Star Wars Outlaws’ gameplay looks stunning in the new trailer publisher Ubisoft revealed at its Forward showcase event on June 12. A cinematic trailer introduced the open-world game during the Xbox Showcase on June 11, letting players establish a sense of what dusty orange, galactic drama to expect, but the gameplay indicates a departure from other big Ubisoft games, too.
That is what Ubisoft promised when it announced the game, then unnamed, in 2021, saying the game will be “totally different from what we have done in the past, while upping the bar for the industry” in a Q&A with The Division developer Massive Entertainment.
In the trailer, we see roguish main character Kay Vess (Ginny & Georgia’s Humberly González) avoiding enemies through stealth and her smooth-riding motorcycle. By tapping right trigger of your controller, you’ll be able to assign tasks to her beaming companion pet Nix, unleashing it on enemies or using it to help press far away buttons.
If Kay is discovered in spite of her creeping stealth takedowns, she can fight back directly with her firearm, using it to buy time before swinging away on a rope, or whatever useful object is nearby.
The game seems to follow Respawn Entertainment’s lead in its spring-released Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, encouraging players to balance sinking into Outlaws’ narrative with mastering its gameplay minutiae.
Once Kay gets on her zooming motorcycle, we witness a world that is dense with creatures, enemies, and settlements, potentially giving players a more substantial open world experience than other Ubisoft titles.
Objective markers are dainty and color-coded at the top of the screen, and explanatory text to the right of the screen disappears once an objective is accomplished. Location names materialize on the right of screen in bright turquoise.
In other words, the HUD design looks like simple, action-adventure standard, but the unobtrusive style is a welcome adjustment for Ubisoft.
That extends to the design around Kay’s spaceship, too, which is fixed with missiles and straightforward aim markers.
The game is “set between the events of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi,” the description on its cinematic trailer indicates, and you can expect it on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC in 2024.
As Kay, you dodge bounty hunters and loot the galaxy, aided by her little pet and shag haircut.
“She’s got a bounty on her back,” narrative director Navid Khavari says in an explanatory video also debuted at Ubisoft Forward, “and [she’s] trying to find work. That’s when she starts to really realize, ‘I kind of like this underworld business.’”
“I know that people are going to love this game—not just for how amazing the gameplay is, but [for] the story itself: to see a young girl become a woman, and become an outlaw,” actress González said.
But there’s time before the irreversible transformation takes place. So before Outlaws releases, you might want to dedicate a quick study session to learning the litany of other, soon-to-be-released Star Wars games.
Respawn is developing a sequel to Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, for example, as well as a first-person shooter and strategy game. Uncharted director Amy Hennig is also collaborating with Star Wars 1313 director Dominic Robilliard on another Star Wars title, a rectifying event after her past attempt at Visceral Games was thwarted by the studio’s collapse. Studios come and go, but the star wars are, apparently, unending.
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