The outpouring of online negativity surrounding Mass Effect 3 and The Old Republic may have proved "just too much" for Greg Zeschuk and Ray Muzyka, who left Bioware and the games industry behind a couple of weeks ago.
That's the view of former Bioware man Trent Oster, speaking to Now Gamer about the doctors' exit. “The last time I met up with [Greg], I felt his exhaustion,” Oster said. "Punch out, eject, get the hell out", was my suggestions to him and it hit closer to the mark than I had realised. I also think the Mass Effect 3 fan reaction and the Old Republic fans negativity was just too much.”
“You have to love games and you put your heart into them to create them. To have the fans creating petitions against the work is pretty hard to take, especially when you've spent the last few years crunching overtime to try and ship a game. It can be hard to shut off the overwhelming negativity the internet spews forth, especially when it has your name or the name of your company in it.”
Oster also suggests that the failure of The Old Republic may have spelled the end for Ray Muzyka's EA ambitions. “I had him pegged as an EA lifer," says Oster. "My thought was the Ray agenda was to first usurp Frank Gibeau and then later John Riccotello as CEO.”
“I'm sure the internal culture at EA had pinned the Old Republic conversion to free to play as a failure and hung that completely on Ray, so that would have hurt his upward climb. But, I figured he would fight harder. EA upper management must have been even worse than I thought.”
Trent Oster is currently the creative director on the Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition. Greg Zeschuk now plans to pursue "some personal passion-driven projects related to craft beer," while Ray Muzyka has announced that he'll be "investing in and mentoring new entrepreneurs, and more specifically, the field of social/impact investing."