Don’t we just love EA? Amazing EA moments…

Good motion, bad motion...

Either they’re doing all of this on purpose to get our attention, or EA just has that arrogant, eherm, charm that only a special few acquire. Most memorable WTF-EA-quote so far? Well, for me it is EA senior VP Glenn Entis asking people to improve motion physics during the Montreal Games Summit and making the tactical error of citing Final Fantasy (of all things) as an example of “bad motion” in games. In his words:

In Final Fantasy, the modelling fidelity was really better than the motion fidelity. In other words, when you looked at the models, they signalled an expectation to the audience that the motion couldn’t deliver upon.

This, right before he says that EA’s amazing attempt at achieving realism is Tiger Woods PGA Tour. His proof that the golf game is achieving realism? Tiger Woods couldn’t tell he was looking at CG. Yep. A certified “WTF-EA?” Moment right there.

Other recent WTF-EA moments include EA CEO Larry Probst saying that before, gamers were complaining, but now, after they’ve done some alterations, players are now happy about their microtransation-pay-for-simple-cheat-codes business model. In his words:

We did a better job on Need for Speed Carbon, and we’re not hearing those same kinds of complaints or negative feedback about that product. It’s generating a lot of money through microtransactions. So it’s a learning process, it’s iterative and we’ll get better about it as we go. Need for Speed is the first example of getting smarter about it.

He said this to Newsweek. Perhaps he actually meant the fact that they started to release free downloadable jerseys for Madden and NCAA Football, but to imply that all the complaints happened before the cheat-codes for money fiasco just is just plain… oh never mind.

Get the rest of the article after the Jump!

Good motion, bad motion...

Either they’re doing all of this on purpose to get our attention, or EA just has that arrogant, eherm, charm that only a special few acquire. Most memorable WTF-EA-quote so far? Well, for me it is EA senior VP Glenn Entis asking people to improve motion physics during the Montreal Games Summit and making the tactical error of citing Final Fantasy (of all things) as an example of “bad motion” in games. In his words:

In Final Fantasy, the modelling fidelity was really better than the motion fidelity. In other words, when you looked at the models, they signalled an expectation to the audience that the motion couldn’t deliver upon.

This, right before he says that EA’s amazing attempt at achieving realism is Tiger Woods PGA Tour. His proof that the golf game is achieving realism? Tiger Woods couldn’t tell he was looking at CG. Yep. A certified “WTF-EA?” Moment right there.

Other recent WTF-EA moments include EA CEO Larry Probst saying that before, gamers were complaining, but now, after they’ve done some alterations, players are now happy about their microtransation-pay-for-simple-cheat-codes business model. In his words:

We did a better job on Need for Speed Carbon, and we’re not hearing those same kinds of complaints or negative feedback about that product. It’s generating a lot of money through microtransactions. So it’s a learning process, it’s iterative and we’ll get better about it as we go. Need for Speed is the first example of getting smarter about it.

He said this to Newsweek. Perhaps he actually meant the fact that they started to release free downloadable jerseys for Madden and NCAA Football, but to imply that all the complaints happened before the cheat-codes for money fiasco just is just plain… oh never mind.

pay for cheats...

What other WTF-EA moments are there? Oh, yeah. Gears of War. Yep, they had something to say about the hottest and bloodiest Xbox 360 game this holiday season. Again, at the Montréal Games Summit, Alain Tascan, general manager for EA Montreal had this to say:

What is Gears of War? I mean Gears of War brings nothing in terms of innovation to the shooter… Like, zero.

Only two very brave UK-based journalists said, ‘You know what, Gears of War is a great game but it’s like what Quake was a few years ago.

Why are people loving it so much? It’s like added production value, incredible cutscenes and the best ever graphics ever. I’m sure it’s going to be a great success, I can’t wait to play it, but let’s face that graphics are still number one.

Umn, wait right there, sure the storyline and the setting is pretty much your standard stuff, isn’t the tweaked cover-system even the slightest bit innovative? And who is he to judge the “innovation” of a game he hasn’t played yet? He says it himself: “I can’t wait to play it…” Again, say it with me folks: “WTF-EA!!”

Blooooood

Despite their infamy due to their execs’ brain-seizing quotable-quotes, Electronics Arts at the very least, knows their way around delicate matters. For example, when faced with a lawsuit from their very own graphic artists that alleges that EA owes the artists mucho amounts overtime pay, they handle the situation with finesse and they opt to pay off the disgruntled workers. The settlement was in the millions.

Moreover, despite their already sour rep among gamers, money-smart folks still think they’re bankable. I mean, just recently Pacific Crest Securities analyst Evan Wilson told investors that even if the EA brand is “tarnished” due to amazingly bad reviews of their recent games, the company is still worth betting money on, even calling it “the marquee developer and publisher of video games.” And you all know how wonderful Superman Returns is right? Oh, and Wilson, despite is belief that EA is still bankable, is also wondering about “excessive employee turnover” and how it is lowering the average experience level at the company.

Amusing that back in May, EA told investors that it was “prioritizing game quality higher than making that date” and so delayed the release of the Superman Returns game to coincide with the movie’s release date on DVD.

A good return?

So what’s what’s EA doing to win gamers back? They go acquire another company of course! They just got Headgate Studios and tasked them to develop solely for the Wii.

Not only that, in a recent interview, Glenn Entis says that they really really want to make EA one of the cool kids again. He says:

There are always risks in business, but it may be a bigger risk not to develop new intellectual property. Just to be clear, we’re not moving away from the old business model. The licensed properties we build, we love those titles, we have great relationships with the license holders.

What we’re saying is we also need to aggressively supplement that with original titles. What people are seeing as a change from EA is not a completely new direction. We’re taking something we’ve always done, which is to create new titles, but we’re saying we really want to pick up the pace now, we want to be more energetic at that – and we’re willing to take more creative risks to do that.

So they’re going to make more original games. They’re going to make their original games better. They’re going to try their best to win us back. They’re going to try to get Sony’s handheld to talk to its bigger next gen cousin. They’re going to make amazing original games for the Wii, for the Xbox 360, and for the PS3… but not the PSP. Larry Probst:

It’s more likely that we would target platforms like the PS3, Xbox 360 or Nintendo Wii if we had an original in mind. Our strategy on PSP has typically been to take the franchises that we build on other platforms and exploit them on the PSP.

WTF! Don’t you just love EA?

Well, if they’re serious about being “cool” again, they’ve got a lot of work ahead of them. They better thank their gods that analysts say that their still a “marquee developer and publisher.”

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published.