EA's four-way play

The megapublisher will attempt to streamline 'operational efficiency' by reorganising into four separate business units.

Electronic Arts' new chief executive officer, John Riccitiello, is going to be making some changes to the way the gaming giant runs its business. Riccitiello, who assumed his post in April, will be restructuring the company's framework so that it becomes four separate labels.

Riccitiello was formerly EA's president and COO, before resigning in April 2004 to "start a private equity business." He then returned to EA as CEO after former top dog Larry Probst quit unexpectedly in February this year.

The first of the four units, EA Games, will be the largest division and headed up by Frank Gibeau. This label will take responsibility for titles, including the Battlefield series, the Medal of Honor series, Spore, the Need for Speed series, and the Command & Conquer series. EA Games is also the label home for EA partners' publishing.

The second will be EA Sports, which will be run by executive vice president Joel Linzer in the interim period until a permanent boss is announced. EA Sports will, unsurprisingly, handle the sports game titles, including the popular FIFA Soccer games, the Madden series, the Tiger Woods PGA Tour golf game series, and the NASCAR series.

The Sims games will be getting their own label, headed up by Nancy Smith, as the series continues to spawn sequels and expansion packs. The reasoning behind this is to cut down on the red tape, meaning fewer execs will have to sign off games or approve regional launches of existing titles.

The fourth division, EA Casual Entertainment, was announced earlier this month and will be a casual-games arm to be headed up by former Activision head of publishing Kathy Vrabeck. This division will be responsible for "casual" titles on consoles, PCs, handhelds, and mobile phones, with games, franchises, and licenses to be announced at a later date.

An EA spokesperson told GameSpot, "It's not a division, it's the creation of four new labels...It will allow us to focus more on customers, more on global priorities, and it will speed decision making."

The transition will be rolled out over the coming months.

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Discussion

115 comments
Cobra5
Cobra5

I really, really hate a lot of the stuff EA has done, with a lot of their licenses, and a lot of their games... their support is terrible... and their games always feel "half-completed"... and so many other reasons. But they're so hard to avoid. SO MANY games belong to them now its like I can't avoid playing their games even though I want to. Oh well.

HyruleanLink
HyruleanLink

This ought to be a good move for EA since they are a major company. Maybe this will allow better production and organization

alphawolf_0
alphawolf_0

Thats kind of funny. " We are dividing into EA games, EA sports, EA Casual and....The sims"

BigDaveyDogz
BigDaveyDogz

people who bash EA have no idea what they are talking about. I've been playing EA games since the Sega Genesis. One of my favorite games of all time: General Chaos!!! who remembers that game!?!?

jjdomo
jjdomo

xxSupermanSGSxx says: "EA still sucks. You can not name me any game that you would consider in the Top 20 or Top 30 for any given year. And thats also a shame considering how many games they put out a year. " Dude, I would consider their sports games as the top game in each category every year. Sims (and all its add-ons and expansions) is probably the best-selling game ever. I consider their games to be in the top 10 every year.

spazdawg
spazdawg

you guys say that EA lacks innovation look at the games theyve put out over the years Sims, Madden, burnout, Command and Conquer Series if EA sucks so bad why r gamers buyin there games?

Montrealien
Montrealien

Pajamas said Maxis is OFFICIALLY over... look what they done to SimCity. They gave it to an external developer to do what was an originally Maxis Game. And Spore was seperacted from the Sims team, making them a broken family. But WIll Wright has no say on the Sims after he created the 1st game eons ago. SimCity too I Guess. EA's just milking on Will's success. Maxis was milking maxis way before EA bought it....NOOB!

rico212
rico212

The only things i like from EA is the Battlefield Series, a little of the Medal of Honor series and some of there sports games. Other then that Activision pawns EA.

pajamas
pajamas

Maxis is OFFICIALLY over... look what they done to SimCity. They gave it to an external developer to do what was an originally Maxis Game. And Spore was seperacted from the Sims team, making them a broken family. But WIll Wright has no say on the Sims after he created the 1st game eons ago. SimCity too I Guess. EA's just milking on Will's success.

Murpheus007
Murpheus007

I like to see people dumping on EA. Their quality sucks, or they have no innovation. Seriously people, you're not hardcore just because you bash the LARGEST developer/publisher there is. They didn't get where they are by pumping out bad product. Not everything they do is gold, but believe me, people buy what they sell. And just because you don't, doesn't make you cool. I know that hurts a little bit, but it's true. Deal with it.

Crush_Project
Crush_Project

wait a minute. You mean that spending $10 dollars to make a multi million dollar game isnt efficient? Who cares what EA does? They are just going to continue to screw everyone.

chrisdojo
chrisdojo

doesn't sound like the complexity will help anything...

Reetesh
Reetesh

Sims gets its own lable.. wow. It really is a Huge thing for EA

ElmorePOW
ElmorePOW

When we will see the fruit of that EA's innovation department? XD - never?

Khoo1992
Khoo1992

Their games quality sucks, but i hope it will be better soon after new division is up

xxSupermanSGSxx
xxSupermanSGSxx

EA still sucks. You can not name me any game that you would consider in the Top 20 or Top 30 for any given year. And thats also a shame considering how many games they put out a year.

SimuLord
SimuLord

It's an encouraging sign for the casual games industry (for those wondering, that's games like Bejeweled and the rest of PopCap's body of work, along with most of the Puzzle Pirates universe---y'know, the kinds of games your mom and grandma would play) that a company like Electronic Arts wants to get in on it. Beyond that, having a separate business unit for the Sims franchise just makes good business sense---the franchise has so much to it between the PC flagship and its massive volume of x-packs, the console stuff, the new laptop-friendly "Stories" games that having a distinct division head/VP running it will help streamline costs and production. EA Games and EA Sports are already familiar brands (one could argue the latter brand is one of the biggest brands in gaming, right up there with the titans as far as public recognition by its demographic is concerned), so those won't take much tweaking. I'd say it's a good time to pop onto E*Trade and buy a few shares of ERTS (and no, I'm not paid to say that.)

football_legend
football_legend

I agree, EA recently had a tremendous change of heart with games like Crysis, Army of Two coming. People just bash em cuz they think since hte others are doing, why not me?- lol

360wishlist
360wishlist

whats wrong with you people??? EA games are awesome, Madden, NBA Live, FIFA, Fight Night, Godfather, Medal of Honor, Call of Duty, and Ea distributes HL games now so EA is pretty kickass. The gaming industry would be worse if a megapublisher like EA never made it this popular.

bigmick07
bigmick07

as long as the sports games keep coming with new feature and graphics i'll be happy

Pete5506
Pete5506

Wow this is working? good for ea

Death_Masta187
Death_Masta187

Re:vitz3 Seriously if we all dislike EA. Who the heck is buying this crap then? __________________________ I have been asking my self that same question for years....because they make 99.9% crap I have not and will not buy any EA game regardless of what kind of review it gets... All i know is even gamespot has their head A$$ about EA and give out higher scores then they deserve... If i was to review any game that has spy ware build in it automatically receives a 5.0 and goes down from there... How Battlefield 2142 got an 8.1 is beyond me. EA does more harm to gaming then it does good... EA killed independent developers...

vondric
vondric

What about EA Mythic and Warhammer?

vitz3
vitz3

Seriously if we all dislike EA. Who the heck is buying this crap then?

SilentHillX
SilentHillX

The only game under EA I have my eye on this year is Army Of Two. I have real high hopes for that one ( I probably shouldnt though...) A game designed exclusively for intuitive, interactive Co-Op play? If they play their cards right with the pace, animation, and sense of action, (im so far loving the art direction with the characters) this could be one hell of a new IP.

bloodychimp
bloodychimp

EA still owes me $40 for Battlefield 2142. The turret glitch completely ruined Titan mode, and it wasn't like that was something they could have missed in Alpha.

Albi4ever
Albi4ever

Hey, SSX Blur is pretty dang good considering the overall "meh"-ness of most EA games... maybe this will make the right people concentrate on the right things and make better games? yeah? here' s hoping!

Baroncx
Baroncx

yet the majority of thier games will continue to lack quality.

DeltaTeam
DeltaTeam

What? does this make sense or just a wast of money and time? I'm not sure but what the hell is Casual? do they even make these kinds of games? ah well, they've got money to throw away.

vitz3
vitz3

"It's not a division, it's the creation of four new labels...It will allow us to focus more on customers, more on global priorities, and it will speed decision making." Correction. "It's not a division, it's the creation of four new labels...It will allow us to focus more on milking customers, more on global domination priorities, and it will speed hasty and rash decision making."

karahasan
karahasan

So, where in which division will will wright work for, now that his maxis games have been split among the divisions?

ffgothic
ffgothic

Good, now make better games EA! Make Madden better! Need for Speed better! NBA Live better! You catch my drift :P

carddude
carddude

Saying four-way makes it sound like you are making a sex swatsitka. Am I right or am I right?

FallenAngel
FallenAngel

LOL Ahkarisazael, couldn't agree more :D

Ahkarisazael
Ahkarisazael

Wow...now we have four really stupid companies trying to bleed us for cash instead of just one! *walks out the door...which in turn mutes the sound of him shooting himself...*

feanorkms
feanorkms

EA is the Microsoft of Operating System Software, always buying out it competitors.

Decessus
Decessus

No, COO stands for Chief Operating Officer.

onemic
onemic

where's EA big? Are they going to stop making extreme sports titles? Or is it all under EA sports now?

kyo_tetsuei
kyo_tetsuei

The funny part of this is, even though they're breaking everything off into neat little segments, at the rate that EA has been acquiring studios and companies, it's only a matter of time before one ends up buying the others and they all become EA again.

Kirro_Zero
Kirro_Zero

I don't care for EA games. They put out a few good games, like the Battlefield series and C&C, but then they have the clone sports games and their cash cow, The Sims. Not that The Sims isn't a good series, but the endless expansion packs turned me off the series long ago.

jmford_1
jmford_1

So, fewer people to sign off on games means we get the junk even faster! As said below, they should come out with a new Desert/Urban Strike game. I liked them a lot.

ZevYehudi
ZevYehudi

Just a comment, there is a typo and it should say "Riccitiello was formerly EA's president and CEO", instead of "Riccitiello was formerly EA's president and COO."

Unknown_Legend
Unknown_Legend

We can officially call EA Sports the laziest unit of the four. Looking forward to seeing Madden 2008, 2009, & 2010 all with the same features and graphics! Brilliant!

RaiKageRyu
RaiKageRyu

Wow, the Sims got their own division.

Luker123
Luker123

Well now we can at least blame one label for giving us the same sports game every year!

bka4u2c_basic
bka4u2c_basic

Posted by: 'razu_gamer ' "each to take over each corner of the world." I knew the world was flat. LOL I'm not surprised the Sims franchise got its own division. Its only the biggest selling PC game of all time. The Sims + expansions has sold more than 85 million copies since it was introduced in 2000. EA knows where their main source of income is and have done what any other company who has a product that sells well would do, milk it. Can't blame them for that. They also just sold "The Sims" movie rights to 20th Century Fox for who knows how much. I sure wish I thought of The Sims. So hopefully by branching out they will focus on making other titles better. I would love a fresh Madden or NBA Live game.

Nightphoenix16
Nightphoenix16

i think SSX needs its own label with all the games the series has put out