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EA inks exclusive deal to develop 'core' Star Wars video games

EA announced today it has landed an exclusive multi-year agreement to develop and publish games based on Lucasfilms' Star Wars universe, with DICE, BioWare and Visceral leading the charge.
Electronic Arts was this close to dropping a Star Wars bombshell on May the Fourth. The publisher announced today it has landed an exclusive multi-year agreement to develop and publish games based on Lucasfilms' Star Wars universe. EA said the it will create and publish Star Wars games for a "core gaming audience" across multiple (undisclosed) platforms and genres. Disney, which has its own internal stable of game developers -- and owns the Star Wars property -- will retain rights to publish certain games on mobile, social, tablet and online. The EA studios creating those "core" Star Wars games are Battlefield developer DICE, Dead Space developer Visceral Games and BioWare, which has plenty of spacefaring experience with Mass Effect, Star Wars: The Old Republic and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. All of the games will be powered by DICE's high-powered Frostbite 3 engine, the same engine that powers Battlefield 3. Recent, major reorganizations within the company have pointed to a greater emphasis on mobile games, but today's deal shows that EA still wants to go big in the high-cost, high-risk triple-A video game space. The announcement also comes about a month after Disney announced it would be shutting down all internal development at its LucasArts game division. EA didn't disclose details of the transaction, or which teams at each EA studio would be working on the games. "The new experiences we create may borrow from films, but the games will be entirely original with all new stories and gameplay," said EA Games label president Frank Gibeau.

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