Details Emerge of a Cancelled Nintendo-Exclusive Star Wars Game
Posted by Thomas Whitehead
It was about Darth Maul though, so never mind
Star Wars remains as one of the most powerful brands in the entertainment industry, progressing from reasonably humble origins in 1977 to a never-ending multi-billion dollar juggernaut. Its power is such that Disney bought Lucasfilm for $2.5 billion, with no doubt that it was actually interested in buying Star Wars rather than the film company, with Mickey's massive corporation now preparing more movies in the franchise.
Whether before, during or after the prequel trilogy, Star Wars games have also been an ever-present. The Wii fared well for games in the franchise, helped along by the Wii Remote fulfilling some fantasies of wielding a lightsaber — titles such as Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, its sequel and Star Wars The Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels tried to scratch that itch. It seems that, at the time of these games, there were plans for Red Fly Studio — which produced the Wii ports of The Force Unleashed — to bring an exclusive game to Nintendo hardware to dive off further into the lore.
According to Game Informer magazine (reported by Nintendo Everything) this project began as discussions between LucasArts and Nintendo to release a new spin-off IP for Wii, 3DS or the — at the time — new Wii U. Apparently they settled on an origin story for Darth Maul — the villain from Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace — and it evolved into a story of "Darth Maul and Darth Talon facing off against Darth Krayt and his Sith army". Darth Maul was arguably a poorly developed character in a film that seemed to disappoint a number of fans, so whether attempts to flesh him out would have worked is certainly debatable.
In any case, it eventually turned into a multiplatform game "due largely to Nintendo not meeting financial demands to make it a first-party project." As the project progressed LucasArts went cold and, like so many development ideas, this concept for "Damage" — as it was code-named — bit the dust, unfortunately resulting in redundancies for Red Fly Studio.
As it stands, EA is in charge of developing Star Wars games, which certainly puts doubt over future entries — outside of pinball and spin-offs from other developers — arriving on Nintendo hardware. Disney still ultimately controls the IP, however, so Nintendo must hope that revived sales of the Wii U, in particular, could force Disney's and EA's hand to include Nintendo's home console. Time will tell.
Would you have liked a Darth Maul game, or does the concept bring back horrible memories of The Phantom Menace that turn you to the Dark Side? Let us know.