Will Wright leaves EA, founds Stupid Fun Club

[UPDATE] Sims and Spore designer leaves longtime home to establish "entertainment think tank" bankrolled by Electronic Arts.

145 Comments

Celebrated designer Will Wright is no longer an employee of Electronic Arts. Instead, he's now partnering with the company that his Sims series helped build into a publishing powerhouse.

Will Wright
Will Wright

The publisher announced today that it is a principal shareholder in Wright's new venture, Stupid Fun Club. The other principal shareholder is Wright himself, with the developer and EA owning equal percentages of the company.

Described as an "entertainment think tank," Stupid Fun Club will develop new intellectual properties across a variety of media. Games, films, TV shows, Web sites, and toys were listed as specific areas of interest for the company.

Last summer, after EA signed with a top Hollywood talent agency, Wright told Reuters that he was in discussions to bring Spore to television and film. "We're basically planting the seeds to spread Spore out to a much wider group of people than would ever play a computer game," he said.

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"The entertainment industry is moving rapidly into an era of revolutionary change," Wright said in a statement. "Stupid Fun Club will explore new possibilities that are emerging from this sublime chaos and create new forms of entertainment on a variety of platforms."

"We believe in Will's vision for Stupid Fun Club, and we're looking forward to partnering with Will and his team long into the future," EA CEO John Riccitiello said in a statement. Riccitiello added that the EA series most often associated with Wright--The Sims, Sim City, and Spore--will continue to be worked on in the future.

Stupid Fun Club is not Wright's first entrepreneurial endeavor. He founded Maxis with Jeff Braun in 1989, achieving success with the original Sim City. Maxis was acquired by EA in 1997, and Wright has spent the dozen years since working for the publisher.

[UPDATE] To learn more about Stupid Fun Club, read GameSpot's in-depth interview with Will Wright .

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Avatar image for redneckdouglas
redneckdouglas

There's a interview somewhere in the web where Will Wright called Wii players "swinging controller around like a dofus and part of an outdated videogame concept.".

Avatar image for weirdazza
weirdazza

i agree wiv jason, spore was crap, once u got to space stage. it was too repetative. dude their better off wivout u but apparently ea/maxis or whoever makes sims is goin into liqidation :O

Avatar image for jason19
jason19

i hate him he build spore so bad end games better be good for sims 3

Avatar image for shani_boy101
shani_boy101

nice name.

Avatar image for MegaWang
MegaWang

I want to see a new Simcity.

Avatar image for nappan
nappan

Hmmm.. I didn't see that coming either. I think in this case I tend to see where Gob Bluth is coming from... this EA is still a pain in the ***, but it isn't the same monster that nearly ruined itself. The Godfather was pretty terrible, but EA is still EA deep inside. That said, he had all the time in the world to make spore, and it was a well-made, but shallow game. Frankly, I didn't even find it to be STUPID fun. Of course, if Mr Versipellis is right, and this means a next gen sim city, I'm in 100%. That said... leaving a huge company like EA in the middle of an economic downturn? That takes guts.

Avatar image for Mr_Versipellis
Mr_Versipellis

Never saw that coming. On the one hand I'll miss his games, on the other I'm glad to see him free from EA to do as wishes. If only he was still with Maxis as an independent company... hey made some epic games... Sim City 4, anyone?

Avatar image for redoAlf
redoAlf

go will go

Avatar image for Sothe1789
Sothe1789

what a bum

Avatar image for Ohno_Kateh
Ohno_Kateh

Damn

Avatar image for casket56
casket56

Will Right was better without them! MAXIS were truly the company for these games anyway

Avatar image for gob__bluth
gob__bluth

EA under Riccitello has changed a lot. Yes, they still milk the sports franchises, but they've done a lot right, including taking risks on games like Mirror's Edge, Dead Space, Boom Blox, Zubo, and letting Wright work on Spore for YEARS until *he* decided it was done. They've cut crappy games they used to put out just to recoup some costs. They tried something innovative with Godfather 2 (even though reviews suggest they came up short). And EA Partners has made believers of former enemies. It's easy to be cynical and bag on them (I think many on here just do it to feel accepted and cool - some people on here are just following a script), but they're just not that bad.

Avatar image for JACKAL1883
JACKAL1883

jay is dumb

Avatar image for joelgargan
joelgargan

Only one good thing has come out of EA this gen... Dead Space.

Avatar image for izzygrigg
izzygrigg

I was wondering when this was going to happen. EA's just a big mess now, everything's abut MONEY MONEY MONEY. I mean, three installs for Spore?

Avatar image for Miroku_of_Nite1
Miroku_of_Nite1

Is this the start of the gaming Illuminati or something?

Avatar image for InnerSenses
InnerSenses

He reminds me of Dustin Hoffman...

Avatar image for gameking5000
gameking5000

Imagine if this company was acquired by EA too

Avatar image for Xequtra
Xequtra

bout time... Maxis was starting to go downhill quite rapidly too...

Avatar image for Evilhen88
Evilhen88

He should have got out of that company years ago there games are getting worse because of there greed.

Avatar image for ImOldGreg
ImOldGreg

Nice, Good luck to Will Wright. He is truly a gem of this industry.

Avatar image for chappy_man
chappy_man

crazy

Avatar image for Killingspree303
Killingspree303

That's great, and a good choice by Will Wright. EA has published some great games, but milks most of them for money. And they're lazing when it comes to developing game engines. I just hate that they're still using the same engine in today's RTS games as they did a couple of years back. I'm talking about the engine used in C&C: Generals, The Battle for Middle-Earth 1 & 2, C&C3: Tiberium Wars and C&C: Red Alert 3. And by the way, EA destroyed Westwood (the guys who made the first and best Red Alert) and made Red Alert they're own lousy way. But now, let's get some great games from Will Wright without EA interfering.

Avatar image for Rush2Fresh
Rush2Fresh

Ok now Sit down and make sim city 5 thanx

Avatar image for SweetMusic
SweetMusic

Good job for leaving EA, Will! :) Bad job for partnering up with them. :(

Avatar image for rkaycom
rkaycom

Should be called stupid fail club...

Avatar image for Cruorem
Cruorem

How in the gods names are they going to turn Spore into a film? Especially, as people have already said, the itself is only interesting for about five minutes.

Avatar image for war_gears
war_gears

honestly any one who agrees with rickster 34 is an honest moron as ea are any thing but good there servers are crap & most gameplay is terrible seriosly EA are not cool in any way sure they make games so what anyone can make a game

Avatar image for the_mitch28
the_mitch28

Now remake spore please.

Avatar image for eggiebertus
eggiebertus

Doesn't anyone think that this sounds a bit silly? '' "The entertainment industry is moving rapidly into an era of revolutionary change," Wright said in a statement. "Stupid Fun Club will explore new possibilities that are emerging from this sublime chaos and create new forms of entertainment on a variety of platforms." "We believe in Will's vision for Stupid Fun Club, and we're looking forward to partnering with Will and his team long into the future," EA CEO John Riccitiello said in a statement. Riccitiello added that the EA series most often associated with Wright--The Sims, Sim City, and Spore--will continue to be worked on in the future. '' Reminds me of that one James Bond movie in which this evil villian sees himself as a new Ceasar, using the entertainment industry instead of legions. Or of that friend of mine at my school who makes all kind of odd movies to post on Youtube hoping to become the new ''Star Wars kid''..

Avatar image for rickster34
rickster34

EA is cool

Avatar image for sj_nehama
sj_nehama

EA owns half of this new company. How comes they wont a word to say?

Avatar image for BenBenBen93
BenBenBen93

well what i mean by my comment is EA cannot pursued him to keep content out of the final game so then can put a price tag on afterwards

Avatar image for BenBenBen93
BenBenBen93

Finally we will soon see his games that EA won't have a say in and his game that aren't made just for money *cough* SIMS *cough*. and imagine what spore could of been

Avatar image for deactivated-57fce817a4cf5

I already belong to a club which is something like the name of this developer; the Nintendo fan club.

Avatar image for Fatal_Byte
Fatal_Byte

What a talented man, I hope this doesn't hurt EA. And yes I realize completely that it wasn't just one man it was entire team effort to make those successful titles.

Avatar image for Mysterieux936
Mysterieux936

Please tell me that Will is still going to have a big influence on future sims titles. If it's only in the hands of EA, my hopes are shattered.

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tony2077ca

stupid fun is better then no fun

Avatar image for sircyrus
sircyrus

Why doesn't he focus on making Spore actually fun beyond 5 minutes, before trying to put it on TV and other sources?

Avatar image for chutup
chutup

I wonder how long before EA just buys him again...

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joelgargan

Haha The Sims. What a game. Basically all i do is make a guy, get married, make his wife into a secret lesbian then turn of the PC hehe.

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wcw6

Hope we see a real and true Simcity 5!!!! I've been a fan of Will Wright since Simcity 2000 on the PC. Hail Will. Hope EA doesn't intrude much on his games, plans and ideas. I'm sick of putting up with their nonsense since the destruction of Westwood.

Avatar image for nappan
nappan

Make good games, and while you're at it, take some of EA's marketshare. They need the humility to get back to some decent games.

Avatar image for Guzthon
Guzthon

Good luck and God bless you and your team with success and faith.

Avatar image for swmeek
swmeek

Good for you Will! Hope it turns out to be what you want it to be and not what Ea says it should be!

Avatar image for Tremblay343
Tremblay343

Stupid Fun Club has existed for a while now actually. Will Wright is now just part of it.

Avatar image for amo_lang123
amo_lang123

this has the best name ever!!!!!! lol

Avatar image for Oni
Oni

Whatever floats your boat Will. Good luck.

Avatar image for Ardus
Ardus

Wait what? Stupid Fun Club? Whatever, as long as he doesn't stop making games he can join whatever ridiculous sounding club he wants to.

Avatar image for Tsuchikage
Tsuchikage

I love Will Wright, and since his last venture (Maxis) was so successful, I can't imagine Stupid Fun Club failing.