In spite of a massive day one patch, every reviewer in the industry not receiving code until the last minute directly before launch, no preview material at all in the run up to release for the singleplayer component, and innumerable other warning signs, EA were apparently "disappointed" by the critical reaction to Medal of Honor: Warfighter.
It's almost as if they didn't know.
Well as it happens, they didn't! According to yesterday's investor call, the business head honchos had been reassured through "internal testing and mock reviews" that everything was going to be just fine.
Mock reviews? Who the hell wrote those?!
Frank Gibeau, EA Labels president, suggested that this year's EA Sports NBA title had been pulled due to not meeting standards of quality. However, according to his report, some fantastical"mock reviews" assured EA that Warfighter was in pretty good shape. Here's the transcript of this particular chunk of the call [via Seeking Alpha]:
We take product quality very seriously at Electronic Arts, and it's kind of lifeblood of what we do. And when we look at launches like Medal of Honor and NBA, we're not happy with the results there in terms of how they've been received, in the case of Medal of Honor, by the critics and reviewers, and in the case of NBA, it just didn't meet our standards of quality in order to go out and compete in basketball at a level that we felt was necessary and important for EA SPORTS. So in the case of basketball, we're committed to basketball, and we're going to be entering that category in the future, and it's going to be done in a way that we deliver a high-quality product.
On Medal of Honor, we're disappointed with the critical reception. Our internal testing and mock reviews indicated that the game is better than the actual score that we have right now, and we believe that it is. However, we are seeing some folks out there that just don't like the game.
We believe that it's going to find an audience. It's been - had a good track record over the weekend in the U.K. We're going to continue to support the game going forward with marketing and additional content.
Were those mock review internal? Were they outsourced? If so, to whom? Frankly, after delivering a hilariously buggy FPS with a 4-5 hour-long campaign, built on the shoulders of a franchise famed for its engrossing singleplayer, the mock reviewers who said it would be fine should probably be re-evaluated.
We gave the game 5/10 in our Warfighter review.