NBA Elite 11 News Post

In what will probably amount to being the closest we will ever get to deciphering the curious cancellation of NBA Elite 11, Kotaku's Stephen Totilo recently got a chance to sit down with EA head honcho John Riccitiello and get the boss' take on what exactly happened with Elite during its development cycle.

There are a bunch of interesting nuggets to dig through within this fascinating interview, but it's interesting to note that Riccitiello had the final say when it came to ending Elite 11's existence.

ďThere arenít many decisions that are essentially squarely on my desk," said Riccitiello. This was one.Ē

Clearly Riccitiello's ban hammer is strong, but the most intriguing part of the interview might have to deal with the actual deadline chaos surrounding Elite. Everyone (including me) has a theory about what what was the final straw for this game, but EA has been adamant that the demo itself was not the final straw, but rather people knew even as the game was being printed that there were issues that might halt the game's release.

"Weíre in the middle of a nail-biter. The demo goes out. We final the game. We do an internal review. Weíre not happy. Interaction between the label and sales organisation says the game is likely to be a 60 [on Metacritic] or something along those lines essentially for the fact that it wasnít finished. What do you do?"

Read the entire interview to see everything there is to offer, just try not to snicker while reading this Riccitiello tidbit.

"To be honest with you, I donít want to sound self-satisfied, but Iím pretty proud of our ability to make that decision. Because, I donít think the consumer was served badly by buying 2K. Itís a good game. And I think weíre better served. We were originally going to put Jam in our package. By separating it out people got to see what a good game that is."

Oh, and you should still bet on NBA *insert name here* by EA Sports releasing in 2011.

Source - How A Big Video Game Was Killed (Kotaku)

Game: NBA Elite 11Reader Score: 2/10 - Vote Now
Platform: PS3 / Xbox 360Votes for game: 5 - View All
NBA Elite 11 Videos
Member Comments
# 1 JohnDoe8865 @ 12/02/10 04:22 PM
Thanks for posting.
# 2 khaliib @ 12/02/10 11:36 PM
The fact is that 2k's basketball game has made a greater gap between the EA's product, and he knows it, but will only say that it is "Good".

I once told a competitior he was good, and he said thanks, then said "Check-Mate"!!!!
# 3 Shinyhubcaps @ 12/03/10 09:54 AM
Kinda surprised that EA had to make a decision between releasing an unfinished game and not releasing anything... and they chose not to release anything? Haven't they been releasing crappy, unfinished games for years? I bet that NBA Jam has something to do with it, and in any other year, that wouldn't be the case. They get their $60 shelf title, but it wasn't NBA Live/Elite. Any other year, they release the unfinished NBA Live/Elite to inflate their sales.
# 4 Hova57 @ 12/03/10 10:55 AM
The key word in all this is competitor . That's what forced this to really happen if there was no competitor then they would probably have released it.
# 5 BobbyColtrane @ 12/04/10 07:42 PM
"We're EA Sports, for Christ's sake."

Lmao new sig.
# 6 Pared @ 12/09/10 10:11 AM
He's absolutely right. It was a good decision.

What we saw early seemed to be what they would have released. And that wouldn't have done the job in this genre.
# 7 carnalnirvana @ 12/10/10 07:25 AM
while it initially seemed like a good decision in my disgust for the demo, now i as a live loyalist and a bball gamer(2k) am beginning to rethink this decision as it only pushes this franchise maybe 2 more years from even being playable........

ok the demo was badddd, we saw it, picked it apart and they got valuable feedback on what was horrible about it...

by canning elite now they get no feedback on the full copy and other issues that were newly implemented that we could not access in the demo....

so now whatever they release in 2011 is a beta test for elite 12...its obvious that the devs need our imput to smooth out things, no product = no review, no ideas to fix for the next edition...

they could have atleast priced it at 19.99. To put out nothing is criminal, its like my professors always say atleast try just dont leave the question blank......
# 8 bigeastbumrush @ 12/11/10 08:52 AM
Instead of "It's In The Game" as EA Sport's moniker, it should be (from his direct words):

EA Sports:
itís very easy to sequel a product when you donít seek to change it very much.
Because that's what they've done for years in b-ball and football.

Shocked that he let that slip out even though we all know it.
# 9 LingeringRegime @ 12/11/10 01:42 PM
Originally Posted by bigeastbumrush
Instead of "It's In The Game" as EA Sport's moniker, it should be (from his direct words):

EA Sports:

Because that's what they've done for years in b-ball and football.

Shocked that he let that slip out even though we all know it.
Yeah, that is pretty much the elephant in the room. He is the last person I would expect to talk about it though.
# 10 Ike04 @ 03/02/11 11:06 AM
please bring back live. The live series was great, it just needed to be tuned with better graphics and have the canned animations removed. I think one of the main reasons people are giving up on ea basketball is because they never stick with one idea. Every year is an overhaul on the entire game. Whereas other companies (2k) built on top of a solid foundation and look where they are now. Please ea, go back to live and stick with it this time.
# 11 jyoung @ 03/02/11 12:10 PM
Originally Posted by EA
If you seek to change it fundamentally youíre inherently taking a sizable risk. When you seek to change something that is on an annual sequel basis youíre taking a really sizable risk because if the technology youíre betting on doesnít come together in the first or second cut, you donít make your window. So from time to time we take those risks. usually, in the sports game business usually only during a platform technology transition. But sometimes, like we did with FIFA, not during a technology transition, and we took a similarly ambitious move four years ago with FIFA and pulled it off Ė in the same studio with many of the same people.
This is why Madden is never going to change much this generation.

The EA properties that have been in direct competition with other series (NHL, FIFA, NBA) are the only ones taking these risks.

And ever since NHL 2K dropped off, we have seen EA's NHL series starting to play it safe, too.
# 12 misterkrabz @ 03/16/11 08:30 PM
I've always liked EA's B-Ball better than 2K...2k's controls are unituative and clunky and EA's hoop game is always smoother and flows better. I hope the pull their head out and make a good game because with 2k, it is what it is and I don't see it getting much better or different.

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