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EA boss 'very confident' in the future of BioWare despite recent bombs

Dragon Age 4
(Image credit: BioWare)
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BioWare suffered what appeared to be a major blow in late 2020 when Mass Effect and Dragon Age bosses Casey Hudson and Mark Darrah very suddenly announced that they were leaving the studio (opens in new tab), just as work on new games in both series seemed to be getting underway in earnest. It was the latest in a long run of bad breaks for a studio that in recent years has suffered a couple of very high-profile bombs—Anthem (opens in new tab) and Mass Effect: Andromeda (opens in new tab)—and previous executive departures including Dragon Age lead producer Fernando Melo (opens in new tab), Mass Effect lead writer Drew Karpyshyn (opens in new tab), and Anthem lead producer Ben Irving (opens in new tab).

During EA's third quarter FY2021 earnings call today, CEO Andrew Wilson acknowledged that the studio has suffered some "blips" in recent years, but said he's "very confident" about BioWare's future and the games it's making.

"That is an incredible studio filled with incredible people who do incredible work," Wilson said. "I think that from the outside world, there have been some blips in their delivery over the last couple of years, but that has come as a result of them pushing deeply into innovation and creativity, and we feel very, very confident and their future roadmap, and we've talked about games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect in their future.

"With respect to Casey and Mark leaving, again, both good friends of mine, we have tremendous respect for both of them, but this happens in the natural course of creative organizations from time to time. We feel very very good about the ongoing leadership of that studio, and the many people who come to work every day to deliver great innovation and creativity."

Wilson noted that the Mass Effect Legendary Edition (opens in new tab), which was just crowned with a May 14 release date today, has been "extraordinarily well received," and said he looks forward to sharing more about what new things BioWare is getting up to "in the near future"—presumably including Dragon Age 4, which was recently confirmed to be set primarily in Thedas, and a new Mass Effect that appears more directly tied to the original trilogy than Andromeda.

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.