According to the always-excellent reporting of Jason Schreier over at Kotaku, we now know that EA has quietly canned yet another Star Wars game.
This information comes from “interviews with six people familiar with EA’s inner workings, all of whom spoke anonymously because they were not authorized to speak to a reporter about canceled projects.” The game was codenamed Viking during production. It was going to be a spin-off of their quite successful Battlefront franchise but with some open-world elements thrown in for extra flavor.
This cancellation follows a direct line from their previous two cancellations. First, there was the narrative-driven heist game headed by Naughty Dog alum Amy Hennig, codenamed Ragtag. At some point, EA decided they didn’t very much like how things were going and not only canceled the game but shut down Visceral Games, the studio that the game was being produced at. From there, EA Vancouver was tasked with trying to make an open-world Star Wars game with the assets and ashes of Ragtag. The new game that they began working on was codenamed Orca. And in 2019, EA canceled that game as well.
At around that same time, EA Vancouver began working on codename Viking, a smaller scale type of Star Wars game that was being designed with the explicit goal of being released later this year, in time for the debut of the 9th generation consoles.
While the game started out being produced solely by EA Vancouver, eventually, Criterion was brought in to head the project. Both teams worked at the project for a while until, eventually, it “became clear that Viking would never be finished in just a year and a half, and EA’s executives had no interest in extending the timeline. Viking was canceled in the first half of 2019”.