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EA Abandons Efforts To Take Over Take-Two

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the no-dice dept.

The Almighty Buck 98

Erik J writes "Electronic Arts has abandoned plans to absorb Grand Theft Auto IV publisher Take-Two Interactive, the company announced earlier today. Following over half a year of hostile buyout offers by EA, the pair went into talks under a confidentiality agreement in late August. From the official announcement: 'EA continues to have a high regard for Take-Two's creative teams and products, [but] after careful consideration, including a management presentation and review of other due diligence materials provided by Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., EA has decided not to make a proposal to acquire Take-Two and has terminated discussions with Take-Two.' The announcement caused Take-Two's stock to drop by 30%, and analysts expect a bidding war to ensue for employment of the GTA creators."

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98 comments

fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25019433)

eat my asshole! you like it, you fag, you know you do.

Re:fp (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25019475)

Goatse troll?

Re:fp (0, Offtopic)

NoobixCube (1133473) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019635)

Why do I get the feeling that it's always the same pathetic loser madly hammering the refresh button just so he can make a post like this every single time? Surely his MAC ID can be banned or something...

Re:fp (1)

cephah (1244770) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019651)

Yes, surely that can't be easily spoofed. :)

Re:fp (1)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019981)

You could at least ban the text of the first post trolls. They're not usually unique text.

Could also have a probation period for each story where any posts that happen say within the first 10 minutes of a story being posted, very blatantly obvious trolls will be deleted by an administrator or something like that. Maybe a post made in the first 2 minutes if it gets modded troll or off topic a certain number of times, it will be automatically deleted. Is anyone really going to be upset if the running trolls are deleted? I mean besides the trolls themselves?

Re:fp (1)

NoobixCube (1133473) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020115)

It's tricky ground to walk, on a site like this. Obviously the first post was a blatant troll, but with so many stories decrying the evils of censorship, how can we actually censor trolls? I had a thought that maybe moderators could send posts below -1 at double the cost of mod points (to try and curb abuse). Something that gets to -10 would require a total of 20 negative mods, and would most probably be a troll; this is hardly a perfect idea, though.

Re:fp (1)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020213)

Yeah, no one likes censoring, but for months someone would write "Frosty piss" or some variant as the first post. Say you can't post that phrase in the first 10 minutes.

Matter of fact, why let ACs post immediately after a story is posted anyway? They already have a tiering system to encourage subscribers.

Re:fp (1)

NoobixCube (1133473) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020269)

And just right now, I looked at the new story about another Mars mission, and lo and behold: the first post is yet another troll posting as AC. I'd probably go so far as to say no more AC posting. I already say to trolls that if they don't want to own up to something they've posted then the obviously think it's not worth reading... Problem is, it's not just trolls who post anonymous, and I'd rather not see the many punished for the actions of the few.

No ACs within X minutes of story going live (1)

zooblethorpe (686757) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020329)

So how about no ACs within X minutes of a story going live? That makes sense to me. It seems this particularly odious and obnoxious variety of AC is mostly just obsessed with getting the first post, so any reasonable delay before allowing AC posts would head this annoyance off at the pass, so to speak.

Cheers,

Re:No ACs within X minutes of story going live (1)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020563)

I dunno. Sometimes (as in once or twice) as AC I post something which can either be a -1 offtopic or a +5 funny right after a story is posted... depending on the mood of the mods. I think if people want to waste their time and energy fp'ing - I don't care. You can change your threshold to not see them at all.

I tried to get one to talk to me once, to no avail. They just like to screw around - probably kids. One day he'll get a girlfriend and give up the stupid shit, then his little brother will discover the fun of talking about poop ... it's the /. circle of life. Rather soothing when you think about it.

Re:No ACs within X minutes of story going live (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25022877)

Fuck getting a girlfriend. Girls have cooties!

Suck cock, it's good for you.

Re:No ACs within X minutes of story going live (1)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 5 years ago | (#25035853)

So honestly, what's up? Why is posting nonsense so appealing? Just answer me honestly on one question... are you over 18? I'm really curious.

Re:No ACs within X minutes of story going live (1)

mmalove (919245) | more than 5 years ago | (#25037911)

I'd really prefer they leave it as it is. I can use my preferences to assign ACs an automatic -6, I can't do that so well if they constantly log in under throw away accounts.

Re:fp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25020443)

We shall first post on the beaches,
We shall first post on the landing grounds,
We shall first post in the fields and in the streets,
We shall first post in the hills;

etc.

Re:fp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25020421)

sure ban "eat my asshole." Next, it'll be "lick my asshole", "suck my asshole", "eat my hairy asshole", "suck the shit out of my asshole", "stick your tongue up my asshole", etc. Face it, you're going to have to eat his asshole.

Re:fp (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 5 years ago | (#25023793)

Immediately Mod-Trolls would start deleting real posts, and there would be no way to correct for it by later up-modding.

Re:fp (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25019719)

When you're all anonymous, there are only two people on the Internet: You and Me.

Although sometimes John comes on but that's infrequent.

Re:fp (1)

travbrad (622986) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020533)

Or you could just set your threshold to +1, I rarely see a blatant troll post with that set. Maybe I'm just not looking at the stories quick enough? That Mars story only had 10 comments when I looked at it, and I didn't see any trolls.

Re:fp (1)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021237)

You couldn't ban a user based on a MAC as slashdot never sees that. MAC is layer 2, Internet is layer 3. You only need a MAC to talk to machines in the local network. You could ban based on IP, but then they proxy...

Re:fp (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 5 years ago | (#25022163)

Why do I get the feeling that it's always the same pathetic loser madly hammering the refresh button just so he can make a post like this every single time?

Don't worry. Soon he'll find craig's list and won't want to solicit on Slashdot anymore. ;)

All I have to say is (4, Funny)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019497)

The Flying Spaghetti Monster be praised! Hallelujah and Allahu Akbar!

Dear Sir (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25019611)

May I kindly ask what the fuck that has to do with the story?

Re:Dear Sir (1, Flamebait)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020035)

I think he was expressing an emotion that often is characterized by people saying "Thank the lord" but was, uh, oddly religious? I don't think anyone is actually honestly pastafarian, and I don't care if that offends anyone.

I think he was hoping to provoke angry outbursts from the same socially conservative christians who got upset about walmart saying "happy holidays" maybe. A noble goal, but of course few of them browse on slashdot, and couldn't figure out how to respond (assuming they can read), so it's not very effective.

Re:Dear Sir (2, Informative)

4D6963 (933028) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020449)

What I was actually trying to express was such a feeling of thankfulness over the failure of EA at ruining Take-Two that all known deities should be thanked on the very off chance any of them exists.

oblig (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026367)

Jebus, Buddha, Allah, I love you all! -- HJS

Re:All I have to say is (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024305)

Does this meant we won't be getting GTA 2009, GTA 2010, or GTA 2011?

Re:All I have to say is (2, Informative)

joshtheitguy (1205998) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026719)

No this means we will continue to get GTA without install restrictions, SecuROM and all the other EA bullshit.

Good (2, Interesting)

DanWS6 (1248650) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019645)

We need more publishers, not less. Well, we need less EA but that's too much to hope for.

Re:Good (2)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020053)

We need EA to start caring about more than the bottom line. Again too much to hope for. Would be solved by gamers not spending money on crap games released year after year with just a different number and no actual improvements. Again...

Re:Good (4, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021535)

As long as we have jocks and EA has Madden they'll keep dumping junk,because the jocks buying Madden by the truckload can cover the bills. I know one guy who already has a deal in place with a friend at gamestop who sends him Madden for the PS3,PSP,PS2,and Wii the second they get them and just charges his CC. The guy even pays some crazy shipping fees so he gets it the same day. As long as there are guys like that,who don't even care if EA does squat but update the rosters,then EA will have a license to be asshats. But as always this is my 02c,YMMV

Good Riddance. (1)

jaxtherat (1165473) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019669)

Good Riddance I say.

Thumbs up (5, Interesting)

renegadesx (977007) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019681)

Good move, you know EA would have populated the market with yearey (or twice yearley) low quality GTA's and Bioshock's with Spore DRM (SecuROM).

They would figure most would just buy them anyways = more profit for them.

One thing that is really good for the industry out of all this, is this prevents EA Sports from monopolizing the sports genre.

EA recently spoke about trying to win back our hearts and shed this negative image people have about EA. However I must say that they are not doing it right. Yes they are introducing new interesting IP's such as Spore, Mirror's Edge and Dead Space. However they wont win any heats with hostile takeovers and horrible DRM!

Re:Thumbs up (4, Informative)

Pyrion (525584) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019901)

FYI, BioShock also has SecuROM.

Re:Thumbs up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25023255)

Good thing I have the 360 version.

Re:Thumbs up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25024395)

yeah you get the most extreme set of DRM which only allows you to play it on the 360 even though a computer DVD is perfectly capable of reading the disc!

Re:Thumbs up (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026429)

Hmm yeah because XBox 360s use x86, don't they? Oh wait, no they don't. Perhaps you could run the games on suitably modified PPC Macs (apparently the dev kits were based on G5 Macs?), but what exactly is the point when the 360 is cheaper and faster?

Re:Thumbs up (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 5 years ago | (#25029235)

Yeah, as opposed to the DRM that makes the DVD only play on a PC with the Windows OS installed even if the DVD could be read just fine by a DVD player or a Linux computer.

Re:Thumbs up (3, Interesting)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020103)

You know, if GTA had been cloned after san andreas, I think a lot of people would have been happy. Not to say that innovation is bad, just pointing out that changing up your cash cow is a risky move that doesn't always work out best for everyone.

Of course, I liked the new GTA even if I did miss some of the elements of san andreas. It's also worth noting that the transition from 2d GTAs, which were great for their time but got old fast, to the 3d sandbox with cutscenes is a risk I don't see EA taking ever.

Yes they are introducing new interesting IP's such as Spore, Mirror's Edge and Dead Space. However they wont win any heats with hostile takeovers and horrible DRM!

Tsk tsk, PC gamers are so self-centered and idealistic sometimes. The lesson they're going to take from the DRM issues this round is "Making games available on the PC is more trouble than it is worth, consoles only from now on." It's reasoning like that which makes me want to kick them in the face, but their security guards always stop me.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

renegadesx (977007) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021443)

Tsk tsk, PC gamers are so self-centered and idealistic sometimes

I'm a console gamer mostly these days, "limited installs" DRM has pretty much made me almost give up on PC gaming, as someone who likes to re-image his machine every 3-6 months.

Yes I know consoles have DRM too, but at least its not the type that goes out of its way to annoy me.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 5 years ago | (#25023487)

I'm a console gamer mostly these days, "limited installs" DRM has pretty much made me almost give up on PC gaming, as someone who likes to re-image his machine every 3-6 months.

I own quite a few games, I just don't own any games by EA because... Well, they produce nothing I like mainly.

What non-EA game has limited installs? I can't think of any.

Yes I know consoles have DRM too, but at least its not the type that goes out of its way to annoy me.

I don't know... Charging you to play online with your own hardware (you hosting a server) on software you have already bought with the internet connection you've already paid for would annoy me (I'm looking at you, xbox).

Re:Thumbs up (1)

renegadesx (977007) | more than 5 years ago | (#25023911)

I don't know... Charging you to play online with your own hardware (you hosting a server) on software you have already bought with the internet connection you've already paid for would annoy me (I'm looking at you, xbox).

Thats not a DRM, thats another annoyance. It does look like with PSN catching up, Live will have to become free (or significantly cheaper) sooner than later.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024371)

Thats not a DRM, thats another annoyance. It does look like with PSN catching up, Live will have to become free (or significantly cheaper) sooner than later.

It's blocking your digital rights from running your own server without paying. I'd say that's a DRM. With xbox live providing practically everything, but online play for free. I also don't see why Microsoft should consider lowering their prices, xbox owners will pay, they have no other choice when it comes to online gaming with the xbox.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

renegadesx (977007) | more than 5 years ago | (#25034087)

It's blocking your digital rights from running your own server without paying. I'd say that's a DRM. With xbox live providing practically everything, but online play for free.

Point

I also don't see why Microsoft should consider lowering their prices, xbox owners will pay, they have no other choice when it comes to online gaming with the xbox.

Yes they have no other choice when it comes to online gaming with xbox but that does give some incentive snub the Xbox in favor of the PS3. They wont get all of em but they will get some, and that equals Microsoft losing customers and business to Sony.
Yes Xbox Live is superior to PSN but PSN is catching up.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 5 years ago | (#25057665)

Thats not a DRM, thats another annoyance. It does look like with PSN catching up, Live will have to become free (or significantly cheaper) sooner than later.

FIRST POST... oops I mean you never see non-anons making trollish posts like that, similarly anyone who pulls equivalent crap on Xbox Live gets their account banned. Since it actually costs them if they want to keep doing it, it stops pretty quick. If Xbox live goes free, you can expect to see a barrage of fresh accounts getting made daily with trolls intending to just make the online experience less fun for everyone else.

And honestly it's not that expensive, you can get a 13 month car for about $45 meaning it costs you about $3.50 a month for the service... IMO it's worth every penny if it means I don't have to put up with trolls.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021455)

It's also worth noting that the transition from 2d GTAs, which were great for their time but got old fast, to the 3d sandbox with cutscenes is a risk I don't see EA taking ever.

The 2ds were even more sandboxy

Re:Thumbs up (1)

Don_dumb (927108) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024165)

The 2ds were even more sandboxy

Perhaps my memory is not serving me well but I disagree.

I quite liked setting up a blockade/defences and getting into a fight with the never-ending supply of police, then trying to leg-it to safety.
I don't think that was so possible or 'free' (for want of a better word) in the 2d editions. Nor could you just fly around like the 3d editions.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25028329)

The 2d ones were so limited in what you could do that I'm prepared to say it was not sandbox. In GTA 2 you could steal cars that were of varying speeds, listen to really horrible radio (an entire channel of 1 minute looped chinese in a high female voice) pick up aproximately 4 weapons, run over strings of elvis impersonators, and collect "GTA" logos. And then do the missions. I suppose the 2d ones had vehicle jumps, but how could you tell?

There was more freedom with just the sniper rifle in GTA 3 than anything in GTA 2. The 2d ones were about as sandboxy as pac man.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024327)

"if GTA had been cloned after san andreas"

It was. They called it "Saints Row."

Thank you folks, I'll be here all week. Be sure to try out our all-you-can-eat potato bar.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

MaineCoon (12585) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020801)

As has been mentioned, Bioshock used the same DRM that Spore used, and used a year before Spore came out. I believe GTA4 for PC will use it as well.

Re:Thumbs up (1)

Maverynthia (1105281) | more than 5 years ago | (#25035771)

DOn't forget about Downloadable Content too :3

Meh. (3, Insightful)

morari (1080535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019713)

Take Two hasn't done anything really worthy of praise in recent memory. People may think some of the products are groundbreaking or artistic, but its really just been squeals pop culture junk. They probably would have fit in perfectly at EA.

Re:Meh. (4, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019805)

hehe, they ship. That's what makes them different to EA.

Re:Meh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25021133)

Once Take Two acquired Firaxis (makers of Civilization and Pirates), the Civilization crap knockoffs came out of the wordwork.

I can't imagine what would have happened if EA tried to merge Firaxis and Maxis under their managerial style.

Re:Meh. (3, Insightful)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021319)

EA could destroy GTA.

coder: We are thinking of adding a mission where you have to beat up a hooker for a pimp. You know be the muscle.

EA: lets send you to our committee

com1: Sounds wicked, but do you have to beat her?

com2: You know figures show that hookers offend some of our market, how would you feel about taking them out?

com3: Do you really NEED to say pimp? Cant he just be a .... mechanic.... that needs his wrench.

com4: Yeah the girl can be a valuable employee and she gives you the wrench, then you bring it to him.

com: Thanks for this great idea put it in right away.

Trust me, EA can take ANYTHING and make it crap.

Re:Meh. (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 5 years ago | (#25023467)

EA could destroy GTA.

coder: We are thinking of adding a mission where you have to beat up a hooker for a pimp. You know be the muscle.

EA: lets send you to our committee

com1: Sounds wicked, but do you have to beat her?

com2: You know figures show that hookers offend some of our market, how would you feel about taking them out?

com3: Do you really NEED to say pimp? Cant he just be a .... mechanic.... that needs his wrench.

com4: Yeah the girl can be a valuable employee and she gives you the wrench, then you bring it to him.

com: Thanks for this great idea put it in right away.

That actually sounds funny to me. I'd play a game for such humor.

Re:Meh. (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026495)

You should try being a postman then - you'll be laughing all day!

Re:Meh. (1)

Pantero Blanco (792776) | more than 5 years ago | (#25030089)

EA could destroy GTA.

coder: We are thinking of adding a mission where you have to beat up a hooker for a pimp. You know be the muscle.

EA: lets send you to our committee

com1: Sounds wicked, but do you have to beat her?

com2: You know figures show that hookers offend some of our market, how would you feel about taking them out?

com3: Do you really NEED to say pimp? Cant he just be a .... mechanic.... that needs his wrench.

com4: Yeah the girl can be a valuable employee and she gives you the wrench, then you bring it to him.

com: Thanks for this great idea put it in right away.

That actually sounds funny to me. I'd play a game for such humor.

The game that you would play wouldn't be the committee meeting. It would be fetching wrenches for mechanics. ...Unless you want to make a game where you're an employee in a large video game company.

Re:Meh. (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25030527)

EA could destroy GTA.

Rockstar seems to have done that well enough on their own. The move to 3D has done very little but water down the experience so as to better carter to the frat boy demographic.

Re:Meh. (1)

IorDMUX (870522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25027523)

Take Two hasn't done anything really worthy of praise in recent memory

I guess it depends on your definition of "Recent", but ...

TES IV: Oblivion?
Civilization IV?
Manhunt?

(Yeah, I know, BioShock, too, but I played the old System Shock's and agree that BioShock is just "pop culture junk".) And besides... if EA eats up Take Two, Duke Nukem Forever might be *gasp* published! Think of the earth-numbing anti-climax as a Quake III lookalike narrated by Madden and with ~ 2 hours of gameplay appears from the darkness... *shudder*

Re:Meh. (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25030511)

Oblivion was infinitely inferior to the greatness that was Morrowind however. Outside of the much improved journal system, Oblivion was dumbed-down for a console release and was not better for it.

Re:Meh. (1)

IorDMUX (870522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25031247)

I'm not so certain about that... I've got my quips with Oblivion, but most are easily modded away. Have you looked at the PC-side content creator for Oblivion--the TES Construction Set? It is superior to the Morrowind version, which shows that the programmers certainly didn't forget about their huge PC-modding audience. Oblivion is far more malleable than was Morrowind... though I do return to bask in Morrowind's greatness from time to time. :-)

Good (4, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25019967)

EA has a bad habit of screwing everything they put their hands on. look at spore and how did it end up.

Re:Good (4, Funny)

Garridan (597129) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020029)

Don't worry. They'll be back for Takover of Take Two, Take Two. In fact, they had to give up once, for precisely that.

Thanks (3, Funny)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020129)

i'll wait for the abridged version, collector's exclusive edition, uncut.

Re:Thanks (1)

teslar (706653) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026019)

i'll wait for the abridged version, collector's exclusive edition, uncut.

*head explodes*

Re:Thanks (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026511)

wait until you see the reader's digest edition - wait you cant - your head just exploded. oh bugger.

Re:Good (2, Interesting)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020395)

EA has a bad habit of screwing everything they put their hands on. look at spore and how did it end up.

Spore didn't interest me to begin with?

It really doesn't matter who distributes, develops it etc. - I am not interested at all in it.

I am sure there are plenty of other gamers like me.

Re:Good (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25020711)

So you're not going to buy it, who gives a fuck what you think?

im wondering why you post anonymous (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020751)

you should take some time to develop the balls needed to voice your opinion with your own identity.

Re:Good (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020901)

So you're not going to buy it, who gives a fuck what you think?

Obviously the people who aren't making wanted profits off such endeavors.

Re:Good (1)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 5 years ago | (#25023195)

Pardon me, Einstein, but you yourself are voicing your opinion on a message board designed for anyone to voice their opinions on.

Perhaps you need to learn to not take the opinions of others so much to heart.

Re:Good (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020793)

Wow, that's amazing.

Who knew that not everyone likes the idea of every game ever thought of.

Next you'll be claiming some people prefer vanilla ice cream over chocolate ice cream.

Re:Good (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020881)

Who knew that not everyone likes the idea of every game ever thought of.

*Motivational poster border*

*Spore creature that looks like poop*

"Crappy game is a crap game!"

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25021341)

I think it's fun, and will consider paying for it if they remove the DRM.

How would you know? (3, Informative)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 5 years ago | (#25022925)

How would you know? Was there a Spore before and after being owned by EA, or wth? Because from where I stand, it kinda looks to me like Maxis was owned by EA for a long time now.

Speaking of which, have you noticed how nobody else funded a Spore or a The Sims? I don't have much love for EA as a corporation or for their DRM, but when was the last time anyone _else_ brought a new genre to the mainstream? I can't think of anything before or after The Sims, all the way to when Id made Wolfenstein 3D. Ok, ok, there was also Ultima Online which brought us the graphical MMO... also published by EA. If you look back for two decades or so, there are exactly two companies which blessed us with new genres: Id and EA. Hmm. Maybe it says something.

Or even a new take on an existing genre? Well, Spore sure feels that way. Or the only PC single-player RPGs this decade which _weren't_ yet another medieval theme? Well, blimey, I can only think of two publishers: LucasArts publishing yet another title in their StarWars franchise (but cancelling almost anything else than SW titles) because they already knew it sells, and EA taking a chance with MassEffect. You know, at a time where everyone else was rationalizing their risk-aversion via convoluted armchair-psychologist conjectures about how players only relate to swords and can't get in-character with a gun.

The average publisher these days seems to be more about cloning whatever sold well last year. Or maybe feeling bold and trying to mix two. "I know! We'll make a Grand-Theft Battlefield Tycoon! That'll sell."

EA might not be perfect, but it seems far less risk-averse when it comes to trying new things.

So did EA screw Spore? Or maybe Spore wouldn't even have existed, if not for EA? As I was saying, I can't imagine many other publishers even trying that. New unproven game type with creatures evolving? Nah, we'll make yet another wannabe HalfLife clone.

Re:How would you know? (2, Insightful)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25025983)

come on. this is will wright. somebody else was gonna fund it, be it ea or another.

spore idea was on his mind for a long time. but it didnt mature into fruition until lately.

ea didnt take any chances with mass effect. it was funded by microsoft.

Re:How would you know? (1)

discord5 (798235) | more than 5 years ago | (#25028421)

EA taking a chance with MassEffect.

Bzzzzzzt, wrong. Bioware took the chance, EA just bought Bioware. Mass Effect was released only a month after EA purchased Bioware for a whopping 860M$. (I know people who'd sell their soul for much much less) EA basicly bought a winning ticket with Mass Effect, and with it yet another franchise they can milk. The actual risk was on the side of Bioware at the time, but they knew since E3 2006 that they'd won the lottery.

The only thing EA has done so far (that I know of) with anything from Bioware is port Mass Effect to the PC, and that was easily one of the most horrible ports I've ever played.

Or the only PC single-player RPGs this decade which _weren't_ yet another medieval theme?

What a novel idea, I'm sure nobody [wikipedia.org] did [wikipedia.org] this. Oh, fuck it, have an index of RPGs from the '80s until today [wikipedia.org] , notice that some of them contain the words "sci-fi" in their genre, which means the likelyhood for elves and dwarves is negligable.

So did EA screw Spore? Or maybe Spore wouldn't even have existed, if not for EA?

Will Wright! Please pee on us! [penny-arcade.com] I'm pretty sure someone else would've picked up Will Wrights titles. If EA didn't want it, I'm sure someone would've cupped their hands and uttered that sentence at some point.

EA might not be perfect, but it seems far less risk-averse when it comes to trying new things.

I doubt it. Spore might've been a risk for them to take, but again not a very large one.

From it's very inception they've hyped it. In the past 2 years, Spore has been hyped by ALL possible means. They even hired Robin Williams [google.com] to promote it, used the "from the hands of Will Wright, the creator of Sim City and The Sims" stamp in press releases. It's like going into a DVD shop and finding an entire rack full of DVDs labeled with "From the director of the Lord of the Rings", which I'm pretty sure boosted the sales of Bad Taste and Braindead.

Companies the size of EA don't like risks. They don't like gambling with revenue when their major shareholders could turn on them at the first sign of their shares losing value.

Having said that, I bought Spore. I was pleasantly surprised until I reached space age, got annoyed and lost interest. Sure, I've messed around with the editors a couple of times after that, and I've actually played through it a few times to explore the differences between being peaceful and warlike, etc etc. But after that, the gameplay is rather meh...

Re:How would you know? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25028743)

Spore before EA? Yes, since you ask it was called Sim Life http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SimLife [wikipedia.org] .

Re:How would you know? (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25030609)

Spore is far from a new genre. It is, at best, a bunch of other genres thrown together in a very unflattering manner.

Re:Good (1)

Quietust (205670) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026237)

Perhaps a better example would be what EA did to The Orange Box when they ported it to the PlayStation 3 - the PC version is great, but the PS3 version is thoroughly awful and ridiculously buggy.

Baffling: Market Response (5, Interesting)

Bob9113 (14996) | more than 5 years ago | (#25020989)

The market responded by punishing the stock price of both companies. There could be little more clear evidence that the market is not efficient. How stupid does one need to be to think that EA + Take Two would be better than the two independently? Or, perhaps, how broken must our "free" market be for that combination to make sense?

EA pumps out extremely polished, but hopelessly formulaic titles. They treat their employees like interchangeable cogs. And they count every bean as if it were their last. It's not everyone's style, but it works for the products they create.

Take Two creates lavish works that are expressions of a borderline mental artistic genius. They treat their employees like, well, Rock Stars. They blow through cash like a 1999 dot-com. They are constantly bouncing from rags to riches and back again, but when they hit they move the industry.

The idiot investment analyst looks at that and thinks, "Imagine Take Two's brilliant artistry with EA's money management and product-focus." But, that is why you are called an "idiot" investment analyst, idiot. These are not compatible business models. EA is no more capable of nurturing artistry than Take Two is of being efficient. They are specialized, and they excel because they are specialized. Their flaws are facets of the strengths that make them great.

Re:Baffling: Market Response (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021385)

To be fair I invested in Take-two last year and sold 3 months ago because people are stupid and make me money by investing like sheep. Either i'm smart and making money from this or just stupid faster than everyone else. But possibly someone did this before me ... prempting me i mean i wasnt quite peak to peak ..... My point is, pretty much people dont care about companies at all they just want to get in first and out first. This causes wild fluxuations because there is lots of money to be made while its swining up and down.

Re:Baffling: Market Response (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021393)

*note to self reinvest in take-two in 2-3days.

Re:Baffling: Market Response (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#25022041)

Woah, you are a braver man than I considering the DOW just dropped 500 points. How lucky do you feel?

Re:Baffling: Market Response (1)

Don_dumb (927108) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024253)

Fantastic comment about the stock market driving everything towards homogenization and an attempt to do everything that does nothing. However, see the next top level comment below yours by phantomcircuit - The market is punishing *everyone* right now.

Re:Baffling: Market Response (1)

analog_line (465182) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024367)

From what I've heard, Take Two's stock wasn't "punished" per se. It was artificially inflated by the EA buyout offer, with many people betting heavily that EA would eventually cave in and significantly raise their offer. When EA announced it wasn't interested anymore, those investors that were making those bets had to get out ASAP, hence a glut of availability, and a consequent lowering of the price. Take Two's stock was overvalued by definition, because of the premium offered by EA. Now it's finding a new normal. The price it was before the announcement wasn't realistic.

Re:Baffling: Market Response (1)

Bob9113 (14996) | more than 5 years ago | (#25026177)

Ahh - yes. You make a very good point. These were not investors who were buying the stock because of the long-term potential. These were gamblers. Good point.

Not really... (1)

Burning1 (204959) | more than 5 years ago | (#25028873)

This isn't surprising at all.

The market is there to make money, not to promote games as art, independence, or consumer interests. If the acquisition of Take Two would have made the investors a lot of money, you can expect a negative market response when the deal falls apart.

Geee Couldn't be a Credit Crunch Could it? (3, Insightful)

phantomcircuit (938963) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021001)

Just maybe this story has something to do with the complete fallout of the credit market... just maybe

JUST MAYBE? [washingtonpost.com]

MOD Parent UP (1)

Don_dumb (927108) | more than 5 years ago | (#25023875)

Well done for noticing that stating the share price performance for a single company without stating the performance of the rest of the market at the same time tells us very little about how well that comany is actually doing.

GTA Creators? (1)

badasscat (563442) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021015)

The last sentence of the summary - and the article it links to - are incorrect. Sam and Dan Houser did not create GTA, Dave Jones did. DMA Design was not affiliated with Rockstar in any way when that game was created.

Re:GTA Creators? (1)

Don_dumb (927108) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024021)

According to wikipedia Rockstar North [wikipedia.org] IS DMA Design who primarily developed the Grand Theft Auto series [wikipedia.org] with the creator Dave Jones, so I'd say that also calling the Housers 'creators' is fair considering their importance in the creation of the game. Wikipedia may be wrong (and that's lazy journalism if it is). But anything to back up your 'correction'?

Re:GTA Creators? (1)

Peganthyrus (713645) | more than 5 years ago | (#25024519)

From what I've read, the Housers are responsible for the huge emphasis on 'realism'. DMA's original 2D GTAs were set in a completely absurd world, with gangs like the Loonies or the Mad Scientists, and secrets like occasionally seeing a whole crowd of Elvis impersonators who'd give you a point bonus for getting them all.

When the Housers got involved, they pushed it towards the emphasis on glorifying the Mafia movies that all the gangbangers, and the wiggas following the gangbangers' cultural lead, were into.

It is the synthesis of Jones's vision of a free-roaming city and the Houser's vision of how cool Scarface that was the massive success of GTA3. You can argue back and forth about who 'created' it; it's certainly the Housers who managed to grab the notoriety for it by getting Jones and the rest of the programmers and artists to bend the game into their vision of the average underemployed white guy's fantasies. In fact, the last linked article quotes on this very subject:

"While neither writes game code, we believe that they are analogous to the director of a Hollywood film, instrumental in determining the final shape of the ultimate games released."

Jones is the vision behind GTA. The Housers are the vision behind GTA3. GTA3 builds on Jones' original work, to be sure, but it would be a totally different game if they hadn't been involved. Look at his gameography [mobygames.com] , play a few, play some of the other stuff DMA released pre-Rockstar (which presumably had to get his approval): I think you'll agree that GTA3 is, thematically, very different from all Jones' games before and since.

I am not saying this is a good thing - I vastly preferred the videogamey silliness of the original GTAs - but the Housers were a big part of creating the GTA3/4 brand.

They own 2K Sports games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25021111)

I don't know about anyone else, but I'm a fan of the 2K sports games.

Before Madden's exclusive contract with the NFL, the NFL2K series was definitely giving it a run for its money and was even better in many years IMO.

The NBA2K franchise has been superior to Live for a few years now.

With exception to their recent things on Madden, EA still doesn't have a great reputation for putting care into their main sports titles. I would certainly like an alternative even though the NFL is still locked down. :-(

corporate date rape (3, Interesting)

Mr_Blank (172031) | more than 5 years ago | (#25021197)

EA decides to buy their competitor, Take Two. Take Two opens its books for EA. After completely digesting the business model, plans, culture, and product line up EA changes its mind and walks away. Take Two then has to continue competing with EA as if it never happened; all the while knowing that EA has a leg up now that it has seen "the books" and knows the next few moves in advance.

      EA needs a shower after that groping.

     

Re:corporate date rape (1)

mmalove (919245) | more than 5 years ago | (#25038117)

It's like a big game of texas hold em. Their own interest in Take Two drove the price up some 30%, now they have to feign disinterest to drive it back down. But, at 30% off it'll probably look ripe for acquisition again.

Gotta love free markets.

Oh, and spore is awesome up until the tribal stage. It's pretty obvious Will Wright ran outta creative genius right there. As fun as it is to blame EA, I don't think they had much to do with it.

Creepy customizable pacman/flow game -> Innovative genre shattering animorphic AI -> RTS with all the depth of a cheap flash game

What if... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25030799)

If they had been taken over, would they have been called Take Three?

nothing to see here (1)

Architectonic (1301739) | more than 5 years ago | (#25132439)

test comment to see if ISP transparent proxy settings have been updated.
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