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BioWare on Autonomy

An interview on Eurogamer talks with BioWare co-founders Dr. Ray Muzyka and Dr. Greg Zeschuk, who respond to questions about their level of autonomy since being acquired by Electronic Arts, saying they have "huge autonomy" and that it "is not actually remotely true" that EA is running the show. "We're not being forced to do anything or told to do anything. We make the decisions. We take input," Zeschuk tells them. "It's just funny when people say that, because it's not actually remotely true." Here's a bit more:

"At the end of the day, we're responsible for the quality of the content and games we release, and we're committed to try and always take feedback really seriously from our fans and be humble about how we take it - use it to make the next games better," Ray Muzyka added.

"You're only as good as your next game, and that's the way we've always felt. That's still very much a philosophy at BioWare; quality in our products and delivering each game and exceeding expectations and always trying to delight and surprise our consumers. That's still what we try and do."

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24. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 15:22 dheer
 
"You're only as good as your next game, and that's the way we've always felt"
Whew. Good thing it's your next game and not your last since DA2 is a giant steaming mountain of shit.
 
Avatar 57008
 
I wonder if he reads them, or if it's just for show.
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23. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 12:40 avianflu
 
Muzyka is trying to be a good PR person for his own company and spin things after the crappy DA2.

But he totally fumbled the spin.
 
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22. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 08:56 Lobster
 
Thank you for clearing that up, BioWare.

So basically what you're saying is this is all your fault.
 
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21. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 08:55 Slashman
 
Well if what they are saying is actually true, then that's even more pathetic.

The over-saturation of DLC, the dumbing down of gameplay elements and the moving away from the things that made your reputation stellar in the first place. If this is all your doing, then you're an even bigger set of tools than I'd thought. If it wasn't EA, you have absolutely no defense against the things people have been saying.

The amusing part is that your original formula worked. It made you hugely successful. And DA:O proved that people weren't opposed to the old-school RPG elements that have always defined your games.

Contrary to what people may say, I'm fine with Mass Effect being the flagship console series for Bioware. Its still fun to play on PC and I'm not too concerned with it. But when you take the core of what made you a great developer and throw it away in favor of an 'awesome button', then I'm less inclined to trust you in any of your future releases.
 
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20. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 08:17 El Pit
 
Bioware: "And that's the gold master."
EA: "Ok, what shall we cut out for future DLCs?"
Bioware: "Errrh... Come again?"
EA: "The DLCs. For Origin."
Bioware: "No, we would like to release it like it is. And maybe do some DLCs later. And we would REALLY like to have it on Steam, too."
EA: "Ahahahahaha... Yeah, right. Your asses, the door, you know the drill."
Bioware: "Well, on the other hand..."
 
Consoles? I owned two: a Pong clone and an Atari 2600. And that's it.
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19. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 05:58 ibm
 
They once got off murder charges by using a Diminished responsibility defence so now they have to use the Dr as their title.  
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18. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 05:25 Julio
 
So Bioware is the reason why DA2 sucked? Either way, its irrelevant to me - Bioware has jumped the shark long ago.

If 'quality' = DA2, and taking 'feedback' means the recent Bioware comments about they think they made the right decisions with DA2...Bioware might as well switch to Facebook games.

On the positive side, upcoming indies like Project Zomboid look interesting.
 
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17. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 04:44 Eldaron Imotholin
 
Dragon Age 2 was absolutely horrendous. That game was so bad, if I think too long about it I end up chewing on pieces of breakfast coated in vomit.

Damn that game sucked so hard. Who the fuck wants to be a champion of some backwater shithole? The whole game was one big, boring and BAD sidequest. If not worse. And that whole frame narrative storytelling was beyong pathetic even though that's all they used in their meager attempts to sell their game through interviews. The Witcher 2 nailed that shit in the first chapter.

But... I haven't lost faith in Bioware yet. Sure, ME1 was awesome, ME2 had it's downsides and ME3 has all the bones in my body scream that it's gonna suck... but SW:ToR!! Man, that looks good. Really, really good.

Problem is that Bioware's customerbase aren't MMO players at heart. SW:ToR will get them a whole new kinda fanbase and in this way, too, old Bioware is dead and a new one will rise. Look somewhere else for good singleplayer RPGs in the future.
 
Avatar 15836
 
Playing: Skyrim, World of Warcraft.
Future: Dead Space 3.
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16. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 04:31 InBlack
 
Do these guys really have PHDs??  
Avatar 46994
 
I have a nifty blue line!
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15. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 02:57 Dev
 
They may think that because I doubt EA tries to control them much on specific creative matters.

Where I'm certain EA DOES try to control them on is things like:
Crazy amounts of DLC (of course EA as a publisher is going to push more DLC so they can get more money)
Crazy DRM (publishers almost always have a big say in this, sometimes the ONLY say in DRM. Remember when the DA1 authentication server went down and no one noticed it for like a week?)
Consolification (EA as a publisher is of course going to push having console titles instead of PC only, they can get far more money out of it, and they are probably not shy about pointing out that the consoles being the bigger audience need to have the games targeted towards them more than targeted to PC).

Taken together this is a HUGE effect in the game and its direction, even if EA doesn't specifically sit down and say "you can't have this weapon in the game its too complicated" or "you must put more boss battles in this game".
 
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14. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 02:32 Muscular Beaver
 
It started with Mass Effect. DA1 was in development back then, and was the last good game they made, however it also reeked of console already.
Dont get me wrong, ME1&2 were told pretty well, but the gameplay was horribly consolish and far too short (especially ME1). ME2, got dumbed down even more. Those games were nice slightly interactive movies, but nothing more.

For me Bioware is now just another random console developer.
 
Avatar 12928
 
Oh that is so lame... You will PAY for your use of inappropriate dialogue!
- Mojo Jojo
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13. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 01:59 ShakaUVM
 
Rattlehead wrote on Oct 3, 2011, 21:50:
Everything else from them have been great titles. Mass Effect 1 and 2 are some of the best space operas ever told and Dragon Age: Origins is probably one of my favorite RPGs ever. Jade Empire is another gem.
Jade Empire was a terrible game for a lot of reasons, DA2 was a terrible game for a lot of reasons, ME2 was a terrible game just for a few reasons (no itemization, no real character leveling).

I don't think they've released one good game since being bought by EA, in fact.
 
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12. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 01:55 saluk
 
Yeah, Dragon Age 2 is enough proof. Heck, I don't care if they are "autonomous" or not, from the looks of things the EA contamination has begun and has no sign of stopping.

They haven't made a truly great game since kotor. After that they have merely been good. Dragon Age was close, but then they blew it with DA2; mass effect was close, and then they blew that with ME2.

TOR looks fine for what it is, but I dont expect it to be a shining example that Bioware has retained their former glory.
 
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11. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 4, 2011, 01:37 Silicon Avatar
 
It's all good until you launch a turd, Bioware. Then you can kiss it goodbye. No company sells themselves to EA and continues to make good games for more than a few years.

 
Avatar 18037
 
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10. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 3, 2011, 23:45 Creston
 
FFS...

"We're not being forced to do anything or told to do anything. We make the decisions. We take input," Zeschuk tells them. "It's just funny when people say that, because it's not actually remotely true."

We're the ones that rushed Dragon Age 2 out the door, because we just really felt that making an inferior sequel in a year's time was the way to go. Especially since that's how we've ALWAYS made games! We always just put the minimum amount of content in and rush it out the door and then sell loads of tiny DLCs to squeeze every last fucking dollar out of the customer... oh... wait, erm. CUT!

"At the end of the day, we're responsible for the quality of the content and games we release, and we're committed to try and always take feedback really seriously from our fans and be humble about how we take it"

You know, like the humility we've shown after Dragon Age 2, where we basically said "If you don't like it, then you were just expecting too much! ANYTHING bad ANYONE perceives about this game is just mismanaged expectations!"

"You're only as good as your next game, and that's the way we've always felt. That's still very much a philosophy at BioWare; quality in our products and delivering each game and exceeding expectations and always trying to delight and surprise our consumers. That's still what we try and do."

Talk is fucking cheap, Muzyka. And the more you talk, the more you sound like a good little EA peon.

Mass Effect 3 is going to make reaffirm or break your entire reputation. I hope you guys realize that.

Creston
 
Avatar 15604
 
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9. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 3, 2011, 23:38 Acleacius
 
Rattlehead wrote on Oct 3, 2011, 21:50:
At least we could have attributed Biowares slide into mediocrity to that

What mediocrity? They have only released one less than stellar game in the last few years and that's Dragon Age 2.

Everything else from them have been great titles. Mass Effect 1 and 2 are some of the best space operas ever told and Dragon Age: Origins is probably one of my favorite RPGs ever. Jade Empire is another gem.

People are gonna hate on Old Republic because it's popular, but from what I played the beta it's a solid WoW clone with a few neat twists.
Let's hope your comments are in regard to story (i.e. opera) only, as the console game play is laughable. For starters the "ciffyb for bullshit" Forced Cover is on the level of the idiocy that is universal ammo.
 
The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders.That is easy.All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.It works the same way in any country.
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8. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 3, 2011, 22:17 The Half Elf
 
nin wrote on Oct 3, 2011, 21:22:

"You're only as good as your next game, and that's the way we've always felt..."


What about your last game?


Amen, I mean how can you possibly EVER say that with all the issues Dragon Age 2 has?

I use to think these were the 'good guys' but I really don't think it's EA that's doing it, it's just part of becoming that 'big' of a studio.
 
Avatar 12670
 
"I've never seen a feature like this before. It warms your ass. It's wonderful" -Walter Bishop
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7. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 3, 2011, 22:03 nin
 
Prez wrote on Oct 3, 2011, 21:58:
"We're not being forced to do anything or told to do anything. We make the decisions. We take input," Zeschuk tells them. "It's just funny when people say that, because it's not actually remotely true."

They say this knowing EA is listening to every word. What are they going to say? That EA are their evil overlords and forced them to release a Dragon Age sequel in a quarter of the development time of the original so they could milk the cash cow faster? In other words, the truth?


I doubt Ray or Greg care - I'm sure they got a huge check for their troubles.

 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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6. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 3, 2011, 21:58 Prez
 
"We're not being forced to do anything or told to do anything. We make the decisions. We take input," Zeschuk tells them. "It's just funny when people say that, because it's not actually remotely true."

They say this knowing EA is listening to every word. What are they going to say? That EA are their evil overlords and forced them to release a Dragon Age sequel in a quarter of the development time of the original so they could milk the cash cow faster? In other words, the truth?
 
Avatar 17185
 
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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5. Re: BioWare on Autonomy Oct 3, 2011, 21:55 Mashiki Amiketo
 
Rattlehead wrote on Oct 3, 2011, 21:50:
What mediocrity? They have only released one less than stellar game in the last few years and that's Dragon Age 2.
Apparently you haven't tried to deal with bioware in the last year since they've been bought out by EA. It's not just that single game, it's the entire projected image of bioware now.
 
--
"For every human problem,
there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
--H.L. Mencken
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