Peter Moore is a big cheese. There's no two ways about it, the ex SEGA and Microsoft man is one of the most well known figures in the games industry, and his role as head of EA Sports has once again put him in the spotlight. We caught up with him at gamescom last month to talk about football, price cuts, UFC and more football.
VideoGamer.com: Will Liverpool win the Premier League?
Peter Moore: Not after watching them on Sunday. Anything less than a good result tonight, with already a patchwork defense... they're in real serious trouble.
VideoGamer.com: They've been tipped this season to perhaps go all the way.
PM: I don't know why. I think the squad is weaker than last year. Losing Alonso was ridiculous.
VideoGamer.com: £30m though. That's a lot of money.
PM: Yeah but it's just money. That's fine paying off your debts but if you're going to once again going to be third or fourth, or even second. Remember they only lost two games all of last season, and that wasn't good enough. They've already lost one and it's still August. Disappointing. So really big game early on tonight.
VideoGamer.com: Will you be watching it?
PM: Jon Rosenblatt, who runs our marketing here in Europe, has been told to find an Irish pub in Cologne, Germany. There's an Irish pub everywhere. Apparently there is, so he feels confident he's got somewhere in Cologne we'll watch it tonight. It's a later kick off because we're an hour ahead.
VideoGamer.com: Leading on from talking about real football to FIFA, you've talked before about improving the Metacritic review score. To me it seems incredibly difficult to significantly improve FIFA 09. How do you think fans will respond to FIFA 10?
PM: Our goal is to continue, as difficult as it is, to make an even better game than FIFA 09. There's no such thing as a perfect game. I can tell you that the team in Canada strives to make the perfect game. They'll never get there. There is no such thing. But the stuff that Dave (Rutter, line producer) showed you just in a brief video [during EA's gamescom press conference) that you can now feel when you play, whether it's the 360 degree dribbling, the Be A Pro gamer photo face - that will be very cool, finally I get to play for Liverpool - some of the improved defending, the sense of urgency, what should be noted here is all of this is reaction to community feedback on FIFA 09. The team has done a tremendous job in eliciting feedback immediately after FIFA 09 shipped. Their first goal last October was not let's sit back and see how good the sales are going to be. It was okay, FIFA 10, which becomes the ramp to World Cup as well, because this game becomes the platform by which we go to World Cup next year, is very important. The team is continuing to push, and while they will never be perfect, no game ever is, the features you saw yesterday, the things you can feel, the intuitiveness, particularly in defending was an issue a lot of the community had last year. They felt there wasn't the urgency, that the AI was taking over in weird places - all those things that are very difficult in football. It's not like American Football, where so much of it is scripted. Plays, the ball is snapped and there are scripted things. The fluidity of football makes it even more challenging for what we do. But boy, if a team is going to get closer to that perfection, it's that team in Vancouver.
VideoGamer.com: I interviewed David recently in London, and he told me you hit the crossbar in a real world crossbar challenge on your second attempt.
PM: Yeah. It's a matter of luck as well. You find your range. It's like a mortar attack, right? Once you figure out where your range is you can drop it in there. We have a football pitch in Vancouver. It was brilliant! It was hilarious! It was about a year ago. You can spend 20 minutes and not hit the crossbar. It was just flukey.
VideoGamer.com: You're too modest.
PM: I was a right fullback, and I could pretty much drop a ball... I was the old style of fullback, down the line to the winger, and that would be one of my strengths. Now, get the ball at my feet and start dribbling, it's a different story. But I can nail it from 50, 60 yards relatively easy. And it was lucky. The first one probably missed by three or four yards, but you get distance then, right? And then it's just [clap]. I don't think it's that hard. If you have enough attempts you're going to hit the crossbar.
VideoGamer.com: Wouldn't it be cool to have a crossbar challenge in FIFA, perhaps during loading?
PM: Yeah it could be. They've got the Practice Arena now. That could be something they could do down the road as a mini-mode. You could actually do it in the practice mode now, where you try and chip.
VideoGamer.com: As you mentioned it's World Cup year next year. Will there be a Road to the World Cup FIFA game?
PM: There will be a World Cup SKU that will go prior obviously to the World Cup that will then lead on to our FIFA 11 game later in the year.
VideoGamer.com: Do you know of any changes or improvements the team is thinking of implementing?
PM: No. I'm sure there will be, but too early to talk about that.