The mid-2000s saw a glut of Star Wars games released across all platforms at the time, from the flight-combat Rogue Squadron games to the hit RPG Knights of the Old Republic. One of the often forgotten gems of that time was 2005's Star Wars: Republic Commando, which seemed to come and go without much fan fare at the time. However, after nearly 16 years Star Wars: Republic Commando is back and the launch trailer offers a glimpse of what fans have to look forward to in the re-release.
Republic Commando was a squad-driven first-person shooter from LucasArts which released in February of 2005 on Xbox and PC. The game followed Delta Squad, a squad of Clone Commandos during the height of the Clone Wars battling the Separatist's droid army and Trandoshan slavers. It was relatively well-received at the time and sold reasonably well, but a planned sequel was ultimately cancelled.
The launch trailer gives new and returning players a glimpse of what to expect as they take on the role of clone Delta-38, or Boss, voiced by Jango Fett-himself, Temuera Morrison on three sprawling missions across the Star Wars galaxy. Joining Boss are squadmates Fixer, Sev, and Scorch, who are at the player's disposal to combat the various challenges presented across the game.
Compared to other re-releases and remasters, studio Aspyr appears to have done very little to change the look and feel of the game. The game graphically appears to be the same as its original 2005 release, albeit cleaned up and optimized for current-gen hardware. Gameplay also appears to have remained the same with guided corridors for intense firefights followed by more open areas for boss fights and larger enemy encounters.
As mentioned above, Republic Commando is often overlooked as a gem of the mid-2000s, prequel driven games released by LucasArts. This was due, partly, to the darker tone of the game as it tried to convey the danger and seemingly "dirty" nature of the missions Delta Squad was deployed on.
It was also an offbeat style of game compared to more approachable Star Wars FPS-style games like the original Battlefront. At the time, this style of tactically-driven, squad-based shooters were more commonly seen in games like the original Rainbow Six and Ghost Recon titles. It could be argued this is what ultimately caused Republic Commando to garner a smaller audience compared to other Star Wars games, but also endeared it to anyone who picked it up.
Over the years, there have been many video games set in the Star Wars universe that went beyond normal expectations for licensed content. These titles often received at least one or two sequels — something that can't be said for squad-based FPS and cult favourite Republic Commando.
However, it seems that this wasn't always the plan. A new interview with lead developer of Republic Commando, Brett Douville, suggests that LucasArts was home to two separate pitches for a potential sequel, before the studio underwent a company-wide 'reboot' that scuppered these plans.
The first would have seen players tasked with executing Order 66, acting as a parallel to what we saw occur in Revenge of the Sith. For the uninitiated, Order 66 refers to Senator Palpatine's command for the clone army of the Republic to systematically wipe out any living Jedi Knights, as a precursor to Imperial rule.
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