The company was acquired along with LucasFilm in last year’s $4 billion mega-buyout that made “Star Wars” creator George Lucas the second largest single shareholder residing in the house of mouse, paving the way for fresh talent to take over the “Star Wars” franchise and create new films.
While many fans were split over the announcement, anticipation has been building for the next “Star Wars” film, which is said to feature the actors from the original trilogy in some form or fashion. Speculation has pointed to Disney zeroing in on the expanded “Star Wars” universe of books for material, some of which features the further adventures of Luke, Han and Princess Leia after the events of “Return of the Jedi.”
Gamers, however, will not be pleased to hear about the demise of LucasArts, which seemed to be on the comeback after most of its games fell short of critical acclaim over the last 10 years. The studio’s better recent releases included “Star Wars: The Force Unleashed” and “The Force Unleashed II,” and those games’ follow-up, “Star Wars 1313,” generated significant buzz at the 2012 E3 trade conference in Los Angeles for its highly realistic graphics and cinematic approach to gameplay.
If there’s any cause for a new hope among gamers, it’s that Disney is still keeping the LucasArts brand alive and the company’s own game development studio is no slouch. Although nearly all of Disney Interactive’s games are somehow tied to Disney’s movie properties, recent entries in their “Kingdom Hearts” and “Epic Mickey” series won both critics’ admiration and gamers’ dollars. Ultimately, there’s no reason to believe Disney cannot put adequate development know-how behind future interactive “Star Wars” properties.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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