Update: A Disney PR representative has contacted GameRevolution. They stated that Lucasfilm Games remains dedicated to its partners and will remain a licensor. For now, the company’s business model will remain the same and it will continue to work with its current licensees. The job listings do indicate the company is expanding, but only to continue to fulfill its current role in the Disney hierarchy.
LucasArts stopped producing video games in 2013 just after its purchase by Disney. The studio was founded in 1982 as Lucasfilm Games, and it’s under that moniker that it may be returning. New job postings on Disney’s career website, as well as LinkedIn listings, suggest that mass hirings are occurring within Lucasfilm Games. The company was left as a shell after the Disney purchase and since then has only served as a licensor.
The listings on Disney’s career site points towards the company taking on a support role for other studios. This might mean that Lucasfilm Games is gearing up to be a publisher or something of the sort. There’s also mention of Star Wars and Lucasfilm heritage products, so it’s possible that Lucasfilm Games might be focusing on remasters instead of new IPs.
Lucasfilm Games is a thing again? pic.twitter.com/CBjzwIPLpJ
— Ashley Day (@jellyscare) October 18, 2017
However, a tweet from the Team 7 senior community manager shows a LinkedIn posting that’s hiring for more development-oriented roles like:
- Lead Game Designer
- SR Technical Artist
- SR Manager, Engineering
- Community Manager
These sorts of positions seem to indicate that Lucasfilm Games will be taking a more active role in game development rather than just acting a publisher or playing support to other studios.
The elephant in the room with the potential reactivation of Lucasfilm Games as a studio is: what happens with EA? Since 2013 EA has been the exclusive licensee for Star Wars games, a situation which has been a point of contention for franchise fans since it was announced. Since 2013, we’ve only received two Star Wars titles on mainstream gaming platforms, Star Wars Battlefront, and Star Wars Battlefront 2. The first was met with decent reviews, but the predatory microtransactions in the second badly marred its release.
EA canceled yet another major Star Wars title recently, and with only Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order on the horizon, maybe Disney is assembling Lucasfilm Games to step in and reclaim the license and attempt to unravel the damage EA has done. With how little has been done with the Star Wars video game license under EA, a revived Lucasfilm Games might be the right move for Disney.
It’s also possible that with the acquisition of 20th Century Fox and its numerous IPs, Disney might feel like the time is right to step back into the video game business. We won’t know for sure until we get an official announcement.