LucasArts Cancelled a Darth Maul Game in 2011 After Eight Months in Development
One of the many characters that got a bit overlooked in the films and rose to life as a fan favourite game and with some new adventures in the Expanded Universe was Darth Maul. He was so popular that he was retconned out of death and into the Clone Wars animated series by the end of its run.
However, that wasn’t always the plan. A report in Game Informer says that LucasArts originally planned to make a game starring Darth Maul before it was cancelled by LucasArts while it was in the middle of development.
The studio that LucasArts brought in to make the game was Red Fly Studio. They’re a small Texas-based indie studio that LucasArts brought in to port The Force Unleashed 2 to the Nintendo Wii. After that experience, LucasArts gave them a chance to make a Darth Maul game.
According to Game Informer’s sources, all Red Fly was told about this game was that Darth Maul survived the conclusion of The Phantom Menace despite Obi-Wan slicing him in half.
Over the course of the eight months of development, the Darth Maul project underwent a number of changes. It started as a Wii exclusive before the order came in to make it multiplatform on the PS3, 360 and PC as well. George Lucas also got involved and requested that game became a “buddy cop” game starring Darth Maul and Expanded Universe character, Darth Talon.
After putting eight months into the game, LucasArts cut off communication with Red Fly. Two weeks later, LucasArts cancelled the project in June 2011.
This seemed to be the status quo for the late stages of LucasArts. Battlefront 3 was being developed at a solid pace despite some of LucasArts changing demands before they cutoff contact prior to the game’s cancellation. Lucas’s interference in a project also spelled the end of Star Wars 1313 which was the last Star Wars game to get people excited before the Disney sale and closure of LucasArts.
When this report surfaced, a little bit of prototype gameplay footage surfaced. You could certainly tell that Red Fly had experience with the Force Unleashed because the gameplay certainly looks like it’s right out of one of those games. While one Force Unleashed game was fine and two was too much, I’m not sure that I could handle a third.
Where are our Dark Forces / Jedi Knight series games? Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy were two of my favourite games in my teens. If there was a Darth Maul game inspired by them, it would be a lot more interesting than another Force Unleashed game. At least the combat would be more rewarding.