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Author Topic: EA...it\'s Official  (Read 1963 times)

Offline ProfessorX
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EA...it\'s Official
« on: December 12, 2000, 09:11:31 PM »
Microsoft enlists Electronic Arts to make Xbox games

Embargoed for release at 0001 EST (0501 GMT) on Wed., Dec. 13

By Scott Hillis Wednesday said the top independent video game developer, Electronic Arts Inc. (ERTS.O) will make titles for its upcoming Xbox console, giving a huge boost to the software giant\'s push into the $20 billion-a-year video game market.

The long-anticipated partnership gives Microsoft a key weapon in its quest to unseat Sony Corp.\'s (6758.T) PlayStation 2 game console from its throne atop the industry.

"There is no question. This is a crucial relationship," said Steve Kleynhans, an analyst with technology consultancy the META Group.

"EA is the biggest player in games. If you don\'t have them producing games for your platform, well, I wouldn\'t say it was impossible, but it would be a fairly significant negative on the new platform," Kleynhans said.

Known for its popular sports games like Madden Football and NASCAR auto racing, Electronic Arts, or EA, would make up to 10 titles within six months of the Xbox\'s launch, scheduled for fall 2001.

"This is significant in terms of the direction we\'re heading with Xbox, and a significant sign of momentum building with the platform," Robbie Bach, Microsoft\'s "Chief Xbox Officer," said in an interview.


The deal was important for EA as well because the Redwood, Calif.-based company stood to reap huge gains if the Xbox takes off, analysts said.

"It gives EA some more robustness to its offerings," said P.J. McNealy, an analyst with the Gartner Group, a technology consultancy.

Noting that a huge part of EA\'s revenues come from sales of PlayStation titles, McNealy said, "EA doesn\'t necessarily care which platform is more successful, they just want to sell software."

Bach and EA Chief Executive Larry Probst declined to disclose financial details of the deal, which capped months of negotiations and private comments that an agreement would be reached sooner or later.

"We\'ve been working together really since the beginning. EA was one of the first we briefed on our thinking, and they gave some great feedback," Bach said.

A handful of games would likely go on sale at the Xbox launch, and Electronic Arts had ordered 500 development kits to start work on the titles, Probst said.

Development of more EA titles would depend on how the Xbox fared in the market, Probst said.

"If any platform is successful then we will support it fully," Probst said. "Obviously, we think that the Xbox can be a successful entrant in the category."

But EA may also have to handle its Microsoft relationship with care given its cozy ties to Sony and a budding partnership with Microsoft Internet rival America Online Inc. (AOL.N) to offer online games, Gartner\'s McNealy said.


In addition to the PlayStation 2, the Xbox will also face Nintendo Co. Ltd.\'s (7974.T) upcoming GameCube and the Dreamcast from Sega Enterprises Ltd. (7964.T).

Microsoft has also signed up some 150 other game developers, including heavyweights like No. 2 Activision Inc. (ATVI.O)., to ensure there are enough titles to make an Xbox purchase worthwhile.

Featuring a 733-megahertz Intel Corp. (INTC.O) processor, a hard drive and a modem for high-speed Internet access, the Xbox uses PC-based technology to power what Microsoft says will be the most powerful game machine on the planet.

The Xbox is also the software giant\'s biggest push yet into hardware, and the company\'s determination to win is signaled by the $500 million marketing warchest it is throwing behind the product.

Shares in Microsoft rose 5/16, or 0.5 percent, to $58-3/8 on Tuesday, while EA shares rose $1-15/16, or almost 5 percent, to $41-11/16.

All we need is Square next and the playing field will be leveled!

Offline ddaryl
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EA...it\'s Official
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2000, 10:40:59 PM »
c\'mon Mr.X this is undebateable and kind of expected, they\'re also developing for Gamecube

When your as big as EA you can develop for multiple platforms.

Although I assume some of the lads are taking this a little rough

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EA...it\'s Official
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2000, 01:48:52 PM »
kind of makes you wonder why ea won\'t develop for the DC............Maybe the "big player" knows what everyone else does and that is the DC will not have longevity.

Offline Ktulu
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EA...it\'s Official
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2000, 03:02:50 PM »
Really, TLUV?  I mean, is that the case?  Seriously?  EA stated they would develop for DC when it hit 5 million - which will happen by spring.  But I seriously doubt they will even then.

Explain this to me: the Dreamcast has a larger userbase than PC gamers - yet EA is STILL developing PC games.  Go ahead, I\'m waiting.  EA "knows" what the future holds?  Uh huh.  Then, um, why did they develop for 3DO and Saturn?  EA has issues with Sega, and will never publish titles on the Dreamcast.  But stop the crap.  Dreamcast is not dying - it will last at least 4 years.  Better yet: Tell me what console in history as failed despite 3 million users in it\'s first year.

There.  Until you can explain/answer either one of the two bolded statements above, then any "guesses" that Dreamcast will die are just ridiculous and spiteful wishful thinking.  DC will live Four years.  Deal with it or prove me wrong.  Wait a minute - I\'ve got a third bold statement: Will PS2 fail since the developers of Oddworld abandoned it?  Do those developers "know" something about the PS2\'s future?  Cut the sh**.

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EA is still in negoiations with Nintendo!!!
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2000, 02:20:22 AM »
EA isn\'t offically on Gamecube yet, but they are talking to them.

Offline Underwhelming Force
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EA...it\'s Official
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2000, 10:29:09 PM »
Lets face it, what they say no is basicly irrelivant. If the XBox, Gamecube or the PS2 is a huge success then EA will dedicate the majority of its reasources to that console. Right now all they\'re doing is making sure they have a foot in the door of every system, exept the DC which they don\'t think has a chance, so no matter what happens they won\'t lose. The console with the largest userbase will get the most games, if one console is realy easy to port to but isn\'t number one it will get ports. If two consoles are realy close together then they will make their games for both. A developer signing on to a console isn\'t a contract for life, it means they want to, at this point, make games for that console. They don\'t have to make games for it for the rest of its life, they will if its successful, but if its not they won\'t.

Offline Paul
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EA...it\'s Official
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2000, 10:44:24 PM »
Frankly, i think EA is highly overated. Even if they develop for the DC now, I don\'t think the DC sales will jump with any significance(will be another story if it\'s Square though) and I don\'t think DC owners will miss any of their same rehash year after year. Just how many freaking football game do you need to be in your game libray???

I used to like EA in the 80\'s when they\'re smaller and actually make innovative games like JumpMan, Impossible Mission etc. Now, they\'re just full of crap.


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