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Why EA must return to its roots

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Riccitiello achieved the essential job of reforming EA, now the firm must be led by a gamer at heart, writes Rob Crossley

He came, he did a bit of this and that, he left.... read more

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Why EA must return to its roots

Postby capsule_toy » 19 Mar 2013, 18:44

John Riccitiello out as CEO of EA. Good. Maybe now someone has the chance to come in and shake things up. Putting a stop to the micro transaction trend which (as everyone has realised) is f**king KILLING the industry.

Things which burned EA and endangered their reputation and the ceo's job...

-Failure of SPORE as a franchise
-SWTOR going f2p
-Dead Space 3 no horror and added dlc edition
-Medal of Honor failed reboot
-Sim City tiny city and online yet unable to play at all for £42.99+ edition
-Sims 3 sim store
-Sims facebook
-Sim city facebook
-Simpsons tapped out mobile game
-Real Racing 3 pay to win... pay to do pretty much ANYTHING edition.

Things to learn, not just for EA but as an industry? Less emphasis on mobile games. Less emphasis on pay to win games. Stop dlc and put out better value games. Keep in what made said series successful. Stop relying on FIFA. Less sequelitis more innovation. Deliver on promises (Spore)

This is industry wide. Gigantic publishers (EA, Activision, Capcom) are far more guilty of this s**t than people like Sega, Konami, Koei, Zenimax, Namco...

None of this will happen, but it just seems to be the topics and ideas which people are against when I'm on boards and forums.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby rhyfel » 19 Mar 2013, 18:53

riccitiello achieved the essential job of reforming EA, you what? its greed that has got EA to where they are now pure and simple.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby tanukilou » 19 Mar 2013, 19:24

Brilliant point. They need someone who plays, enjoys and understands games in there. Otherwise all you can see is a product and nothing more, you're on the outside looking in. You don't get it. Would you want a vegan cooking your BBQ?
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby capsule_toy » 19 Mar 2013, 19:38

Exactly.

They, like Activision (like Bobby will EVER relinquish control to let it happen..) need to operate with an ethos of 'games for gamers, by gamers'. Not operate with a view for greed and only greed.

The more they please the people who BUY the products, the more customers they'll have, surely. Noone goes back to a place after a bad time, and those who they talk to, refrain from going there, nothing travels faster than bad news and nothing is louder than a disgruntled, dissatisfied customer.

I want old EA back. The one which took risks, the one which brought us Road Rash, James Pond, Alice, proper Battlefield, Black & White, Burnout, Kessen, NFS Underground/original Most Wanted, Populous, Sim City 2000,3000,4, SSX Tricky, Mirror's Edge, Dead Space (as both were conceived and greenlit BEFORE JR took control)

Proper games, lengthy games in many cases, games for gamers by gamers, not games with half the content cut out and sold back to the consumer for a price, not games which require online and don't work without it, not games which are identikit visuals/identikit features/identikit gameplay....

No goddamn f2p games like Real Racing or social games like Sims/SimCity social, they just devalue the publisher, they're throwaway as the focus and resources from REAL games on console or PC is diverted to developing things which fleece money out of people, and time, can anyone REALLY say they've had a great time playing a Facebook style game on browser or phone?

You monetize games and gameplay by making games people want to play and talk about and recommend to others, not by giving away a substandard piece of software which covertly (and more so now - overtly) demands money off you so much that in the end to get a game equivalent to a full price one you've paid ten times the amount of cash in micro transactions.
Last edited by capsule_toy on 19 Mar 2013, 19:43, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby the688 » 19 Mar 2013, 19:43

To me, EA has "failed" because they seem to always choose the "easy money" over integrity towards their customers.

If they see half a chance to introduce some half-brain scheme no doubt thought up at some huge conference table by someone who has had way to much fancy Starbucks coffee, and uses far to many "clever" buzzwords, EA have always jumped at it like a zombie smelling fresh brains.

EA has never tried to be the gamer (and thereby customer)'s"friend" or ally, but always just seemed to go their own way - not guided by what the fans want, not guided by some sort of "mission" to deliver something new or excellent. They've just driven about buying every small developer they could find, and turned someone's little "heart and soul" project into a marketing-BS-behemoth while adeptly stripping it of any soul, of any "uniqueness".

EA, to me, stands out as those guys who will always slap you in the face, if it made them think they'd earn four extra cents per unit shipped. The only "great" things that we know EA for, is not on their own merit. The excellent games that they put their horrible animated EA-logos on, aren't made by EA, but were already successes, that EA simply bought to cash in on. Not to develop - but to suck every dollar out of. Just like their EA-sports series. A new game every year. Not much improvement - but you have to buy the new one if you want to play online. WHAT?! I

I remember back when Westwood Studios (legendary company behind massive RPG-titles in the Dungeons and Dragons-series, way back in Amiga days - also the creators of the Dune RTS-series) suddenly went into the hands of EA (via Virgin, admittedly, but that's beside the point). Every single gamer I knew went: "Oh crap. That's the end of our beloved Westwood" - and that's back in 1998!!)

EA has consistently been on auto-fire, shooting themselves in the foot. The only titles they have their names on, aren't their own creations. DICE - makers of Motorhead, Pinball Fantasies and the ancestor of the Battlefield-series "Codename Eagle", have had EA-stickers on their games for many years now. What have they been up to, since those days when they released a wide variety of excellent games? Well - since EA got in, they've done nothing but make Battlefield-series games. And now that BF4 is on the way, with BF3 still relevant (after BF2 stood proudly for many years!) - this franchise also looks like it's going to be another damned cash-cow.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby capsule_toy » 19 Mar 2013, 19:46

the688 wrote:To me, EA has "failed" because they seem to always choose the "easy money" over integrity towards their customers.

If they see half a chance to introduce some half-brain scheme no doubt thought up at some huge conference table by someone who has had way to much fancy Starbucks coffee, and uses far to many "clever" buzzwords, EA have always jumped at it like a zombie smelling fresh brains.

EA has never tried to be the gamer (and thereby customer)'s"friend" or ally, but always just seemed to go their own way - not guided by what the fans want, not guided by some sort of "mission" to deliver something new or excellent. They've just driven about buying every small developer they could find, and turned someone's little "heart and soul" project into a marketing-BS-behemoth while adeptly stripping it of any soul, of any "uniqueness".

EA, to me, stands out as those guys who will always slap you in the face, if it made them think they'd earn four extra cents per unit shipped. The only "great" things that we know EA for, is not on their own merit. The excellent games that they put their horrible animated EA-logos on, aren't made by EA, but were already successes, that EA simply bought to cash in on. Not to develop - but to suck every dollar out of. Just like their EA-sports series. A new game every year. Not much improvement - but you have to buy the new one if you want to play online. WHAT?! I

I remember back when Westwood Studios (legendary company behind massive RPG-titles in the Dungeons and Dragons-series, way back in Amiga days - also the creators of the Dune RTS-series) suddenly went into the hands of EA (via Virgin, admittedly, but that's beside the point). Every single gamer I knew went: "Oh crap. That's the end of our beloved Westwood" - and that's back in 1998!!)

EA has consistently been on auto-fire, shooting themselves in the foot. The only titles they have their names on, aren't their own creations. DICE - makers of Motorhead, Pinball Fantasies and the ancestor of the Battlefield-series "Codename Eagle", have had EA-stickers on their games for many years now. What have they been up to, since those days when they released a wide variety of excellent games? Well - since EA got in, they've done nothing but make Battlefield-series games. And now that BF4 is on the way, with BF3 still relevant (after BF2 stood proudly for many years!) - this franchise also looks like it's going to be another damned cash-cow.


Well said, I'd have said exactly this myself in addition to my rambling but I didn't want to write an essay noone would read XD
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby Jon Ahmad » 19 Mar 2013, 20:17

"A gamer at heart" Yeah, that'll be the day. :roll:
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby Malmo » 19 Mar 2013, 20:26

With regards to EA I can say only one thing, It is far easier to gain a reputation than lose one.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby slothfull9 » 19 Mar 2013, 20:38

Malmo wrote:With regards to EA I can say only one thing, It is far easier to gain a reputation than lose one.


Surely that's the wrong way round?

If EA really returned to its roots it would be doing more original games, like Archon and M.U.L.U. :D
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby ginge51 » 19 Mar 2013, 21:15

Stop moaning at ea if you dont want or like there games dont buy them simples.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby richomack360 » 19 Mar 2013, 21:25

ginge51 wrote:Stop moaning at ea if you dont want or like there games dont buy them simples.


Unhappy customers are allowed to be vocal - if everyone who disliked or had a gripe with a brand stayed silent then how would the brand know when its delivered a poor product ?
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby Malmo » 19 Mar 2013, 21:42

slothfull9 wrote:
Malmo wrote:With regards to EA I can say only one thing, It is far easier to gain a reputation than lose one.


Surely that's the wrong way round?

If EA really returned to its roots it would be doing more original games, like Archon and M.U.L.U. :D


Nope, that is the correct way. EA have acquired a very negative reputation among gamers, people so very easily hold one very bad thing against someone or something, and EA have managed to do something bad an awful lot. They can make all the promises and good deeds they like, they're going to struggle to lose their bad reputation either way.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby Dalaeck » 19 Mar 2013, 21:55

I remember EA as a stupid sports game company, much like I remember Activision as a bad movie game spinoff company. I think it would be fantastic if they returned to their roots and never touched another game outside of those genres again.
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby Taus » 19 Mar 2013, 22:24

capsule_toy wrote:John Riccitiello out as CEO of EA. Good. Maybe now someone has the chance to come in and shake things up. Putting a stop to the micro transaction trend which (as everyone has realised) is f**king KILLING the industry.

Things which burned EA and endangered their reputation and the ceo's job...

Things to learn, not just for EA but as an industry? Less emphasis on mobile games. Less emphasis on pay to win games. Stop dlc and put out better value games. Keep in what made said series successful. Stop relying on FIFA. Less sequelitis more innovation. Deliver on promises (Spore)

This is industry wide. Gigantic publishers (EA, Activision, Capcom) are far more guilty of this s**t than people like Sega, Konami, Koei, Zenimax, Namco...

None of this will happen, but it just seems to be the topics and ideas which people are against when I'm on boards and forums.


What a lot of bullshit, you're about right in the "essay that no one will read" comment

Clearly you would have EA as some hokey bedroom developers that do it for for the love of coding

Half the things you mentioned are, as Rob wrote, the heavy lifting that was required, aka good business decisions. What's wrong with being a multi platform dev? Right on they should be making mobile games!

What's wrong with DLC? As long as its good I'm up for it. For example the Battlefield 3 DLC has been awesome, Close Quarters - brilliant, End Game - brilliant

They've gone wrong for sure, hence the man has lost his job, but under JR they got better as well, new IPs etc

Your puritanical critique can just as well be leveled at Bungie & Valve

Shock, horror, surely not Valve! They're just a bunch of gaming techno pixies who exist to make us happy. No, they're a business, just as like EA, who punt out s**t DLCs (sometimes), sequels & kill off used games
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Re: Why EA must return to its roots

Postby Down with robots » 19 Mar 2013, 22:36

richomack360 wrote:
ginge51 wrote:Stop moaning at ea if you dont want or like there games dont buy them simples.


Unhappy customers are allowed to be vocal - if everyone who disliked or had a gripe with a brand stayed silent then how would the brand know when its delivered a poor product ?



Furthermore, any company with a half decent business plan would see customer feedback as vitally important, knowing what the consumers think is pretty much the most important thing there is to know in any industry.
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