2008 wasn’t a great year for EA. After being hit with losses in the hundreds of millions, and forced to shed more than 10% of its work force, the publishing giant is reconsidering its strategy for the future.
Most gamers would agree that EA was acting strangely last year. The company, known for endlessly exploiting the same licenses and IPs again and again, seemed to do a heel-turn in 2008, and released two completely new IPs. The new games were successful, but it would seem, not successful enough. The good news is that they’re not planning to go back to their old ways, not yet at least.
Speaking at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference, EA’s COO John Pleasants recognized that the company didn’t have the big hits that they needed and that in the future the company would focus on quality over quantity, reducing their output by around a fifth. “You can lose your way on basic execution when you have too many games,” Pleasants said.
Another big change will come in the way that EA markets its games, in fact marketing is one area that they are committed to spending more money, as well as making better use of the possibilities offered by the internet. Pleasants explained it thus: “The game-development process has evolved, so the marketing should as well. It’s less about ‘We have an idea, we go away for 24 months and spend $30 million working on a game, then put a little buzz out there and hope it works.’ We need to have a dialogue with the audience, take a longer lead time and make sure we have the right mix of digital and traditional.”
Fewer titles? Listening to their customers? This isn’t the EA I know.
I think I like it though.
Source: Game Daily