No seriously guys, THERE ARE NO LOOT BOXES. Oh did I tell you? NO L O O T B O X E S.
I’m barely exaggerating, but EA took every single possible opportunity to tell us that they didn’t plan any loot boxes for their upcoming games. What a time to be alive, the most hated publisher (according to a survey done by myself on Reddit by browsing 2 mins) doing a 180° on their policies. Call me crazy, but I really respect them for admitting their mistakes and changing their stance. Although I would like to remind you of one thing: during last year’s conference, Andrew Wilson also admitted EA’s mistakes on Battlefront 1 and we saw how that panned out with Battlefront 2… I sincerely think that this time they will be utterly careful, and I hope that gamers will stop being toxic to them, because… ugh.
Now, let’s remember that EA’s conference was very awaited for many reasons:
- Last years mixed bag (with the straight-up influencer’s blunder)
- Battlefront 2 controversy
- Future of the industry as EA is still a leading force (no matter what haters say or think)
Here. We. Goooo for hot takes.
Sea of Solitude presentation by Cornelia Geppert (from JO-MEI). What a blast this was! Not only Connie looked very emotional, but the trailer was wonderful and above all; the theme of the game is important. Here is a quote from her during the presentation: “When humans get lonely, they turn into monsters. What makes this underlying concept, so important and so unique is that nearly every human being can somehow relate to or remember the feeling of being lonely. In my case, I started writing the story when I was at the loneliest in my life. As an artist, you process your emotional world by getting it out and putting it into your art.”
EA Origins Premier: a new service for EA fans, for 14.99€/month (99.99€/year) PC players will get access to all the upcoming PC games (Madden 19, FIFA 19, Battlefield V etc.) but also more than 100 existing games in the back catalog. This announcement was massive for me due to its nature: reshaping the way we will consume games in the future through subscriptions.
Although this business model opens up another discussion as I pointed out on twitter. (I’ll dedicate an article to this)
Unravel TWO: an absolutely lovely sequel to one of my most beloved revelations of 2015/2016. The new mechanics look pretty cool, playing with 2 Yarnys adds a certain depth and new ways to reach our goal.
Anthem: This is one of the most awaited games of 2019. I am not into this kind of games in general, but the game is done by BioWare and is visually stunning. After the long video where BioWare team talked about the game background and showed some game, I will probably be getting it day one when it releases on 22/02/2019.
Least favourite moments:
Before we dive into details, I am not saying I would have done better.
The setup looked less professional than what EA did previously. It looked a bit empty and… austere? Maybe it was an attempt to be closer to the crowd and show humbleness, I don’t know.
Star Wars: this setup I mentioned above led to a very awkward reveal: details on Star Wars by Respawn. It was announced by Vince Zampella who was sitting in the crowd…
Command & Conquer – Rivals: as much as I understand the importance of having a diverse portfolio, and how important mobile gaming is… This game didn’t resonate with me at all, and this is coming from someone who sank hundreds of hours in Red Alert 2. I think that there is a good opportunity in the future to relaunch the brand through with a fully-fledged RTS.
Battlefield V hands-on. This didn’t get a lot of visibility, but after the conference when the press went to try the game, there were some 7yo kids playing at the same time, as reported Gautoz from Gamekult. While some will think this is ok, it is absolutely not for several reasons:
- It’s a press hands-on
- PEGI 18?
That’s all for this post about EA, I could have added in the positive points the “HR interlude” that happened during the pre-show but decided against it because I think it wasn’t properly executed and was put there just for the sake of having it there. It is a very good idea to speak about your HR policies and how open you are, but the execution needs to be better:
- More details
- More precise answers
- More employees with different backgrounds interviewed on the topic
To summarize: EA didn’t PLAY as much as I would have loved, still an okay show.
(Full conference, in case you want to watch it)