Despite strong fan interest, Red Fly Studios CEO Dan Borth reveals that EA and Lucasarts are indifferent in reviving the studio’s canceled Darth Maul game.
With the acquisition of Lucasfilm in 2012 by Disney, longtime Star Wars gaming fans were left to wonder what would become of the beloved Lucasarts gaming division. Unfortunately, the studio was dissolved and the development rights for Star Wars were handed over to juggernaut publisher EA. However, fans remained optimistic that the big name studio would be able to use the franchise efficiently, with the relaunch of the Star Wars Battlefront series seen as a smart move. But, with DICE’s interpretation of the Battlefront series now drawing middling reviews, gamers were left to wonder if good Star Wars games would grace the world once more.
But then, a glimmer of hope. A development studio known as Red Fly Studios revealed that they were working on a hack-and-slash title themed around dual-blade wielding Sith Darth Maul, only for the title to become a victim of the dissolution of Lucasarts. But fan reception to the revealed footage was extremely positive, with fans clamoring for a Force Unleashed-style game that allowed players to step into the menacing boots of one of Star Wars greatest villains. Reception was so positive that Red Fly CEO Dan Borth announced during a Reddit AMA that the studio was actively working on a next-gen demo in hopes of pitching the title to EA. Things seemed to be looking up for the once-dead game.
But now Borth has revealed that, despite fan enthusiasm, Red Fly’s Darth Maul game will likely never see the light of day.
Speaking with Game Informer, Borth revealed that he had made several attempts to reach out to EA directly, but was greeted with disinterest and was ultimately told “No comment.” The CEO of Red Fly wasn’t entirely certain of why the publisher gave him the brush off, but he conjectured:
“It really feels like [EA] has an exclusive party going on, and they’re just not interested in talking about anyone else joining the party.”
Borth also reached out to Lucasfilm to deal with the company that had Red Fly working on the title at one time, but was again met with indifference. While speaking with a Lucasfilm rep, Borth got the impression that the attention the Reddit AMA brought the title only served to annoy the company.
While Lucasfilm and EA did not explicitly tell Red Fly to stop working on the Darth Maul game, Borth stated that the companies were clear in stating that the project wasn’t going anywhere. When asked if the Darth Maul game was officially dead, Borth admitted that the denial from EA and Lucasarts was effectively the nail in the coffin for the title, stating:
“It would just be stupid to keep barking up that tree.”
With the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens driving the world into a Star Wars frenzy, releasing a fan-supported game like Red Fly’s Darth Maul title seems like a shrewd marketing move. With Lucasarts actively working on rewriting the canon of the Star Wars universe, however, it’s clear that the studio couldn’t find a place for the Darth Maul game to fit – which is sure to disappoint those who enjoyed the tantalizing glimpse Red Fly provided. It remains to be seen if the same fate will befall the long-missing Star Wars 1313.
Source: Game Informer