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EA says sequels are boring, skies open

EA says sequels are boring, skies open

EA is trying to move away from sequels and movie spin-offs in favour of original content and new IPs.

EA has a mixed reputation in the games industry, it's fair to say. Sure, on the one hand it publishes good games like Command and Conquer 3 but, on the other hand, it publishes bad games like Harry Potter and the Order of The Phoenix, which is crappy on every platform.

Still, the CEO of EA, a man called John Riccitiello (but whom we shall call simply John to avoid massacring his surname), still has a few ideas about the future of gaming. A man with his finger on the pulse, John recently told The Wall Street Journal what some of the problems with the games industry are:

"For the most part, the industry has been rinse-and-repeat. There's been lots of product that looked like last year's product, that looked a lot like the year before."

Yep, in hypocrisy so massive that you'd need climbing shoes and a pack mule to get past it, the CEO of EA reckons that there are just too many sequels on the computer game market. This from the man whose company will soon be bringing us a re-release of Earthworm Jim on the PlayStation Portable!

John's trying though and is obviously trying to evidence how EA is trying to move away from repeated movie licenses and Madden games towards more original games and IPs.

The problem is; though EA is supposedly moving in the direction of more original games it's still way too early for them to be bigging itself up in this manner - especially to the educated kind of gamer who might read the Wall Street Journal.

What do you reckon to the future of gaming? Do we need less sequels or just better sequels? Catch the first part of the discussion in the forums. The second part will be available next year, complete with a sneak peek at the third instalment.

27 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
knuck 11th July 2007, 18:16 Quote
haha... he should stick to making games and not claiming stupid things like that

It is partially true, but only for some low quality games. I mean we are all happy when a new Gran Turismo is released,right ?
will. 11th July 2007, 18:17 Quote
Does this mean no more Sims games? Or are they just pretending...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghys
haha... he should stick to making games and not claiming stupid things like that

It is partially true, but only for some low quality games. I mean we are all happy when a new Gran Turismo is released,right ?

Not particularly... The last three have just been a small update in graphics and that's it. Same dodgy AI and same tracks.

If they don't give cars damage, add an on-line mode and allow more than 6 cars at a time I wont even consider the next one.
knuck 11th July 2007, 18:35 Quote
of course it's easy to say that now that great racing games came out, but back when GT2 and 3 were released, i was freaking out, really !

only the fourth one was kinda disapointing
Amon 11th July 2007, 18:45 Quote
GT4 wasn't a very big improvement to the general audience. For enthusiasts, it was very satisfying. GT3 was a big step forward.

AI isn't an issue if you're using a competitive car against them

Sequels are a great idea, except the idealists behind them tend to lose touch with innovation. Homeworld 2 is the first PC sequel I an think of that did it mostly right.
C-Sniper 11th July 2007, 18:47 Quote
hopefully they will redo the battlefield series. if they are trying to get a away from sequels.
FIBRE+ 11th July 2007, 19:27 Quote
Talk about contradiction!. Sequals are boring when they make it just to squeeze some more money out of us... Battlefield 2142 etc

I hate big companies like this, they spend soo much money paying people in suits to work out what the public want, but when we try and tell them they dont wanna know :(

Tim, I think you and the rest of the team need to combine your powers Captain Planet style and get some interviews with these idiot big wig's and probe them with questions from us forumites :)
Amon 11th July 2007, 19:29 Quote
^ Agreed.

Demonstrate to the EA CEOs what http://img520.imageshack.us/img520/1750/teabag2ju4tf5.gif means for wasting our money and time.
pendragon 11th July 2007, 19:49 Quote
Video game sequels are great.... provided they're done well of course ;)
adam197 11th July 2007, 19:51 Quote
LMAO!

... that is all ...
Bungle 11th July 2007, 20:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amon

Sequels are a great idea, except the idealists behind them tend to lose touch with innovation. Homeworld 2 is the first PC sequel I an think of that did it mostly right.
Diablo 2? Warcraft 2? Quake 2? Age Of empires 2? Masters Of Orion 2, These are just a few of my favourite things(cue Julie Andrews). Most sequels I've come across did very well in my book. It's the attack of the clones that will bring us down. Time to realise Mr Developer, there is no spoon.;)
Da Dego 11th July 2007, 21:54 Quote
NEWS FLASH: Head of company that releases some of the most pointless "serial" games year after year states that sequels are boring. Stock crashes as investors realise that he has no new ideas. :p

If this came from someone else, maybe with industry clout other than heading the game company most known for treating the public like baby seals needing to be clubbed, I might listen. As it stands, this is like Sony saying "we think that consoles are overpriced and offer too many unjustifiable addons."
DougEdey 11th July 2007, 21:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by FIBRE+

Tim, I think you and the rest of the team need to combine your powers Captain Planet style and get some interviews with these idiot big wig's and probe them with questions from us forumites :)

Tim Smalley, He's our hero, gonna take crap games down to zero!
SNIPERMikeUK 11th July 2007, 22:15 Quote
EA are saying sequels are boring now!!!, gamers must have been saying this for years, only once in a while have EA actually listened to what the gamer wants....'Endless' movie tie in tripe yeah thats original!! 'Endless' yearly updates of sport games, the 'Agony' of another game with a new bit of spit and shine every year, that costs another £40-50 at the end of it, or some new crap for the sims, whichever way u look at it EA are evil (Fight Night series might be an exception but then that is not a yearly updated game, and it does'nt have enough depth to be all that).....

And the need for speed games, what the gamer has been crying out for since they started churning that crap out, was another good top notch Hot Pursuit....

Oh and!!!, Did I say I hate EA
Mankz 11th July 2007, 22:17 Quote
Would you call the GTA series a set of Sequels?

Most Sequels are good, HL2, Soldier of Fortune 2, Medieval Total War 2 ect. It seems that every sequel made by EA is bad, where as lots of other programmers comeup with good stuff.
steveo_mcg 11th July 2007, 22:22 Quote
Sequels are one thing, the endless "revamps" of old ip's grates muchly; madden, nhl, fifa .... oh look they are all EA. What is it with folk like this guy, are they so far removed from their company they don't know what they do or so far removed from their punter that they don't relies the public knows that they are talking ****!
DXR_13KE 11th July 2007, 22:50 Quote
hurra!!!! is this the end of the sims? and FIFA XX? and NHL XX? the world is gonna end!!!! :D
Bungle 11th July 2007, 23:19 Quote
Maybe they are feeling the backlash from this...
http://news.com.com/2100-1022-5457274-3.html
I've read quite a few articles on EA employee standards and it's not good. This is your wake up call John. Time to go to work.
Bladestorm 11th July 2007, 23:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXR_13KE
hurra!!!! is this the end of the sims? and FIFA XX? and NHL XX? the world is gonna end!!!! :D

The sims is now developed by EA Sims, not EA games ;p it got so big they split it off into a department all of its own .. so I doubt it will be stopped any time soon.
Neogumbercules 12th July 2007, 00:09 Quote
This is one of the reasons I like the Wii. Developers are pretty much forced to come up with something interesting, or they end up with that crappy FarCry port.
C-Sniper 12th July 2007, 10:34 Quote
I really think that the gaming industry could use a new game with a kick ass storyline like they use to make before graphics became the main focus. good example Half Life. then wait a year or 3 and release a new story , and repeat. (and maybe add a sequel here or there)
Xir 12th July 2007, 12:33 Quote
EA really focusses on sportsgames. And seeing any sportsgame updated every year without much changing but players shirtsponsors, yeah, I guess even EA can see that that is boring.

Of course, in sportsgames it is difficult to innovate, the game is the game.

On other sectors, FPS or Racing, this also applies, but limited. There is no need to update a FPS every year because in real life the teamsponsor changes. *g*

In FPS the sequels often offer a big difference in Gameplay, (most are combinations though):

FPS with Horror (FEAR)
FPS with Racing (GTA)
FPS with Roleplaying (Vampires / Thief)

The really big change is the level of interaction has risen. First you'd be happy if your FPS person could push a button, then conversation entered, then vehicles entered, now you've to worry about squad tactics befor running in somewhere.
Not to mention the complexity of a nearly fully interactive world. (Oblivion)


Hmmm, do EA make any roleplaying (Oblivion-like) or adventure games?

Just some random thoughts :D

Xir
mikeuk2004 12th July 2007, 13:26 Quote
Isnt it ironic coming from a company that probably has more sequals than any other company alone in just to sport field alone.
[USRF]Obiwan 12th July 2007, 15:00 Quote
And still EA manage to release:

For XX = 01 to 2000

FIFAXX
FIFASTREETXX
NBAXX
NBASTREETXX
NASCARXX
NFLXX
NHLXX
SIMSXX
NCAAXX
TIGERWOODSXX
NFSXX

Next


Yeah right....
Mankz 12th July 2007, 15:07 Quote
Thinks like Fifa and NFL are basically the same game, but updated, where as NFS:U and U2 were really very different, I don't think they can be classd as a sequeal the way Fifa ect. is.
Bungle 12th July 2007, 18:14 Quote
The thing is, when you look at it, we are partly the problem here. That's right YOU mr Joe Public. Everytime we dip our hands into our wallets and hand over cash for these titles, we are basically asking for more of the same. Guess what, that's what they did. Same as the music industry, they gave us manufactured "talent" and we lapped it up like a thirsty kitten. Gotta remember, we are the driving force behind what direction these companies take with developement. "The needs of the many out weight the needs of the few". Vote with your wallets on what you want produced.;)
Fod 12th July 2007, 18:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by [USRF]Obiwan
And still EA manage to release:

For XX = 01 to 2000

FIFAXX
[snip]
NFSXX

Next


Yeah right....

EA are a business. they will take the profitable path, be it at the cost of creative output, just like any other business. It's easy to look at the games industry with some magical fanboy spectacles where every new title released is new IP, pushes the boundaries in new and unexpected ways, and goes on to sell millions. Fact is, those games ARE released occasionally, and 80% of the time they tank. Clover made Okami and God Hand, two outstanding, and original games. Where are they now? they shut down. Same story many many times over. Doing something different --> taking a risk.
let it not be said, however, that EA are not innovating. some of the stuff they have been putting out and announcing recently, pretty awesome :)
Faulk_Wulf 12th July 2007, 18:18 Quote
Final Fantasy, Need For Speed, Unreal Tournament, Quake.

not all sequals are bad,
more its the serials that are bad.

Its not even that the sports games are "same old same old"
its that its "same flaws same flaws" with few bug fixes in between.

Sequels, if given the love of the original, can be amazing or innovative.

Resident Evil? Two and Four are often highlighted as excellent games.

Just my 2c.
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