Looking Past the Face of a Company

Today I saw a tweet from Kotaku stating that the contenders for Worst American Company of the Year were announced.

Now, trust me, I despise the company just as much as the next person (I will never forgive for what they did to the Dead Space franchise, as Dead Space 1 and 2 are in my top five games of all time), and think they have brought on a lot of the hate themselves (especially from Nintendo fans and Wii U owners). But when a company makes a good game, I have to give credit where credit is due….

…but that’s exactly it. The credit doesn’t go to EA – the owners and businessmen and women who are the sole offenders of why people hate the company. It goes to the developers; the people who put in the time and effort to make a good game, and make sure it gets released on time. As of right now, I am playing through Need for Speed: Most Wanted U, and I am loving it. It is a solid game that is extremely entertaining, as well as pretty to look at (not to mention the online multiplayer is awesome). Recently there was a series of tweets that sparked a little controversy – you can find the article here, courtesy of My Nintendo News. At first, before the whole conversation unfolded, many thought Alex Ward was being an arrogant idiot (myself included). But as the conversation progressed, it seemed as though both EA and NINTENDO were to blame for Ward’s bitterness. If what he said was true, then I wouldn’t want to really bring any games to a system belonging to a company that didn’t care about my hard work and well being. NFS Most Wanted is a great game, and should’ve gotten more publicity and promotion. It’s also the kind of online gaming that the Wii U really needs right now. But, because EA has decided to cut ties with the Wii U, and generally have been less-than-desirable to many gamers, many people are starting to refuse to buy their games and support them. I was about to jump on board, until I thought of something: there are many men and women who are good, upstanding workers, making great products to support themselves and their families. The question then becomes, Do we make the honest workers suffer for the sins of the real villains?

As I said before, I’m playing through NFS Most Wanted U, and I absolutely am blown away by the entertainment the game provides. It reminds me that even gaming companies who have become lost in greed and sucking the life out of their games (ahem…..ACTIVISION….cough….INFINITY WARD) can produce gems every now and then. We, as gamers, cannot overlook these great games simply because of the horrible company backing the game up with money. For example, when I worked at GameStop, for a time, would it have been right if you had judged me simply because I worked there (later to quit the company due to the way things are run)? No, absolutely not. I love gaming, regardless of platform and genre. So why doesn’t this apply to game developers working to pay the bills within a company that is hated (and for very valid reasons)?

All this to say, show your dislike for the company and the people running it, but keep in mind the people that may make up the company, or a branch of the company. EA deserves to be on the list of most hated American companies, but people like Alex Ward don’t deserve to be thrown under the bus, especially when they make a great game for whatever company will take it on their console. Keep that in mind before you make your next hate post on whatever social media you use.

 

~Mike

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