July 8, 2008 // 8:35 pm
- Industry giant and evil overlord Electronic Arts reported this morning that it had finished its wheeling and dealing with the Federal Trade Commission concerning the takeover of Take Two Interactive.
In its regulatory filing, EA said it would not go through with the previously offered $2 billion deal (because Take Two rejected it), and would instead return to the table, presumably with hired goons, no sooner than August 21 of this year. The news apparently convinced some people that this deal will happen, as stock prices rose for both companies. We have just experienced the beginning of the end.
The average gamer knows this to be true. It was a sad day when EA acquired BioWare, and that's just one developer. Take Two represents one of the four legs (along with EA, Ubisoft, and ActiBlizzion) that holds up the bed of videogames that we all sleep in. Combining two of those legs into one will certainly make the bed unstable, and we will most likely not have as much fun in it any more for fear that it will break and splinters will pierce our fun-parts.
The EA Sports games are a perfect example of what a lack of competition does to the quality of their products. EA just doesn't give a shit. They know that if you want NFL-branded football, you will buy their game, so they have no motivation to make it anything other than passable. If EA acquires Take Two, all sports games will begin to suck harder.
I know the reality of a Take Two buyout is probably not as doom and gloom as I think it is. I still have faith that BioWare will continue to make great games despite being under the EA banner of douchebaggery. The point I'm trying to make is that competition breeds innovation. The more competition EA disposes of through either acquisitions or exclusive licensing, the lower their need to focus on quality, and the shittier the average game will end up being. Just look at the history of AT&T for a perfect example.
Hopefully, if EA continues its trend of gobbling up every other company, it will actually end up like AT&T – broke into a thousand pieces that end up giving us better choices and service. If not, I'll just go back to boring things like spending time with my family.