Star Wars Eclipse is an action-adventure game developed by Quantic Dream which will offer you to experience the story of several characters in the Star Wars universe. We are talking about a branching narration, so if you know the previous titles of Quantic Dream: Heavy Rain, Detroit Become Human, Beyond Two Souls or even Fahrenheit, you know what to expect. Otherwise, little reminder. A branching narration, it is when the game is divided into chapters which are themselves designed to offer several possible outputs. For example, your character may find himself facing an enemy who threatens him: solution A, you cooperate and you are kidnapped, and the rest of the adventure will be your interrogation. Solution B, you attack it, it wounds you, and the rest of the adventure will consist in finding someone to heal you.
So much for the definition. Quantic Dream has made this system its trademark, with truly sprawling chapters in its latest game to date: Detroit Become Human, released in 2018. The possibilities of such a model are pretty crazy and the fact of adding several characters playables that interact and interfere with each other is a tough challenge. In Star Wars Eclipse, we will therefore play several protagonists, who will have their own history, their skills and their role to play in events capable of altering the balance between the dark side and the light side of the Force. Suffice to say that what will be told in Eclipse will not be anything at stake and it should be a rather epic quest. Besides, if you ever want to know when Star Wars Eclipse takes place compared to the Star Wars movies, you might be both disappointed and upbeat.
Star Wars Eclipse takes place during the High Republic, so before all the films we have seen so far. It is a period which has never been exploited in the cinema or in video games, and which has especially been fleshed out in books, comics and audiobooks. Concretely, it takes place 200 years before episode 1. If you have watched the Eclipse trailer, you have probably recognized some familiar elements, glimpsed during the prelogy. For example, we can cite the ships of the trade federation or the Jedi council room, with what looks like Master Yoda. Granted, it’s 200 years before Episode 1, but it’s plausible. Yoda died at the age of 800 and therefore his presence in the High Republic is credible.
This period of the High Republic, the golden age of the Jedi, it is not for nothing that it was chosen by Quantic Dream. In fact, Disney wants to make this a fully exploitable period. There is also a Disney + series scheduled for 2023, based on that age, and this week, the lead actress was successfully cast. Like what, coincidence or not, it is a part of the Star Wars universe that we are likely to review a lot in the coming years. But besides, what does this period have in store for us in terms of issues and action?
The High Republic is the height of Jedi rule. This is their golden age. They are many, strong, and they bring peace to a whole host of incredibly diverse and colorful systems. It shows in the trailer: everything seems exotic and peaceful, teeming with life. Nothing to do with the troubled times of post-logy or with the perpetual war that characterizes the original trilogy. We are here in the calm just before the storm started through the prelogy, episodes 1, 2, 3 where the republic falls and the Empire emerges, dominated by the Sith. For now, it is a strong, dominant, overwhelming republic that reigns on the outer border. However, this Star Wars world in full pre-prelogy, is not all pink and on that, the trailer gives us some clues on what we should be able to play in-game.
There will be action! In this first video, we identify saber fights, but always between Jedi, so probably training. We also see an army, unknown to the battalion. They have huge tanks, cruisers, fighters, well in short, it is the imperial army before its time. And if you look closely, the emblem the soldiers wear greatly resembles the shape of the ships that attack the Federation of Commerce, especially in space battles. Then, obviously, as the common thread of this trailer, we follow the ceremonial birth, under the eclipse, of what we imagine to be a sith. As the game is called Eclipse, as much to say that this character must be very important. He’s probably the big bad. Also note that David Cage, the boss of Quantic Dream studio, tweeted about the game, calling it “a mix of branching action and storytelling with multiple playable characters”. The action therefore seems fairly central, which is logical for a Star Wars, but which ultimately sticks relatively little with the know-how of Quantic Dream.
Star Wars Eclipse trailer
As we have seen, the action will be there, and it’s rather bizarre for a Quantic Dream game. The studio is more used to dialogue sequences and rare combat scenes which usually resolve in QTE form. The logic would be to think that these QTE streaks are just going to become a lot more regular in the game, but maybe not. It may be that for the first time in 15 years, Quantic Dream breaks its model of play and interactions. In any case, this is what Kotaku’s sources revealed in September 2023, mentioning in particular that “the Star Wars game from Quantic Dream will not have the usual QTE system that we expect”. Other sources claim that the game has been in development for over a year and a half, which gives us a more precise window than the official “early development”.
At the same time, those famous September rumors pointed to a potentially open-world title. I have to say that Quantic Dream recently opened a branch in Canada, in Montreal, where the studio has recruited veterans of Assassin’s Creed, Deus Ex or Gotham Knight.. These are all profiles that allow us to make this giant leap from interactive drama to open world action-narrative. And if we rely on the job offers in force in recent months for the studio, we even find profiles familiar with multiplayer which could suggest such a possibility for this Star Wars Eclipse. However, since Quantic Dream is no longer tied to Sony and can now work on multiple projects at the same time, it could very well be a whole different game.