EA clarifies recent offline games comment

Peter Moore confirms that not every EA game will require an online connection, says free-to-play not coming to every EA franchise.

In a blog post today, Electronic Arts COO Peter Moore clarified comments he made at Gamescom recently about moving away from offline games.

Moore said it is a fact that EA no longer makes "offline" games, but clarified that not every game EA ships will require an Internet connection.

"Many, if not most, of our games include single-player, offline modes that you can play entirely without an Internet connection, if you so choose," Moore said. "We know that’s something many of our players want, and we will continue to deliver it."

Maxis' upcoming The Sims 4 will not require an Internet connection.

Moore also addressed "confusion" regarding EA's plans for free-to-play games going forward. At Gamescom, he suggested that every major EA franchise will have a free-to-play option. Today, he said this is not the case, though the company is evaluating options for the future.

"I also see confusion about our plans for free-to-play games. Many of our most popular franchises for PCs and mobile--including Battlefield, Need for Speed, FIFA, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Plants vs. Zombies, and now Madden NFL, to name a few--already offer free-to-play experiences. Command & Conquer is another exciting new free-to-play game coming online later this year," Moore said. "However, not all of EA's games will offer a free-to-play mode."

"We will continue to explore new free-to-play experiences for our franchises when we believe there is gamer interest and a cool new game we can build," he added. "But of course, we will continue to deliver award-winning core gaming experiences on all of these franchises."

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Discussion

399 comments
Divedude
Divedude

Like all director and VP's and everything at this time of big sales.  They will tell you what you want to hear just so they get more presales and bigger hype.  After release you will be what lies were really told on both sides.

quidditch3
quidditch3

OMFG biggest Backpedal in history!!!!

vackillers
vackillers

I love it when these big names in the industry say something completely fucking retarded and then back-peddle everything they just said a day ago! We all know EA/MS all want everyone to be online with their games, this is pretty a clear fact in both behaviours over the past 3 months but the simple fact is, people just wont buy your shit if that's the case, plain and simple!! the second you start taking away player/gamer options and choices just coz your a bunch of greedy fucking bitches, is the second everyone stops buying your products and moves on to something else. 

Free-To-Play has proven to fail time after time after time again, only in the absolute EXCEPTIONAL circumstances have they worked. Things like Command and conquer, no matter how much you try to justify that, should NEVER be a free-to-play fucking game, ever!!! its a C&C game, people will buy it !! no one is going to risk playing that on a serious note if its pay-to-win which these things may not start out doing, but always eventually do anyway!!!


I like moore, I think hes been pretty good over the current generation of games and is quite an intelligent guy, to come out with the dumbest comment the other day like that he really should know better then that, it's like he's take a play out of a MS play book. People don't like online-only, plain and simple, its time to stop shoving that shit down peoples throats, it doesn't matter how hard you try we just simply ain't gonna swallow it !!!

Mamamf
Mamamf

Did he have a stroke or sth?

keech
keech

Yeah there will be confusion when you make a statement, then backpedal and say something totally different in a matter of days.

You keep being afraid EA, we dog-piled Microsoft and we're coming after you next!  xD

franky111
franky111

Looks like EA is pulling a Microsoft...releasing a statement that is undesirable to the consumer, then "clarifying" with a more ambiguous statement.

Yeah, I can see why these two companies partnered together for the xbone.

TimberWolf_CLT
TimberWolf_CLT

You can tell that Peter used to work for Microsoft... :p

JDWolfie
JDWolfie

Thought we were about to have another Sims City disaster on our hands.

shnelle
shnelle

Wow an EA exec who said one thing then completely backpedaled and said the exact opposite.  I'm sure that will never happen again and we can actually trust what this guys says....<giggle>

Falconoffury
Falconoffury

Offline "experiences" mean that nothing can be experienced offline. They need to choose their words more carefully.

frylock1987
frylock1987

Nothing to clarify here Mr. Moore. Your company, more then likely saw all the negative backlash, so to ensure you keep getting money from your mindless fanbase, you are doing damage control.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

So Peter Moore is saying that he lied to our fucking faces before?

What a piece of human garbage, babbling whatever he thinks people want to hear.

RoyialNetwork
RoyialNetwork

No EA, whats confusing is why you think that and continue to implement the practice in the first play. That's what is confusing.

kohle36
kohle36

I love how single player games are now an optional 'mode'

Sublime408
Sublime408

EA, committed to doing as many 180s as Microsoft!

sethfrost
sethfrost

... aside from BF3, I haven't bought a EA game in years, nor have Origin on my machines. I can live without you, Peter Moore. (I bought BF3 for the SP part, played it once and that was that; was curious about the Frostbite2 engine & DX11 implementation by @repi & DICE).

ignautius
ignautius

I actually believe that he misspoke.  I really do.  But here's the thing I don't get:

How.  Can.  You.  Be.  That.  Stupid. ?

Suggesting only-online or always-online or required internet or anything of the sort is TOXIC in the video game industry right now.  Look at Diablo III.  Look at EA's OWN GAME, SimCity, and how awfully that went and how much crap they had to eat over the online requirements.  Look at the Xbone and the public backlash over Xbone-phone-home until Microsoft pulled the "feature".

So not only did he misspeak, but he literally took the most hated thing about trends in video gaming AND SUGGESTED IT WAS THEIR NEW BUSINESS MODEL.  It's a topic you should be staying as far away from as possible, so he wrote it in the sky in neon lights, and he didn't even NEED TO.

How can you be so stupid?

WICGuardian
WICGuardian

EA seriously thinks they are the most important company in gaming

somatzu
somatzu

Peter Moore killed the dreamcast.

pbo666
pbo666

my god the man acts like a free to play command and conquer is a good thing!! 

next you know we will be getting a major presser announcing the the release of KKOTOR (Kinect Knights of the Old Republic) and how great it is that its brought to millions free to play

Katz
Katz

EA isn't much into giving gamers what they want.

ddg4005
ddg4005

What'd I tell you?  People say things that are just for marketing purposes then have to backtrack on said statements.  No surprises here.

berserker66666
berserker66666

In Plants vs Zombies 2, you don't get any stars for finishing level the first time. (Which is needed to unlock the next world). There's an option of either unlocking the world via real money ($5) or grind through the levels again for stars. You only get a few stars per level and you usually need 15 or more stars to unlock.

So yea, I can reallyyyyyyyyyyy see the appeal of free-to-play games. FROM EA NO LESS............-_-

Heshertonfist
Heshertonfist

EA: "No offline modes. Ok, offline modes. But we're making everything free-to-play. Ok, no we're not. Whatever we said a few days ago, that's exactly what we're not going to do anymore. What were we talking about again?"


Oofoor
Oofoor

I never saw a need to clarify. The article from gamespot was doom and gloom on his statement. Yes Peter Moore spoke poorly, he almost always does. 

People just want to hate EA period. Nothing they ever do or say will be taken as good from this community.  

The prevalence of things like throw away facebook games being so hugely popular is why game devs will continue to look for ways to allow you to share your gaming experience with people you know. It is not because EA are dirtbags. It is because the majority of people playing games are doing the extremely shallow free to play pay to win games. 

If you sold sandwiches as a job and realized hey if I put X ingredient onto my sandwiches I can expand my consumer base and sell to a broader array of people making me more money. I am pretty sure you would do it. 

Every company ultimately wants their product to get to as many people as possible. I do not understand why people hate that about big companies when in a business situation they would most likely do the exact same thing.

picho86
picho86

@ddg4005 How is shooting yourself in the foot good for marketing?

Agent-M
Agent-M

@Heshertonfist Seems like EA may have some internal struggles for what their new policy should be.  Flip flopping around issues just proves it.

Darth_Aloysius
Darth_Aloysius

@Oofoor No, what EA are doing here is thinking that because tomato ketchup makes bacon sandwiches taste so great, they should stick it in cake, and chocolate, and jelly.

Do you want ketchup in your jelly? Didn't think so.

picho86
picho86

@Oofoor In short, they take serious franchises that people care about, and turn them into casual F2P.

They can make casual games all they want, but not at my expanse.

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

It's not as simple as that.

Adding online multiplayer to a purely offline singleplayer game costs a LOT of extra money to make. It's quite hard for companies to make that money back in the proccess.

Look at the newest Tomb Raider for example. It barely made a profit at all. I highly doubt many, if any, people bought it just for the online multiplayer experience. So essentially they invested a huge amount of money into something that didn't make them any more money. Thus their profit was less.

If they released without the multiplayer component, it would have saved on development and they would have made roughly the same amount of money, thus their profit would have been better.

The problem with CEO's like Peter Moore and the like, is that they don't know much about the market they are working in. They are only looking at it from a business sense, and the problem with that is the best business model is to cater to your audience. Since they don't know much about what their audience wants, they end up implementing unsuitable business plans.

There are features and systems that will NOT work with every game. Every game should be handled separately and a business model has to be established around that individual game/product. Something that may work for FPS games won't work the same in, say, a stealth game. What works in the latest sports titles obviously won't work in the lastest RPG. But companies like EA try to force certain thing (like online and to a lesser extent micro-transactions), into pretty much all their games. Some games it will work, others it won't.

So no, if I'm going to copy a business model, it would be from someone like Rockstar and Kojima Productions. Companies that cater to their audience. Games that are made by gamers, for gamers. Companies that try to make each game unique. My company would have artistic integrity and the most important thing would be to provide a service/product. Money-making comes second and would be used to help my company provide further services/products. EA on the other hand are only out to make money, and are using games as a means to get it. Their backwards philosophy means a lot of people don't trust them. They put money before their customers. Microsoft are like this too. they dismissed all the negative feedback regarding the Xbox One until they saw the poor pre-order sales. It was only after that they started listening.

ddg4005
ddg4005

@picho86 @ddg4005 

Because, unfortunately, these companies never see outlandish statements as self-destructive.  They're surrounded by a reality distortion field that tells them what they believe gamers want instead of actually listening to them.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Darth_Aloysius @Oofoor So what are they sticking into everything that does not work? Are they forcing Sims 4 into a mmo? no. Are they even making any multiplayer in it? no. 

People honestly thinking they want every game to have the exact same features are just fooling themselves.

kohle36
kohle36

@Scorpion1813 @Oofoor 

Hell look at Valve. Who'd have thought, catering to your audience even when it isn't necessarily the MOST profitable decision for Q3 is a viable business strategy. Turns out, keeping your customers happy matters too.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Scorpion1813 But the online they are adding with many games is not multiplayer. Yes forcing multiplayer into a singleplayer game is stupid. But an online mode does not mean multiplayer. People thinking him saying online meant multiplayer for every game are delusional.


And do you honestly think EA overlords every developer under them as to what features they "have" to put in? Most likely EA gives them budget and time restraints. And lets them do what they feel makes a good game. While still giving direction as to things they would like to see incorporated. If they were evil corporate overlords there would be no smaller developers working under them such as maxis and popcap. They would all just be EA. But that is clearly not what is going on.   The developers making the games do love games. They want to give artistic integrity and a great experience just like you say. If you as the parent company that helps fund them, which is what EA is to alot of game studios, puts money making second. Do you know what happens?All of it falls apart. Games never get put out, they get shelved. Studios collapse. Yes EA does a tremendous amount of idiotic stuff. They also publish a tremendous amount of amazing stuff. No company

Do I think EA is making the right calls? No. Do I think they as a business want to make money? Yes. No business thats puts money second will be around long. That is the harsh truth. If "art" is your first priority yes you will do some amazing things. You will also do some really really stupid things. To be truly great you have to balance the two. 

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@Oofoor

EA own The Sims and they own Maxis.

EA even made The Sims 3, and that came with more expansions than the previous two. 

EA being the publisher means EA get to chose what gets published, how it get's published, and when it gets published.

Darth_Aloysius
Darth_Aloysius

@Oofoor @Darth_Aloysius Ever heard of SimCity? Always online - caused only problems.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Scorpion1813 @Oofoor Ok you don't want online. Maybe someone else does. So by having a feature in a game that allows you to log on to use it does not actually affect the player that does not want to log on. Or it shouldn't, sometimes it does and that sucks.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Scorpion1813 @Oofoor I thought they announced Sims 4 not being always online was a direct result of their Sim City debacle. 

And I am not entirely confident that EA forces Maxis to make expansions for the Sims. It is a proven business model that allows you to add what you want into your game while ignoring what you dont want.

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@Oofoor

"People honestly thinking they want every game to have the exact same features are just fooling themselves.

"We don't ship a game at EA that is offline; just doesn't happen,"

EA are all about every game being online. They even tried telling us that's what we want. And despite us telling them that no, it's is in fact NOT what we want, they continued on with their "everything must have online" crusade!

kohle36
kohle36

@Oofoor @Darth_Aloysius Which is exactly why people find PR blunders like Moore's all the more facepalmable. When a company fucks up bigtime and then tells its customers 'we're listening', only to make a statement mere months later that seems to say ('actually, we're not. lul!'), people are naturally going to be wary. When it's a company that regularly does these sorts of things (and actually follows through), people are going to call them on it. 

It doesn't even particularly matter at this point what Moore 'meant to say', because he said it in the wrong way to the wrong people at the wrong time. EA doesn't 'want' anything for their games except for them to be as profitable as possible. That means convincing as many people to buy them as possible. Stuff like this doesn't help their case. Contrary to what you seem to believe however, focusing on profitability at the expense of literally everything else isn't always the most profitable route (see my above comment about Valve)

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@Oofoor

I think I'm missing some news here. When was it announced that EA listened to their fans and made SimCity offline?

Sims 4 already has 2 expansion packs announced and the game still has over a year left in development. But, you'd think if they were listening to the customer they wouldn't be releasing tiny stuff packs at half the price of the full game.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@kohle36 @Oofoor @Darth_Aloysius Oh is it because they actually listen to the players? If enough people throw a fit or do not support something, like Sim City being online required, they make changes to keep people happy so money will keep coming in. EA paid attention and they adjusted. What other news am I missing in relation to my statement?

kohle36
kohle36

@Oofoor  @Darth_Aloysius You don't follow gaming news that closely, do you? Do you know WHY they Sims 4 looks like it does now? Protip: it's not due to the goodness in EAs hearts or their desire for creative diversity.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@picho86 @Oofoor PVZ has always been casual. Awesome! but casual. Free to play was not as big when it first came out. Lot of people hated Star wars the old republic. So they tried to change it up to get interest going again.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Scorpion1813 I just had a fun idea. I should apply for the job as interpreter of Peter Moore. Then I could smack him when he starts talkin. And say it the correct way lol. 

But in seriousness I get what your sayin. Just I know that EA (despite what Peter Moore or Frank Gibeau sometimes say) will not force online only into every game they put out.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Scorpion1813 @Oofoor Yes Peter Moore is an idiot when it comes to speaking. But saying "we don't offer offline experiences anymore" is not saying "All our games will be online only." It means "We know people like to share what they do in their games with friends. So all our games will allow you to do that somehow."

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@Oofoor

"No where in this recent news did Peter Moore say all our games will be always online"

They more-or-less did.

"we don't deliver offline experiences any more." 

There are plenty of offline games out there, and they are going strong. Not to mention the strong resistence against online-only. Just because it is becoming more commonplace, doesn't mean it's going to take over the whole industry and all games will be online-only.

Oofoor
Oofoor

@Scorpion1813 @Oofoor The whole industry is moving to online only. That is not an EA exclusive gripe.

 No where in this recent news did Peter Moore say all our games will be always online. Actually watch the interview that this news is base on.

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@Oofoor  

People are raging at EA because EA keep telling us what we supposedly want, but they couldn't be further from the truth. Also, yes, forcing online features into games that are no better off for them is only ruining those games.

EA are moving towards online-only, they've said as much themselves. But considering a lot of there games are singleplayer games first and foremost, online-only is not welcome.

Valve game are designed to be able to play both online and offline. Sure, some may focus more on the online part of things (mostly for multiplayer - but that is rarely at the expense of the offline gamer).

Oofoor
Oofoor

@kohle36 @Scorpion1813 @Oofoor But people are raging at EA over putting online elements into all of their games right? Is that not the core of this current rage at EA? Every valve game has online components.


I never have tried to say making customers happy is not important. Making customers happy is one of the best ways to keep money in your business.

Scorpion1813
Scorpion1813

@Oofoor

"EA try to force certain thing (like online and to a lesser extent micro-transactions), into pretty much all their games."

Notice I didn't say online multiplayer. I just said online. The part where I did talk about online multiplayer was an example of how forced features are not a good thing. Especially when these features are not the reason people buy those games. They aren't attracting more buyers, they are just raising the development cost and don't get any reward for it.

The publisher/developer relationship is very heavily biased in the publishers favour. Many publishers take over creative control from the developers. Publishers will often require ownership of an IP if they agree to publish it. That gives them creative control and it also means they can give it to another developer if the one currently working on it doesn't play ball.This isn't to say they decide everything, but they have the final say and if they want a specific feature in the game then the developer does it. If they don't do it (and they still own the IP) then they will have to find another publisher, who will be asking why they broke off from the previous publishers. In the end another publisher isn't going to invest in something if there is a chance the dev will run off again.

EA have a very distinct vision of what they want their games to have. "We don't ship a game at EA that is offline; just doesn't happen". So everything they publish is forced to have online features.That's their business plan and all their developers will have to adhere to it or go elsewhere.

Putting creativity first, money second, does not mean guaranteed failure. It just means more importance is put on the game itself, rather than on how best to maximise profit. This does not mean money-making should be ignored. It's just not top priority. Look at Rockstar: they could just as easily release a game annually like AssCreed and make a shit-ton of money. But they don't ,and the reason why is because they want to take their time making the game the best it can be and they want to respect the gamers by not selling the same game to us every single year.

Look at Nintendo - they'd make way more money selling their games multiplatform, but they aren't letting that get in the way of making great games and being one of the biggest companies in the industry along with Rockstar.

Money supports developing the game, but it's not infinite - it does run out. There is a time when a game needs to be declared done, and then needs to be shipped and sold. That's where the importance of game design comes into play. What features must be put into the game, and what features are extras that can be adding if time allows it (or at a later date via expansions, DLC, or sequels).

Money should be used to support the company in making games. Instead, some companies use games as a way to support making money. Only caring about money, and showing you clearly don't have any integrity for the product or it's consumer-base, isn't going to win you any favours. All you are doing is breading mistrust in your company and your product. For example: Microsoft completely lost all my trust when they disregarded all our feedback, essentially saying we were all wrong. As soon as they got the pre-order sales figures back they changed their minds and all of a sudden started "listening to our feedback". Because of their attitude and blatant disregard for gamers, as a gamer, I won't be supporting them. EA are pretty much bordering on the same thing, and if they ever do drop offline support, I won't be buying any of their products.