Star Wars Outlaws teases High Republic connection amid Empire’s reign

Brad Norton
Star Wars Outlaws gameplay

Star Wars Outlaws appears to be tying together far more than just lore from the original trilogy. Despite its place in the timeline — set between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi — through our experience with a hands-on demo, we learned of connections tying all the way back to the High Republic era.

It’s an increasingly big commitment to be a Star Wars superfan these days. There are dozens of books, and countless hours of animated and live-action shows, not to mention efforts in the gaming space of late.

One particular area of investment over recent years has been on the literary side, as the new High Republic era kicked off in 2021 and has been rapidly expanding since. The Acolyte, the latest series on Disney+, is the first time we’ve ever seen a High Republic story brought to life on the silver screen.

Now, it appears the era in Star Wars history, a period set hundreds of years before the events of the prequel trilogy, we’re set to learn more about the era’s lasting legacy. During my 60-minute stretch with Star Wars Outlaws over Summer Game Fest, I stumbled upon an Easter egg no one else had noticed — an Easter egg involving the High Republic.

Star Wars Outlaws gameplay
The Nihil’s mark on the Galaxy can still be felt centuries later.

Wandering off the beaten path, as Outlaws encourages through its open-world structure, I happened upon a particular note of interest. Easy to skim over and miss at the moment, this note happened to be extremely interesting.

Extremely interesting for one particular reason: It mentioned Nihil Marauders.

With the original trilogy set almost 400 years after our first knowledge of the High Republic era, it’s a fascinating inclusion. How exactly could this antagonistic force still be relevant across the galaxy all this time later? Why did someone leave a note referencing their brutal ways? I tried to pry answers for these questions and more during my sit down with Narrative Director Navid Khavari and Game Director Mathias Karlson.

The note I found came during one of three playable missions. This one saw Kay Vess escaping a ship that just crash-landed onto the nearest planet. Exploding into pieces at every turn, it’s a moment-to-moment struggle to get out of the wreckage. As it turns out, the very ship itself “is from the High Republic era,” Khavari confirmed during the interview.

“That’s something exciting about the Torshara planet, which we were able to construct ourselves,” he continued. “The moment we landed on the idea of Torshara having this powerful wind that sort of draws ships to crash in, we were like, ‘We need to have a High Republic ship!’

“I’ll probably leave it at that… There’s gonna be some more details coming.”

So while not quite ready to spill all the beans just yet, it’s a certainty that Star Wars Outlaws incorporates the High Republic era, to some degree. Even just the odd Easter egg like this is sure to whet the appetite of the most dedicated Star Wars fans, and based on Khavari’s comments, there looks to be plenty more just around the corner.

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