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Game developers are like flowers, says EA CEO

Electronic Arts has a reputation among gamers for swallowing talented game developers only to later turn them into excrement. EA CEO John Riccitiello knows it, and told Game|Life at DICE, "We at EA blew it, and to a degree I was involved in these things, so I blew it."

Developers fallen victim to EA’s previous mismanagement include the once great Origin Systems, Westwood and Bullfrog. "When I talked to the creators that populated these companies at the time, they felt like they were buried and stifled," Riccitiello said.

EA Sports is notorious for making small changes, sometimes the most significant of which is a roster update, every year to its sports games and selling them for full price. While that model may work for a select genre, it’s largely inapplicable everywhere else. EA may have figured that purchasing a developer for solely the IP would be a winning idea, but one that is now proven to fail without the adequate inspiration behind it.

"The command and conquer model," said the EA CEO, "doesn't work. If you think you're going to buy a developer and put your name on the label... you're making a profound mistake."

Such was the topic of Riccitiello’s talk at the DICE conference, informing listeners that he would put forth a "new model" of "how publishers and developers can work together in the future," hoping to avoid the mistakes of EA past.

With EA’s most recent acquisition of BioWare and Pandemic, for which the publisher paid $860 million, the company now has to makes sure it doesn’t mess with a good thing.

"Creative teams can be thought of as flowers in a hothouse -- you move the temperature up or down a few degrees and the flowers will die," Riccitiello said.



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RE: Cautiously Optimistic
By FITCamaro on 2/11/2008 12:51:28 PM , Rating: 2
I made my own version. ;)


RE: Cautiously Optimistic
By leexgx on 2/11/2008 1:16:35 PM , Rating: 2
you can norm remove the movie files from where it is installed

BF2 1.3 patch basicly Killed BF2 with the server crashing bug and 2142 is an mod just to make more money


RE: Cautiously Optimistic
By christojojo on 2/11/2008 1:38:52 PM , Rating: 2
Personally, I don't mind developers making mods, esp. stand alone ones. That is if they fix the problems in a time efficient manner.

I would like to see BF2/2142 engine (patched properly of course) used for official mods for Star Wars (First Strike is nice but not enough players), Lego, C&C, (i know they're working on it)and a bunch of others.

Side Note: I think i would be cool to have the commander to be the only player with full force powers.


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