Chilling in Carbonite: The future of Star Wars 1313 is uncertain, but work ‘continues’

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The Star Wars world was whipped into a frenzy in mid-2012 with the official announcement of a new action game set in Lucasfilm’s sprawling sci-fi universe, namely Star Wars 1313, a game that at first glance appeared suited for next generation consoles.

Graphically, Star Wars 1313 certainly looks destined for release on machines like the PlayStation 4 and next Xbox (as well as high-end PCs), and when I personally saw the game running in real-time at gamescom 2012, I had a tough time determining if the opening sequences were cinematics or in-engine demonstrations. I was later assured that the entire presentation was in-game, running at a magical 33 frames per second throughout.

Gamescom 2012 - Star Wars 1313 Developers

Now six months after I clapped very wide eyes on the next game from LucasArts, and nine months following its world debut, the future of Star Wars 1313 is about as bleak as the world it portrays.

Stephen Totilo at Kotaku is reporting that he and his team have received some disturbing information on the current state of development as far as Star Wars 1313 is concerned, with sources pointing to work having been halted following the acquisition of Lusasfilm by The Walt Disney Company in October 2012.

Star Wars 1313 Screenshot 6

The sources claim that development on Star Wars 1313 has been frozen, impacting the title’s planned late 2013 release and potentially shifting its launch into 2014… or beyond. When contacted for information on the news of work being put on hold, a LuscasArts representative said that:

“LucasArts has been working diligently to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities that the new Star Wars movies present… Star Wars 1313 continues production.”

In what form that production continues, however, is uncertain. When I saw Star Wars 1313, it may have looked impressive but it was unclear how those visuals and initially impressive gameplay scenarios were to be extended out into a potentially enormous underground world, filled with all of the intrigue, danger and detail promised by the developer.

Last year, the look of the main protagonist hadn’t even been finalised and the presentation used one of the team’s test characters instead. In addition, the only in-game glimpses we caught of the title were from a single demo. Anything further was relegated to concept art and promises.

Star Wars 1313 Screenshot 5

The history of Star Wars 1313 and how the project first came to fruition may ultimately prove problematic as it was, Kotaku reports, conceived as a tie-in for a planned live-action TV series set in the Star Wars universe, at the time going by the name of ‘Underworld,’ while an open-world role-playing game (similar in concept to Knights of the Old Republic) was initially on the cards with episodic adventures delivered as downloadable content.

The story only gets more complex and intertwined from there as the TV show was put on hold and ‘Underground’ was re-written to become its own standalone project. Read Totilo’s full report on the stories and sources surrounding the current development plight of Star Wars 1313, and hope for a resolution to any possible setbacks to the game’s release.

Star Wars 1313 Screenshot 10

Were you hoping for a 2013 release for Star Wars 1313, or were you more realistically looking forward to a release on next generation consoles?

Read over our Star Wars 1313 preview for initial impressions on the game and let us know what you would like from a new Star Wars action title.

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