EA has made it clear in the past that they haven’t really catered to the open-world genre in the same way that some of their rivals have. Instead, they have focused on titles that involve large multiplayer experiences, making popular franchises such as FIFA, Madden, Battlefield and Dead Space. While they have had open-world games, these have generally been RPG titles from BioWare.
Meanwhile, publishers such as Ubisoft have dove into open-world games completely, creating titles such as Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry and Watch Dogs. In fact, some of the biggest games of recent times have been in this genre, from Batman: Arkham Knight to Grand Theft Auto V and yet EA has been unable to come with its own idea.
That could all be about to change though. EA’s chief financial officer Blake Jorgensen recently explained at a business conference that the company was ready to move into this space.
“We’ve never really operated in the largest genre of gaming, and that’s the action genre. That’s the Assassin’s Creed-style games; more open-world, more single-play versus multiplayer. It’s not been an area that we’ve operated in. We recently hired Jade Raymond, who was behind the Assassin’s Creed franchise for Ubisoft and she will be building an action genre for us through a studio we’re building out in Montreal right now. So a lot of excitement around the action genre.”
That new studio mentioned by Jorgenson is Motive Studios, which has been set up in Montreal to work on established IPs and create their own brand new franchises. As said above, it is being headed by former Ubisoft employee Jade Redmond and it is thought to be working with Visceral Games’ Star Wars project.