April 10, 2013

EA - Worst Company in the US?

As I am sure many have seen already, EA was recently voted Worst Company in America via the Forbes article points out, relative to the other companies on the list, EA has the most computer-centric and online organized (i.e.: reddit) demographic.  So, does this mean they are in fact the worst company in america?  Doubtful.  All it really means is they have pissed of the most people who are willing to go online and vote in a non-scientific poll.  However, there is one thing we can take from this: considering that game companies have a relatively similar demographic, we could reasonably conclude this means they are currently the Worst Game Publisher in America.  EA's response is, "We can do better."  I am sure they can, but will they?
Consumerist's website.  As this

I am tempted to doubt they can or will.  In some ways, they almost seem too big.  Their focus has become growing and maximizing revenues and profits.  Sadly, this means EA as a whole appears to have become out of touch with its customer base.  As a publisher, that is understandable, so long as the developer studios are still in touch and given freedom to interact with and cater to the players.  However, I get the impression EA micromanages things, at least for its big titles, effectively taking away some of that freedom, and refocusing the development of the games from quality to marketability.  We can see Battlefield going down this path, as we see some of the decisions being made appearing as attempts to cater to the Call of Duty crowd, sacrificing some things that make the Battlefield series what it is.  We can only hope EA learns a little something from this.  The indie development scene has proven word of mouth is still a powerful thing.  If EA changes their focus to high-quality games that players want, they will tell friends and bring other players in. If they instead focus on flashy marketing and emulating rivals' cash cows, sacrificing quality, they may get a lot of sales as first, but those will by and far be disappointed players who will not come back next time.

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