Before I even start, I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and a safe Black Friday. It’s always nice to have great, wholesome family moments on Thanksgiving, but we all know when the clock strikes 12 midnight… It’s officially Black Friday. You know what that means… It’s time to go to Wal-Mart, and slit everyone’s throat over a PlayStation. Anyway, let us begin.
So I spent this entire week laughing at EA Sports and their new game NBA Live 14. The failures of this company are so abundant, that it’s just comedy at this point. To be honest with you, there’s actually a lot of things that I just really hate about EA as a company. Their Terms of Service basically says that their above the law and they always seem to ruin my favorite game franchises. The ones that hurt me the most are the Bioware games (In case you didn’t know, Bioware is a subsidiary of EA. Basically, Bioware works under the umbrella of EA). You may have already guessed which ones, and yes, I’m talking about Dragon Age and Mass Effect. If you’re a fan of Dragon Age and you’ve played both games so far, then you already know that Dragon Age 2, was a step backwards, from Dragon Age: Origins.
In Dragon Age 2 the visuals were better, your character actually had a voice this time, and they did a great job mixing regular fighting mechanics with the original RPG strategy type of combat. The only problem was, instead of being in a land with a bunch of cities to explore you’re stuck in this one city for the entire game! Also, I noticed that they didn’t put as much into the story for Dragon Age 2 as they did with Dragon Age: Origins. (By the way I defeated the Arishok in Dragon Age 2…….Who the man.)
The Mass Effect series wasn’t really sabotaged much by EA. Unlike Dragon Age of course. I played all 3 games, and I really enjoyed playing all of them. To me, Mass Effect is one of the best game franchises that I’ve ever played. I even played almost all of the DLC as well, but I do remember feeling like Mass Effect 3 could have been slightly better. Especially at the end of the game, where all the decisions I made throughout the trilogy, didn’t really seem to matter at all. To be honest, I didn’t mind this too much even though Bioware said all those decisions would matter.
So basically, the similarity that I see with the Dragon Age and Mass Effect franchises are that they started out with good games, but as they got more popular it seems that EA wanted to get more involved with these games. As soon as they got involved that’s when bad things started to happen.
All these issues concern me and I really can’t figure out why Bioware decided to go with EA in the first place. We’re talking about possibly the top video game development company in the hands of EA. Who last year, was voted the worst company in America. Period! The founders of Bioware, Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk resigned from their positions last year which leads me to believe that even they might not have liked that situation either.
At the end of the day everything that I’m saying right now is just speculation. I don’t work at EA or Bioware and I don’t know anyone at EA or Bioware. These are simply just inferences I made using reasoning, logic and deduction skills. To be honest with you, my reason for bringing this topic up was to express concern over the future of Bioware. I mentioned earlier that game franchises like Dragon Age started out good, but then slowly lost its way. The big question is, will Bioware start out good, but then slowly lose their way? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
On a more positive note though, EA has stated multiple times that they really would like to improve and do better. EA CEO Andrew Wilson, stated that winning worst company in America, was a “Wake up call”. I’m sure getting their asses handed to them by NBA 2k every year was a wake up call as well. Even though NBA Live 14 was horrible, EA has not only apologized for NBA Live 14 but they even announced that major updates will be released for the game, that will dramatically improve the game (pssh I hope!).
As for the Bioware games, the next Mass Effect game is officially in development and it’s been made clear that Shepard’s story is over.
Dragon Age: Inquisition is the next game in the Dragon Age series. I’m glad to hear that EA and Bioware have listened to the fans and want to take all the good qualities of Dragon Age: Origins, and include them in Dragon Age: Inquisition. While this really does have me excited, I can’t help but go back to NBA Live 14 and how we were all mislead to believe this was going to be a major improvement to the series, on a next gen console.
At the end of the day, there’s a lot of questions that still need to be answered but these questions won’t be answered for a long time. For now, I really hope that EA will turn things around. I also hope Bioware will never change and continue to make awesome games. All we can do now is wait, as we go into the future of Bioware.