In a lengthy interview with Eurogamer, CEO Andrew Wilson and DICE general manager Karl-Magnus Troedsson talk about what went wrong with Battlefield 4 and how they’re using those lessons to improve future games.
If you were one of the many players burned by Battlefield 4’s bug-ridden launch, EA CEO Andrew Wilson actually agrees with you. “For me, the situation we had was unacceptable. For the team it was unacceptable,” Wilson said in a recent interview with Eurogamer. “We have worked tirelessly since then to make sure the gameplay experience got to where it absolutely should have been at launch and we’re focused on that and we continue to deliver value to that player base.”
Wilson states that the main problem with game’s multiplayer mode existed client-side, not on the servers. These problems originated due to the game’s ambition, Wilson said. DICE was creating a game with 64-player multiplayer, gigantic maps 1080p and was being developed for at the time unfinished PS4 and Xbox One hardware. Wilson wanted to be clear that the game was not rushed to meet the launch of those two new consoles, as some have suggested.
“DICE had a lot of time this time … Last year was a very unique situation. Not to abdicate responsibility whatsoever – we own it, we are responsible for it and we have worked tirelessly to remedy the situation – but when you are building a game on an unfinished platform with unfinished software, there are some things that can’t get done until the very last minute because the platform wasn’t ready to get done.
“What was happening with Battlefield 4, even as we were pushing all of this innovation, was a lot of it we couldn’t test until really late in the phase. I believe it was unique.”
Wilson stands by EA’s choice to push the boundaries of Battlefield, adding in a thinly-veiled swipe at Activision’s Call of Duty: Ghosts, also released last year, which had been criticized for being too similar to previous entries.
“You could go down the really conservative path, which some people did in the industry, and your game didn’t have any of those problems, but you also got the feedback of, it just feels the same as it used to.
DICE general manager Karl-Magnus Troedsson adds in his thoughts as well, saying that the reaction to Battlefield 4 actually hurt DICE’s reputation. “Was I surprised at the reaction? No. Were we a bit surprised by the state of the game? Yes. For sure,” he told Eurogamer. Interestingly, Troedsson’s comments practically refute a statement earlier this year from EA’s CFO when he said that the Battlefield brand was undamaged by Battlefield 4’s launch.
Troedsson has said that the problems EA had with Battlefield 4 has triggered a new development process for the company, one that DICE’s follow-up game, Battlefield: Hardline is benefitting from.
“How stable is the server? What state is the client in? That’s one example of a thing we changed based on what happened with BF4,” Troedsson said.
The entirety of the interview can be read at the link below. How do you feel about Wilson and Troedsson’s statements? Are you willing to give Hardlinea chance when it launches later this year, or are you still turned off from the problems with Battlefield 4?