EA took the stage at this year’s E3, and the company plans to double down on beautiful and engrossing indie games. There is now a name for the new initiative, too: EA Originals.
Executive Vice President of EA Studios, Patrick Söderlund, got up on stage to give details on the new push. After referencing last year’s Unravel announcement, he laid out the three core pillars of EA Originals. First, it’s about taking unique, gorgeous, and innovative experiences and bringing them to the masses. Second, it is about supporting small developers and helping them with development, marketing, and publishing. And third, EA wants to offer a level of security by giving all profits back to the developers.
After Söderlund stepped off, Klaus Lyngeled of Zoink! Games in Gothenburg, Sweden jumped on to introduce Fe. It’s an open world game that about our relationship with nature. There are no words, but music will undertone emotions and themes. You’re a cub who awakens in an unknown world to discover extraordinary creatures that communicates with songs. As you learn songs, you can connect to the forest. Like Metroid style games, the more songs you learn, the more of the forest you can unlock. There’s also the looming menace of the Silent Ones, who with each step silence the forest.
It’s a very personal experience. There isn’t one set path for the game, and Zoink! wants every experience to be unique.
EA’s foray with EA Originals should serve the publisher well. To help fund beautiful projects by small teams without asking anything in return is unprecedented. It is uncertain what EA’s long term goals are with EA Originals, but one thing is: those polls showing EA as the most evil company in the America may change.