Yesterday, it was revealed that Lucasfilm Games was established as the "official identity" of all Lucasfilm games projects going forward.
Much of the speculation after this announcement focused on new Star Wars games. Games like Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and Star Wars Battlefront II became such big successes that talks of sequels were ongoing.
It seemed like the focus on Star Wars distracted from other possibilities from Lucasfilm Games, as Bethesda decided to drop a massive announcement today.
Bethesda announced an Indiana Jones game in a video on its Twitter page today. In a subsequent tweet, Bethesda confirmed that Machine Games, who developed the Wolfenstein series, will work on this game. Todd Howard, the creative behind the Fallout and Elder Scrolls series, will serve as executive producer. Lucasfilm Games, the recently rebranded Lucasfilm segment overseeing its gaming properties, will also work on this game.
In a subsequent tweet, Bethesda wrote:
“A new Indiana Jones game with an original story is in development from our studio, @MachineGames, and will be executive produced by Todd Howard, in collaboration with @LucasfilmGames. It'll be some time before we have more to reveal, but we’re very excited to share today’s news!
A new Indiana Jones game with an original story is in development from our studio, @MachineGames, and will be executive produced by Todd Howard, in collaboration with @LucasfilmGames. It'll be some time before we have more to reveal, but we’re very excited to share today’s news!— Bethesda (@bethesda) January 12, 2021
Machine Games voiced their excitement working with the property in a follow-up tweet:
“We’re developing a new Indiana Jones video game! As huge fans of the franchise, it’s a tremendous honor for us to create a brand-new Indiana Jones game with a completely original story. We’re very excited and can’t wait to share more in the future!”
We’re developing a new Indiana Jones video game! As huge fans of the franchise, it’s a tremendous honor for us to create a brand-new Indiana Jones game with a completely original story. We’re very excited and can’t wait to share more in the future! https://t.co/2oN6TZ5GJO— machinegames (@machinegames) January 12, 2021
The teaser video can be found below:
WHAT THIS MEANS
This news comes at a great time for fans of Indiana Jones. The franchise, which was all but relegated to the past, will likely come back into the pop culture foreground with the next Indiana Jones film. Disney announced during its Investor Day in December that the sequel, directed by James Mangold, is set to arrive in 2022. There is no release window for the Machine Games’ Indiana Jones game, but it's possible that Lucasfilm is attempting to release both projects around the same time to reinvigorate interest in the franchise.
With the recent Microsoft purchase of Zenimax Media, the owner of Bethesda, it’s possible that Machine Games’ Indiana Jones game may be exclusive to the Xbox platform. However, there has been no firm confirmation whether all Bethesda-published games will be Xbox exclusive, so it’s unclear what platforms this game will ultimately release on.
It's likely that more information on the upcoming Indiana Jones project will be announced later this year. In recent years, Bethesda has held E3 conferences to showcase its upcoming games. If Bethesda chooses to host an E3-style conference this summer, it's possible that more information will be revealed at that time.
Machine Games is most known for its reboot of the Wolfenstein series. Those games featured brutal first-person shooter combat set in an alternate reality where the Nazis won World War II. Given Indiana Jones' penchant for using a whip and a revolver, some form of combat system is expected. It's likely that the game will draw from series like Uncharted or Tomb Raider, which – of course – were inspired from the Indiana Jones film franchise.