BioWare + LucasArts = ?

Some very interesting news cropped up today telling us all that LucasArts and BioWare have teamed up, yet again, on an unannounced project. It was a very interesting read and one that hinted at a lot of possibilities for the duo. Naturally, I won’t bother restating what has already been said in the press release (you can read that here). What we will discuss here is what exactly this could mean.

BioWare has been developing an MMORPG for a while now, it’s no secret. What is a secret is what exactly their MMORPG is based on. Naturally the gamers of the world have united in an attempt to convince them to make one based off their hit-RPG, Knights of the Old Republic. This notion was, obviously, fueled earlier today by this press release. Now I hate to burst bubbles, I really do, but we have to look at this scenario logically. As much as I’d love an MMORPG based off of KotOR, I just do not see it happening, and here’s why:

  1. LucasArts and Sony Online Entertainment still have a contract that allows for Sony to develop the Star Wars MMO property. I don’t see Sony quietly backing out of this and allowing more competition into their very small arena. A BioWare Star Wars MMO would kill their property.
  2. [Quoted from the LucasArts/BioWare press release today]“BioWare’s mission is to deliver the best story and character-driven games in the world, delivering powerful emotional experiences to our fans.” No MMORPG, ever, has character-driven games. It is, with our current technology, impossible. MMORPGs are world-driven, not character driven.
  3. The press release is announcing a new partnership, not one that has been working on an unannounced title since 2006 (when they announced they were beginning development on an MMORPG).
  4. Why would they announce the partnership but not the game? If this really was about them making a Star Wars MMORPG then they would have announced it along with this deal. Everybody is already assuming that this means the Star Wars MMO is coming. BioWare knows this, and LucasArts knows this which is why they kept their game a secret because with everybody assuming its an MMORPG they don’t have to worry about their new IP being leaked to the public.

I understand that this is all circumstantial evidence, but these things need to be brought up. This deal in no way signifies that their will be a BioWare Star Wars MMORPG. I very much hope I am wrong, but as of right now I believe they may be working on a completely separate game altogether. LucasArts has many, many other IPs including Indiana Jones. There is a good chance BioWare is asking to be a part of one of those franchises.


  1. 1) contract run for 3 years, was renewed in 2006 and will end in 2009

    2) Bioware clearly stated their MMO won’t be a fedex based game but a story driven one where players have to make choice that will influence their characters.

    3) They could have been working on a SW MMO then as it’s ready to be shown to LA, meet them and agree on continuing the development with LA approval.

    4) Because it would be a major blow to SOE SWG so LA could be obliged to pay $$$ to SOE if there where a lawsuit.

  2. A company like BioWare does not have to make something and then show it off to a publisher/IP owner.

    If BioWare wanted to make a Star Wars MMO then they’d have approached LucasArts in the beginning to see if they were interested instead of wasting their time, resources, and money building a small prototype of the game before hand. Only start-up companies need to do that.

  3. They released the announcment because someone found out about the site, IT was either make an announcement or begin answering a flood of questions about it.

  4. Can’t we MAKE Them Do it? They’ll more than make their money back, and let’s face it, Star Wars never gets old. If they don’t make this game, my girlfriend is going to freak. She’s played KOTOR 4 times!!

  5. Can’t be an MMO. The Austin-team is doing the MMO…since 2006, so unless they were laying the engine0groundwork (unlikely…they’re using the mass effect engine, or its main aspects, I’m sure.)

    Bioware’s main team just finished Mass Effect. No coincidence.

    They’re transferring the Mass Effect team over to KOTOR 3, is most likely. Bioware talks about developing original IPs, but maybe that was strutting to get Lucasarts to leave them the hell alone with KOTOR 3 (apparently Lucasarts likes killjoy memos like “you cannot make your Wookiee a jedi).

    Lucasarts doesn’t think it was THEIR fault KOTOR 2 shipped early: Obsidian assured them they’d finish the game in time, I’m sure; they didn’t, ergo, they’ve been waiting for Bioware to do Jade Empire, Mass Effect, etc., before initiating development.

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