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EA: Providing Multiplayer Is An "Expectation"

Jonathan Lester
EA, multiplayer, Starbreeze, Syndicate

EA: Providing Multiplayer Is An "Expectation"

Syndicate Co-Op Designed To Emulate Original Game

The idea that games need to provide multiplayer functionality is becoming an increasingly pervasive notion, and EA believes that including it is now an "expectation" both within the industry and for gamers alike. But only if it's done properly. EA Partners Producer Jeff Gamon has spoken out on Syndicate's upcoming cooperative mode, suggesting that it's a value addition that gamers crave, but will also be a relevant part of the package. Full details after the break.

Speaking to Eurogamer, Gamon suggests that games are expected to implement multiplayer modes to keep up with the competition, and that the extra value and replayability are absolutely vital for sales success - if not a truly mandatory requirement.

It's a matter of scope and value for money. We have to think in terms of our customers and the product. I don't think online and social modes are absolutely a requirement. It depends on the game. But it's rapidly becoming an expectation because it's becoming more and more common.

We are making a first-person shooter with Syndicate. The kinds of people who play that want to play online with their friends.

So will Syndicate's cooperative suite just be a tacked-on extra that's only included to fulfil our expectations? Apparently not. Gamon reckons that Starbreeze are attempting to provide the same teamwork-based thrills of the original strategy game.

Co-op for us was always equal partners in this. It wasn't about, we need to tick a box here. This is Syndicate. We're Starbreeze, so we're going to do a single-player campaign with a great narrative, really immersive, but it was a given to us this was going to be equal partner in the billing, with the co-op mode recreating that experience of the original game.

I've got every reason to believe him, actually. Syndicate's co-op missions are shaping up beautifully, and I said so in our recent hands-on preview. But the "expectation" does have destructive repercussions for games that inappropriately include multiplayer modes in completely unnecessary ways - and consequently force resources out of the all-important singleplayer experience. It's a divisive issue, and we've love to get your take on it. Do you "expect" games to provide multiplayer options?

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