A New Future Under EA: Ray Muzyka Charts BioWare's Future
May 19, 2008 Page 4 of 4
RM: I'm more excited than ever, because of a whole bunch of things. One is where we point at the nexus of change. I see 30 years in the past and 30 years in the future, and it's like, "Holy crap, look at all the things that have happened in just the last few years, let alone compared to 10 or 20 years ago in video games. Where are we going in five or 10?"
Another thing I'm excited about is being part of a larger company. It's like this big toy box where there's this cool tech over there and interesting ideas and smart, nice people that are willing to share and collaborate on a bunch of things from different studios. But none of it's forced. It's as much as we can enable. It's up to us, as BioWare. It's part of that.
It's part of EA. We are EA. BioWare is a publisher now. It's a weird thing to say, but it's true, and that's not a bad thing. It's all about how you approach it. Are you oriented around your design, and your fans and long-term goals, not just short-term goals?
It's going to be a very healthy thing, because being a publisher actually really is about having a closer connection to your fans, in some ways. You're selling things to them, so if you're listening to them, you can take that stuff and bring it in and make your games better, which is our philosophy. And I think it's the philosophy of the new EA as well.
I hope so. The way I looked at EA, is that EA is like the weather of the industry. First of all, you can't get out of it if it's raining. You're sort of stuck. But also where EA goes, it kind of pushes the industry in some ways. So if it's sunny weather for us, it's good for everyone.
But to wrap up, story based games are your thing. It's part of your... I saw you speak at the IGDA Leadership Forum earlier. I feel like, watching Mass Effect, there's still a little bit of the Uncanny Valley thing going on. How do you feel about perfecting that?
RM: We can always improve. I think we can always get better. The good news is that we're not done yet. We have a long way to go still, and we continue to get better over time. I'm excited about that. I think we've built a really great foundation of people and teams, and they're really passionate and ambitious. They can fuel great things, because you actually can listen to feedback and improve.
I don't know. For us, our mission may building the best story or narrative-driven games in the world, but I see narrative -- and I talked about this in the [DICE] panel -- as being very broad. I think you'll see more and more of that coming in BioWare games. It's the narrative of the explorer, and the narrative of the combatant and the hero's journey. It's the narrative of the story, characters, and the social space.
Maybe there's some different ways to look at narrative. There's more than one way to tell a great story. But I think beyond that, our vision is emotion. So yeah, we're going to be pushing it hard to make you feel really compelled by the game as we deliver it. And if we need to deliver more compelling characters, we're going to be doing that.
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