EA embraces Avatars, plans to ‘put them in battle gear’

Earlier today, we talked about Microsoft’s vision for Avatar integration in Xbox 360 games, and it seems that Electronic Arts is more than keen to take The ‘Soft’s ball and run with it. Speaking with Gamedaily, EA Games boss Frank Gibeau talked about his company’s big plans for Microsoft’s future goldmines.

“We try to take advantage of as many of the capabilities of Xbox Live as we can,” stated Frank, shockingly suggesting that EA would ever take advantage of anything or anyone. “The customer there is a very strong and dedicated customer… they’re very loyal and use a lot of the feature sets, so our sense is they’ll be using chat and their avatars as much as Microsoft says they will. Putting guys in football gear or battle gear and making them available will be part of the plan.”

I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating — for all the stick I give Microsoft over the Avatars, I must confess that I am somewhat excited for what the Xbox 360 can do with them, and whether or not they will fulfill the potential that Nintendo’s Miis never quite achieved. With EA already on board to help make that happen, perhaps other developers will set about finding unique ways to make Avatars work and the system will be a fun new experience for Xbox Live users. 

Or it could all go horribly wrong and the Avatar gimmick either becomes a wasted asset or an overbearing nuisance. Either way, it’s going to be interesting to see where Avatars are going to be in a year’s time.

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James Stephanie Sterling
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