Monday, July 09, 2007

John Riccitiello

John Riccitiello, EA's new CEO, has been talking a lot recently about the dangers our industry faces. The games we make are too hard, we've counted on sequels for too long and innovation in general is lacking -- in short, the failings of our industry to reach critical mass and mass market acceptance is our own fault.

For many people this is likely music to their ears - validation of a message they've been screaming from the top of soap boxes for years. To have EA's CEO echo these points surely must feel like vindication.

I wonder, though, could this strategy backfire? EA, like the rest of us, is 100% dependant on the talent of the game developers it attracts to make their product and profit. Many developers will be attracted by this message, perhaps seeking out positions at EA (a company they might have sworn they would never work for) if they believe that doing so will allow them to work on something truly innovative. Could others, though, be turned off by the finger-pointing of Riccitiello? Does anyone out there feel slighted by these comments? Surely we've done something right as an industry or we would have stopped with E.T...

So -- a question for the readers out there in the industry. Do John's comments make you more or less inclined to someday accept an offer at EA (assuming you don't already work there)?

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Blogger Patrick said...

I'm disinclined to accept offers to work at even better companies because I want to work for myself, so I'm probably not the best guy to ask. Also, I think no matter what EA or Sony or Nintendo say they'll do, the consoles are not the most exciting sector right now, and won't be for years. Its the internet, thats where the business model and design innovation is happening.

1:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No chance. EA has more employees in its Spin department than I have co-workers at my studio. Furthermore, I don't buy an On-A-Dime reversal of strategy. If they're still whistling that tune in 2 years, maybe I'll actually listen (though will probably suggest that the song has no soul, having been written by a team of devs who've done nothing but write whistling songs every day for the last 8 years).

2:00 PM  
Anonymous Pearlie said...

Well said.

8:36 AM  

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