The launch of the next game in the Star Wars: Battlefront series is not directly tied to that of the next Star Wars film, Episode VII. That said, EA says it would "prefer" for the release of the two to be close to one another.
During a call with investors yesterday, EA was asked about the effect a delay of Episode VII could have on Battlefront. Referencing what little of the game has been shown so far, EA Studios executive VP Patrick Söderlund said, "[Y]ou know what we're building is more rooted in the traditional Star Wars universe, and not so much necessarily linked to the movies being made. And that's just because we wanted to make a game that celebrated the history of Star Wars."
Battlefront won't ignore everything from Episode VII, though; Söderlund said, "Obviously, there will be things in there somewhat tied to the new movie." Not much has been officially revealed about the movie, which will take place 30 years after Return of the Jedi and features some returning characters.
As for when Battlefront will launch, Söderlund explained, "I wouldn't say we have a particular tie to the movie. Now, obviously, we would prefer to be close to the movie, but I wouldn't say we're directly tied to it."
Episode VII is scheduled for release on December 18, 2015. Battlefront, which is in the works at Battlefield and Mirror's Edge developer DICE, does not yet have a release date. As part of a showing at E3 last month that offered some brief glimpses of early work on the game--watch it above--EA announced we'd "see more" from the game next spring.
Not being tied directly into the release of Episode VII is good news, at least in theory, for the quality of Battlefront. When licensed games are released to coincide with a movie, their quality can suffer as a result of being rushed out the door--a criticism leveled at Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark, which launched during the same week as Transformers: Age of Extinction.
Battlefront is just one of at least two Star Wars games EA has in the works, the other being a title from Dead Space developer Visceral Games that is rumored to be an open-world title. EA signed a multiyear deal to produce Star Wars games in 2013.