Posts Tagged ‘disney’

Vader “Noooo”, Etc: Disney Closing LucasArts

Oh dear. Disney have told Game Informer that LucasArts studios are shutting down, although the name will remain to hold the licenses. They explained: “we’ve decided to shift LucasArts from an internal development to a licensing model.” This means Star Wars 1313 is a goner.

There’s clearly quite the story to be told here, but for such a once-mighty studio to have fallen unto complete abandonment must be one of the most catastrophic failures of management in gaming history. That or some kind of Lovecraftian curse. Yeah, maybe that’s it. Our thoughts are with those developers who are now out of work.

[Alternative headline: “LucasAren’ts”? Yeah? Big bucks, right here.]

New Republic: Obsidian Actively Pitching More Star Wars

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II was utterly masterful. Sure, it had more rough edges than a Sarlacc Pit who’s also a door-to-door woodchipper salesman, but the underlying tale mixed oppressive darkness, moral grays, and an eye for exactly what makes Star Wars tick to stirring effect. Personally, I think it far outstripped KOTOR 1, but to each their own. Naturally, though, I nearly grinned my face in half when Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart told me his Black-Isle-based collective is lobbying heavily to develop a new Star Wars RPG. “I would say it’s within the top three pitches we’ve ever come up with,” he told RPS during a recent interview. But wait, what about the EA-shaped Death Star hovering over The Old Republic? Well, Obsidian’s new tale is set in a very, very different time period.

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Warren Spector’s Junction Point Closes

the parting of the ways

Sad news travels fast and although it’s taken a while for Disney to confirm, we’d already heard convincing rumours suggesting that Epic Mickey developers Junction Point had closed earlier today. Polygon have now received a statement from the House of Mouse, which reads in part: “These changes are part of our ongoing effort to address the fast-evolving gaming platforms and marketplace and to align resources against our key priorities.” No mention of the poor sales and reception of Epic Mickey 2, which was initially due on PC, then delayed, and now perhaps cancelled. The staff numbered 160 early last year and hopefully those who find themselves without work today will find new projects and/or studios soon.

Edit: Eurogamer have confirmation that Spector will not be staying with Disney.

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Of Monsters And Meatbags: SWTOR’s HK-51 Update

Don't worry, ma'am. We're only here to help.

Disney owns Star Wars now, so what better way to celebrate than with the most un-Disney character in the entire Star Wars universe? In fairness, Hk-51 isn’t HK-47 (who has already appeared elsewhere in Star Wars: The Old Republic), but they’re quite obviously cut from the same organic-life-loathing cloth. They probably also both loathe cloth, for that matter. Point is, don’t go into a frothy mouthed state of paralytic shock if your new companion combines the words “meat” and “bag” to form a phrase of a far more sinister nature. But the galaxy-spanning quest to secure an adorable HK-51 of your very own is only a small part of SWTOR’s upcoming update 1.5. The rest appears in a hyper-advanced eyeball stimulating holocron after the break.

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The Rabbit Alliance: Epic Mickey 2

There short videos have been attempting to promote Epic Mickey 2 since we last looked at the game and here they are gathered in one place. I can’t believe Warren Spector has managed to incorporate quite so many Star Wars characters and settings into the game in such a short time since the acquisition. The AT-AT boss fight looks absolutely stunning. That’s all in my head, of course, but crossovers are surely inevitable. Kingdom Hearts is the obvious bet, but will Spector develop a Star Wars game? Alec says ‘Tatooine Underworld’. I’ll go with Deus X-Wing.

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Disney Acquires All Of Lucasfilm – Including LucasArts

Star Wars: Episode VII - in which it turns out the first two Death Stars were only distractions to hide a THIRD DEATH STAR. Starring Harrison Ford as a reluctantly out-of-retirement Han Solo and Shia Labeouf as everyone else.

Star Wars‘ universe is ruled by an all-powerful elderly man who’s known for controlling the masses with unspeakable technological horrors and shooting lightning out of his fingertips. I’m talking, of course, about George Lucas. However, in the most exciting twist the franchise has seen since “I am your father,” he’s now mostly out of the picture. Disney has officially purchased Lucasfilm – all technologies, IPs, and rights to every property – for $4.05 billion. We now live in a world where Pixar or Joss Whedon heading up a new Star Wars film is a very real possibility. But what does this mean for videogames? Could we finally get that Ewok tractor-driving simulator everyone’s been clamoring for? Or Grim Fandango 2 developed by the team that made Disney Princess: My Fairytale Adventure? We can only hope. So far, though, here’s what we know for sure.

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No Consolation Needed: Epic Mickey PC-Bound Nov 18

Green robo-dragon needs sustenance! Also, will soon be blue robo-dragon.

Sure, Epic Mickey 2 may be part of a diabolical scheme in which we play as one kind of rodent (mouse) while being another type of rodent (guinea pig) for Warren Spector’s goal of turning every videogame ever into a musical, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be great. I’m curious, at least, given all the fightin’ words Spector’s been throwing around about his game’s maturity and the industry’s lack thereof. Fortunately, we won’t have to wait too terribly long to find out whether or not the cyberbrain behind Deus Ex has finally short-circuited, because Joystiq brings word from Comic-Con that Epic Mickey 2’s PC version is launching day-and-date alongside consoles on November 18. Also, Disney released the sing-along sequel’s opening cinematic today, so you can even do a little judging right this very second.

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Take Note: Epic Mickey 2 Cast Will Break Into Song

He's not really a mouse.
Speaking to Gametrailers, in a chunk of footage you can see below, Epic Mickey 2 lead Warren Spector explained that the fully-voiced cast for the new platformer will regularly feature characters breaking into song, in that time-honored Disney fashion. These songs will apparently explain things and further the story.

Spector also told IGN: “This time around, in the second game, I just wanted to take a baby-step to making the full-blown interactive musical game. This is not it. Gamers, you tell ’em there are songs in the game and they start getting panicked, but I just want to see if people will accept songs in games and, if they do, next time I’m going crazy.”
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Play Fix-It Felix, Defeat Wreck-It Ralph

they will throw him off the building and he will die

The trailer for Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph, with its abundance of gaming cameos, seems to have won over all but the grumpiest of Earth’s residents. Even I cracked a smile, although I continued to smile as I watched grimly unnerving British horror film Kill List afterwards so don’t read too much into my facial expressions. I’m all but certain that there will be a Kinect controlled mini-game laden nightmare of a 3D platdeformation to herald the film’s November release, but right now you can play something better. Fix-It Felix, the arcade game that Wreck-It Ralph escapes from. It’s simple, Donkey Kongy and jolly good fun.

A Quick Aside: Wreck-It Ralph Film Trailer

Who Framed Jazz Jackrabbit.

Do I care that most the characters you’ll spot in the lovely trailer for Wreck-It Ralph are from consoles and arcades? No I do not. Because I’m super-happy after watching a trailer for a movie not based on a game, but based on the concept of games. It looks, incredibly, like there might be a game-themed film that doesn’t make me want to pull out my own arms. And from Disney, no less. The game: try to see how many licensed game characters you can spot in each scene.

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