Star Wars Outlaws needed a speeder because of its 'fairly vast' distances

Star Wars Outlaws, the Star Wars game that will finally let us play a blaster-toting scoundrel who probably thinks a lightsaber is a low-fat cavalry weapon, is being published by Ubisoft. That brings with it certain expectations. Since this isn't a Rayman game, those expectations include an open world that's perhaps too big for its own good.

In a recent interview at Comic Con, creative director Julian Gherity explained that open world locations in Outlaws, like the desert moon of Toshara, are so big they needed to give player-character Kay Vess her own speeder to cross them. "There isn't just this bustling city," Gherity said, "in Toshara's case it's called Mirogana, but there's all the wilderness outside where the player and Kay—driven by their objectives, but distracted by their curiosity—can go and explore. But those distances are fairly vast, so to make them fun, accessible, to grow access for the player, we came up with the speeder."

Gherity went on to explain the inspiration for the way the speeder looks and controls "wasn't anything that had previously been done in Star Wars. It was motocross, and motocross in the sense of making the travel really fun. Thrilling, full of tricks, speed, chases, that type of thing."

Fortunately, the developers at Ubisoft Massive have also said the planets in Outlaws won't be procedurally generated, but will instead be "handcrafted." In an interview with Edge magazine, Gherity explained those handcrafted worlds won't be the size of entire Assassin's Creed games. "It's a crude analogy, but the size of one planet might be about [equivalent to] two of the zones in Assassin's Creed Odyssey, for example," he said. "It could be two or three zones. But it's not, you know, this sort of epic 'the whole of England recreated' approach."

When asked if players would be able to customize the speeder, repainting or even putting stickers on it, the reply came back, "I don't know about stickers, but there will be some personalization." So that's nice.

After flying speeders across the worlds of The Old Republic, I'm pretty down to try it again in Outlaws. I just hope I get to do that across maps that are full of interesting unique locations rather than bland repeatable activities.

Star Wars Outlaws will be out in 2024.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.