There’s new information about a pair of intriguing Star Wars adaptations that were in development circa 2002, which both ended up falling by the wayside before the end of production.
Now that Disney owns the Star Wars licence, there are several video game adaptations in development for release over the next few years. However, in the years directly before that deal came about, a number of projects entered production but would never be completed.
A new video from DidYouKnowGaming sheds some light on two of these cancelled Star Wars video games. As 2003 drew to a close, LucasArts faced a difficult decision; an internal team was working on a game starring Chewbacca, and Factor 5 was pitching a follow-up to its hugely popular Rogue Squadron series — but the publisher could only give the greenlight to one title.
LucasArts’ Chewbacca game would have been set in the period between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Apparently, its storyline would have covered everything from his time fighting alongside other Wookies on Kashyyyk to meeting Han Solo and becoming his co-pilot on the Millennium Falcon.
The Rogue Squadron follow-up sounds like even more of a dream project for fans. The game would reportedly have starred Darth Vader, presenting an Imperial campaign as a counter-point to the Rebellion ops featured in the trilogy of titles released for the Nintendo 64 and Gamecube.
Codenamed Dark Squadron, the project would have also iterated upon the series’ gameplay. The critically maligned on-foot sections from Rebel Strike were out, and players could use the power of the Empire by calling in reinforcements including AT-AT walkers and even Star Destroyers during combat.
Ultimately, the Chewbacca game was selected by LucasArts management, putting a stop to the development of Dark Squadron. Of course, Star Wars fans will be well aware that the project starring the Wookie warrior never saw release — and apparently we have George Lucas to thank for that.
The story goes that Lucas was unhappy with Chewbacca taking a lead role, rather than being a supporting character, and put a stop to the project. The team that was working on the game would go on to develop The Force Unleashed, which was released in 2008.
Both the Chewbacca project and Dark Squadron would certainly have appealed to a broad swathe of Star Wars fans, so it’s strange to see that neither game actually came to fruition. Here’s hoping that none of the currently gestating titles based on the property suffer the same fate as these two promising washouts.