star Wars: Dark Forces is what took me down the games rabbit hole as a six-year-old. Sad day.

#13 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (5793 posts) -

That's too bad. The game seemed promising. Guess we'll never see gritty Star Wars. Maybe one day.

#14 Posted by Adrian79 (176 posts) -

But we'll still get a Day of the Tentacle remake right?.....RIGHT???

#15 Edited by Toxin066 (3301 posts) -

Fuck. I want Battlefront 3 pretty badly. And 1313 could have been something special. No chance of Disney auctioning off those IPs, eh?

#16 Edited by louiedog (2335 posts) -

Does this mean the people working on 1313 got laid off today and not the day after the game would have gone gold?

#17 Posted by elko84 (1084 posts) -
#18 Edited by Heartless_Enigma (4 posts) -

Anyone else check the date today to see if it was the first? My jaw's on the floor...

#19 Edited by Nerolus (246 posts) -

Off to a good start, Disney. Can 150 people and cancel two great looking games.

Excuse me a few minutes while I polish this pitchfork...

#20 Edited by BaconGames (3481 posts) -

I guess I'm not surprised only to the extent that I kind of always assumed they would shutter LucasArts relatively soon after the acquisition. The devs at Lucas were always known or assumed to be great at what they do up to the present day so I wouldn't be shocked if a lot of those people laid off found happy homes elsewhere.

The only real question in my mind after all this time is how Disney plans to approach legacy game properties both Star Wars and non-Star Wars related.

#21 Edited by BabyChooChoo (4623 posts) -

Online
#22 Edited by Soapy86 (2632 posts) -

Can't say I'm all that sad about it. LucasArts hasn't put out anything really good in a long time.

#23 Edited by Bollard (5660 posts) -
#24 Posted by Morningstar (2185 posts) -

Such bad news...

#25 Edited by AlexanderSheen (5036 posts) -
#26 Posted by DrDarkStryfe (1139 posts) -

It was rumored that development stopped on 1313 sometime late last year. The company was a shell of its former glory, and could not hold onto a leading executive for its life.

A shame that one of the all time greats had to be put down. They will be missed by anyone that has played the great software they put out in the 90's.

#27 Posted by deskp (448 posts) -

@toxin066: No need to auction it off when people can just lisence them or something.

#28 Edited by Mentlegen26 (10 posts) -

I wonder how far along 1313 was, and if it will be a sunk project or licensed out.

#30 Posted by Krystal_Sackful (810 posts) -

Damn it Johnny V. You did this didn't you?

#31 Edited by Maitimo (204 posts) -

Given Disney's lack of success with games publishing and LucasArts' continued irrelevance, it might be sad but it's hardly a surprise.

#32 Edited by antipothis (8 posts) -

Best news I've heard since Lucas sold star wars. The last thing of note that LA developed internally was the force unleashed 1 and 2 (Kinect Star Wars is not of note). Now we can actually finally start getting star wars games again.

#33 Edited by ejiehi (123 posts) -

Give Tim Schafer his games back Johnny V. >:(

#34 Posted by PsychoPenguin (181 posts) -

@chavtheworld: 2005 is recent, right? It's not like they've developed anything good since then.

#35 Edited by Abendlaender (2830 posts) -
#36 Posted by BBAlpert (1526 posts) -

@adrian79 said:

But we'll still get a Day of the Tentacle remake right?.....RIGHT???

I don't know if this is anything like the THQ situation where orphaned franchises get divvied up between other publishers, or if the case is that Disney still keeps all those licenses even if they have no plans of doing anything with them.

#37 Edited by MikkaQ (10314 posts) -

Wow that sucks. I loved growing up with LucasArts games.

#38 Edited by StoicForce (10 posts) -

I can't imagine Star Wars 1313 being completely cancelled if it was even half-way done. Either it's being marketed assets-and-all to a 3rd party developer or it really was in such early stages that there is nothing to sell.

#39 Edited by BaneFireLord (2949 posts) -

Yeah, no shit "recent titles in the Battlefront franchise failed to gain momentum"...they were all on the fucking PSP.

#40 Posted by chikin_n_rofls (140 posts) -

:(

#41 Edited by villainy (564 posts) -

Damn you John Vignocchi!!! Seriously though it is a shame Disney isn't going to even attempt to bring the LucasArts name back to its former glory.

#42 Edited by weegieanawrench (1940 posts) -

What the shit? Aww man, 1313 was looking real cool.

#43 Posted by SpicyRichter (545 posts) -

What are they THINKING?

#44 Posted by LegendaryChopChop (1213 posts) -

1313 still has to come out in some way. Some way, right? That game looked awesome.

#45 Posted by sissylion (679 posts) -

Hey, Disney, if you aren't going to be doing anything with all those LucasArts adventure game properties, maybe sell them off to a company that will rerelease them? Just an idea. Alright, cool, talk to you later. Love you.

#46 Posted by 2HeadedNinja (1666 posts) -

Vignocchiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!

#47 Edited by eccentrix (1587 posts) -

The video game industry is doing weird things.

#48 Edited by XenoNick (1450 posts) -
#49 Posted by AdmiralStupid (77 posts) -

BOOOOOOOO!

#50 Posted by Phatmac (5726 posts) -

video games are dying. :(

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