Although announcing three games at once feels a bit much, I'm really happy about the Respawn feat. Star Wars news. Respawn Entertainment always felt like one of those development studios that should have been shut down by a bigger studio circa 2015 because the people loved Titanfall but it wasn't, you know, Call Of Duty or anything. I turned my back for what seemed like but a moment, and suddenly Apex Legends exists and Respawn are one of the key players under EA, growing stronger from within. One day we'll be watching Andrew Wilson at an E3 showcase and realise it's actually Vince Zampella's eyes looking out at us. Everyone coming on stage to present is just Vince Zampella doing a voice and wearing a different baseball cap.
Point is, I'm mostly just pleased that Respawn are still around to make games featuring robots that surprise and delight us. And if they're not allowed to do Titanfall 3, Star Wars is at least a rich field to till said robots. Lousy with robots, is Star Wars. But honestly, if anyone is going to make Star Wars games (apart from BioWare, who have spent recent years making Dragon Age 4 and / or collapsing like a magnificent neutron star) then I'd root for Respawn. They may not make the Star Wars games you think you want, but they'll make the ones you need right now.
See, Ubisoft and Quantic dream are both making Star Wars games too, and they do sound like the Star Wars games you think you want. Ubisoft are doing a still-mysterious open-world Starventure, the kind of concept that sounds like you might, perhaps, be able to make a Jedi OC and pick your own lightsaber colour. Meanwhile, Quantic Dream's effort is Star Wars Eclipse, a dramatic and darker-looking action adventure where you play as a diverse range of characters, and will make serious choices in a branching narrative. Kill the younglings or, I guess, try not to kill the younglings and end up doing it anyway? A shower scene with a sexy Twi'lek who is voiced and faced by, for example, Florence Pugh. I am 100% convinced that this game will be terrible (in a world of binary moral decisions I consider making fun of David Cage games to be a karmically neutral act).
The important thing, though, is that these sound like the kind of Star Wars games that we've missed. The kind to fill the void left by the cancelled Star Wars 1313 and the double cancelled Amy Hennig-helmed project codenamed Ragtag. But I firmly believe that the Star Wars games we actually need are Respawn's. Yes, I am ready to damn QD's effort on the basis that their trailer was good, and support Respawn's on the basis of no trailer at all.
You know why? Because Respawn have a track record of making good, interesting games, with awesome wall running and pew pew pew!. They understand the core things that are enjoyable about a standard Star Wars game (space knights having glow-sword fights; some mysticism and emotion; adventure!). They know how to add a dusting of fun robots, a couple of wacky jokes, and people/monsters with tentacles. A cool map with different bits to explore and some fun puzzles. They do this kind of cool stuff in their games that aren't Star Wars, even, so more Jedi: Fallen Order would be very welcome.
But what's even more welcome are Star Wars games that are slightly less standard. We have many an authored third-person Starsperience, after all. Let's throw something different into the mix. After the PR disaster that was the new Battlefront II, I'm about ready for a Star Wars FPS again, and if the project lead is a dude who worked on the pre-DICE Battlefronts then I'm all on board for that. That, combined with Respawn's experience in shooters, is the start of a good recipe. Plus, the great beast of Star Wars movies has once again gone into hibernation, so I have hope that means that creatives who make clever decisions, like yer Respawn bods, will have a bit more latitude to do interesting things, as Mickey's great burning eyeball is busy looking at his superhero movies.
Perhaps most exciting for PC Star Warsers is the prospect of an XCOM-esque strategy game. While not being made by Respawn directly - the newly-formed bods at Bit Reactor are on development duties here, with Respawn handling production - there are so many things you could do with that concept. You'd get so attached to your wee little squad members. Perhaps a lean rebel team of spies, all living together on a spaceship a bit like the Millennium Falcon. Imagine getting through a hench battle, your favourite robot (there would be more robots, obviously) just hanging on to life, and then the enemy sends down a Sith warrior with a rubbery squid face and a big red laser stick.
This is wild speculation until we see literally anything more about these projects, but to me, a bunch of Respawn games we know nothing about have way more potential than Ubi or QD games we know a little about. Respawn are reliable. I can trust them to make a decent game. I'd still prefer they were working on Titanfall, or better yet a brand-new weird IP, but if we have to get a billion Star Wars games, then let them be Respawn's.