Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is built on what you might think of as the meat and potatoes of Star Wars: Jedi, and lightsabers. After all, that’s how everyone played Star Wars as kids, right? But it turns out Respawn ran into a lot of resistance from Lucasfilm when it pitched the idea for Fallen Order.
Fallen Order game director Stig Asmussen appeared on a recent episode of the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences’ podcast Game Maker’s Notebook. Speaking with Insomniac Games’ Ted Price, Asmussen explains how at first, Lucasfilm encouraged Respawn to go in “a different direction” with the game, perhaps featuring ranged weapons and soldiers rather than a lightsaber-wielding Jedi aspirant.
By the time Respawn got to sit down and discuss the game with Lucasfilm, Asmussen said, the studio had unofficially been working on Fallen Order for months – and the developers had been working on a melee-focused game that was going to feature lightsaber combat.
“I said, ‘What if we do a game about Jedi and force powers?'” he said. “And they were not super comfortable with that. “They kind of threw it back, ‘What about blasters and bounty hunters?'”
“What I came to learn and find out was that for them, Jedi is the Holy Grail,” Asmussen continued. “And to make a game about Jedi, you’ve got to earn it.”
You can listen to the whole podcast right here:
Asmussen said it took some time to build enough trust with Lucasfilm to get to the point that the Jedi-and-lightsabers concept was acceptable, but once that happened, the Lucasfilm writing team and Respawn’s Fallen Order team were able to work together – and the collaboration meant creating new planets and creatures for the game that are accepted as canon in the greater Star Wars universe.
There were points where Asmussen’s team would have an idea that Lucasfilm would flat-out veto, but over time the story and world of Fallen Order came together. We thought it turned out pretty well, as you can read in our Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order review.