BioWare promotes Gary McKay to studio boss after tumultuous year

    
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Because it's not real.

After a year of shakeups at BioWare, the game developer now has a new general manager… who is the same as it’s old general manager. Sort of.

BioWare announced that it was promoting interim general manager Gary McKay to full-time, super-awesome studio general manager. McKay replaced Casey Hudson, who departed the company studio last December, and has only been with BioWare since early 2020.

In his inaugural pep talk, McKay said, “We’re laser-focused on releasing the types of games BioWare has built a reputation on: high-quality console, PC, and online RPG games with rich stories, unforgettable characters, and vast worlds. We continue to work on the next Dragon Age and Mass Effect — and this is a milestone year being the 10th anniversary with more to come from Star Wars: The Old Republic.”

BioWare’s weathered a rocky year in which it effectively ended development on Anthem, struggled with Star Wars: The Old Republic output, and launched the Mass Effect legendary edition.

Source: BioWare
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Dug From The Earth

Reminds me of those movies where the evil mastermind kills off his lead general, and then promotes the next minion standing there to lead general, saying “Dont fail me or else”

PlasmaJohn
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PlasmaJohn

Sooo wasn’t McKay EA Sports’ Chief Monetization Officer? No wonder SW:TOR got a poorly implemented Battle Pass.

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Sleepy

You are in command now, Admiral Piett.

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Natalyia

Sadly, their “laser focus” on games-as-a-service and rushing games out incomplete and poorly implemented has cemented a very different reputation for the studio of late.

SWTOR is essentially in maintenance mode. We get new stuff in the Cartel Market and a (very) occasional story flashpoint. That’s pretty much it. The somewhat maligned Icebrood Saga feels like an embarrassment of riches in comparison to the content SWTOR delivered over the same time frame.

ME3’s ending was a failure. Andromeda was… uninspired at best. Anthem was… an essentially unmitigated disaster.

At this point, I simply just don’t trust the the studio even knows what a “rich stories, unforgettable characters, and vast worlds” even means for a great RPG game, much less is capable of delivering one.

I hope they do something great – but I’m sure not expecting it, and I’m most definitely not pre-ordering anything they make. I’ll believe they’ve done a great Mass Effect game when they actually deliver one and people I trust have played it, not a minute before.

Not a half-complete Mass Effect Online Experience with a ten year vision and a roadmap for the future, whose “early beta build” that testers had some issues are largely fixed internally – trust us.

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Stormwaltz

There’s still a huge mass of individual talent at BioWare – IMO Inquisition proved that. Where they’ve had problems is project management – aligning teams on direction, coordinating a cohesive product, and managing scope.

I’d guess, based on the various articles, that after they pulled off runaway successes with their dev process on Mass Effect and Dragon Age, some critical portion of BioWare became afflicted with”Victory Disease.”

That’s an old Pacific War term – the Japanese won all their early battles against the allies through a combination of meticulous planning and judicious risk-taking. After all those gambles paid off, they started to think they could pull them off all the time.

But I’m armchair quarterbacking here. The truth could be very far from what we perceive here on the outside.

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Jim Bergevin Jr

It all gets back to the stranglehold EA has on the studios they control. There is a reason that there are a plethora of games from the 90’s and early Aughts that are hailed as top of the line on game development, and a dirth of such in the modern era.

PlasmaJohn
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PlasmaJohn

EA has a lot to answer for but Bioware has dug its own grave.

If you believe Schreier’s reporting management basically believes in sunshine and rainbows while the line devs are killing themselves to make things happen. This is not a sustainable business model and the state of SW:TOR pretty much reflects that dismal state of affairs.

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Jim Bergevin Jr

But that’s all part and parcel of the EA buyout. We’ve seen the decline in pretty much every single studio they bought out. I don’t blame the Grunts at all. It’s the management and that comes from the top down.

PlasmaJohn
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PlasmaJohn

“Bioware Magic” was a thing well before EA came knocking.

EA is certainly a villain but sadly not in this instance. I’ve spent several years tearing apart data structures and reviewing the scripting in their games and “shoddy” is being nice.

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Greaterdivinity

online RPG games

But have you built a reputation on that? Like…really? I get he likely has to mention, but their online games have unarguably been the weakest entries from the studio.

Good luck to him, I hope he can get things settled, right the ship, and get the studio to ship some quality games without the teams suffering years of crunch and mental health crisis.

I didn’t even realize we’re coming up on 10 years for SWTOR (and some other titles), man time flies.