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EA Denies Layoff Rumor

An unconfirmed rumor on Startup Grind states between 500 and 1000 layoffs will hit Electronic Arts as soon as this week. They have a list of factors leading to this, including general business downturns, and specific recent aspects of this like disappointing sales of Battlefield 3 and Star Wars: The Old Republic, and the expensive incremental marketing campaigns attempting to boost both games after launch. There's a follow-up to this on Develop denying this. "There are no lay-offs as such, we always have projects growing and morphing," reads a statement they received from EA, which also adds: "at any given time there are new people coming in and others leaving," but that the company "is growing and hiring, building teams to support the growing demand for digital games and services."

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48. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 18, 2012, 08:01 Verno
 
Orogogus wrote on Apr 17, 2012, 19:58:
40M Steam (Jan 2012) and 9M Origin (Feb, PC Gamer), apparently. They're doing better than I would have thought, honestly, and large enough that I have doubts about whether the impulse buyers are such a significant factor. I'm sure it would for low priced indie games, but not so much for full priced games. And people seem willing to sign up for GOG, and of course Battle.net is probably bigger than Steam.

Those Origin figures are bloated, they include all free web based EA accounts and one time registrations. Valve only uses the last year of activity for theirs IIRC. GOG is a whole different market and Blizzard's ecosystem is probably heavily rooted in WoW/D2 accounts more than anything else.

Steam is the only platform that really has a thriving, active user base with a wide variety of consumer types represented and actually buying a lot of stuff. I'm not saying Origin won't get there, they've done a lot in a short period of time but its important to remember they are a rebranding and have been inflating their stats for earnings calls with shareholders.

The client is also a mediocre piece of shit but thats neither here nor there. I'm still waiting for someone do a proper DD client with a UI that isn't a disaster.
 
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47. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 17, 2012, 19:58 Orogogus
 
Verno wrote on Apr 17, 2012, 09:55:
I don't buy the argument that they make more money per sale and that somehow eclipses all Steam sales. Steam has something absurd like 35ish million active accounts last time I checked. Just even the impulse buys on a platform that large would likely dwarf first run sales on Origin. They are quite likely missing out on a lot of money to build out the Origin platform but I'm not sure they understand quite what they're up against - both their own negative reputation and consumers desire to use as few platforms as possible.

40M Steam (Jan 2012) and 9M Origin (Feb, PC Gamer), apparently. They're doing better than I would have thought, honestly, and large enough that I have doubts about whether the impulse buyers are such a significant factor. I'm sure it would for low priced indie games, but not so much for full priced games. And people seem willing to sign up for GOG, and of course Battle.net is probably bigger than Steam.
 
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46. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 17, 2012, 11:51 Creston
 
Verno wrote on Apr 17, 2012, 09:55:
I don't buy the argument that they make more money per sale and that somehow eclipses all Steam sales. Steam has something absurd like 35ish million active accounts last time I checked. Just even the impulse buys on a platform that large would likely dwarf first run sales on Origin. They are quite likely missing out on a lot of money to build out the Origin platform but I'm not sure they understand quite what they're up against - both their own negative reputation and consumers desire to use as few platforms as possible.

I'm sure they understand, but they're probably arrogant enough to believe they can force people into using Origin for everything and anything and that eventually those people will just use Origin like they do Steam.

I think they are grievously mistaken, but I guess time will tell. They got a lot of people to adopt it for BF3 and ME3, but they have nothing on the horizon that's going to create brand loyalty to Origin.

All that said, so far I've had few issues with Origin. It certainly launches games far, FAR quicker than Steam does. Steam's bullshit "Preparing to launch game XX" window that sits there for a minute or longer at times is really irritating.

But if given the choice, I'd buy a game on Steam every single time over buying it on Origin.

Creston
 
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45. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 17, 2012, 09:55 Verno
 
I don't buy the argument that they make more money per sale and that somehow eclipses all Steam sales. Steam has something absurd like 35ish million active accounts last time I checked. Just even the impulse buys on a platform that large would likely dwarf first run sales on Origin. They are quite likely missing out on a lot of money to build out the Origin platform but I'm not sure they understand quite what they're up against - both their own negative reputation and consumers desire to use as few platforms as possible.  
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44. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 17, 2012, 01:28 CJ_Parker
 
Turglar wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 21:16:
And there is a fucking popup telling you your points were reset when you log in.

No there isn't, you n00b. Why is it always people that don't even play the game that feel an urge to reply to shit they know nothing about? *sigh*
 
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43. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 17, 2012, 00:05 Steele Johnson
 
I can believe the rumor. A lot of money went into the development of their Star Wars mmo even though everyone and their f'n grandmother knew that the mmo genre bubble had already burst, and limiting their online sales of their latest games to the Origin spyware platform.

What did they expect? Clueless execs with no common sense.
 
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42. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 22:35 mag
 
I was a huge fan of BF1942 and BF2, and I was very excited for BF3, but every thing I heard about it made me want it less. So. Yup. Lost my sale. Still haven't gotten it.  
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41. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 21:47 NKD
 
CJ_Parker wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 19:12:
Teddy wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 18:44:
You mean like in the extensive list of patch change notes that were listed clearly in the launcher when you were downloading and installing the patch?

You clearly haven't even played the game. For the patch notes to show up you have to specifically click on a link in the launcher. They aren't just displayed while you download the patch.
And I have many better things to do than wade through patch notes. Good customer service = notify the player of really important changes (like a full respec) via an in-game pop-up or broadcast message the first time the player logs in after the change. Simple as that.
But hey, feel free to suck up the shitty treatment while paying $15/month for it. In the meantime I'll have some standards.


You had to click a button, oh my god! I feel so badly for you. It must have been an arduous process clicking 'Patch Notes' and scrolling down to your class.

I hate this generation of "PLEASE HOLD MY HAND" gamers. Execute the lot of em.

Cutter wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 13:51:
NKD wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 12:52:
Cutter wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 12:09:

Good products and services sell themselves.

If only that were true. Gaming is full of titles that were very good but never got the attention they deserved, and consequently sold like shit, and even sunk their studio.

It is true. Advertising can certainly help, but by the same token, all the advertising in the world will little help a terrible product or service. I also noticed you changed you sig from the quote I made that was spot on. Damn, it's not easy being right most of time.

I dunno man. There are a lot of great games that did not save their respective studios from being canned. Meanwhile there are complete piles of shit that sell millions of copies.

Unless you're making a low budget title for a niche audience, you're forced to spend quite a bit on marketing just to make sure people know your title exists. It's a constant game of one upping the other guy. People only have so much money to spend, and very few of those people are smart enough to look behind the facade of marketing. That's why I think a return to the roots of lower budget games is essential. The high budget game, 99% of the time, is by necessity going to be a marketing-driven overly-compromised mess.

As to the sig, yeah I was pretty sure we were all aware of SWTOR's failings by now, and I think my current sig makes a more salient point. More and more I see people around here crying about publisher A or developer B and then in the very next thread admitting to buying their titles.

This comment was edited on Apr 16, 2012, 22:01.
 
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If you don't like where gaming is heading, stop giving your money to the people who are taking it in that direction.
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40. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 21:16 Turglar
 
LOL are you really bitching about a free respec? Oh no its so hard to spend 60 seconds clicking on my talent icons again, boo fucking hoo. And there is a fucking popup telling you your points were reset when you log in. Of all the shit that went down in 1.2 complaining about this make you look like a fucking moron.  
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39. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 20:22 MisterBenn
 
Cutter wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 13:51:
I also noticed you changed you sig from the quote I made that was spot on.

I noticed that as well! I was wondering how that would turn out...
 
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38. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 19:29 Closed Betas
 
Teddy wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 18:47:
ASeven wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 15:48:
Since TOR was at least $100M in costs if not more (That ealuser's blog suddenly becomes even more reliable, he was spot on on TOR) like $300M, such a failure will hurt EA one way or another. You can't shrug off $300M as if they were nothing.


As much as I want them to sink and as fast as possible, i do recall them pulling in $587 million in profits some 10 years ago, and this is after they build an entire adventure/strategy game that they yanked off the market after its completion due to the game calling you at your home and other strange things... That was pure profit. and 10 years ago.. Trust me when i say they aren't losing money.

 
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37. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 19:26 Bhruic
 
Tim Collins wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 14:37:
The new star wars patch is a complete disaster, its so bad they gave everybody a free month. I immediately unsubbed after I found out they converted the gear in game but only for people who were stupid enough to NOT modify it pre 1.2...that combined with the fact they ninja patched and only gave 24 hour notice (I didnt login that day) thus not giving people time to prepare for 1.2 by selling/trading in items that no longer had any value.

The new warzone sucks, the legacy system is useless and really bioware has screwed up so badly on this game they forced me to quit because I REFUSE to promote the careers of people that, by their actions, have no clue what their doing.

You're joking, right? Or by "24 hour notice", do you mean besides the fact it was announced on the forum a week ahead of schedule?

Not to mention they didn't give "everyone" a free month, they only (originally) gave people with a level 50 a free month - they've since modified that to anyone with legacy level 6.
 
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36. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 19:12 CJ_Parker
 
Teddy wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 18:44:
You mean like in the extensive list of patch change notes that were listed clearly in the launcher when you were downloading and installing the patch?

You clearly haven't even played the game. For the patch notes to show up you have to specifically click on a link in the launcher. They aren't just displayed while you download the patch.
And I have many better things to do than wade through patch notes. Good customer service = notify the player of really important changes (like a full respec) via an in-game pop-up or broadcast message the first time the player logs in after the change. Simple as that.
But hey, feel free to suck up the shitty treatment while paying $15/month for it. In the meantime I'll have some standards.

 
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35. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 19:05 Saboth
 
"disappointing sales of Battlefield 3 and Star Wars: The Old Republic". I skipped BF3 due to Origin requirement. It's a shame, because I wanted it, and would have bought it otherwise. I did pick up SWTOR, and it was a major letdown. It shipped with many unfinished things in it, and they haven't even been addressed in the most recent patch (although it helped). EA has nowhere to look but the mirror if they wanted to know why sales are disappointing. They can try and play down the "Worst Company in America" title and scoff at it if they want, but there's many many good reasons they earned that title.  
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34. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 18:47 Teddy
 
ASeven wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 15:48:
Suddenly all those guys saying TOR could sink EA aren't that silly anymore. Since TOR was at least $100M in costs if not more (That ealuser's blog suddenly becomes even more reliable, he was spot on on TOR) like $300M, such a failure will hurt EA one way or another. You can't shrug off $300M as if they were nothing.

Wonder if this may mean Bioware will join that huge graveyard of devs EA killed after milking them to death. It won't be good for them this failure that's for sure.

By all those guys, you mean you? No, it still sounds "silly" to use your words. I wouldn't be as nice.
 
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33. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 18:44 Closed Betas
 
Then it all crashes down
And you break your crown
And you point your finger
But there's no one around
Just want one thing
Just to play the king
But the castle's crumbled
And you're left with just a name

EA, IMO is soon to be crowned King Nothing, and I will sit back and enjoy it as it bleeds and burns to the ground for the exploitation they have brought, the fun they have purposely removed from games, just to sell more following years..

You get what you deserve EA.. and sucking dirt seems about right
 
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32. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 18:44 Teddy
 
CJ_Parker wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 15:07:
Tim Collins wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 14:37:
The new star wars patch is a complete disaster, its so bad they gave everybody a free month.

Yep. They have a strange way of patching and communicating changes. I haven't played since January and just hopped on real quick to check what 1.2 was like last week only to find all of my skill points refunded for a respec. WTF?!?
How about a little notification about why this was deemed necessary? Maybe give a quick outline of any underlying class changes in the notice so I know what this is all about.
Or am I supposed to dig up the info on their forums (that are down for "maintenance" every time a shitstorm brews on the horizon)? Fuck off. I'm not digging up anything. You fuck with my build, you explain why.

What a bunch of hacks and amateurs...


You mean like in the extensive list of patch change notes that were listed clearly in the launcher when you were downloading and installing the patch? It mentioned that several classes had their points refunded, and mentioned in each specific class change notes which ones were refunded along with all of the talent changes themselves. But hey, don't let the facts get in the way of your ranting.
 
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31. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 18:24 Julio
 
You know, I should feel bad, but hopefully the rumor is true. Please start with the guys at Bioware that made the decisions on DA2. Then the people who came up with Origin.

But of course they'll keep those people around, and EA will continue to swirl around the toilet bowl.
 
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30. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 17:59 jdreyer
 
eRe4s3r wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 13:17:
BF3 sold over 3 million units on all platforms combined and apparently had the worst sales of any BF game on PC. Maybe the Origin link really hurt it on PC particularly with BC2 being on steam. EA really shot themselves in the foot with that stupidity.

Origin, and it not being on Steam were the biggest factors for me.

I still don't own it.

UPDATE: Oh, yeah, and no skimishes with bots filling in the missing players so I can play matches with just my friends.

This comment was edited on Apr 16, 2012, 18:42.
 
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29. Re: EA Denies Layoff Rumor Apr 16, 2012, 16:25 Beamer
 
Creston wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 16:01:
ASeven wrote on Apr 16, 2012, 14:56:
It just shows how fucked up the current publisher's business models are if almost 13 millions sales is considered a disappointment and it either didn't cover the costs of the game or didn't cover the expectations of the stockholders and investors.

I think they probably mean that the PC sales were disappointing. Not even EA is a big enough bunch of cockbags to say that 10+ million is "disappointing" sales.

Creston

They were hoping to get some of the CoD action, so I'm sure they were hoping for closer to 15 at the very least, if not 18.

Like Highlander, though, there can only be one, and while they took a chunk of CoDs units they weren't the right game to dethrone CoD. And why would they be? CoD will not be dethroned by a modern warfare game, as people are just in the habit of turning to CoD for modern warfare. Doing the same basic thing somewhat better isn't enough.

CoD will be dethroned by something totally unique and out of left field, much like CoD4 originally was. I have no idea what that next thing will be, though. Mainstream has kind of turned away from the fantasy scifi and turned towards realistic. Not sure where we can really go with this from an FPS standpoint.
 
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