Star Wars Outlaws: A New Hope for Busy Gamers Has Made the Ideal Length for a Game

Consider Ubisoft creating an open-world exploration game for the new Star Wars TV series – Outlaws, set in Fortnite’s version of George Lucas’s galaxy far, far away. In an age of ever-increasing game worlds, where it can take a hundred hours to see just a fraction of most video games, this is one of the defining problems for people who want to play, but don’t have time to play. Star Wars Outlaws is poised to become gamers’ second-coming – a title that combines the richness of Ubisoft, the masters of the sprawling game world (Assassin’s Creed Valhalla), with just the right sort of time commitment.

The Quest for Shorter, Sweeter Adventures

(In a recent conversation with VGC, Julian Gerighty, the game’s creative director, said that Star Wars Outlaws ‘probably runs about 30 hours’ for those who want to see the main story, with 50 to 60 hours for people who want to see everything.) The decision to make games that don’t demand 200-hour commitments isn’t some sort of revolutionary departure from what we’ve seen before. It’s a return to making games that actually fit in your life, when you’re busy with lots of things besides video game quests.

DISCOVER a World of Adventure, Without the Epic Time Sink

Despite its shorter length, Star Wars Outlaws is anything but small. This star-struck, side-quest-packed Star Wars adventure for Android allows you to make your intergalactic mark in a universe brimming with adventures and secrets. I recently did some play-testing and was able to get a taste of the vast number of scenarios and settings that can be found. After working our way out of a nearby pub that was under siege by scum and villainy, we thwarted a grubby arrival at a planet outpost, and had a wild chase on space-bikes through a nearby asteroid field. Even on my limited preview, it was clear that there is a treasure trove of adventures and unexplored territory that players will need to venture into if they want to unearth every last secret that Star Wars Outlaws has to offer.

A New Dawn for Game Design: Quality Over Quantity

This decision to limit the match time is one of the most important changes in the way games are made possible. By setting a time that isn’t absolutely impossible to complete during a sitting, the developers were able to build detail and narrative into the game in a way that remains more manageable. The project is neither too large to fail unfinished, nor is it compromised by trying to tell a great story in an impossibly short time.

Explore, Discover, Uncover: The Hidden Gems of Star Wars Outlaws

For those players who enjoy unlocking a game’s secrets, Star Wars Outlaws promises lots of unique secrets to discover. Though a playthrough of the main story can easily be completed in 30 hours, the desire to explore and to complete everything in the game could extend a run’s playtime to something meaty and substantial, without overwhelming the player.

Scheduled for Stardom: The Launch of a Balanced Adventure

Make a note in your calendar for 30 August: the day Star Wars Outlaws launches on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and PC. It’s the breakthrough title that might actually change the shape of games that follow: one that respects players’ time but still gives them an enormous, absorbingly elaborate world to get lost in.

Discover Defined: A Close Look at the Essence of Adventure

To discover is at its core to reveal something previously obscured, to see new things, to go to places both within oneself and without, and to shed light on the things that are worth acknowledging, worth seeing, worth playing through for a sense of accomplishment, delight and enlightenment. In that light, Star Wars Outlaws is a deeply discovery-oriented work, the sort of experience that invites you into a curated adventure, that respects your time, but also pulls you in enough to rekindle that joy of finding out, that feeling of reward. In the approach of its duration, it stands in contrast to gaming culture at large, suggesting that the value of a thing is not always about the time it takes to play through, but about the kinds of experiences you have while doing it and what memories it leaves in your wake. Star Wars Outlaws is a beacon in the gaming world, which is always looking for the next big thing, for the mythic outpost of people who want satisfy adventure itself, calling for what’s true and deep within the realities of the daily grind. It also reminds us that sometimes, less really is more, happily, when the world of make-believe strikes in the world we inhabit.

Jun 13, 2024
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