Just weeks after announcing a new licensing deal with Disney to exclusively produce Star Wars video games, EA is moving forward with a new studio in the Los Angeles area that will focus primarily on the franchise.
A new report from the Wall Street Journal indicated the studio will be a new home for DICE, the developers behind the extremely successful Battlefield franchise. EA is reportedly planning to add 60 new staff members by the end of the year to the new location, which the publisher hinted would come from the strong talent pool already living in the area (Activision studio Infinity Ward is also local to SoCal).
"There is an extreme talent pool over that we want a part of," DICE General Manager Karl-Magnus Troedsson said. "It's no secret that our main competitor is there."
The first Star Wars game from EA isn't expected to arrive for at least a year, but the company is seemingly wasting no time in getting the right tools in place to get its first game out the door in a timely manner. There's still no telling what EA's plans are for Visceral, the other studio developing a new Star Wars game. The developer's Montreal branch was closed down earlier this year, and EA recently let go of nearly 900 employees before opening this new LA studio.
With DICE on board, many have speculated a return to the Battlefront series may be in the works. Given the Swedish developer's penchant for first-person shooters, it certainly makes sense. Unfortunately, we're quite a ways away from finding out any real details.