EA Sports' Daryl Holt arrived to Spain with great news for a growing but not yet strong local development scene, the establishment of EA Sports Madrid. 24 new jobs to begin with and more in the future for a development team that will support EA Tiburon as it tries to bring back the NBA Live franchise to challenge the dominance of NBA 2K. "It's not moving the game versus adding to the game", Holt explained to Gamereactor after the announcement.
"We look at distributed development now as you can work anywhere and build games together, so we've seen that like with our FIFA product - we have people in Vancouver, people in Bucharest, people in Cologne all making wonderful experiences for players - NBA Live should be no different."
"Bring some more talent, international talent, from an environment, a country that knows basketball -Spain is definitely there, has the #2 rated men and women national teams and it's the number two sport here behind football- so there is definitely a cultural affinity for that sport. Bringing that knowledge and that passion to work with the team in Orlando, I think it will make for a better game. It can't hurt but help to bring more vision, more diversity, more inclusion, more viewpoints to make a stronger game."
The first step for EA is to build small development team with people in direct contact with the main team in Orlando, learning with ropes with a plan to expand later.
"Spain was an opportunity we looked up and we are excited to announce that Madrid is what we selected and we've got 24 positions now open there for anything from software development, UI scripting and development management positions, so that we can start to build a nucleus for the development team and starting to work with NBA Live franchise there."
"We'd love to go fast, but we wanted to be very organic and find the right people, because we know that this group of people will form that nucleus that allow to grow and expand, and so be very selective and trying to figure out who are the right people. Probably a mix of experienced game development talent, which we know exists in Spain and can be successful, as well as some new talent coming from university pipelines."
Take a look at the interview in the video where Holt talks more about his panel "making games bigger than sports", the changes in FIFA 19 and how they affect the gameplay or the future of EA Sports on Nintendo Switch.