Disney closes LucasArts and axes Star Wars 1313

LucasArts is being moved to a ´licensing model´ by Disney

Disney has followed up its recent £2.5 billion purchase of LucasFilm by halting production at LucasArts, the firm's gaming division, which, sadly, spells the end for Star Wars 1313.

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Odds are if you've ever loved a Star Wars game - of course you have - it was developed by LucasArts, so while we're all eager to see what Disney has in store for us this is also a time to pay homage to what has gone before.

Who could forget the thrill of taking down a Star Destroyer in X-Wing, whizzing around Tatooine in Star Wars Episode 1: Racer - regarded by some as being the only thing associated with the first prequel that isn't a menace - or taking down entire armies in the Battlefront series?

More recently the Force Unleashed games and Kinect Star Wars have graced our living rooms, but it was Star Wars 1313 that had looked likely to be the next big hit for LucasArts.

The game was going to be a gritty shooter set in the seedy underbelly of Coruscant and the early footage looked superb, but now that Disney has decided to cut game development and staff at LucasArts, Star Wars 1313 is on an indefinite hiatus.

Production on Star Wars: First Assault has also been halted due to the large-scale layoffs, but the Lego Star Wars franchise is expected to continue under the guidance of a small team retained by LucasArts.

Disney will now begin licensing out production on future games to other developers.

A Disney spokesperson said: "After evaluating our position in the games market, we've decided to shift LucasArts from an internal development to a licensing model, minimising the company's risk while achieving a broader portfolio of quality Star Wars games.

"As a result of this change, we've had layoffs across the organisation. We are incredibly appreciative and proud of the talented teams who have been developing our new titles."