EA Studios executive vice president Patrick Söderlund wants the publisher to be remembered for its games – and not for being voted the worst company in America for two years running, for example.
Speaking to MCV, Söderlund said he doesn’t “believe for a second” that EA is the worst company in the US, but that the publisher has to take the message to heart anyway.
“When something like that happens, you have to sit down and ask yourselves ‘Why are people saying these things?’” he said.
“We did that and we started to realise that we are doing things that people don’t like. We looked at something as simple as the Online Pass. People were telling us they didn’t like that. So we weighed up the pros and cons and went ‘Ok. We will remove it.’
“These decisions need to be driven by what consumers want and tell us, and that is where we may have faltered a bit in the past. If we continue to do those types of things, then we will earn people’s trust and respect. We don’t want to be bad, we have no desire to be voted the worst company in America. On the contrary we want to be voted the best.”
Söderlund admitted that it’s hard to please everyone all the time, or even most of the time, but he thinks EA can make headway.
“You are bound to make mistakes, but when you do, just be clear to communicate that you agree it was a mistake, and you are taking the appropriate actions to fix them. Not a single person or company will do everything perfect. There is no such thing as a perfect,” he said.
“My goal is to be seen as the best in the business. I want people to recognise us for the games we make rather than anything else. Whether that is the Worst Company in America or whatever people don’t like. We need to be remembered and respected for the games we make.”
EA can also learn from positive feedback; early reactions to Titanfall show that EA is doing the right thing backing new kinds of games, Söderlund said.
“That response is telling us that gamers don’t want to play the same game every year, and even the games we build on an iterative basis, we have to make sure we keep on innovating or people won’t give us their money,” he said.