Sony Claims They Removed ‘Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic Remake’ Promotional Material Due To Licensed Music, Fans Believe It’s Evidence The Game Is In Trouble
A Sony spokesman claims that the company has removed Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Remake promotional material from YouTube and other social media platforms due to licensed music. However, many fans believe the removal is because the game might be getting scrapped.
X account Daily Star Wars Games reported earlier this week that Sony and PlayStation had privated the Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Remake trailer as well as deleting numerous tweets about the game.
One can see below that the trailer is indeed private:
In response to this report, a Sony spokesman told Kotaku, “As part of normal business, we delist assets with licensed music when the licenses expire.”
However, this explanation does not hold water given the PlayStation Spain YouTube account still has the trailer publicly listed on YouTube.
t’s possible that there’s a different license agreement for Spain than other countries, but the Sony spokesman makes no comment about that, and if you take his comment at face value, the existence of the Spanish trailer does indeed refute the claim.
The privating of the trailer and the deletion of social media posts has led to speculation that the game is getting cancelled.
YouTuber Ryan Kinel said, “After two years it looks like whatever iteration this was in is completely and totally dead. So bad that they deleted any mention of their social media that they’re busy making the videos private on YouTube.”
X user Dataracer also posted, “KOTOR Remake is done.”
This was exactly 2 years ago. That’s a corporate decision.
KOTOR Remake is done.
— Dataracer (@Dataracer117) September 29, 2023
The Knights of the Old Republic Remake was announced back in September 2021 as part of the PlayStation Showcase 2021. At the time it was in development by Aspyr Media and appeared to be a PlayStation 5 exclusive.
Shortly, after the trailer reveal, red flags quickly surfaced as Aspyr Lead Producer Ryan Treadwell described the game as a complete remake. At the conclusion of the PlayStation Showcase 2021, he was asked, “Is this like a remaster of the original game? What’s going on here?”
He answered, “It’s so much more, Sid. This is a complete remake of this beloved Star Wars story. For Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Remake, we are rebuilding from the ground up while maintaining that integrity and story from the original.”
Shuman then asked, “So Ryan, how much of a remake are we talking about here? Is this updating some graphics? Adding some higher resolution modes?”
Treadwell responded, “You know the original Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is a true classic and one of our favorite Star Wars story ever. We want to honor that original story and make it as impactful for players today.”
“In terms of the visuals we have the opportunity to present this story with a much higher level of fidelity than was possible in the past while making sure that we are being authentic to what players loved about that original game,” he added.
In an interview with StarWars.com, Treadwell further detailed, “Our big goals on this are to bring the story to a modern audience and have it be just as impactful today as it was for players when it originally launched.”
Lucasfilm Games’ Executive Producer Orion Kellogg also told StarWars.com, “We’ve been working really, really closely with Aspyr for a long time now to deconstruct what made KOTOR so great and bring that back to new audiences, because we want this game to be an incredible RPG.”
Kellogg went on to hint that they will be changing character designs, dialogue, and more, “We want this game to be just as beloved as it was before. Some of my favorite meetings to have in my week right now are to get into the nitty gritty with Aspyr and talk about, ‘Why did we make that choice in the original game and how does that play today? How do we expand that choice and make it even more meaningful and impactful?’ We think about, literally, every word of dialogue and [other choices] down to the clothes that the character is wearing.”
He then reiterated they are deconstructing the game, “We trust Aspyr, we trust the team that’s working on it, and we’re doing the work ourselves to dig in, deconstruct, and reconnect to why people love it because we don’t want to mess with that. We love it, too, and so we want to do it right. We hope everybody feels we’ve done this game a service when all is said and done.”
Another red flag surfaced when it was revealed that former The Mary Sue writer and radical social justice activist Sam Maggs was working on the game.
Maggs announced her involvement on Twitter sharing a video of her updating her Twitter profile with Knights of the Old Republic.
She tweeted, “IT’S ACTUALLY HAPPENING:”
IT’S ACTUALLY HAPPENING: pic.twitter.com/4kcJ4UiTsd
— Sam Maggs (@SamMaggs) September 9, 2021
In a subsequent tweet she added, “Could not be more honored and excited to be part of an INCREDIBLE team at Aspyr Media to remake one of my all-time favorite games!!”
About four months after the game’s initial announcement a rumor from YouTuber MrMattyPlays detailed that the game would be race and gender replacing a number of characters.
He said, “On the story front, I was told that they’re staying faithful to the main story outside of some changes to characters like race, species, name, age. But that’s not going to apply to anyone connected to the main plot.”
In February 2022, the game would receive some good news when Maggs announced she quit the project.
On her website she wrote, ” was on this project for like 9 months in 2021 and then I quit. You’re gonna be okay. If you e-mail or message me about it, I won’t see it. My filters are really good.”
By July, a report out of Bloomberg claimed the game was in “serious trouble” and that it had been “delayed indefinitely.” Not only did Bloomberg claim the game was paused, but their report claimed Aspyr’s Design Director Brad Prince and Art Director Jason Minor were fired following a demo of the game for executives.
However, in Ausgust 2022, another Bloomberg report claimed Embracer Group, the parent company of Aspyr Media after an acquisition in 2021, shifted the game’s production from Aspyr Media to Saber Interactive.
Embracer Group had previously announced that “one of the Group’s AAA projects has transitioned to another studio within the Group.” Embracer also explained the transition saying, “This was done to ensure the quality bar is where we need it to be for the title.”
Embracer Group board member Matthew Karch had previously announced in May 2022 that Saber Interactive was working with Aspyr on the remake.
He announced at the time, “Aspyr has gone full in to make this the best game that they can make. When we acquired Aspyr, we knew from the start that they would require our assistance [and] Saber has tremendous expertise in creating these types of products.”
Karch added, “We’re fully confident that the game is going to be fantastic but it’s a massive, massive product and massive products require a lot of effort and a lot of time to make good. And especially when you’re talking about a game already old – very old – we’ve basically had to remake that game from scratch.”
More recently in May 2023, Embracer Group CEO Lars Wingefors was asked, “Could please clarify the current status of the Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Remake in regards to its development status and what shape is it in?”
He responded, “Favorite question. I have no further comments.”
What do you make of Sony’s explanation on why they privated the trailer and deleted social media posts?