Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Antistrategy of the Week
"...EA's ambitious goal is to create more such innovative, internally developed games while lessening the company's dependence on professional sports and Hollywood movie franchises."
Wow - actually making cool games instead of being beancounters? How ambitious!
Just imagine if they started doing this years ago, when it was obvious that their strategy was in deep decay.
Wow! Will Wright allowed to do his own thing? Radical!!
Still, there seem to be some real interesting changes in the process.
I wonder how EA could really harvest the edge.
Interesting you say that, because Spore is one the textbook examples of edge competencies...
...and EA still doesn't get it!
I'm not dissing Wright. He's consistently one of the genius thinkers in making games.
It's just that what he does is not a symptom of EA's "new" strategic thinking, he's just the one guy who's managed to do anything inside EA *despite* them.
I was more impressed by that guy who reorganized his people into small teams - now if only he'd let each small team off to make a small "casual" game (for the portals) in a two months, I think EA might seed something interesting.
What do you think of Manifesto Games?
I saw Wil Wright's initial presentation at GDC and was absolutely blown away by Spore.
Amazingly, I hadn't yet connected it to the edge but of course that makes total sense. A user-created game that they don't ever realize they've created.
One thing to remember is that EA's pretty much been gave WW carte blanche after the Sims.
That's why I'm even more impressed that EA is starting to work this way with it's other properties. They've made some really smart hires in the past few years (both Neil Young & Alan Yu come to mind) and hopefully this process will start to pay off.
The bigger question is: How long will the blockbuster mentality last in the game space? According to Lucas, it's on the way out in the world of films.
Part of that is the barrier to entry has been esentially erased. Nearly everyone can afford high end tools (okay maybe not the highest end). But in games the tech changes constantly. Tools don't stay consistant. Or will they?
Could the edge help fuel a new set of tools for use in the game space? Spore looks like one attempt at that. How soon until we see others?