EA Lowers Outlook, Plans Cuts

This press release from Electronic Arts warns investors it is lowering its financial guidance for fiscal year 2009 due to lower than expected sales in North American and Europe. This is bad news for investors, and worse news for gamers and some EA employees, as the announcement also says EA "is continuing to pursue cost saving initiatives including a reduction of its product portfolio for fiscal year 2010 with additional associated headcount reductions and facility consolidations." Gamasutra reports on a related conference call where EA CEO John Riccitiello says the company's focus for the next year will be titles with the greatest "hit potential," and strong online features. Word is the sports label will likely remain unaffected and Riccitiello also specifically praised Spore, Dead Space and Warhammer, while expressing faith in Mirror's Edge, saying it: "was very strongly reviewed... we'll be looking at some issues around the design to make sure that strong IP is married with strong business. Many times, what happens with new IP is the first edition doesn't generate the units that subsequent editions could generate. In this particular year, the consumer might have been more reticent to take risks than they might otherwise be, and it was a very crowded holiday."
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Re: EA Lowers Outlook, Plans Cuts
Dec 10, 2008, 08:33
17.
Re: EA Lowers Outlook, Plans Cuts Dec 10, 2008, 08:33
Dec 10, 2008, 08:33
 
I don't know what all this Riccitiello bashing is about. Sure, being the head of the EA food chain he has to take responsibility for mishaps, but come on, the blame is squarely at the feet of some of those sanctimonious & egotistical pricks they've got working there. THEY are the ones who need to get fired. They are the ones who get to Green light games, sequels and the next drivelware.

As for Mirror's Edge, he is right. It was a new IP in a crowded holiday season. But he can cry me an ocean if he didn't know that since Q2. That is NO excuse.

I for one applaud them (the credit is not with DICE since EA gets to Green light the games regardless of what they think) for trying something new. Dark Space (a Bioshock clone if I ever saw one), Mirrors Edge were two new IPs which they can grow if they actually stick with them instead of turning them to the cookie cutter madness that became of The Sims, Battlefield and every other EA property.

IMO, the next EA project to tank is going to be BF Heroes. Especially in the face of L4D (and whatever new and addictive madness Valve is cooking up as I type this), Quake Live (which doesn't stand a Ghost in hell chance), Parabellum (scripted movies aside, it looks nice), the venerable Team Fortress 2, and whatever rubbish Garage Games (have you seen Legions? *sheesh*) is currently cocking up.

Even if EA gets smaller, they're not likely to end up being so small that they become insignificant. My guess is that - unchecked - they are going to suffer the same demise as the likes of Eidos (which started off as Domark), Atari, Midway and every other big wheel that became a small cog, then got wrenched right off the assembly line.

It is never a good thing when people lose their jobs, but in some cases, it is the right thing to do and most people deserve it. Incompetence and underperformance should not be rewarded. But try telling that to the US govt. who've decided to take my money and give it to the auto-makers, rather than letting them fall into bankruptcy and thus get restructured and with better [trustee] oversight. Car czar my ass.

Anyway, for EA, now would be a really good time to rethink those DRM policie I think.
Game developers are just human beings who happen to make games for a living. If you want to hold us up to higher standards of conduct, then go ahead
...but don't be surprised if we don't uphold them
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 Re: EA Lowers Outlook, Plans Cuts