Amy Hennig And Jade Raymond Talk About Collaborating With LucasArts For Star Wars Project
Amy Hennig – creative director for EA’s Visceral Games’ current Star Wars project and former Naughty Dog creative director – divulged new details on how she and the teams at LucasArts is collaborating to bring a new Star Wars projects to life. Hennig also spoke about how movies are different from games.
In an interview with Venturebeat, Hennig and Jade Raymond, founder of EA’s Motive studio and former Ubisoft creative executive, traded details about creating stories within established universes. Hennig compared the process by which LucasArts vets new storylines to the Force, the power which connects all living things within the Star Wars universe.
“My role, my mission that I was given when I joined, was to say, 'How do we tell more stories?'" Hennig said to Venturebeat. “I’ve been working closely with Lucasfilm since I joined...We’re trying to build more. They want people to be telling new stories. Not in the sense of, 'How is this Star Wars?' It’s all connected. It’s like the Force. It binds everything together. That sense of destiny and inevitability and fate is really important to Star Wars stories.”
Hennig also touched on how important that cohesion is in comparison to her previous work at Naughty Dog. With the Uncharted series, many critics pointed out the absurdity of protagonist Nathan Drake being presented as a charming rogue while killing countless enemies.
“That’s why we took some of that away," Hennig continued. "And we did do a little winking back at the audience at how ridiculous it was. No, we don’t take this seriously either. But it becomes tough. Movies are a passive medium. You’re the privileged observer. You aren’t necessarily meant to identify with the protagonist. If they have flaws, you just observe them. If that character is the one you’re playing, though, you’re complicit in their actions. Taken to the wrong extreme, it means we’re very limited in the kinds of games we can make because we’re trying to avoid causing that dissonance, and that would be a shame. It’s a tricky problem to solve. I don’t think we throw up our hands and say, 'It’s just a game, get over it.' But it is hard to solve."
For more on Visceral’s untitled Star Wars project, check out our report here.
While it might come across as cheesy to compare game development to one of science fiction's most iconic plot mechanics, knowing Hennig has confidence in her ability to access valuable resources like consultants and documents is good news for Star Wars lore fans. Combine that with years of experience and comments indicating her new project is similar in spirit to Uncharted, and it seems like Hennig is poised to bring gamers a story worth paying close attention to.