Patrick Söderlund addresses the tag and talks about working to earn respect.
Electronic Arts Studios, in its long and storied history, has come under a ton of flak for its approaches to game development and publishing. Of course, it’s also done a lot of good and executive vice president Patrick Söderlund hopes that the company will be “remembered and respected for the games we make”.
Speaking to MCV, Söderlund commented on EA being voted the worst company in the US, something he doesn’t “believe for a second”. But it’s still serious. “When something like that happens, you have to sit down and ask yourselves ‘Why are people saying these things?’.
“We did that and we started to realise that we are doing things that people don’t like. We looked at something as simple as the Online Pass. People were telling us they didn’t like that. So we weighed up the pros and cons and went ‘Ok. We will remove it.’
“These decisions need to be driven by what consumers want and tell us, and that is where we may have faltered a bit in the past. If we continue to do those types of things, then we will earn people’s trust and respect. We don’t want to be bad, we have no desire to be voted the worst company in America. On the contrary we want to be voted the best.”
Söderlund continues, “You are bound to make mistakes, but when you do, just be clear to communicate that you agree it was a mistake, and you are taking the appropriate actions to fix them. Not a single person or company will do everything perfect. There is no such thing as a perfect.
“My goal is to be seen as the best in the business. I want people to recognise us for the games we make rather than anything else. Whether that is the Worst Company in America or whatever people don’t like. We need to be remembered and respected for the games we make.
Söderlund believes that positive feedback is the key to backing the right kinds of games in the immediate future. For example, Respawn Entertainment’s Titanfall, which has seen nothing but positive hype since its E3 2013 reveal. “That response is telling us that gamers don’t want to play the same game every year, and even the games we build on an iterative basis, we have to make sure we keep on innovating or people won’t give us their money.”