Friday, 17 May 2024

An Insightful Interview with the Minds Behind Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Following the highly-anticipated release of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, I had the opportunity to sit down with Steve Blank, Lucasfilm’s director of franchise content and strategy, and Stig Asmussen, Respawn Entertainment’s director of the Fallen Order, to uncover more about this captivating Jedi-driven experience. While they were careful to avoid revealing too many story specifics or gameplay details, they did share some intriguing insights about the game’s setting and the overall development process.

The Dark Times for the Jedi

In the aftermath of Episode III, the Jedi find themselves in desperate circumstances—either on the run or in hiding, hoping to evade the Empire’s watchful eye. I asked Steve Blank about Cal’s place in this universe, and he explained that Cal’s character emerged organically from the story’s conception. Blank described this period as the “dark times” and found it interesting to explore how the Jedi adapt to these challenging conditions. Cal, a padawan who hasn’t completed his training, now navigates this new era, allowing players to discover the layers of his personality and the specifics of his story.

Stig Asmussen chimed in, sharing that their team had initially approached the game mechanically, envisioning a young protagonist with room for growth. They wanted to break away from the usual game formula, offering players an opportunity to develop their potential alongside Cal. Asmussen also mentioned that Cal’s relationship with Cere, his Jedi mentor, would unfold over the course of the game, leaving players eager to discover more about their connection.

A Dynamic Partnership

As we delved further into the interview, it became clear that both teams—Lucasfilm and Respawn Entertainment—had a strong collaborative partnership. They opted to focus on gameplay milestones rather than exclusively relying on cinematic trailers. This approach allowed them to prioritize the player’s experience and showcase the evolving nature of the game. Asmussen remarked how this collaboration emphasized the importance of gameplay and ensured the project aligned with their shared vision.

Exploring New Horizons

One of the exciting elements of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is the introduction of Bracca, a brand-new planet in the Star Wars universe. Blank described Bracca as a mid-rim planet, known for its ship-building and ship-breaking industry. He mentioned the colossal machine showcased in the trailer, which serves as a gargantuan garbage disposal, consuming debris from the dismantled ships. This efficient planet provides an intriguing backdrop for players to explore.

Speaking of exploration, Asmussen elaborated on Cal’s friendship with BD-1, a droid who plays a significant role in Cal’s journey. Asmussen revealed that Cal and BD-1 meet early on in the game and share a connection, as both characters are outcasts in their own ways. Their friendship develops as they face the challenges ahead together.

A Different Star Wars Experience

Given the focus on Cal and BD-1 in the concept art, I asked Asmussen about the tone of the game and whether it would remain lonesome or expand into an ensemble story. Asmussen acknowledged that more characters would be revealed and mentioned Cere’s appearance in the trailer. However, he emphasized that the team chose to create a more intimate and personal story—one that centered on the theme of “man versus wild.” This allowed them to explore various environments and pit Cal not just against his surroundings but also against the Empire and the elements.

Promising Growth and New Challenges

Admittedly, details about Cal’s training and his proficiency with a lightsaber remained somewhat elusive. Blank mentioned that during the events of Order 66, Cal was still a padawan. While he refrained from divulging specific details, he assured players that Cal’s journey would involve significant growth and development.

Another exciting aspect of Jedi: Fallen Order is the introduction of the Purge Troopers, a new type of enemy combatant. Blank revealed that these troopers were developed in collaboration with Marvel, based on designs by the Respawn team. This partnership allowed them to create a unique trooper specifically tailored for gameplay. While the Purge Troopers have made appearances in Marvel comics, this marks their debut as formidable adversaries in the game.

A Stellar Partnership Shaping the Experience

As we wrapped up the interview, the conversation turned to the impact of Cameron Monaghan, the actor who brings Cal to life. Asmussen spoke highly of Monaghan’s deep understanding of the character, highlighting how his performance challenged the writing team and enriched Cal’s portrayal. Monaghan’s true dedication to the role shines through, as he immerses himself in the character, bringing an undeniable energy and authenticity to Cal’s journey. Blank expressed his admiration for Monaghan’s ability to bring the character to life, praising his keen insight into Cal’s motivations.

FAQs

Q: What engine was used to make Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order?
A: The game was developed using the popular Unreal Engine.

Q: Did the team draw any inspiration from previous projects, like God of War?
A: Asmussen mentioned that the team took lessons from their work on God of War, particularly in terms of focusing on the fundamentals and not getting caught up in creating trailers first. They prioritized building a solid foundation and then expanded from there, ensuring that the game’s core gameplay elements were solid before anything else.

Conclusion

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order promises to captivate players with its immersive storyline, dynamic characters, and thrilling gameplay. As the game takes us into the dark times for the Jedi, we can expect to witness Cal’s growth as he faces the challenges of this new era. With an emphasis on gameplay and a focus on an intimate and personal story, Respawn Entertainment and Lucasfilm have crafted an experience that will resonate with Star Wars fans and video game enthusiasts alike. May the Force be with you as you embark on this unforgettable journey.

To learn more about Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and embark on your own adventure, visit Wqaindia.