Amy Hennig has commented on the reveal of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Hennig worked on a single-player Star Wars title herself at Visceral Games until the studio was closed by EA in 2017. The game, which was was handed to EA Vancouver and turned into a multiplayer experience instead, was closed and the project was shelved earlier this year. Now, though, Hennig has spoken out about the new Star Wars game on the block.
Speaking to Eurogamer, Amy Hennig spoke about the announcement of Jedi Fallen Order and her canceled Star Wars game “Ragtag”. “[It’s] odd! I have to be candid with you. I mean, it’s coming from the EA Star Wars Twitter handle, so it’s certainly part of the plan, but I don’t know whether it’s implicitly referencing previous comments they made after our project was killed?”
Hennig doesn’t know why EA had a change of heart but speculates, “that was very clearly not an acceptable plan when we were working on Ragtag! But you know, things change … and there’s been a pretty public and vocal backlash against the idea gamers don’t want single-player finite games without all these extra modes. Of course they do, of course we do. So maybe this is just a demonstration of a change of strategy for EA.”
Hennig also thinks developers Respawn are in a different position to that of her studio at the time, Visceral Games, “[Jedi Fallen Order] has the benefit of being largely developed before they were acquired. It is a protected entity, and Vince [Zampella] makes very sure – because he’s part of the executive team at EA, he can protect the interests of Respawn.”
The Uncharted creator went on to speculate changes of management could have played a part as well. “And you’ve got to understand there’s been huge changes in management there … Both Patrick Soderlund and Jade Raymond have left in the meantime.”
Hennig states she is excited for Jedi Fallen Order and, regarding EA’s new approach to single-player, says “I’m glad for Respawn’s sake.” Looking back to “Ragtag”, Hennig says “Obviously it’s disappointing not to be able to share the game we were developing, because I think it was really cool and pretty compelling.” Despite the disappointment at losing the opportunity to make a single-player Star Wars game, back in 2018 Hennig herself speculated about the viability of the current price points of solo experiences. Hennig doesn’t land on the side of microtransactions but did state she believes options like subscription models may work as a way to off-set shorter narrative experiences.