One of the major complaints many have with modern video games is that they’re often far too keen on holding players’ hands, throwing them through endless amounts of tutorials when they’d rather explore the games for themselves and find out what they’re supposed to do the old-fashioned way. However, EA doesn’t believe that this is the case, with Electronic Arts chief creative officer Richard Hilleman explaining that the company believes that their games are still too difficult for new players.
Speaking at the D.I.C.E. Summit in Las Vegas, Hilleman said: “Our games are actually still too hard to learn. The average player probably spends two hours to learn how to play the most basic game.
“And asking for two hours of somebody’s time – most of our customers, between their normal family lives… to find two contiguous hours to concentrate on learning how to play a video game is a big ask.”
While certain games, such as EA’s sport titles, benefit from user-friendliness when it comes to their mechanics due to their pick-up-and-play nature, that EA believes its games should cater more towards those who haven’t really got the time to play video games seems like it will only negatively impact those who do.
Shadow of Mordor’s creative director also spoke of how “every game is an RPG now.”
Games should certainly be inclusive to all kinds of players, but to specifically target those who won’t be able to play their games for a lengthy period of time seems counter-intuitive. Hopefully this simply means more streamlined, shorter tutorials, rather than toning down their existing IPs for a more casual audience.
Elsewhere during EA’s on-stage Q&A session, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor‘s creative director Michael de Plater spoke of bringing RPG elements to more games in the future, saying: “Every game is an RPG now. You wouldn’t make a game without progression and levels and XP. And I think every game is going to be a social game… good ideas propagate.”