Free-lance video game writer Julian Murdoch posted an article on gaming network 1UP
about the New EA, in which he illustrates how gaming publisher Electronic Arts
under the lead of its new(ish) CEO John Riccitiello is trying to reinvent itself and protect innovation within the company by giving its developers a high degree of independence. The article also compares EA to Take-Two
, the publisher of the Civilization
games that EA
is currently trying to take over
As part of his story, Murdoch talked to Soren Johnson, lead designer of Civ3
, about his move
team last year and how he views the New EA:
I knew coming in that EA was thinking hard about how to generate new IP and new ideas. They didn't see the current model as being sustainable, and I was pretty excited about that. [...] It's kind of ironic, because I came to EA, but I think having a spirit of independence is definitely important.
Soren also comments on the buy-out
of his former studio Firaxis
in late 2005:
[Take-Two] saw us as 'the Civilization studio' as opposed to a studio that just had a high level of expertise in strategy, and was answering questions of what 'strategy' means for the industry.
He added how stifling this was:
You're never quite the same when you get taken over.
All in all Johnson is still skeptical whether EA's new approach will be successful, saying that plans are a lot easier to make than to implement:
Because innovation is hard.
You can read the full two-page article on 1UP
and comment about it in our forums