After doing hardly anything with the Star Wars license for years, EA’s finally starting to pick up the pace. There’s the Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic remake, of course, and now a trio of games set in a galaxy far, far away has been announced. Respawn’s at the helm, developing a follow-up to Fallen Order and a brand new FPS, as well as producing Bit Reactor’s Star Wars RTS.
Since EA’s presumably trying to make up for all this wasted time, we at PC Gamer are here to help, offering up very good pitches of our own. EA, we’ll expect to hear from you soon.
Star Wars Cantina Manager
Fraser Brown, Online Editor: I’m sick of Sith and Jedi and stormtroopers who couldn’t hit the side of a house—give me something more mundane. So here’s the deal: you’ve found yourself in possession of a shitty Tatooine cantina, but you can’t even attract scum, let alone quality clientele. You’ll need to find a band—I hear Figrin Da’n and the Modal Nodes have room in their schedule—to drown out the bar brawls, learn to mix the best blue milk cocktails, and deal with ethical conundrums, like should you really be banning droids? They’re people, too, you know.
Once you’ve got the basics down and the crowds are coming in, that’s when it’s time to recklessly expand. I’m talking about a restaurant, a podracing track, a gladiatorial arena and a big soft play area for the younglings. Can a wholesome family cantina thrive in the harsh desert of Tatooine? Call me up, EA, and we’ll figure it out together.
Star (Wars) Citizen
Nat Clayton, Features Producer: An absolute no-brainer. How there hasn’t been an Elite-style Star Wars game where you’re handed a ship and let loose on an open galaxy full of merchants, trade routes, mining belts and bounty hunts is absolutely beyond me. Replace Sidewinders and Anacondas with X-Wings, Imperial shuttles and Millenium Falcon-esque frigates, and you’re practically halfway there.
But why stop with just a competent Far Far Away reskin of Elite Dangerous? Star Citizen has proved you can absolutely rake it in by promising anything and everything—so hey, let’s say you can get out of your cockpit and blast smugglers on the streets of Tatooine, perform boarding actions on Star Destroyers, rummage through the bowels of Bespin for scrap, ride a train across a 1:1 scale recreation of Coruscant. The best part is, you don’t even have to fully implement these features—just keep gesturing at new ways to explore the Star Wars galaxy while selling gorgeously-detailed B-Wings for $150 and you’ll be running blockades all the way to the InterGalactic Banking Clan.
Rich Stanton, News Editor: One of the background elements that’s always fascinated me in Star Wars is the Jawa sand-crawling vehicle, which seems to be a mix of armoured fortress, mining vessel, junkshop, trading post, and of course home for our bright-eyed little heroes. I’d love to play a game where you explore procedurally generated landscapes dotted with bespoke elements like settlements and spaceships, alternating between crafting, trading, mining, kidnapping droids, all of which leads to upgrading your sandcrawler and through that making your Jawa clan happy.
I’d envisage it with a more zoomed-in focus on the crew, and the various planet surfaces being quite inhospitable places for them. The Jawas are on the bottom rung of the Star Wars hierarchy, or at least it seems like it, and the whole tension of the game would be doing well for yourself while taking advantage of the other groups around you through sneakiness and trading, while trying to avoid fights however possible. Seriously, if a bunch of Jawas piss off a single bounty hunter, nevermind an Imperial, it should be a big problem for the player. You may well be able to win through force of numbers, but you’ll nearly always lose crew doing so, which will make the other Jawas sad, and happy Jawas are the most important thing in this game.
I enjoy “peaceful” real-time strategy games and management sims, and always think the big “good versus evil” stuff of Star Wars works best in the background. I’d love to just make a nice life for a bunch of Jawas in some forgotten corner of the galaxy.
Tusken Raiders Elite
Imogen Mellor, Features Producer: You’ve heard of Sniper Elite—now welcome Tusken Raiders Elite to the squad, too. EA should absolutely make a game where you get to play around with their famed slugthrower rifles. Perhaps your clan needs supplies and you’re on a mission to raid a camp for some more. Maybe you’re sick of those damn podracers tearing up your peaceful side of the desert and you want to halt the race. Give me a game where I get to sit on a rock and angrily fire at all sorts of groups making a racket on Tatooine and then run away before anyone can retaliate.
Morgan Park, Staff Writer: I’d greenlight a darker, more realistic take on the old Republic Commando FPS. A game that puts the “war” in Star Wars better than Battlefront ever could. Stormtroopers go down in one blaster shot in the movies, but they’re always bullet spongey in games. I want the 1917 of Star Wars, a band of troopers traversing an embattled planet to deliver a message. Blasters could feel powerful for once and we could take a break from focusing on lightsabers and force powers. Let’s have a Star Wars game that feels like its own thing, without movie character cameos!
TIE Fighter Strikes Back
Wes Fenlon, Senior Editor: Everyone else is dreaming up their fantasy Star Wars game, but all I have to offer is a boring and sensible idea: just make another good space flight sim, EA. Star Wars: Squadrons was surprisingly great, and its modest scope left room for EA to do so much more. The campaign made a point of letting you talk to your squadmates, for example, but each conversation was essentially just a backstory info dump. The campaign could definitely use more varied objectives, more devious AI, maybe even branching paths depending on how you resolve missions. The team behind Squadrons proved it could deliver a flight sim that feels great, something we hadn’t gotten from Star Wars in 20 years. A sequel just needs the TIE Fighter-caliber campaign to match.
Bungie does Star Wars
Tim Clark, Brand Director: Look, I know I’m going to lose points for obviousness, but sometimes an idea is obvious because it’s really good. Having spent the last seven years and change crafting an incredible shared-world space shooter, Bungie is just about the only studio with the chops to create the kind of Star Wars game that the universe has always been crying out for.
Forget Hunter, Warlock, Titan and think Bounty Hunter, Jedi and Sith as the starting classes. Now picture a planet hopping, RPG-shooter hybrid, played with up to five friends, with the best-feeling PvE combat currently in a videogame. Could you even imagine how sweet a raid would be set in Star Wars? Now you might wonder, why would Bungie want to make what is essentially the same game but in a Stormtrooper outfit, especially for a giant publisher such as EA, when it spent so long fighting for its independence after dalliances with Microsoft and then Activision. And the answer is: it wouldn’t. This game will never happen.
But if it did, it would be better than every single other suggestion on this list. And that’s why I’m in charge.