Posted on May 19, 2008,

Moore: Madden & Co. Would Take a Year off if Necessary

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We’ve had some major news about EA Sports with the announcement of its casual sub-brand, Freestyle. They’re clearly making a push towards the mainstream audience of people who don’t traditionally play many games and are picking up a Wii. EA Sports prez Peter Moore was in attendance for seemingly his first public event since he came to the company at EA Canada recently, and GI.biz had a chance to speak with him.

If you ask anyone who regularly bashes EA Sports what the brand’s main problem is, they’ll likely say that they simply release the same games year after year. So if Moore really felt like the games under him weren’t innovating from year to year, would he be willing to sacrifice a year to give the developers extra time?

“Well, if we really felt we were in trouble, that we just couldn’t innovate at the level we needed to, yes,” he said. “I don’t think that with any of our franchises, even as difficult as it got with NBA Live a couple of years ago, there was a focus on ‘let’s take a year off’. That wasn’t the case. The team has done phenomenally well; you’ve probably seen it here. We’re making huge steps. We gained 15 Metacritic points this past year, from an admittedly low base.

“But I don’t think there’s any temptation to take a year off and try and catch up. I think our teams now are really starting to get in the flow of not just PS3 and Xbox 360, but as you’ve seen, really get a feel for what the Wii should be all about.”

The problem with that, of course, is where do you draw the line between innovating enough to justify releasing a $60 product a year after the last game? It’s a difficult question to answer, but it seems unlikely that Moore would resort to that.

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