EA: on single player, post-pandemic and independence

In the first half of 2010, there was a feeling that single-player games were becoming obsolete. As most franchises bring multiplayer elements, companies have bet on online matches to increase revenue, and EA was among them.

However, even if these portions were shoved down the consumer’s throat, the market would regulate itself, and for many publishers, the expectation of “easy money” turned out to be a huge investment thrown away. When multiple multiplayers fail, other options will need to be sought, and one of them, trust me, is to go back to betting on single player campaigns.

Credit: Disclosure/Respawn Entertainment

EA himself understood this Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, a game that surprised many with its exciting story and addictive gameplay. A result? Success will influence the company’s approach to the single player.

At least that’s what the publisher’s CEO said during an investor event. When asked how such games fit into the company’s policy, Andrew Wilson replied:

“Our players, in general, have these basic motivations — inspiration, escape, social connection, competition, self-improvement, creation — that unite us as players. And creating worlds, building characters, and telling stories is essential to fulfilling some of those motifs.

When we think about our portfolio and when we think about building it, we really think about two main vectors. Um, how can we tell amazing stories? Second, how can we create amazing online communities? So how can we combine these two things?

When we think about single player games, we think that they are a very important part of the portfolio that we provide to fulfill these motivations. […] And we’re trying to complement that with online games, new multiplayer games, and new single player games.

Please EA give us a new Black & White! (Credit: Disclosure/EA)

But if Wilson’s words didn’t make it clear, EA’s CFO Chris Suh explained that the company isn’t abandoning games as a service — which, frankly, isn’t surprising. According to the executive, almost three-quarters of the publisher’s income today comes from this type of game, which they are certainly not ready to give up.

It might not be much, but for a company whose former president thought single-player had no future, it’s good to see EA looking at things differently today. And because it is a printing house that gives us such pearls Black and white, dead spaceseries Mass effect the and Dragon Age to eat to openWe just need to win.

EA is not for sale (or is it?)

With major acquisitions taking place in the industry in recent months and some giants rumored to be interested in taking over EA, shareholders are interested in the topic. Therefore, although the head of the publishing house said that he would not comment on the predictions, he did not completely rule out such a possibility.

“Our goal, and my goal as CEO of this company, is to always take care of our people, our players and our shareholders,” said Andrew Wilson. “If there’s a way we can do it differently than we do today, I’d certainly be open to that. But I can tell you that today we are very confident and excited about our future.”


Credit: Disclosure/EA

Again, no matter how difficult the CEO is, you can read his message between the lines. Although he proudly states that EA is currently “the world’s largest independent developer and publisher of interactive entertainment”, if the offer is good enough, they will surely sell.

The biggest challenge here will be finding a company with enough cash to cover what could turn out to be one of the biggest acquisitions in history. The first move would reportedly come from Comcast/NBCUniversal, but neither the values ​​nor the proposed merger appealed to the Electronic Arts crowd.

With that, several options remain, with Disney, Apple and Amazon noted as interested. With an estimated market value of US$36 billion, if any company wants to own one of the oldest companies in the gaming industry, it will have to shell out a lot of money.

COVID-19 and the gradual return to normalcy

EA Austin

EA Austin office (Credit: Disclosure/EA)

Like many companies in this industry, EA was also affected by the pandemic that started in 2020. Due to employees working from home, the launch of projects has been postponed, and even some games would suffer quality due to drastic changes in the environment. .work.

But according to COO Laura Miele, the talent of her teams has allowed them to adapt to the new era, allowing them to “get to a place that’s not only more efficient, but more creative.” This has allowed professionals to make progress in the pace and way of creating processes related to game creation.

However, even as employees are slowly returning to work locally, Electronic Arts has urged maintaining a “meaningful and productive environment for them and their creativity.” This includes allowing these people to choose where they live, and if they earn more money at home, they can continue to contribute there.

“People choose to work for companies with strong values ​​and morals, and compensation is really important, but people really want an emotional and personal connection to where they’re at,” Miele defended.

For a company that topped the list of the worst American companies to date, they’ve learned their lesson and it looks like they’re ready to change their image. But I’d like to hear from the other side of the story whether EA executives are really leading the publisher and its studios differently.

A source: eurogamer, GamesIndustry the and IGN

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