As we found out yesterday Electonic Arts have signed an exclusive deal with Disney which gives them complete control over the Star Wars franchise...from a video game point of view.
Some folks have decided that it's not in the best interest of the franchise to be exclusive to one publishing house, with studios such as BioWare, Visceral, and DICE all announced as having future games in their development pipelines.
Because no good has ever come of exclusive licensing deals.
See how bad the football genre has gotten with EA controlling all NFL, and how it took the courts to break that monopoly (because that is what it was, anti competitive) up.
DurdensWrath points out in the comments of that story that EA have a history of either failing to innovate when faced with no competition, such as in the above example with Madden and the NFL franchise. Polygon moderator Salias counteracts with the viewpoint that Activision, and Ubisoft are the same when it comes to stagnant franchises (Call of Duty, Assassin's Creed).
In terms of stagnating gaming: Activision is the same. Ubisoft is the same.
It also asks the question of whether the distaste should be placed at the feet of Electronic Arts alone, or does it indicate a larger problem with the industry regarding licenced games?
Also in what situation is a license deal not limited to a single developer or publisher? How is this different from Lucas Arts? I don't understand.
If DICE makes Battlefront III and it sucks, that's that. Its not like Disney would give it to another studio and say "try again." I think EA is a great choice for this. They have a lot of talented studios who specialize in diverse genres of games.
The bottom line is these are still businesses, and Star Wars is a huge license. Disney isn't just going to throw the rights out to anyone that wants them. If its gonna be anyone, I'm glad its EA.
One last point of view comes from 'PanocideX,' who observes that EA have a dearth of talented studios to tackle the Star Wars property, which it must be added could potentially cover a wide range of genres. Disney knew what they were doing, and likely approached multiple publishing houses ahead of signing with Electronic Arts.
The question is do you think it's going to be a good fit for the brand? As some of you know I'm not the biggest Star Wars fan, but I am interested in video games, the industry and obviously good discussion on the matter.
What do you think Polynauts? Is the EA/Star Wars relationship a solid one?