Just admit it. There’s been more than a handful of times where you’ve written EA off for their annual sequels. And unless you’re a die hard fan of Madden, Fifa, Need for Speed, The Sims and/or NBA Live (just to name a few) there hasn’t been much in the way of originality to pique your interest.
Well things seem to be changing, according to a recent piece in Variety on the publishing giant. Noting the big gains the company has made with releases of Army of Two, Boom Blox, Spore, Dead Space, and the upcoming Mirror’s Edge. There appears to be a new order of business for the company under new CEO John Riccitiello.
Case and point, Glen Schofield, the general manager over at EA’s flagship development studio in Redwood Shores, CA estimates that 50% of future development is going into original IPs.
Now when you look at the solid sales for games such as Army of Two, the critical acclaim that Dead Space is getting, and add the high anticipation gamers have for Mirrors Edge, it would appear that EA may have found a new groove.
But they aren’t just stopping there. The company is also looking into making their established properties better. Citing the rising costs to secure licensing rights to movie properties, as well as a need to redefine the company image to a broader landscape, Frank Gibeau, president of EA Games says they “found a few years ago that we had a set of problems where EA’s reputation became one of just doing sports games, sequels and licenses and the market was reacting to newer properties like ‘Grand Theft Auto’ and ‘Halo’.”
But, with EA’s new IPs getting so much attention and props, is there that possibility of a day coming along when we’ll see Boom Blox XX: Collector’s Edition? Will they be able to resist the urge? Let’s keep our collective fingers crossed and hope this new way of doing business pays off for the company, as it sure seems to be for the gamers.