Though the news had leaked well ahead of time, the reveal of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Remake remains one of the biggest surprises in that one State of Play from last September.
Since then, we’ve heard and seen nothing from developer Aspyr, which makes today’s report all the more frustrating.
According to Bloomberg [Paywall], the development of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Remake has been put on ice. The game has effectively been delayed indefinitely.
Citing people familiar with the goings on, Bloomberg’s report says Aspyr fired the game’s art director Jason Minor, and design director Brad Prince last month. The studio reportedly told staff that it’s putting the project on hold and is seeking new contracts.
The Austin, Texas-based Aspyr is known mainly as a port developer, having worked on countless transformations of games for Mac, Linux, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, Xbox, and mobile. The Knights of the Old Republic Remake would’ve been a major undertaking for the studio, compared to its earlier work.
The circumstances around the firing of the two directors are unclear. The report says Aspyr showed a demo of the game (vertical slice) to Lucasfilm, and Sony – who’s co-funding the project. The team “felt like they were on track,” which made the firings all the more shocking.
When the game was announced last year, it had already been in development at Asypr about three years at that point. In fact, the studio projected an end of 2022 release window for the remake.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like the studio made enough progress to justify continued funding. According to the report, Aspyr management was not happy with the aforementioned demo. It appears Aspyr spent too much money, and took too long to get the game to that point, and wasn’t going to be able to make that same model sustainable.
Saber Interactive was brought in in May this year to help Aspyr finish the game. Both developers are owned by the Embracer Group, so there’s a chance the former could take control of the project entirely – at least, that’s what some at Aspyr believe.