Battlefield DICE almost missed out on developing the new Star Wars: Battlefront.
Many a Star Wars fan left Electronic Arts’ E3 presentation stoked and excited to learn that a new, next-gen entry in the Star Wars: Battlefront series was in development. This joy was multiplied when it was learned that DICE, the developer behind the well-regarded Battlefield games would be working on the new title. EA has since expressed its confidence that the game was with the right developer. That said, it’s been revealed that originally DICE wasn’t even considered for the job.
“I didn’t anticipate them wanting to work on a license – they’ve always been new IP or their own IP,” said Patrick Soderlund, executive vice president of Electronic Arts. “But they were just like, ‘we would kill to make this game’ and the whole studio started talking about it like, ‘please give us this game’.” Surprised by the studio’s enthusiasm, Soderlund realized that DICE could be perfect for the job. “I called Frank [Gibeau, EA Labels boss] and I realized we had something here. ‘If they want it that badly, then the game will be freaking awesome – we have to figure it out’. So we figured it out, we got them the game and it was that simple. They begged to do it, the opportunity was there and that’s exactly why you’ll see a game that will be what it needs to be.”
Considering that DICE’s recent efforts with its Battlefield franchise have left it with considerable experience balancing the same kind of vehicle versus foot soldier combat that previous Battlefront games specialized in, it may in fact be, as Soderlund put it “a match made in heaven.” Only time will tell, of course, but we have a feeling that the Force may be strong with this one.