DICE "feels good" under Riccitiello's EA

"It's definitely the right direction."

Working for Electronic Arts since John Riccitiello returned "feels good", according to DICE creative director Lars Gustavsson, and the chief executive's focus on quality over quantity is "definitely the right direction".

"On a daily basis you can definitely feel the sheer interest in making good new IPs, good games, quality; that DICE is recognised for being DICE the studio and not just part of a big company," Gustavsson told Eurogamer for today's Battlefield: Bad Company 2 preview.

"I think that the EA you see today - and I hear that from basically everyone on the outside - is a different EA, and yes, change doesn't come overnight, but I think we're starting to see the fruit of this process. [Look at] Dead Space and everything. It's definitely the right direction and I'm happy to see that people recognise it."

Gustavsson said that one of the greatest ongoing benefits of working within EA was the opportunity to share information with other studios through the publisher's "creative director class", which takes place around four times a year.

"I get to sit down and discuss all of these things with, you know, 20 other creative directors from different studios, and that's an enormous possibility for us as a small studio, since it's hard to find a design class to be honest!" Gustavsson said.

"It's all these possibilities, and sometimes it's easy to forget the... I mean, coming into that room they are all stars - 'You made that game! You made that game! Ooh!' It's this enormous brain pool within EA and I think, with this new way of thinking, we're learning how to take better advantage of it."

Whether it's borne of that process of not, one of Gustavsson's pet projects at the moment is incorporating data-driven development practices into DICE for the likes of Bad Company 2 and Battlefield 1943. You can read more about how he's done that, and what else the studio has in store, in today's Battlefield: Bad Company 2 preview.

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