Somehow, KOTOR returned: Saber boss finally comes out and says 'it's obvious we're working on this' after chaos at Embracer and that the remake is 'alive and well'

The Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic remake still stubbornly refuses to become one with the Force. The remake that wouldn't say die is apparently still going, per a recent chat between Saber boss Matthew Karch and IGN, in which the CEO came out and said—maybe a touch wearily—that the troubled project was still alive.

"It's clear and it's obvious that we're working on this, it's been in the press numerous times," said Karch, before adding "What I will say is that the game is alive and well, and we're dedicated to making sure we exceed consumer expectations." To be honest, at this point I think exceeding consumer expectations would just mean putting the game out at all.

Karch isn't wrong about the press thing (I would know). The KOTOR remake fell under a shroud of silence ever since its original devs at Aspyr showed a reportedly disastrous demo to Lucasfilm and Sony execs in July 2022, but news has continued to pour out about it anyway. For instance, we learnt on the down-low that it had probably switched devs from Aspyr to Saber, that it's probably been delayed again, and that Saber likely kept the project when Embracer sold the studio off in the wake of its collapsed $2 billion mystery deal.

And yet, somehow, the remake continues to survive under Saber's auspices. Which seems like a miracle akin to dodging a thunderstorm's-worth of raindrops to me. In fact, Karch's comments feel like the most surefire sign of life the project has had since it first debuted at a 2021 Sony showcase. 

Although it's been generally accepted for years that the project is under Saber's control, none of the key players involved ever really came out and said it directly. The closest we got was a 2022 comment from Embracer that Saber was assisting Aspyr with the game, with the remaining gaps filled in by reports based on anonymous Saber sources. But with Saber now outside Embracer's, uh, embrace, and Karch somewhat exasperatedly saying "It's clear and obvious that we're working on this," the precise status of the KOTOR remake is clearer than it's ever been.

Which still isn't as clear as I'd like it to be. I love the original KOTOR—it's one of the games that formed my tastes as a kid—and I'm very curious to see what a modern studio would do with a remake. Saber's project is clearly still alive in some capacity, but it's had to endure a lot in the past few years. 

Even though KOTOR seems to be on a surer footing, I still wouldn't bet money it will actually come out, and even if it does, I suspect the scars of its development will be more than a little visible.

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.