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Author Topic: EA responds, and then really responds to their award  (Read 10009 times)

Blyss

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So initially, this was thrown out there, and was apparently a joke, though given their reputation, some didn't realize that it was.  Too funny that people DIDN'T get the joke.

Then they really did reply, and it wasn't a lot better.

These are my favorite bits:

"Many continue to claim the Always-On function in SimCity is a DRM scheme. It’s not. People still want to argue about it. We can’t be any clearer—it’s not. Period."

With no real explanation as to how it's not, why people are wrong, just that they are, period.  Damn it.  Fuck you guys for questioning us.



"In the past year, we have received thousands of emails and postcards protesting against EA for allowing players to create LGBT characters in our games. This week, we’re seeing posts on conservative web sites urging people to protest our LGBT policy by voting EA the Worst Company in America.

That last one is particularly telling. If that’s what makes us the worst company, bring it on.  Because we're not caving on that."


The bad part of that is that there seems to be no basis for it, and they themselves cite no reference for it.  It does make them sound pretty good as a company, until you realize that it's probably all a lie, and that makes it a little more sinister in my opinion.  Using a topic that you know will be polarizing to make you seem like a good guy, makes you more of a bad guy, as far as I'm concerned.

EA has already gone into the pile with Capcom as companies that will no longer get my money.  I wonder how many more people feel that way now?
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #1 on: 10 Apr 2013, 11:44 »

I'll come back to this in a bit, but I don't wanna forget
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #2 on: 10 Apr 2013, 12:28 »

*sits back, lights cigarette, awaits ackblom12's return*

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #3 on: 10 Apr 2013, 12:50 »

Have you got a page that the first image is used on?
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Blyss

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #5 on: 10 Apr 2013, 13:24 »

"In the past year, we have received thousands of emails and postcards protesting against EA for allowing players to create LGBT characters in our games. This week, we’re seeing posts on conservative web sites urging people to protest our LGBT policy by voting EA the Worst Company in America.

That last one is particularly telling. If that’s what makes us the worst company, bring it on.  Because we're not caving on that."


Hey, EA, how about you stop using us as a transparent diversion for awful business practices and stop trying to poison the well by associating critics with bigots? It isn't "supportive". It isn't "progressive". It's exploitative.

I see them trot out that bullshit all the time when it wouldn't even be a fraction of what people are talking about. It's blatant and insulting.

Also I can't think of a single example of a trans* character anyway. More like an endless stream of Bisexuals, letting them reuse the same characters for any play-through and list them as available romances. Because, y'know, screw having distinct characters - that's hard work.
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de_la_Nae

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #6 on: 10 Apr 2013, 14:21 »

EA used to be bloody awful to work for, I'm lead to believe. Can't speak for these days.

I admit, I tend to agree with the first link. It's snarky enough to get my attention, for one thing.

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #7 on: 10 Apr 2013, 18:11 »

They're not winning the "Golden Poo" awards for their LGBT policies, they're winning them because they have the corporate reputation of a biohazard bin.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #8 on: 10 Apr 2013, 19:30 »

It really sucks that EA continues to be one gigantic collective asshole of a corporation. I love the new SimCity, and frankly a good 75% of my console games are EA, too.

There's a grain of truth in that letter, too. Yeah, EA treats their customers like shit pretty frequently. But at least they're not, you know, starting wars in 3rd world countries or clearcutting an entire rainforest.
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cesium133

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #9 on: 10 Apr 2013, 19:45 »

Eh, I didn't buy the new SimCity game and I'm not going to. I'm a huge fan of SimCity. I've played the original, 2K, 3K, and 4, and 4 is my favorite. I just refuse to buy any game that requires an internet connection. For one thing, many of the times that I do get enough time to play a game, I'm in a situation where I don't have an internet connection (e.g. I'm waiting at the airport and the crappy wifi there costs $15 to use). Plus, I usually wait a couple years before buying a new game anyway, which with my luck would be right before EA got tired of running the server for it and shut it down.
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GarandMarine

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #10 on: 10 Apr 2013, 20:35 »

It really sucks that EA continues to be one gigantic collective asshole of a corporation. I love the new SimCity, and frankly a good 75% of my console games are EA, too.

There's a grain of truth in that letter, too. Yeah, EA treats their customers like shit pretty frequently. But at least they're not, you know, starting wars in 3rd world countries or clearcutting an entire rainforest.

I cannot resist appending "Yet" or "That we know of" to that last statement.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #11 on: 11 Apr 2013, 12:01 »

Ok, despite essentially bookmarking the thread I totally forgot about it. I'm also not Kat, so it's not like I've been preparing an essay with well thought out arguments and conclusions here, so I don't really have an excuse. :P

Alright, so the problem I have here is that EA is basically using the obvious absurdity of beating out companies like Bank of America for that award to completely avoid acknowledging why the gaming community has such disdain for them, as both a publisher and developer. I have no doubt they've gotten hate mail for including LGBT romances in games (though even compared to the already kind of boring and borderline creepy hetero romance options, they are subpar) that is not why they're assholes. They're assholes for taking any and all business practices such as Free 2 Play, DRM, acquiring established development houses, social features, near required multiplayer and various other things and turning them into a goddamn circus of "what not to do" and then managing to increase how shit it is with every iteration. They're about as close to the perfect example of being Anti-Consumer as a game company can possibly get and they think we should be thankful for it.

Also as far as I know, they're work conditions have not gotten any better since the big debacle surrounding it a few years ago.
« Last Edit: 11 Apr 2013, 13:32 by ackblom12 »
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jwhouk

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #12 on: 11 Apr 2013, 16:05 »

Remember when they were "Electronic Arts"? They had such promise back then.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #13 on: 11 Apr 2013, 16:15 »

Except when they didn't. This isn't anything new is the problem. They have short periods of brilliance, like a few years ago when they took a lot of chances on new IPs alike Dead Space, Mirror's Edge and the like. Before that? They were known for buying established development houses, gutting them and then shitting all over the franchises they had acquired. Remember Bullfrog? Westwood Studios? Origin Systems? Maxis? If they didn't shit all over it, they ignored it and just refused to do anything with it.
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Blyss

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #14 on: 11 Apr 2013, 16:19 »

Bullfrog and Westwood I remember fondly.  Some pretty awesome titles came out of those studios.
 :meh:
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #15 on: 11 Apr 2013, 16:21 »

forgot to say, Maxis still exists and is used, but is mostly a shadow of it's former self. It's basically nothing but a Sims and Sims Expansion cash cow now days. They made the new Sim City, but I'm not sure I'm willing to give them much praise for that.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #16 on: 11 Apr 2013, 16:23 »

I just made myself angry by actually looking up all of their aquisitions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_acquisitions_by_Electronic_Arts

So much angry sad.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #17 on: 11 Apr 2013, 18:43 »

I recall most of those, I think. Though Maxis was *always* a Sim-something company, it felt like.

By the way: Sim Copter = best. Just be aware.

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #18 on: 11 Apr 2013, 18:46 »

SimCopter is awesome. I also like Streets of SimCity. Back in college we would play that over a LAN. If Maxis/EA released a version of Streets of SimCity compatible with SimCity 4, I would buy it in a heartbeat.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #19 on: 11 Apr 2013, 18:53 »

Oh yeah, Maxis was definitely always known for the general Sim franchise, but it wasn't The Sims, which was made about in 2000, so 3 years after EA's purchase, that they started some really nasty practices, such as the ridiculous number of $30 expansions for each entry of The Sims franchise.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #20 on: 11 Apr 2013, 22:57 »

....well, that acquisition list left me depressed. Westwood and Bioware in particular.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #21 on: 12 Apr 2013, 02:08 »

To be honest as shitty as EA's business practices are it's also really come down to their shitty PR department and the fact that they've had this image for yonks already.
Other companies are better at keeping a lid down on their dirty laundry, and EA makes for an easy target because they basically represent all the other stupid things that the majority of videogame publishers/developer groups do.

Also, the award is kind of stupid since it is made off the internet, and the gaming community's problems are full of opinions. Many of those may be informed opinions, sure, but still opinions. Kind of falls into the same category as people who review-bomb on Metacritic.
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Blyss

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #22 on: 12 Apr 2013, 10:55 »

I think that fact that they responded (at all) speaks volumes, but it also says a lot that their response to an award that doesn't mean much, was something that was probably better left unsaid.

To start with a modicum of humility only to end off with, "well, the only people that are really voting for us are narrow minded bigots, see?" really doesn't help them or their image in the least.

What's that old saying about speaking and removing all doubt?  I forget.

 :wink:
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #23 on: 12 Apr 2013, 11:10 »

About the whole "we get complaints for being brave enough to front LGBT characters", does that happen in any non-bioware games? Or is their bravery on the LGBT B front only really a consequence of buying Bioware, who I think had already been including (I might be wrong) gay characters in their games?
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #24 on: 12 Apr 2013, 11:17 »

I think the closest Bioware got to having a non hetero characters before EA was Mass Effect, so yeah Bioware had. Poorly done even in comparison to their regularly kind of borderline creepy hetero romance subplots, but yeah I think that's about it. I'm happy to be corrected on that though.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #25 on: 12 Apr 2013, 16:01 »

Jade Empire, which was Bioware's first in-house IP, had male-male and female-female romance options. You have to be fairly meticulous with your conversation choices to trigger them, and you have to patch the game to prevent the gay kiss from being hidden :roll:, but the options are there.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #26 on: 12 Apr 2013, 16:05 »

Ah right, forgot about Jade Empire. I'm pretty sad that setting never really got a proper go at it. I would love to have some more Wuxia flavored action RPGs.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #27 on: 12 Apr 2013, 16:47 »

Jade Empire was fantastic, and another Bioware favorite for me. Dragonage Origins was pre-EA right? I know that had same sex options.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #28 on: 12 Apr 2013, 16:50 »

Maybe? I think EA purchased the Bioware parent company in 2007 or 2008, but I can't remember for certain.

Edit: Ok, they made the purchase January of 2008, which means Dragon Age was after the purchase. Mass Effect 1 was the only one released of those two franchises before the purchase.
« Last Edit: 12 Apr 2013, 17:06 by ackblom12 »
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #29 on: 12 Apr 2013, 21:32 »

I actually REALLY enjoyed DA:O. Shame I never got to finish it....

(was staying at my uncle's for a summer and he had it for xbox)
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #30 on: 13 Apr 2013, 03:52 »

It is fucking brilliant.

I read about the Jade Empire gay kiss censorship thing. There's how many years between that and the obvious "gay sex is happening" in Mass Effect and DA, and even though those were kinda... not really perfect, it says a huge deal about how fast the world is moving.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #31 on: 13 Apr 2013, 08:24 »

I did love DA:O, but dear lord the omen it revealed when it practically asked for your credit card number to access an area in-game.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #32 on: 13 Apr 2013, 08:35 »

Also I can't think of a single example of a trans* character anyway. More like an endless stream of Bisexuals, letting them reuse the same characters for any play-through and list them as available romances.

Forgot to mention, but Avellone has said in a previous talk about Project Eternity that one of the theme's he's wanting to explore is that souls in that world are gendered, and what happens when someone is reincarnated into the body that doesn't match that. If it was anyone but Obsidian, I'd be skeptical of their ability to handle such a topic and I'm hoping it's a topic they end up going ahead with in game.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #33 on: 13 Apr 2013, 09:14 »

Ah, but that's not EA then. Hope it turns out well and that the writers don't take for granted that they're so fantastic that they don't need any input. As cisgendered depictions can be prone to do. :-P

Jade Empire

While we're straying a bit from EA: Opinions on Jade Empire, Akima? I picked it up on some Steam sale but haven't played it yet.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #34 on: 13 Apr 2013, 09:19 »

Whoa! Really? I totally missed that interview. So Eternity is gonna tackle trans* issues? ....yeah any one but Obsidian I'd be concerned, otherwise that sounds pretty kick ass.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #35 on: 13 Apr 2013, 09:37 »

Possibly. It's one of the themes they openly talked about when the Kickstarter was still going, which makes it likely, but it's certainly no guarantee. I've got high hopes for it happening though.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #36 on: 13 Apr 2013, 18:33 »

Y'know, when it comes to video games, I think it doesn't matter if a character is male, female, trans*, gay, straight, bi, or purple. What matters is if the game is any good or not.

And this, unfortunately, is where EA has failed miserably.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #37 on: 13 Apr 2013, 18:36 »

I disagree with that entirely, for the same reason that portrayals (or lack thereof) of any general group of society is portrayed in media, it matters about them in video games. I doubt there are many non-white, non-male, and/or non-cis folk that think that their portrayal, or lack thereof, doesn't matter.
« Last Edit: 13 Apr 2013, 20:59 by ackblom12 »
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #38 on: 13 Apr 2013, 18:36 »

@Joseph: But that "good" hinges on having meaningful and evocative subject-matter at the core of your mechanics.

Not all of us are looking for something purely mechanical (and even those generally don't succeed without some theme to them).

I doubt there are many non-white, non-male, non-cis folk that think that their portrayal, or lack thereof, doesn't matter.

Absolutely it does. Though if portrayals are denigrating then I'd rather there be a lack of them. Easier to deal when people don't start out with minstrel shows in mind.
« Last Edit: 13 Apr 2013, 18:50 by Valdís »
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #39 on: 13 Apr 2013, 22:01 »

I think what Joe is saying is that simply adding or improving diversity will not in itself contribute to improving poor gameplay, nor compensate for it.

And while a realistic diversity is good, it is not necessarily always appropriate - it is perfectly possible to have a story (in any medium) about a slice of society that is sufficiently small or specialised or localised or isolated that diversity for its own sake would actually be unrealistic (see also: positive discrimination).  There is diversity within diversity, as it were.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #40 on: 13 Apr 2013, 22:16 »

I don't think that anyone here would argue against that, but this is an industry that has recently had multiple instances of publishers trying to get developers to remove female leads from the cover art (The Last of Us), developers removing them from the same on their own for 'better sales' (Bioshock: Infinite), and the developer of Remember Me having to fight tooth and nail to have a female main character. This isn't even going into how female characters are normally treated.

And then there's the LGBT spectrum that practically doesn't exist. Nor issues with POC and their visibility.

Edit: Basically I'm saying that's all fine and good, but that diversity you're talking about doesn't actually exist in any meaningful form in this industry.
« Last Edit: 13 Apr 2013, 22:44 by ackblom12 »
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #41 on: 18 Apr 2013, 21:09 »

*Looks at the above statement*

SO what you're saying is that in the games that I have been most excited about over the last year, YoungWhiteMale fuckery has been trying to change the aspects that have been most awesome about them.

Are you SHITTING me.
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ackblom12

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #42 on: 18 Apr 2013, 21:19 »

This article is a little over a year old and has a good amount of profanity, but it covers a couple of other things I forgot to mention EA is pretty bad about. It doesn't include everything, and nothing from the last year, but it definitely has a couple of things I had forgotten about.

List of things EA has done that are objectively shit
« Last Edit: 18 Apr 2013, 21:56 by ackblom12 »
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #43 on: 18 Apr 2013, 21:52 »

Faith in gaming industry. . . .waning. . . .
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #44 on: 19 Apr 2013, 00:36 »

From what I've heard, the industry representative in Brian Fargo's parody videos during the kickstarter campaign for Wasteland 2 is pretty representative of the real world.
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #45 on: 19 Apr 2013, 01:02 »

It's a shame really, on EA's side. I'm rather putting my faith into indie devs like the Supergiants, which coincidentally is a team that split from EA because they were furious that their producers never played the games they were producing. I'm amazed there isn't a forum topic for them yet.

And Supgergiant Games made the incredible Bastion by holing themselves up in the house of the studio presidents' father for three years. Seriously, if you lock 5 people into a room for three years, what comes out must either be brilliant or bullshit.

So glad it's the former.

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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #46 on: 25 Apr 2013, 12:57 »

This article is a little over a year old and has a good amount of profanity, but it covers a couple of other things I forgot to mention EA is pretty bad about. It doesn't include everything, and nothing from the last year, but it definitely has a couple of things I had forgotten about.

List of things EA has done that are objectively shit

That was actually amazing to read.  I knew of some of the things they were guilty of, but no idea just how much. 
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #48 on: 30 Apr 2013, 14:49 »

kind of borderline creepy hetero romance subplots
How so? I don't have much experience (never really bothered to do the romance subplots), but how could they be done better?
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Re: EA responds, and then really responds to their award
« Reply #49 on: 01 May 2013, 05:04 »

The way you got together with women in old Bioware games were pretty much the definition of being a Nice Guy. You listened to their problems and told them that they were special flowers at the end of each conversation, and then you'd fuck.
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