How The Finished Product Is Determined
RS: It’s based on sort of the design that we come up with at the start of the year, the features that we really want to blow out- BounceTek and then our dribble system. We plan really far ahead before these shoots even happen to figure out what type of data we need and once we get it, it’s just [a matter of] plugging stuff in to reach our goals.
RF: I think when you saw these guys working they had their shot sheet. They go through to make sure that Damian feels the right way [in the game]. So they take that shot sheet and basically fill the holes for each specific guy. You kind of start with your control like a science experiment and say, “here’s my one guy that I have and here’s how I make him feel right [to the audience]” and we design that stuff up front and it happens months in advance. Then that really opens it up for us to add variety and all of the signature stuff because we spend so much time using Ignite tech to get the players to feel right generically, then we can add all of the signature stuff to make each guy individually feel the right way. We’re really fortunate that we can mess around with stuff and check it two hours later. We can now look at stuff within hours as opposed to waiting two weeks.
SO: Even on the gameplay side, we have an ANT tool that basically allows us to go in and change stuff by the second and by the minute. If I don’t like a certain crossover, I can change something up immediately, and go back to it and change it again. I can have one of our guys go in and try the new Damian Lillard package I just put in. They can go in [and provide feedback] so that we can change it immediately.
RS: That ANT tool is our propriety animation software EA Sports uses across the board and the main component to the Ignite package so we’re able to do a lot of these things because of our great tools and the support we have across the sports label.
RF: In effect, everybody uses the same stuff and it cannot be understated because when there’s an improvement in one group or one team (at EA), that stuff all cross pollinates to everyone here. If Madden, Fifa or NHL has an innovation, we can all share it and it allows us to run a sport in its entirety and make it feel unique and feel right. Very few people would realize a football game, soccer game and a basketball game are [running] on the same engine, but that’s because of the scale and how much stuff we can add into each.
Decision To Release On Only Next-Gen Consoles
RF: I think going to next-gen Consoles, specifically for us, made the most sense. It’s very rare that you get these transitions and for us, a brand back on the rise, we want to plant our flag with the newest, latest and greatest and there’s a lot of advantages with that. We’re singularly focused and in a vacuum looking at XBox One and PS4 in this case and we don’t have to worry about other platforms and that allows us to provide the best possible experience on those platforms and be straight ahead. So to us, it really was the only decision. It’s a very rare, great opportunity to perfectly align with the transition of the new stuff. We haven’t had one of these in about eight years so it’s a really good opportunity.
Targeting Youth With Kyrie Irving and Damian Lillard
RS: I think we made that decision because sort of the ethos for the franchise this year is all about what’s next, being next and all about next. We wanted to align ourselves with athletes who are the future of the league and are going to be the next superstars on the rise and we feel like with BounceTek there’s a nice synergy there between the guys that we’re picking, their handles and their game. We thought this year it would make a lot of sense to pick up a guy like Kyrie who’s- I mean the guy’s next up. When Kobe’s gone and LeBron and Durant get older, he’s going to be one of those guys coming up I think as one of the legit superstars in the league and so all of the guys we’ve gotten, I think we’ve got a great cast to represent what the franchise really represents this year.
RF: Every single thing you see us do is going to be about what’s next, who’s next, what’s the next hot thing and I think that aligns right with our game as well. We’re next and we’re coming up on the new hot machines, we got all of the new stuff. We are next.
What do you think?
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