Things haven’t been quite so easy with Electronic Arts since it acquired the exclusive Star Wars game license from the folks at Disney.
Sure, the original Battlefront went very well when it came to sales, but its sequel, which released last November, was met with a great deal of controversy over its loot box system. In fact, it got to the point that Disney reportedly stepped in to force the company to cancel its Microtransactions right before the game’s launch.
And then there’s the cancellation of another one of the company’s Star Wars projects and the abrupt closure of Visceral Games, which many fans questioned considering that it looked like a strong single-player game was in the works. EA reportedly preferred something multiplayer-oriented, and that didn’t help matters much either, making the company one of the worst hated in the industry.
So now, in the midst of several petitions calling for EA to lose the Star Wars license, a new story suggests that Disney may be shopping the license around to other developers. Cinelinx reports that Lucasfilm is looking at other options, after taking EA to the “principal’s office” to discuss what was going wrong, while at the same time reaching out to both Activision and Ubisoft to see what they could offer in terms of Star Wars developments.
The reporter notes, “I know what you’re thinking, because I had the same thoughts. EA has a contract for the games, exclusively. How could Disney get around that without breaching and causing more problems? I don’t know all the technical aspects of it, but supposedly there’s an addendum of some kind within the contract that would allow Disney to pull the license, or shop it around, if certain standards/conditions weren’t being met.”
Considering that Battlefront II has been performing below par in terms of sales – especially compared to the original Battlefront – there may be cause for concern.
EA has noted in the past that it’s still getting along with Disney, and that the media calls the whole relationship between them overblown. But when it comes down to the bottom line, it would be easy to see why Lucasfilm would give other companies consideration. And, yes, we would totally kill to see an Assassin’s Creed style game with someone like Darth Maul. Just imagine it.
Neither Lucasfilm nor EA have said a word about this, so take it with a grain of salt. But considering everything that’s happened with Battlefront II – and the fact that EA wants to bring those bothersome Microtransactions back into the picture – don’t be surprised if there’s a shake-up down the road.