SWCE 2016: Star Wars: Commander Panel Liveblog

Get an in-depth look at the making of the hit mobile game and a sneak peek at brand-new features and gameplay!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:30 am

And that’s it! Thanks for joining us!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:29 am

Go to starwarscommander.com for more on the game, or @starwarsgames on Twitter.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:28 am

The development team are really big fans, super-passionate about Star Wars. They want the players to know that.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:26 am

One team member has 70!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:25 am

How many rancors does the team currently have in their charge?

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:25 am

Ratcliffe asks who the audience plays for, and it’s close, but it seems like there are more Rebels here…

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:25 am

The team is now talking about the various squads — they all have different approaches to the game. Some play for the Empire, some for the Rebellion.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:22 am

Hez Chorba, Lucasfilm’s senior brand creative director, works closely on the game to ensure authenticity.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:21 am

This had led to the creation of new characters and much more.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:21 am

“We want to make sure that anything we do doesn’t contradict what’s going on in that time period.” Pablo Hidalgo, Leland Chee, and Steve Blank of the Story Group all offer input.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:20 am

In the collaboration with Lucasfilm, the team puts together a blueprint of what they want, and then send to Lucasfilm. Then they’ll discuss and nail down what will work. The Lucasfilm Story Team is also involved, and will advise on ships and characters that would be appropriate.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:19 am

Matt Fillbrandt: “They want to make the best game possible…It’s been great and we want to be back here at Celebration 2018 having out 4-year anniversary.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:17 am

“It still amazes me how much passion everyone has.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:16 am

They recently invited local fans to the studio. 

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:16 am

Any interesting community stories? They found out that fans were using specific chat applications to communicate; one team member got thousands of notifications after joining. “It’s just amazing to see how they met in the game…it goes all over the world.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:14 am

They spend a lot of time playtesting. And at least once every week, everyone stops working and plays the game.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:13 am

How does the team make sure everything is working?

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:12 am

In the hackathons, producers, artists, engineers and designers all throw out ideas.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:12 am

The team has hackathons, which often lead to new features. “And because it’s a mobile game, it’s live. We can keep adding to it.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:08 am

Seeing fans essentially create their own squad wars inspired the team add the feature; the announcement was a high point. Getting feedback from fans means a lot to the creators.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:06 am

The game just hit its 2-year anniversary. What have been the highlights for the team?

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:05 am

Rogue One inspired units are also coming to Commander!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:04 am

Tauntauns!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:03 am

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:03 am

And what else is coming to Hoth…? 

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:03 am

For example, you can send in snowtroopers on Hoth, which would be more effective than regular troopers.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:02 am

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:02 am

Armories will offer a brand new troop customization system! It changes the appearance of the original troops and lets you switch them out according to their surroundings.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:01 am

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:01 am

New armory, equipment, and skins!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:01 am

What’s next for Commander?

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20166:00 am

Last week saw a Squad Perks update! You can unlock new perks, like how fast you generate currency or discounts on troop costs, by working with your squad. Anytime you donate troops, you’ll earn Reputation Points. And there’s much more.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:59 am

In the Commander office, when they play, they chat, assigning low level players certain duties, and high level players others.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:58 am

Tips and tricks! Don’t forget to fill your Squad Centers; Strategically rearrange your Defense Outpost for war; Squad coordination is key.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:57 am

Ratcliffe asks if a guide community has popped up on the Internet? Yes, and the team has noticed. Veteran players often help novices. “I’ve learned a lot from fan posts on how to do things right,” says one of the team members.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:54 am

As seen in the key art below, this update brings Sullust to the game.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:53 am

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:53 am

Squad wars were also introduced, bringing even more new content and locales to the game.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:51 am

(New models on the right!)

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:51 am

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:51 am

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:49 am

Character models have been updated to more closely match the movies.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:47 am

“We only have 3 UI people on staff, and they went through everything.” Cameras have been moved closer to troops, troop units have been updated, and more.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:46 am

This year, they’ve updated the UI and art. The lead designer says, “We wanted to create a clean, modern aesthetic.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:45 am

Matt Fillbrandt of Lucasfilm says they looked at The Force Awakens and tried to figure out what would fit in the Commander timeline, which was between Episodes IV and V. Takodana and Maz’s castle were perfect. “Those are the kinds of things that we really want to do for you guys, so you enjoy every second of the game.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:43 am

Every new addition had a unique role. The luggabeast had its own abilities, etc.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:42 am

You can see it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pUD2JkBxIJo.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:41 am

Now showing the Force Awakens trailer.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:38 am

Trailer playing for the Hoth expansion. “Do not underestimate the Rebel force…or the power of the dark side.” Vader!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:37 am

Then came the The Force Awakens expansion. This year, they’re leaning into the social aspect of the game. “We’re really trying to encourage commanders…to create meaningful interactions.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:35 am

Continuing the history of the game, it was then expanded to new worlds, including Hoth.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:35 am

“We were trying to bring that Star Wars feel to the real-time mobile strategy genre for the first time.”

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:34 am

The game brings together new characters and classic heroes, and has also introduced new worlds to Star Wars.

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:34 am

The original focus at launch was “what would it be like to be a commander on Tatooine?” 

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:32 am

What is Star Wars: Commander? It’s a mobile gams and has 30 million players, and has had 1.4 billion battles since launch!

StarWars.com Team July 16, 20165:30 am

We are at the Behind-the-Scenes stage, and host Amy Ratcliffe is getting things started!

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