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EA Issues Open Letter To Fans Following Abysmal NBA Live Reception

by Mike Futter on Nov 22, 2013 at 10:56 AM

It hasn’t been a great week for EA Sports, and especially NBA Live 14 executive producer Sean O’Brien. The game is trending at a 45 Metacritic rating on PlayStation 4 right now. O’Brien has issued a letter to fans detailing some of the changes he hopes will improve the experience.

“We hear loud and clear that some of you are disappointed in various aspects of NBA LIVE 14, and I’m sorry if the game doesn’t live up to your expectations,” he writes. “Looking at your feedback, we have laid out a plan to make NBA LIVE 14 a better game as quickly as we can.”

The team will be changing the way the game experience is taught. In addition, there will be Twitch live streams to teach various skills (here’s hoping those are archived, and not streamed directly from the PlayStation 4). There are also new blog entries with a controller guide, instructions on perfecting your style, and explaining the dribble.

O’Brien also explains how the team prioritized its efforts during the development cycle. “We felt authentic gameplay, control and the connected experience would provide the best foundation for the future,” he writes. “As a result, game visuals and animation polish suffered.  Improvements on these fronts are also in development now for NBA LIVE 14. You will notice in the coming weeks and months that the game’s visuals and animation will improve significantly.”

The elements that fans have enjoyed, like the live season and big moments will continue to evolve. Updates will be coming every day of the season.

For more on NBA Live 14, you can read our review. You can also check out O’Brien’s full letter to the community.

[Source: EA]


Our Take
This is one of the smartest moves I’ve seen out of EA in a long time… provided the team follows through. There’s no defensiveness that was present in the SimCity notes to the community, and the only hint of explanation comes in the section about how things were prioritized during development. NBA Live 14 can be fixed up a little bit, but this move is more about engendering trust for NBA Live 15.