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Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III

A lengthy feature on Eurogamer looks back at the rise and fall of developer Free Radical games. The article's into states it was once to be called "Did Haze Kill Free Radical," but their research resulted in more of an indictment of mainstream game development in a piece ultimately titled "Free Radical vs. the Monsters." One interested contention, highlighted by GameSpot, is that LucasArts actually wanted their ambitious plans for Star Wars: Battlefront III to fail. Here's what he says about the sequel where the idea was that "players could seamlessly transition from a small-scale gunfight into a space battle simply by climbing into a ship and taking off":

But LucasArts began to press hard on other, less quantifiable, issues. "Stalling tactics," says Graeme Norgate. "If a publisher wants to find something that is wrong with a milestone, it's very easy for them to do so as there are so many grey areas within a deliverable. If the contract says, 'Graphics for level X to be release quality,' who can say what's release quality? And there you have it."

"LucasArts hadn't paid us for six months," says Norgate "and were refusing to pass a milestone so we would limp along until the money finally ran out. They knew what they were doing, and six months of free work to pass on to Rebellion wasn't to be sniffed at." Part of the eventual agreement between LucasArts and Free Radical saw certain assets passed on to Rebellion Studios. For a time LucasArts was tempted by the thought of a hastily put together Battlefront 3, but nothing came of it. When presented with the allegations put forth by this investigation, LucasArts said simply that it does not comment on rumour and speculation.

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18. Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= May 5, 2012, 22:32 Jerykk
 
jdreyer wrote on May 5, 2012, 20:05:
Cutter beat me to it. There are two sides here, and we're only hearing one. While it sounds damning, I'll withhold judgement for now.

Also, Free Radical, why would you agree to such vague contracted milestones? Is it just the case that LA holds all the power, so dev studios agree to whatever? I also make software and are in the middle of contract negotiations with one of our larger customers. Everything is very finely detailed so both we and the customer are crystal clear on the expectations. Not only is it common sense, but it protects you.

Game development milestones are a bit more vague than regular software milestones. Regular software milestones are very much a binary thing. Either a feature exists (and works) or it doesn't. In game development, a lot of milestone requirements revolve around quality. As a developer, you have some negotiating power but publishers ultimately hold all the cards.
 
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  1. May 5, 15:44 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= necrosis
  17. May 5, 21:07  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Hyatus
  19. May 5, 22:37   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Rigs
  20. May 5, 23:58  LucasArt did not shutdown Star Wars mods for Battlefield games. IMAPC
  2. May 5, 16:07 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= deqer
  6. May 5, 17:10  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Paketep
  11. May 5, 18:10   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Dev
  3. May 5, 16:17 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= RollinThundr
  4. May 5, 16:57  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= TurdFergasun
  5. May 5, 17:10   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Wildone
  21. May 6, 00:14   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Wolfox
  22. May 6, 01:07    Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Sho
  8. May 5, 17:37  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Agent.X7
  15. May 5, 20:17  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= ViRGE
  7. May 5, 17:28 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Aero
  9. May 5, 18:03  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Sepharo
  10. May 5, 18:07   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Sepharo
  25. May 6, 10:36  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Flatline
  12. May 5, 19:35 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Cutter
  13. May 5, 20:05  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= jdreyer
  14. May 5, 20:07   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= nin
>> 18. May 5, 22:32   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Jerykk
  16. May 5, 20:56 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= entr0py
  23. May 6, 07:19 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Ledge
  24. May 6, 10:20  Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Prez
  26. May 6, 10:39   Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Flatline
  27. May 6, 12:06    Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III<br> A <a href= Nighthawk
  28. May 6, 12:40 Re: Free Radical on LucasArts and Battlefront III Tanto Edge
  29. May 7, 10:19 I still have BF1 and 2! Ant


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