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Star Wars Celebration 6: Getting A Closer Look At Star Wars 1313

Posted August 27, 2012 - By Adam Rosenberg








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Star Wars 1313 Revealed And It's All About Bounty Hunters

Just so we're clear: if you've been keeping up with the latest news on Star Wars 1313, then you shouldn't expect to learn a whole lot of new information from the game's recent appearance at last week's Star Wars Celebration VI in Orlando, Florida. The panel devoted to LucasArts' third-person shooter went into a fair bit of detail, but the actual in-game content that was demoed amounted the same stuff that the developer first showed off at E3 2012.

Don't despair, there are previously unrevealed facts ahead. I just want to make sure you temper your expectations. There's still no word on the game's story beyond the Coruscant underworld setting, and the identity of the main character remains a mystery.

First, here's a brief refresher of that E3 demo, which game director Dominic Robilliard played through twice on a beefy-looking gaming PC built into a Cooler Master tower. The controller even malfunctioned on the initial playthrough, a seemingly unintended hiccup that was spun for the gathered audience as hard evidence that the showing was indeed a live gameplay demonstration.

The brief sequence picks up near the beginning of the game, with the to-be-changed playable protagonist and his older, more experienced bounty hunter partner flying their unarmed, inconspicuous ship into the depths of Coruscant. They're to deliver a captured Trandoshan -- now confirmed not to be noted bounty hunter Bossk -- to parties unknown, but their journey is disrupted when armored soldiers from another ship attack and make off with the mark.

A brief battle ensues in the ship's cargo hold, showcasing 1313's cover-based action. In addition to blasters and other firearms, players will be able to make use of various gadgets, such as a concussive attack that knocks enemies out from behind cover and temporarily stuns them. The firefight concludes with your bounty hunter companion dropping a thermal detonator into an escape pod and launching it at the nearby enemy ship like a missile.

Star Wars 1313

Our two heroes leap out of their ruined spacecraft and across the yawning expanse to the now-damaged enemy ship in pursuit of their stolen mark. An Uncharted-esque climbing sequence follows as our hero shimmies his way along the ship's exterior. The demo ends just where the E3 one did, as our playable bounty hunter leaps off a part of the ship as it breaks away, toward the now-exposed ship interior.

It's an exciting sequence and it looked utterly fantastic on the Celebration theater's giant screen. Whether or not 1313 is actually coming to next-gen console platforms, it certainly looks good enough to do so. Robilliard played the same demo a second time to end the panel, pausing at various points and using his developer tools to zip around the 3D environments and things like human faces and an aging droid's dented exterior. The level of detail is astounding, right down to the stuff that no human will ever notice as it flies by in fractions of a second.

The panel also featured the reveal of some new concept art that was meant to show off the look and feel of Coruscant's level 1313. Much of what we saw was part of the level's entertainment district, though it's more in the vein of the Mos Eisley cantina than glitzy sci-fi nightclubs. In one image, a surveillance droid hovers above an average street scene, looking out for trouble. In another, a gathering of humans and humanoids stands around a burning fire that curls up out of the lower "trashcan" portion of an astromech droid.

Star Wars 1313

Unfortunately, the characters themselves continue to be a mystery, which also means that a lot of the other non-story content planned for the game is being kept under wraps as well. As Robilliard said, "The thing with bounty hunters is, their weaponry is so distinctive and signature that it's hard to talk about [the arsenal] without giving away too much."

Can you think of any Star Wars bounty hunters with particularly distinctive weapons?

A comment like that would seem to suggest that some of the main roles in the game -- perhaps even the playable protagonist -- will be familiar. Nothing is being confirmed, though Robilliard did reveal that fans could expect to encounter a few familiar faces in the depths of 1313. It makes sense, given the setting -- closer to A New Hope than Revenge of the Sith, chronologically -- but confirmation is confirmation.

A few other tidbits:

While Star Wars 1313 is designed as a linear, narrative-driven adventure, players can expect to find a couple of more open "living world" environments to explore. You won't be picking up side quests or anything of that nature, but you will be able to wander around level 1313 and soak in the sights rather than simply following one corridor into the next.

If you're worried about another 4-5 hour adventure, a la Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2, you can rest comfortably now. The dev team is shooting to deliver roughly nine hours of single player action. Also, no co-op or multiplayer is planned.

There will, however, be DLC. No details specified, but Robilliard confirmed plans for some kind of additional content offering.

The attacking soldiers seen in the demo are mercenaries "particular to a faction in the game" that we'll "hear more about in time."

Robilliard did a little bit of dancing around a question asking if we'll be seeing anything from the Rebellion or the Empire. It seems that the game's setting won't ever leave level 1313, but that you can probably expect to feel the effects if the larger galactic conflict in the context of that environment.

There are no plans at this point to release Star Wars 1313 for any handheld devices.

Star Wars Celebration 6: Getting A Closer Look At Star Wars 1313
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