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EA Sports: gamer ‘interest’ in single-plat declining

Friday, 15th June 2012 15:18 GMT By Stace Harman

VG247 catches EA Sports boss Andrew Wilson on camera to discuss UFC, yearly updates, Kinect and the varied palette of today’s gamer.

“More and more, what gamers are telling us is that games that exist on just one platform really aren’t that interesting. They really want something that they can engage with all day long where they’re not wasting time, and everything that they do creates value.”

Talking to VG247 at E3 2012, EA Sports head and ju-jitsu enthusiast Andrew Wilson has indicated that gamers in general are shifting away from single-platform products.

“More and more, what gamers are telling us is that games that exist on just one platform really aren’t that interesting. They really want something that they can engage with all day long where they’re not wasting time, and everything that they do creates value,” he said.

“Right now, I think that’s what we’re doing with football, American football, hockey, basketball, college football, golf, UFC; I think we’ve got a lot of bases covered.”

EA’s slate at E3 was multi-format to the bone, with one announcement obviously crowning EA Sports’ offering: the recently-signed deal to produce UFC titles.

“We had a [mixed martial arts] game that has an engine that’s very strong, and Fight Night Champion which is probably the best striking in any video game on the market,” he said.

“You take that and blend that with all of the UFC brands and we’ll be able to do some cool things; but we haven’t started full-scale planning yet because we just got the deal done.”

Another example of EA Sports branching out across all platforms is the implementation of Kinect into key brands like Madden and FIFA, both of which will see use of the Microsoft peripheral in this year’s updates. Wilson believes this is just a natural extension of behaviour already exhibited when playing these titles.

“We spend a lot of time screaming at the television,” he revealed. “I scream at the referee calls, I scream at the offside traps, I scream when my players don’t make runs.

“The very nature of making that screaming mean something in the game felt very natural, and when you play the game it feels very natural.”

Asked whether the inclusion of Kinect is simply to differentiate this year’s releases from last years and whether the publisher would – or indeed could afford to – take a year off from its key brands, Wilson replied, “It’s less about affordability and more about what’s best for gamers.”

He added: “Right now, so long as we can innovate every year to change the way you play… and as long as we can continue to do a tremendous job of connecting you with other gamers and the team and the sports you love, I think that [a release] every year makes complete sense.

“I soon as we think that’s not possible then we’d look to do something different.”

However, Wilson also suggested that it’s not just about sports.

“Gamers have so much more choice now than they’ve ever had. When I came up as a gamer, you only played sports games: if you were a sports guy, you played sports games. Well, guess what? There’s no such thing as a sports gamer any more.

“The next big game that a lot of our FIFA gamers play is Battlefield 3 or Need for Speed, so the competition for us to deliver great experiences is bigger than it’s ever been and we take it more seriously than we ever have.”

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14 Comments

  1. SlayerGT

    There are still “sports” gamers. My brother every year picks up The Show and in August asks me the same question, “How’s the football game?” (American football) And for the last 6 years I’ve told him the same thing..”crap”

    #1 3 years ago
  2. stealth

    hes a nut

    #2 3 years ago
  3. DSB

    They would be more interesting if they were on all platforms.

    @1 It’s a sad thing man. That seems to be response I get from everyone who’s sticking with Madden these days, which is why I haven’t picked it back up.

    I’m a slave to NHL, but really there’s very little changed since 09 either.

    And I can’t get NCAA football in Europe, so I guess I’m gonna have to get another 360 in America. I usually stay in Alabama, so playing the NFL without the Tide would be blasphemy.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. Gadzooks!

    Dear mr EA,

    1) Cram your screamgaming up your bunghole.

    2) Cram your yearly minor updates right next to your screamgaming.

    3) The last worthwhile Fight Night was round 3. Boxing should be tactical, not a lightspeed spamfest like it is now.

    Produce BETTER, not just MORE.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. TheBlackHole

    Crock of shit.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. fearmonkey

    I enjoyed the first fight night not the later titles….

    I’m not much of a sports gamer and I’m glad for it. Ea and their yearly updates and turning off multiplayer for the games you previously bought is crap.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. Patrick Garratt

    I tell you one thing. He gives a bloody slick interview.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. jonahfalcon

    Note to EA: Funny how interest in sports gaming was high before you decided to monopolize the NFL license.

    Funny, that, huh?

    Maybe people preferred NFL 2K to your Madden crap, especially its $19.99 price.

    #8 3 years ago
  9. OlderGamer

    Holy crap. Um Gad +1, that was almost painful ;)

    And this:

    “More and more, what gamers are telling us is that games that exist on just one platform really aren’t that interesting. They really want something that they can engage with all day long where they’re not wasting time, and everything that they do creates value,” he said

    Who the hell tells them that? That is PR company BS if ever I heard it. Translation?

    EA is continuing to push for gamers to conect to the web via mobile devices and PC in order to link their personal information. They have been doing this for a bit now. With Online Team Builder(like in NCCA Football)(what couldn’t do that on a console?) And funneling gamers online for Battlefield kits. Samething in other games. EA really wants you to link stuff besides your console to their servers.

    Because of it my spam filter works over time.

    Plus:

    “They really want something that they can engage with all day long where they’re not wasting time”

    Oxymoron.

    And:

    “everything that they do creates value”

    Value to who? EA in the form of extra DLC?

    This guy is so full of hot air he should be floating two miles up.

    #9 3 years ago
  10. OlderGamer

    Oh, and put your sports games on PC. All of them. And on Steam at that. You can keep that Origin crap.

    #10 3 years ago
  11. viralshag

    I’m going to buy and play FIFA every year until my hands fall off.

    #11 3 years ago
  12. absolutezero

    I remember back in the 16/32 bit era there were so many different football and sports in general games.

    Remember Mutant League Football? Remember fucking Striker on the SNES?!? amazing.

    I now only know of Fifa and PES. Actually I don’t even know if PES is still a thing. Both of them take the sport and THE PASSION deadly seriously. Puts me off going near either because I hate football.

    I loved Striker though, and that shit PS1 Addidas football game.

    So you can add everything under the sun to the never ending yearly parade of sports games, the fact that they are the only sports games in existance now pretty much means Ill never buy any of them.

    #12 3 years ago
  13. DSB

    Sega Soccer Slam? Mario Strikers?

    I agree though, it’s a shame that the market isn’t open, and it’s a shame that people stopped making those games.

    NFL Blitz could’ve been great if it hadn’t gone so terribly wrong.

    #13 3 years ago
  14. OlderGamer

    Kind of like that for a lot of generes tho, games today are extremly serious things in a lot of cases.

    But yea, long live Tecmo Bowl, I loved that game.

    #14 3 years ago

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