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Old 10-12-2007, 12:34 PM   #41
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Well, I guess that's it for the hopes some people had for a KotOR-based MMORPG developed by Bioware.

Lucasarts is NOT going to let such a game be developed by a someone who is owned by another publisher, because that would mean they would have to share the profits, and we know how much LA likes that...

Sure, EA would jump at it - they know that Star Wars games are just an excuse to print money. In that sense this could be considered "good" news (assuming you love Bioware and hate Obsidian), because EA can force Bioware to make such a game even if Bioware is more interested in developing their own IPs. But that's an incredibly ficticious scenario, since LA would have to go for it first, which is so far beyond my imagination it's just staggering.

I wonder how many employees at Bioware we'll see jumping ship in the coming weeks...


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Old 10-12-2007, 12:44 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavlos
That's mostly corporate PR talk though, doesn't necessarily say what they really think about the issue. You're hardly going to go out to the press and complain loudly about your new boss.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabretooth
You forgot Crytek, Epic and Obsidian.
Epic and Crytek are mostly game engine makers though. They've made some amazing game engines that other companies use to make good games, but Epic/Crytek's own games are fairly generic and bland from a story/gameplay perspective. Feels more like tech demos to show what their engines can do, in my opinion. The multiplayer may be OK, but the single player scenarios of their games leave a lot to be desired.

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Old 10-12-2007, 01:05 PM   #43
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Bioware's own forum thread is getting pounded. 15 pages of angst in 12 hours. That's got to have a reinforcing effect on the developers who are considering going rogue.


Edit:
Oops my bad, that's a part 2 thread. The first 14-page thread was already closed. Wow.
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Old 10-12-2007, 01:11 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by tk102
Bioware's own forum thread is getting pounded. 15 pages of angst in 12 hours. That's got to have a reinforcing effect on the developers who are considering going rogue.
There are 6 more 10+ page threads about it in their off-topic forums, so apparently a lot of people have opinions about it.

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Old 10-12-2007, 01:17 PM   #45
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With that much fan base, any group that defects from the EA takeover is going to have something of a hero status before they even put out their first game.
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Old 10-12-2007, 01:17 PM   #46
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One thing to note: Is this an actual good business idea?

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/fn/5208720.html

Quote:
However, analysts said the video game maker is paying too much for the two studios, which produce action-adventure games.

Evan Wilson of Pacific Crest Securities said the buyout may allow Electronic Arts to improve its games in that category, but it could have bought several studios with more valuable games for the same price. He added that EA already received a good deal of revenue from VG Holdings due to prior agreements.

Wilson wrote that Elevation Partners, VG's parent, bought the company for $300 million in 2005, and other buyouts have been much less expensive.

"We also question the price because VG Holdings' recent track record of games does not justify that increase in value of the two firms since their acquisition," he said.


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Old 10-12-2007, 01:26 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Moeller
BioWare was one of my favorite devs, I wonder how this will affect that. Guess it depends how independent EA lets Bioware be from them.
Presumably it will be like an awesome movie property that gets messed around with by hollywood execs. The "power" of bioware is that they were able to create the content they wanted on a schedule they wanted.

I now expect Bioware to release the same game every year with minor cosmetic changes.

Also, does this mean the end of Bioware PC games? Are the all consoles from here on out?

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Old 10-12-2007, 02:31 PM   #48
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Also, does this mean the end of Bioware PC games? Are the all consoles from here on out?
I was wondering this same thing.

Now that they are EA employees(slaves) we'll probably slowly start to see turnover until a year from now all EA has is the rights to all of Bioware's past products and not the minds that created them.

You'd think with Bungie splitting off from Microsoft to have more freedom that other independents would appreciate theirs more.

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Old 10-12-2007, 03:36 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Hannibal
You'd think with Bungie splitting off from Microsoft to have more freedom that other independents would appreciate theirs more.
Well, it may not have been Bioware's choice, since they are owned by VG Holdings. I don't know if that's a company listed on the stock market, but if it is, then it doesn't matter what the employees want - if somebody makes a bid that the shareholders like (= enough $$), then it gets sold. Period.

Like it's been said, you're not going to hear any employees complain about this openly now, because nobody is going to start off criticising the new boss. What would be the point of that? After all, even if Bioware employees dislike EA, what good will it do them to voice displeasure? It'll just cost them their jobs, and it'll look bad when they're looking for the next one either way. Once they find new jobs and are secure in those, you might hear different, though.

Want to know what Bioware employees think of it? Watch how many of them quietly leave in the next couple of months...


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Old 10-12-2007, 03:58 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
Epic and Crytek are mostly game engine makers though. They've made some amazing game engines that other companies use to make good games, but Epic/Crytek's own games are fairly generic and bland from a story/gameplay perspective. Feels more like tech demos to show what their engines can do, in my opinion. The multiplayer may be OK, but the single player scenarios of their games leave a lot to be desired.
Crytek, yes, but not Epic. The Unreal Tournament series might not have been the most ground breaking games ever made, but certainly among the best MP FPS games. Playing in an UT lan is particularly fun


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"I don't really see this as a bad thing. The worst thing I can say about EA is they have a serious tendency to stick to what they know will sell. Even the original games they publish tend to be in that 'we know we can sell this' area.
By selling, they mean games that are easily mass marketed. Hell, FIFA games made by EA have always sold better then KONAMI's Pro Evolution serie. Yet, serious soccer fans as well as critics always consider Pro Evo the better game even with the lack of licensing.

But that's sports games only. There was the travesty that was BFME II, zero support for the first game (no, those patches solved nothing). There were those "expansion packs" for The Sims that, IMO, are an insult to human intelligence. Then there's the horrible expansion packs for the Battlefield games, the horrible Battlefield: Vietnam that received no support whatsoever. I can go on about the horrible lack of support and originality of EA's franchises.


Quote:
And you know what? Bioware's games are easy to sell. By that I mean, they're pretty typical video game fare in terms of the material involved. The Baldur's Gate games were fantasy RPGs. KOTOR was a sci-fi action RPG. Jade Empire was a wuxia action RPG. Mass Effect is another sci-fi action RPG.
That's a pretty stupid thing to say. Might as well not make games about anything involving a humanoid form of life to be considered original. Hell, might as well say that unless the idea comes from a proto-human life form, it's not original.


Quote:
If Bioware was known for making more esoteric games like Okami or Psychonauts, yeah, I'd be concerned. But they don't. They make exceptional video games that are easy to sell to the typical hardcore gamer. EA didn't make all the money they did by screwing up easy money-making formulas like that.
It doesn't really matter if they make esoteric games or not. In fact, their strength is in the execution and the writing. What everyone fears is how EA likes to pump out endless sequels and impose weird fees for "unlockable" content as well as crappy expansion packs. Bioware might make amazing games, but they take their time to finish it properly. With the EA executive looking over their shoulder, they might not have the time to properly complete X game for a Christmas release for example.

Note that Bioware is not Blizzard. Though their games can be "superior", depending on the point of view, Blizzard has this mythical status among many gamers, especially in Korea. The fact that it's a branch of Vivendi doesn't matter then: whatever happens, they have the better position in terms of negotiation. Hell, this is the company that pushed back the World of WarCraft expansion pack from a Christmas 2006 release to January 2007 and nobody can touch them about that.

Bioware does not have this luck.


Quote:
I'm kinda interested to see what Bioware can do with the added muscle of EA behind them. Plus, doesn't EA own at least part of the Lord of the Rings license? They announced that White Council game a while back, at least. Can you imagine Bioware making a LotR RPG? That game would practically print money, and I'm sure EA is aware of that."--- BY BISHMON AT 10/11/07 05:05 PM"
What if they don't want to make a LotR RPG and it gets forced on them?


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Old 10-12-2007, 04:36 PM   #51
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This is a colossal kick in the nuts.


Waking up.
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Old 10-12-2007, 06:04 PM   #52
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Umm.... wow. That REALLY sucks. Just wow.


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Old 10-12-2007, 06:23 PM   #53
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I just hope that Mass Effect is close enough to being finished that EA can't mess it up.


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Old 10-12-2007, 09:53 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Like it's been said, you're not going to hear any employees complain about this openly now, because nobody is going to start off criticising the new boss. What would be the point of that? After all, even if Bioware employees dislike EA, what good will it do them to voice displeasure? It'll just cost them their jobs, and it'll look bad when they're looking for the next one either way.
I can speak to this. Employees in these sorts of companies typically are bound by conduct regulations that prevent them from opening speaking unfavorably about their employer. In my contract I am prevented from saying such things. So the silence from bioware employees contractually mandated.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Want to know what Bioware employees think of it? Watch how many of them quietly leave in the next couple of months...
That is by far the best indicator. But the biggest disappointment is that even if "all" the important people leave and go elsewhere, they can't take their properties with them.

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Old 10-12-2007, 10:47 PM   #55
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Damn! I take a day off and miss a nuclear bomb of an announcement.

A disconcerting move, no doubt. And I very much agree with the analyst who questioned how two companies that were purchased for somewhere north of USD$300 million in 2005 doubled in value to USD$620 million in two years, not to mention the additional USD$155 million in stock that will also be issued. The 2005 investors have big dollar signs for eyeballs and they keep repeating the phrase CHA-CHING!

All I can say is that John Ricitiello headed up Elevation Partners group when they purchased BioWare and Pandemic Studios in 2005. Mr. Ricitiello left Elevation Partners in February to assume the CEO position at EA. It seems quite apparent from yesterday's announcement that Mr. Ricitiello very much wanted to have BioWare and Pandemic Studios join the EA fold and was willing to pay a very steep premium to get them. I've played very few EA games so I'm taking a wait-and-see attitude for how this will impact BioWare's future games. Mass Effect will be fine. How plans for the Mass Effect trilogy will be impacted is another matter. It just depends on the contractual arrangement between BioWare and Microsoft.
Quote:
Greg Zeschuk: Well, to be blunt, I don't really see ourselves as not being independent anymore. We've got a goal of making great BioWare games, and we believe in [EA CEO] John [Riccitiello]'s vision--we can't overemphasize that. We've worked with John for years, and we're looking forward to keep doing what we're doing and doing it well.
That's all well and good but the good doctor is deluding himself if he thinks BioWare is still independent. EA is a publicly held company. Shareholders want return on their investment and BioWare will not be able to pull another Dragon Age while under the EA umbrella. I just don't see that happening in a financial results driven company. And if EA's financials suffer, as is likely to happen at some point down the road, and John Ricitiello gets the boot then who knows who will take over the reins and what they would expect from their in-house game development units? It's unfortunate news and for me the news came much earlier than anticipated. The gaming industry is bound to consolidate but I thought BioWare wouldn't need to be concerned about their finances for the next 4-5 years after their acquisition by Elevation Partners. But with EA offering such a high premium it looks like the offer was too good to pass up.


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Old 10-13-2007, 01:58 AM   #56
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Knights of the Old Republic was one of the games that EA did NOT get their hands on according to the gamespot article.


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Old 10-13-2007, 02:02 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by Devilsfanatic
Knights of the Old Republic was one of the games that EA did NOT get their hands on according to the gamespot article.
That just stinks!!

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Old 10-13-2007, 02:32 AM   #58
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Bioware was licensed to make one game, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Bioware has NO rights to the game or franchise other than collecting revenue from continued sales.

When the game was a hit and LA wanted to make a sequel, Bioware wasn't interested. They contacted Obsidian and Obsidian agreed.

The lack of KotOR 3 has nothing to do with Bioware. If LA wanted to make the game, they would find a developer. It hasn't been made because LA wants to focus attention on their other games.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Devilsfanatic
Knights of the Old Republic was one of the games that EA did NOT get their hands on according to the gamespot article.
EA can't get something from Bioware that Bioware doesn't have.

Likely, the article is referring to the royalties from the continued sales of the game. In other words, if you buy another copy of KotOR 1, Bioware will get the money, but EA will not. However, when Mass Effect comes out, EA will get a cut of that.


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Old 10-13-2007, 02:47 AM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Lion54
Bioware was licensed to make one game, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Bioware has NO rights to the game or franchise other than collecting revenue from continued sales.

When the game was a hit and LA wanted to make a sequel, Bioware wasn't interested. They contacted Obsidian and Obsidian agreed.

The lack of KotOR 3 has nothing to do with Bioware. If LA wanted to make the game, they would find a developer. It hasn't been made because LA wants to focus attention on their other games.


EA can't get something from Bioware that Bioware doesn't have.

Likely, the article is referring to the royalties from the continued sales of the game. In other words, if you buy another copy of KotOR 1, Bioware will get the money, but EA will not. However, when Mass Effect comes out, EA will get a cut of that.
Thanks for the clarifacation Bob lion54!

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Old 10-13-2007, 01:17 PM   #60
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Gentlemans this is the end of the great style of Kotor games we had until now, prepare for really rushed, incomplete and horrible Kotor games. Oh and they will only be released in the year 3000! Those who know Westwood and Command & Conquer know that doom has arrived to Star Wars


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Old 10-13-2007, 01:49 PM   #61
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^^^
This announcement has no impact on the KotOR franchise or any other Star Wars game franchise other than the almost foregone conclusion that BioWare and Pandemic Studios won't be making any more Star Wars games.

Bear in mind that LucasArts is a competing publisher to EA and LucasArts controls all SW game development. It is highly unlikely that LucasArts is going to use an EA-owned developer to develop a Star Wars game.


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Old 10-13-2007, 04:28 PM   #62
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RIP guys. Well at least with those $$$ you guys can retire...

And yes, now I would hope that someone else would make kotor3, maybe LucasArts itself. I mean, I would rather see NO kotor3 at all than some EA-quality product.
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Old 10-13-2007, 05:40 PM   #63
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As much as this news sucks in many people's opinion (just check Bioware's forums, if you have any doubt...), I consider it a complete non-factor to the status of KotOR3.

Sure, people have speculated that Bioware might do KotOR3 or might be doing a KotOR-based MMORPG, but it's all been conjecture with very little evidence and a lot of supposition, as far as can tell. Bioware has never officially confirmed anything and actually even expressed interest in doing only their own IPs, which effectively rules out any possibility of being involved in Star Wars games again.

Of course, they could have changed their minds, but there has been no evidence to suggest that, and now it really doesn't matter anymore anyway. It'll be a cold day in Hell before LA allows an EA-owned dev to do a Star Wars game, so it's now a very, very, very, very, incredible moot point...

Not that it matters, anyway. KotOR3 is vapourware


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Old 10-13-2007, 08:51 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Char Ell
This announcement has no impact on the KotOR franchise or any other Star Wars game franchise other than the almost foregone conclusion that BioWare and Pandemic Studios won't be making any more Star Wars games.

Bear in mind that LucasArts is a competing publisher to EA and LucasArts controls all SW game development. It is highly unlikely that LucasArts is going to use an EA-owned developer to develop a Star Wars game.
QFE

Couldn't agree more, LA decides what happens to KotOR, not BioWare or EA (thankfully!)



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Old 10-13-2007, 09:19 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PouiyWired
I mean, I would rather see NO kotor3 at all than some EA-quality product.
A lot of people are either unaware or have forgotten that EA got a new CEO earlier this year. John Ricitiello headed the group that acquired BioWare and Pandemic Studios back in 2005. He left that group to take over as CEO of EA in February of this year. I tend to think that EA was willing to pay such a high price for BioWare and Pandemic Studios because he knew that they produce quality games and that is something he wants to improve at EA, as well as to have EA gain more of a presence in the genres that these two companies develop games for.

In any case, a list of pros and cons I came up with about BioWare being acquired by EA.

PROS
- BioWare doesn't have to worry about finding publishers for their games and negotiating publishing deals. Obviously EA will now publish all their games that aren't already contracted out to another publisher. This will allow BioWare management to concentrate solely on the development side.
- BioWare will have much more freedom to create games for multiple platforms and won't have to make exclusive deals like they did with Mass Effect.

CONS
- BioWare will become part of a publicly traded company, subject to the whims of shareholders' demand for profitable performance on EA management. With John Riccitiello at the helm I think BioWare will be given a long leash. However, should other EA development efforts underperform then BioWare may be pressured to help the parent company's bottom line by bringing games to market sooner than desired by the BioWare team.
- BioWare will also become subject to management changes. Should John Riccitiello be forced out or otherwise leave his position as CEO of EA and new management is brought in then BioWare could have operational changes dictated to them that they might not be real happy about.

Short term, everything at BioWare will likely operate status quo. The long term impact however is much more of a question mark, IMHO.


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Old 10-14-2007, 07:57 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Char Ell
A lot of people are either unaware or have forgotten that EA got a new CEO earlier this year. John Ricitiello headed the group that acquired BioWare and Pandemic Studios back in 2005. He left that group to take over as CEO of EA in February of this year.
I believe I read somewhere that JohnR was recruited to the Bio/Pandemic owner company (VG Holding) from EA, where he was an exec before. Thus he's had his part in making EA what they are today.

(If you want to bring out the tin foil hat you could also speculate on the coincidence of a high-ranking EA exec being involved in the deal forming the Bio/Pandemic merger, turning Bio from a privately owned company into something that can more easily be bought, then assuming CEO position in VG Holding (the owner company) for a few years, before returning to EA again and making them buy the company he helped construct. Long term planning or just a coincidence?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Char Ell
- BioWare will also become subject to management changes.
Exactly, even if the BioBosses have a good working relationship with JohnR there is no guarantee that he'll stay on that job forever, and someone with a different view of how things should be done might take the helm instead.

The past track record of EA absorbing and destroying good game studios does hint at the corporate culture prevalent in EA.

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Old 10-14-2007, 10:27 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Sure, people have speculated that Bioware might do KotOR3 or might be doing a KotOR-based MMORPG, but it's all been conjecture with very little evidence and a lot of supposition, as far as can tell.
After Galaxies, I'd be surprised if even EA would be stupid enough to look into a Star Wars MMORPG, nevermind LA letting them do it in the first place...



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Old 10-14-2007, 11:38 AM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
I believe I read somewhere that JohnR was recruited to the Bio/Pandemic owner company (VG Holding) from EA, where he was an exec before. Thus he's had his part in making EA what they are today.

(If you want to bring out the tin foil hat you could also speculate on the coincidence of a high-ranking EA exec being involved in the deal forming the Bio/Pandemic merger, turning Bio from a privately owned company into something that can more easily be bought, then assuming CEO position in VG Holding (the owner company) for a few years, before returning to EA again and making them buy the company he helped construct. Long term planning or just a coincidence?)
Mr. Riccitiello actually left EA to become one of the founders of Elevation Partners back in 2004. I'm pretty sure he was the one doing a great deal of the recruiting for people with money to invest in technology and entertainment, people like Bono. Elevation Partners formed VG Holding to be the parent company of BioWare and Pandemic. Mr. Riccitiello remained managing director of Elevation Partners while also taking on the additional role of CEO for VG Holding up until the time he left EP and VGH for the EA CEO position.

In any case your tin foil hat theory doesn't seem all that far-fetched to me. EA's previous CEO, Larry Probst, gave up his CEO position to Mr. Riccitiello but Mr. Probst did stay on with EA as chairman of the board. It's not like he got forced out. And after this announcement was made it did occur to me that BioWare really lost their ability to refuse EA's offer when they decided to be acquired by Elevation Partners. Sure, Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk were owners of VG Holdings but they were likely minority owners and couldn't squash the EA deal on their own, like they could have done if they hadn't agreed to be acquired by Elevation Partners.

I haven't really followed EA in the past because I only follow news for companies I'm interested in and EA wasn't publishing games I was interested in. This deal changes that so I'll likely keep a much closer eye on EA's dealings going forward.


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Old 10-14-2007, 09:08 PM   #69
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Also, does this mean the end of Bioware PC games? Are the all consoles from here on out?

Well, that's unlikely. EA policy of making more money with a single strike reigns supreme. Meaning that their games always have the tendency of being multi-consoles.


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Old 10-15-2007, 12:02 AM   #70
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There's a good chance I'm going to hurt someone for this. You know, I live in Florida, and after I moved to a horrible city near Orlando, I remembered EA had an office in Maitland, just north of Orlando, so I decided to vent my increasing anger at having to live in this redneck town. So what did I do? I stood in front of the building with a large sign with a one-finger salute drawn on it planted next to me, while I gave them a one-finger salute of my own. Childish, I know, but I enjoyed seeing them look at me from the parking lot. I videotaped myself doing it too, and I have to say that even I admire my own ability to stand upright and still, flipping them off for almost a full hour. This was after playing Superman Returns for the Xbox 360 and realizing that these money-hungry video game pirates have ruined the Man of Steel in video games, and the game was indeed developed right there in EA Tiburon. Of course, now I'm wondering what this has to do with what those bloodsuckers have done to BioWare, but suffice to say that I'm paying them another visit, and I am going to do alot more than stand outside their building, which is a Florida monument to the gaming equivalent of purgatory, and give them the middle finger for an hour.

If I don't come back in 4 days, tell BioWare I love them. And tell John Riccitiello I hope he gets attacked by Rhett's elves, and Darth Malak, simultaneously.

P.S. Sending hate mail to EA is not only allowed, but encouraged.


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Old 10-15-2007, 08:48 AM   #71
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^ This gets my vote in this year's Post of the Year Award

Right on!



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Old 10-15-2007, 09:55 AM   #72
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Quote:
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I videotaped myself doing it too
Please share @ youtube.com
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Old 10-16-2007, 12:13 AM   #73
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SykoRevan is now ****ing epic.


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Old 10-16-2007, 12:17 AM   #74
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I too require pictures/video forth which to adorn my SykoRevan alter.
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Old 10-16-2007, 02:21 AM   #75
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Epic and Crytek are mostly game engine makers though. They've made some amazing game engines that other companies use to make good games, but Epic/Crytek's own games are fairly generic and bland from a story/gameplay perspective. Feels more like tech demos to show what their engines can do, in my opinion. The multiplayer may be OK, but the single player scenarios of their games leave a lot to be desired.
So you're telling me that to make a great game you need a singleplayer with a rich story? You tell that to the reviewers who have given UT, UT2004 and FarCry 9+/10 scores. And to the millions who frag each other in an addicted daze on UT servers everyday. FarCry and UT are both excellent games, good story or not (UT doesn't even have one), and far from "tech demos".

Tip: Sabre is a little sensitive when it comes to anti-UT statements.


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Old 10-16-2007, 10:01 AM   #76
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All I can say is, "Time will tell." It'll be interesting seeing what eventually comes of all this. I wish some companies would realize that if you let a developer take their time to perfect a game, it'll sell well because of that perfection. Good games aren't built in a day, or on the backs of slaves. But hey, even if Bioware dies, at least they're not the only good game developer out there.

LOL @ Syko.


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Old 10-16-2007, 11:51 AM   #77
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So you're telling me that to make a great game you need a singleplayer with a rich story?
Couldn't have said it better.
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Old 10-16-2007, 12:22 PM   #78
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Quote:
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So you're telling me that to make a great game you need a singleplayer with a rich story?
Yes, that is pretty much my opinion for games that have any longevity (i.e. make you consider reinstalling them 6-10 years later for another replay). Rich story, interesting gameplay and atmosphere are important factors in what make a game good.

If I just want a 20 minute adrenaline kick when playing (which happens on occasion) the story is not quite as important, but those games are pretty much disposable once they're past their prime and newer, prettier-looking ones along the same generic theme has been released.

I played a fair bit on Unreal (1) and Unreal Tournament (1) a handful of years ago, when I was still bothering with multiplayer games. After playing for roughly a year I got tired of them though, and haven't quite felt compelled to buy any of the sequels since they're just more of the same which I'd already gotten tired of. I still replay Deus Ex every now and then, but would hardly bother digging up my old Unreal disc and play through that again.

Farcry was pretty, with nice environments and decent enemy AI, but the story was a typical generic FPS shooter one that felt more like an excuse to make you do things than anything. Gameplay was standard fare FPS like they've been for pretty much a decade. I played it for a couple of months before getting bored with it.

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You tell that to the reviewers who have given UT, UT2004 and FarCry 9+/10 scores. And to the millions who frag each other in an addicted daze on UT servers everyday.
Different people have different tastes.

Fortunately I don't require the approval of people who are professionally opinionated to decide if I may consider a game good or bad, nor is peer pressure any major factor to weigh in. I'm quite capable of forming opinions on my own.

I quite frequently find myself disagreeing with reviewer scores when they give stellar scores to games with pretty surface but little substance, and poorer scores to games that are in my opinion much better (System Shock 2, Deus Ex, VtM:Bloodlines etc). It looks like there is a fair deal of peer pressure among reviewers, almost like they feel compelled to give massively hyped games high scores since everyone is already convinced of their excellence. As such I don't put much weight on what reviewers think any more, preferring to go by either word of mouth, reputation or trying out demos myself.


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Old 10-16-2007, 01:00 PM   #79
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Couldn't have said it better.
I could have, using one word: Lightsabers!



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Old 10-16-2007, 01:40 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
Yes, that is pretty much my opinion for games that have any longevity (i.e. make you consider reinstalling them 6-10 years later for another replay). Rich story, interesting gameplay and atmosphere are important factors in what make a game good.

If I just want a 20 minute adrenaline kick when playing (which happens on occasion) the story is not quite as important, but those games are pretty much disposable once they're past their prime and newer, prettier-looking ones along the same generic theme has been released.
Yay, I'm debating with stoffe!

While I see where you're coming from, I disagree when you say that only the games with a rich story and atmosphere are the best. How about Mario, or Pong, Tetris and all those forefathers of gaming? The way I see it, stories should not be taken for granted in games, because it is perfectly possible to make a fun game without any real story.

While a majority goes on to the next version of a game, that doesn't mean a game isn't great. Longevity and replayability are certainly not deciding factors for how fun a game is. A game can be immersive, but ultimately it's meant to be fun (as opposed to books, movies and such).

Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
I played a fair bit on Unreal (1) and Unreal Tournament (1) a handful of years ago, when I was still bothering with multiplayer games. After playing for roughly a year I got tired of them though, and haven't quite felt compelled to buy any of the sequels since they're just more of the same which I'd already gotten tired of. I still replay Deus Ex every now and then, but would hardly bother digging up my old Unreal disc and play through that again.
Agreed, I consider Deus Ex to be one of the greatest games ever made and it is my most beloved game because of its very atmosphere, storyline and stuff. But if I ask myself in a raw sense, I find UT more fun because it is readily accessible, easy to play and doesn't require a lot of thinking. You can call me dumb for that, but again, great games need not only be made for Einsteins.

UT's sequels do take the graphics further, but there is still a very strong UT community out there, which is comparable to the CS community. Many do migrate to the sequels, but UT's persistence is proof that it was way above average in its time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
Farcry was pretty, with nice environments and decent enemy AI, but the story was a typical generic FPS shooter one that felt more like an excuse to make you do things than anything. Gameplay was standard fare FPS like they've been for pretty much a decade. I played it for a couple of months before getting bored with it.
Again, we go to longevity. I'll admit that Far Cry's story is a sorry excuse, but then you have to accept that. As a game, Far Cry was an exceptional experience with its AI, difficulty, instinct-factor and what-not. And here I can express something plaguing my mind that I've pinpointed. You know you're playing a great game when you feel it's a great game the first run you make through it, not in the four hundred ones you make later. Far Cry was a brilliant experience, IMO and it's certainly one of the best shooters I've played.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
Different people have different tastes.

Fortunately I don't require the approval of people who are professionally opinionated to decide if I may consider a game good or bad, nor is peer pressure any major factor to weigh in. I'm quite capable of forming opinions on my own.
Got nothing against ya there!

Quote:
Originally Posted by stoffe
I quite frequently find myself disagreeing with reviewer scores when they give stellar scores to games with pretty surface but little substance, and poorer scores to games that are in my opinion much better (System Shock 2, Deus Ex, VtM:Bloodlines etc). It looks like there is a fair deal of peer pressure among reviewers, almost like they feel compelled to give massively hyped games high scores since everyone is already convinced of their excellence. As such I don't put much weight on what reviewers think any more, preferring to go by either word of mouth, reputation or trying out demos myself.
I agree there, though I wonder what sane reviewer has given Deus Ex or System Shock 2 a bad score. Vampire I've played a long while ago, and IIRC, other than its character creation system, replayability and storyline (and atmosphere), it had very little going for it. Combat was bland, pacing slow and load times horrendous (I mean like you have to go through 5 loading screens worth half an hour to get to point B). Won't say it was a bad game, but it certainly falls more than a little below System Shock 2 and Deus Ex.

*gleefully awaits response*


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