Report: Downloadable ‘Star Wars’ Shooter Could Be ‘Battlefront III’ Precursor

[Image source: Kotaku]

Or “could have been” if Kotaku’s sources are correct: another “Star Wars” title quietly under development at LucasArts might become another casualty of the Disney buyout–a casualty that could see “Star Wars: Battlefront III” relegated to the list of anticipated games that will never see the light of day.

The game is “Star Wars: First Assault,” a shooter-sans-Jedi for Xbox LIVE which was leaked late last year. That game, quietly being developed at LucasArts, was to serve as a sort of proof-of-viability if it was successful on Xbox LIVE. If it did well, it would send a signal back to the mothership that gamers would be interested in more “Star Wars” shooter action, allowing LucasArts to move forward with “Battlefront III.”

According to Kotaku’s source, this wouldn’t be the same “Battlefront III” that was nearly complete before getting cancelled, it would be an all-new game, built on the code from “First Assault.”

Kotaku released some images from the Unreal Engine “First Assault” featuring what appear to be clone troopers packing blasters. That game would have been released sometime this spring before the buyout upended pretty much all of the current developments at LucasFilm, including today’s announcement that successful “The Clone Wars” animated series would cease production at the end of season five.

Combined with this report, Disney is obviously playing some kind of long game that involves clearing out anything that’s not “Episode VII”-related to make way for the J.J. Abrams-led sequels. The only problem is that unless these projects were disasters (or simply not up to snuff), Disney is being kind of myopic about some cash-in-the-bank creative opportunities set in the “Star Wars” universe that many of us would be excited to play.

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