Sometimes it feels as if EA isn't a game publisher afterall, but an experiment by a 1984 government to see how far it can push its citizens before they revolt. Clearly EA has a management that just doesn't think like a gamer, no matter how much I or you might wish it.
Despite that, it does try to come up with legitimate reasons for its foibles, like with the recent uproar over the non-inclusion of pools in the upcoming Sims 4 game. According to EA producer, Graham Nardone, it's just too difficult.
"It’s easy to look at something and think, ‘That looks pretty simple.’ When you think about a feature like pools upfront, it looks like a square box on the ground and you put a shader on the top surface and have Sims jump in,” said Graham Nardone.
”But ultimately, it’s more complexity in terms of what tech’s there and what isn’t there, what we have to build to support this. How do we cut down into the terrain, how do we get Sims going through portals across different levels of pools? There’s so much that’s going on in the background that you don’t end up seeing just to have a Sim go swimming.”
What he didn't explain however, was why it's too difficult. It's because the engine being used for Sims was initially designed for SimCity and is therefore entirely unsuited to things like terraforming, which is why Sims 4 doesn't come with any hill modulation at all. Every single plot in the game is entirely flat and just like SimCity, Sims 4 is far smaller than previous games, with only 25 plots in total. In previous titles there's been upwards of 125.
Clearly EA has tried to cut costs on the latest Sims game and it really, really shows. Let's see how the publisher reacts when modders put in everything that;'s currently missing without charging DLC prices.