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Author Topic: EA buys Pandemic and Bioware..sad day  (Read 1567 times)
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Daehawk
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« on: October 11, 2007, 09:14:27 PM »

Guess they'll be gutted soon with employees leaving or being fired or reassigned. Geez I hate EA....

Quote
Two top-tier studios died today:

    Electronic Arts Inc. today announced an agreement with Elevation Partners to acquire VG Holding Corp. -- the owner of both BioWare Corp. and Pandemic Studios. This acquisition gives EA a strong competitive position in key genres in interactive entertainment: action, adventure and role-playing games. The two studios have been recognized for creating some of the highest-quality games in the industry.

    BioWare Corp. and Pandemic Studios have ten franchises under development, including six wholly owned games. BioWare Corp. is currently developing the highly anticipated Mass Effect, which will be published by Microsoft in November, and is in the early development stages of a massively multiplayer online game. Pandemic Studios is redefining open-world games with its upcoming Mercenaries 2: World in Flames and Saboteur, in addition to several unannounced projects.

    Pandemic Studios and BioWare Corp. employ roughly 800 people across four studios located in Edmonton, Canada; Los Angeles; Austin; and Brisbane, Australia.

    "These are two of the most respected studios in the industry and I'm glad to be working with them again. They'll make a strong contribution to our strategic growth initiatives on quality, online gaming and developing new intellectual properties," said John Riccitiello, EA's Chief Executive Officer. "We also expect this will drive long-term value for our shareholders."

    Pandemic Studios is led by Andrew Goldman, Josh Resnick and Greg Borrud. BioWare Corp. is jointly led by Greg Zeschuk and Ray Muzyka. These teams will join the EA Games Label run by Frank Gibeau, President of EA Games.

    "Pandemic Studios remains focused on attracting the best talent and creating blockbuster action games," said Josh Resnick, President and Co-founder of Pandemic Studios. "As a worldwide publishing leader, EA represents the ideal partner to bring our titles to market as global entertainment events."

    "We are truly excited by John Riccitiello's new vision for EA," said Ray Muzyka, Co-founder and CEO of BioWare Corp. "This vision is consistent with BioWare's focus on crafting the highest quality story-driven games in the world. It will enable us to further the careers of the passionate, creative and hard working teams at BioWare Edmonton and BioWare Austin."

    EA will pay up to $620 million in cash to the stockholders of VG Holding Corp. and will issue up to an additional $155 million in equity to certain employees of VG Holding Corp., which will be subject to time-based or performance-based vesting criteria. EA will also assume outstanding VG Holding Corp. stock options. In addition, EA has agreed to lend VG Holding Corp. up to $35 million through the closing of the acquisition.

R.I.P.
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ROTC1983
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« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2007, 09:30:22 PM »

EA...ugh frown
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Farscry
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« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2007, 10:09:09 PM »

Fucking EA. And "fucking Bioware" for selling out. icon_evil
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drifter
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« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2007, 10:16:47 PM »

It may not be Biowares choice, they are owned by VG Holding and that is what EA bought so they are along for the ride.
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ROTC1983
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« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2007, 10:19:23 PM »

So, when should we expect the name changes? Tongue
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Calvin
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« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2007, 10:24:45 PM »

Why do we need another thread in the PC forum? We have been discussing this in console for a while.
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CeeKay
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« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2007, 10:53:50 PM »

well fuck. 
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ROTC1983
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« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2007, 01:05:59 AM »

Quote from: Calvin on October 11, 2007, 10:24:45 PM

Why do we need another thread in the PC forum? We have been discussing this in console for a while.

It affects us, too...I guess it should have been in General Gaming, eh? smile
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ScubaV
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« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2007, 02:10:26 AM »

Shit, cock, ass, motherfucker son of a bitch!!!   icon_evil crybaby finger

I hope Vivendi never decides to sell its games division (i.e. Blizzard).
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« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2007, 04:21:26 AM »

Quote from: drifter on October 11, 2007, 10:16:47 PM

It may not be Biowares choice, they are owned by VG Holding and that is what EA bought so they are along for the ride.

Exactly. Neither Bioware nor Pandemic would ever have voluntarily sold out to EA but since they were owned by a parent company there was little they could do, regardless of their own bargaining positions. EA buys the parents, cuts all Bioware/Pandemic deadlines in half, products start sucking per the EA norm since they are buying the names "Bioware" and "Pandemic" and all of their own individual properties. Because when you're too lazy to develop your own individual IP's, go out and buy some then milk those cows for as long as possible. Rinse, repeat. Standard EA practice.
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Daehawk
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« Reply #10 on: October 12, 2007, 05:20:05 AM »

Small quote from Synco over on the OO post...

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I would like to start off with that no one is as shocked as the employees. We were informed at the same time the press release went out.

As for the this quote

"....but I do think it could mean the death of Dragon Age."

Trust me, very unlikely.
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« Reply #11 on: October 12, 2007, 06:14:30 AM »

I wonder if we'll see a mass exodus of employees from Bioware who don't want to work for EA.
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kathode
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« Reply #12 on: October 12, 2007, 06:17:20 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on October 12, 2007, 06:14:30 AM

I wonder if we'll see a mass exodus of employees from Bioware who don't want to work for EA.

Unlikely.  When it comes down to it, getting paid is much more important to most people than any moral objections over company philosophy.  If they do institute lots of sweeping reforms, you will probably see people leave.  But I would say that's unlikely, and I have heard from others that Bioware is not really all that great a refuge from the horrors of "EA Spouse" to begin with.
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« Reply #13 on: October 22, 2007, 08:43:38 PM »

I mentioned this in the game boxes thread:

This is from one of Bioware's first releases (Shattered Steel for PC in 1996, after Bioware was founded in 1995). What was cool back then was if you posted questions in certain places (I want to say Compuserve's gaming forums, and America Online's [then not nearly as maligned as it later would be] forums), Bioware's Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeshcuk (my memory is foggy but I want to say Zeschuk more often replied there) would reply and were helpful. I think they helped me once when I got stuck at a certain point in the game. I guess you can't go home again, but there's my little peek at Bioware's humble beginning.

And the image is again my cheap joke that the plot of Mass Effect is, it seems, not much different than Shattered Steel's. Well, OK, this time there are *multiple*planets to cleanse... icon_wink
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Daehawk
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« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2007, 09:54:38 PM »

id love to start a game company. id never forget how I started and always be on boards yakkin and helping. Course I can say that knowing nothing of the inside of the games industry. But Id hope I could stay like that.
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Daehawk
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« Reply #15 on: October 25, 2007, 04:05:21 PM »

And now the layoffs have started at other EA owned places...hmmmm.

http://www.destructoid.com/restructuring-layoffs-forthcoming-at-ea-mythic-studios-50896.phtml
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« Reply #16 on: October 25, 2007, 05:15:25 PM »

Quote from: Daehawk on October 25, 2007, 04:05:21 PM

And now the layoffs have started at other EA owned places...hmmmm.

http://www.destructoid.com/restructuring-layoffs-forthcoming-at-ea-mythic-studios-50896.phtml

I'm afraid this is real bad news for EA Canada which has had a significant and unavoidable increase in their costs due to the rising Canadian dollar. Based on the fact I can drive by their offices late at night on just about any of the 365 evenings of the year and see people working, it's really not fair to their workers if it means staff cuts. It could also quite possibly mean cuts to Bioware staff for the same reasons.
And what in Gods name is the logic of moving the UO team to the Mythic facilities? It's not like there's real similarities in the style of MMORPG's they produce; just can't see what synergy they'll gain. I can just imagine what it would be like being a Redwood Studios employee living in California and being told that you can now can move to the other side of the continent or hit the road.
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« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2007, 05:38:08 PM »

I'm in northern Virginia (near Fairfax), so maybe I'll start running into Ultima Online dev team members. We'll do some LAN gaming.  icon_biggrin

I take all these "says a reliable anonymous source" news bytes with a grain of salt; if it's true though, we all get a glimpse of what Pandemic and Bioware have agreed to expose themselves to in terms of EA's often cutthroat environment on their future, post-Mass Effect titles.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2007, 05:52:33 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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