Perhaps the new car smell has worn off a little bit.
Just more than five months since Disney purchased LucasFilm, the company has laid off all current staff at LucasArts and canceled all projects currently in development at the video game publisher and developer. About 150 people are now out of jobs.
To be very clear, this does not mean that the J. J. Abrams-led Star Wars sequels are canceled or in any way delayed. Those films are most certainly still happening. Heck, the ability to produce those films is the reason Disney bought Lucasfilm in the first place. The movies side of LucasFilm is still moving ahead at full steam.
LucasArts was working on other Star Wars multimedia projects, like the video games Star Wars 1313 (a third-person action adventure game set in the seedy underworld of the Star Wars universe) and Star Wars: First Assault (a multiplayer shooter in the vein of the Call of Duty and Battlefield franchises). Both of those games have been killed off.
The last Star Wars game published by LucasArts was 2012’s Kinect Star Wars for the Xbox 360 — a game that didn’t exactly win the hearts of reviewers.
“After evaluating our position in the games market, we’ve decided to shift LucasArts from an internal development to a licensing model, minimizing the company’s risk while achieving a broader portfolio of quality Star Wars games,” Disney said in a statement.
“As a result of this change, we’ve had layoffs across the organization. We are incredibly appreciative and proud of the talented teams who have been developing our new titles.”
LucasArts has also published games based on the Indiana Jones franchise.