In fall 2015, EA released the video game Star Wars Battlefront, but longtime fans knew that the title had existed in previous iterations. During the mid 2000s, LucasArts worked in conjunction with Pandemic Studios on both the original Battlefront and its sequel. There was supposed to be a third installment in the series, developed by Free Radical Design, but it was ultimately canceled. Game footage has leaked online in the years since, but a Battlefront 3 never saw the light of day.
After the first two games were well-received, it was certainly a disappointing development. Coupled with the lukewarm reception to the latest Battlefront, many were left wondering what could have been. As it turns out, gamers will be able to check out an unofficial version of Battlefront 3 called Galaxy in Turmoil, a fan made project from Frontwire, which is based on the work by Free Radical Design. Thanks to an agreement the studio made with Steam Greenlight, the game will be available to millions of users for free in the near future.
Frontwire president Tony Romanelli announced the news in an official statement on the company's website. Steam has signed an official distribution deal and will ship the game to its users when it is ready. It's unknown when Galaxy in Turmoil will come out, but this is obviously a major step forward for Frontwire and an exciting turn of events for gamers eager to see what Battlefront 3 may have been like.
The major hurdle, as one would expect, was that Frontwire does not own the various Star Wars assets that were used to design Galaxy in Turmoil. Steam's terms of service indicate that proposed games can only contain elements owned by the publisher. In his message, Romanelli addresses concerns about a cease and desist letter from Disney, but apparently Steam doesn't share those fears. It will be interesting to see what happens down the line, especially with EA planning future Battlefront followups. The situation is similar to the Star Trek Axanar fan film, which faced a lawsuit from Paramount Pictures before Star Trek Beyond director Justin Lin convinced the studio to drop it. Lucasfilm has maintained a strong relationship with its fans since the Disney acquisition, so chances are they don't take legal action against Galaxy in Turmoil. There's no reason both can't exist peacefully.
All in all, Galaxy in Turmoil looks to give players a very comprehensive experience. The game includes a multitude of features, such as a single player campaign mode, several maps showcasing a plethora of Star Wars planets, ground and space combat, and battles from different eras of the franchise. According to Frontwire's FAQ page, it is built for Windows 64-bit only at this point in time, though Mac support is mentioned as a possibility for a later date. Those interested in playing Galaxy in Turmoil can go to Steam's website and install the program on their computer so they're ready for when the game's released. From the sound of it, Galaxy in Turmoil won't be available on console.
Even though it's an exclusive title for PC gamers right now, it's still great to hear that Galaxy in Turmoil is going to be available to no cost for the fans. On the heels of Battlefront generating controversy for a number of reasons, this is a strong alternative for those wanting a Star Wars gaming fix. And as EA promises their Battlefront 2 will improve upon its predecessor, maybe they can look to Frontwire for some inspiration.
Galaxy in Turmoil will be available on Steam soon.