Thought EA Sports' were done with basketball? Think again. Label boss Peter Moore revealed to IndustryGamers that EA Tiburon already have an early build of next year's title 'up and running' and that they will be returning to challenge 2K.
Last year saw EA Sports rebrand their NBA Live franchise as NBA Elite only for them to take one look at NBA 2K11 and cancel the release, a course of action that Moore says was done for quality purposes.
'We took a year off so that we can focus on building the quality that it needs to be,' states Moore. 'I know better than anybody, having helped build NBA 2K in my early days, the power of what Greg Thomas and Visual Concepts do. It's their focus because, as you know, they’ve given up on NHL recently. NBA is the game that they need to focus on... when I think about 2K sports, it’s probably 80% of their portfolio from a unit basis and a revenue basis. It’s a great game, but we’re not walking off the court crying here.
'We’re focused on building a great game for next year,' he continues, adamant that giving up was never really an option at all, but rather that the team had to sit down, reassess and bounce back: 'We’re not just going to walk away from it; we’ve got a very, very talented team that’s already got stuff up and running even though it won't ship this year, it'll go next year. So we’ll be back.'
Fighting talk, indeed, and frankly quite laudable stuff. Moore is fully aware that his label has some way to go to restoring respectability to the franchise after last year, but he's nothing if not up for the challenge.
'It’ll take a while to get back, yeah. It’ll take us a few years maybe, but if that’s what it takes, that's what it'll be. We’re in our 20th year as a label... We’re not a short term player. It’s not going to happen overnight, but we’ll sit here 3, 4 years from now and hopefully we’ll be talking about what a great battle NBA 14 or 15 is versus their 14 or 15.'