Following a management reshuffle over at EA, newly assigned chief design officer Patrick Söderlund has opened up about the mistakes that the company made with Star Wars Battlefront 2 in an interview with The Verge. Söderlund admits that the sequel's progression system was handled poorly at launch, with microtransactions essentially crippling the game unless you dropped real cash on loot boxes.
"I’d be lying to you if I said that what’s happened with Battlefront and what’s happened with everything surrounding loot boxes and these things haven’t had an effect on EA as a company and an effect on us as management," Söderlund says. He goes on to state that the publisher had two choices: "We can shy away from it and pretend like it didn’t happen, or we can act responsibly and realise that we made some mistakes, and try to rectify those mistakes and learn from them."
Of course, it wasn't that long before EA reworked Battlefront 2's progression system almost entirely, and again, Söderlund describes it as a learning experience. "We have taken significant steps as a company to review and understand the mechanics around monetisation, loot boxes, and other things in our games before they go to market," he explains.
So if the whole ordeal really was a learning experience, what's going to happen with high profile titles down the line? What about the likes of this year's Battlefield and BioWare's ANTHEM? Simply put, Söderlund says that the same mistakes won't be made again: "For games that come next, for Battlefield or for ANTHEM, [players have] made it very clear that we can’t afford to make similar mistakes. And we won’t."
It's all well and good saying that it won't happen again, but are you still cautious of EA's business practices going forward? Let us know what you make of all this in the comments section below.