By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times –
LOS ANGELES — After virtually disappearing from sight since late 2010, George Lucas’ video game company is attempting a comeback by plunging back into the Star Wars universe.
LucasArts on Friday announced that it has been developing a new title, “Star Wars 1313.”
Set to be unveiled at the E3 conference next week in Los Angeles, the game puts players in control of a bounty hunter ensconced in a “ruthless criminal underground,” according to a company statement. Unlike the plethora of Star Wars titles aimed at kids, the company is describing “Star Wars 1313” as a “mature-themed video game.”
Many in the industry have wondered about the future of LucasArts following the disappointing sales and critical reception of “Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II” in late 2010. Around the same time, the San Francisco company laid off about 80 of its 250 employees.
Since then, it has released only one game, “Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars,” which was developed by an outside company.
LucasArts has not yet announced a release date for “1313” and has no other upcoming titles on its slate.
However, representatives for the company were at Game Developers Conference events earlier this year in San Francisco seeking to recruit new talent.
In addition to internal developers at LucasArts, staffers from the Lucas-owned special effects company Industrial Lights & Magic, along with LucasFilm Animation and Skywalker Sound, are working on “Star Wars 1313.”