Electronic Arts CEO: Creativity Can Pay Off, But We're Still Not Sure About Publishing Brutal Legend

Nathan Grayson

EA has certainly taken a turn for the less-reviled as of late -- a sudden change that can be attributed to risk-taking, trouble-making CEO John Riccitiello . However, even creative greats like Picasso, De Vinci, and Batman were only human, and all humans have breaking points. For Riccitiello, that point was seemingly first-person run 'n' rebel Mirror's Edge.

"I was totally convinced that game needed to be third-person and not first-person, because I wanted to see Faith," Riccitiello said.

“I was really wrong about the third-person thing,” he continued, citing the highly anticipated title's finished form.

But even with titles like Mirror's Edge under his belt, Riccitiello's heart is clad in a business suit, and some "creative risks" -- like Tim Schafer-Jack Black collaboration Brutal Legend -- give him palpitations (the bad kind; not the blood-pumping, required-to-survive kind).

"I have seen it," Riccitiello replied when asked if EA has considered publishing Brutal Legend. "I am well aware of what the game is. It’s a very significant creative risk."

"Sometimes significant creative risks end up being some of the world’s best products. Spore was also a significant creative risk. So was The Sims. Portal, BioShock. But so was [the relatively poor-selling, high quality Tim Schafer title] Grim Fandango."

That's, uh, pretty hard to mistake for a "Yes."

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