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EA partners with id for Rage

Mon 14 Jul 2008 10:36pm GMT / 6:36pm EDT / 3:36pm PDT

Company also announces new service tracking player accomplishments and supporting community across titles

EA CEO John Riccitiello closed the company's E3 2008 presentation by announcing a new partnership with id.

John Carmack said that EA Partners was a good match for an independent studio because it gave them "full access to the worldwide marketing muscle at EA" without taking away any of id's ability to build and design games the way they think they should be done. He took the stage with Riccitiello to show footage from Rage, which will be published by EA.

EA also unveiled Nucleus - a new service tracking user accomplishments and supporting community across its various titles.

Speaking at today's E3 conference, Nanea Reeves of the EA Online Group said that the service is now live in over 30 countries through the new EA store. Nucleus is currently supported by Spore and Battlefield Heroes and will be supported by 25 titles by the end of 2009.

Rupture's Shawn Fanning joined Reeves to discuss how the social achievements work - for example, notifying friends when a player issued a challenge to another friend to achieve a particular accomplishment.

The majority of EA's press conference consisted of various company spokespersons and third parties demonstrating their upcoming titles.

Rod Humble of the Sims Studio showed a video of SimAnimals - a Wii and DS exclusive coming in January 2009. He also indicated that the Sims 2 store was now live, allowing players to purchase and download game items and - upon its release in 2009 - to download the entire upcoming Sims 3 game.

EA Redwood Shores' Glen Schofield showed off the "strategic dismemberment" of Dead Space, which will be available on October 21 for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC.

Patrick Soderlund of EA Games European Studios showcased Mirror's Edge, a first-person action/adventure game that emphasises gymnastics more than shooting. In fact, as Soderlund noted, the entire game can be completed without firing a single bullet. The PlayStation 3 version of the game, developed by DICE, was demonstrated live and a new trailer was shown to the E3 audience.

Legendary games creator Will Wright, of Maxis Studio, was on hand to describe his Spore franchise which he hopes will represent the "intersection of science and creativity." Hoping to hit the 100,000 creatures created mark by the time the full retail product launched in September, Wright was pleased to note that gamers had already created more species than actually exist on earth within the first 18 days.

Wright pointed out that the creature creator program had been downloaded more than 2 million times, and said that a National Geographic special using Spore to demonstrate principals of evolutionary biology will air at the same time that the game launches.

EA Sports' Peter Moore said that the year was shaping up to be a "landmark" year for the company, which is recognising the 20th anniversary of Madden Football. NBA veteran and announcer Bill Walton joined Moore onstage to talk about NBA Live 09 and its "dynamic DNA" - player and team data accumulated and updated to the game on a daily basis.

Moore also discussed the new EA Sports All-Play line on the Wii, competing in Tiger Woods PGA Tour against LPGA pro Natalie Gulbis - one of 28 golfers to appear in the game.

BioWare's Greg Zeschuk revealed Dragon Age: Origins, which he called a return to the company's roots - the spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate. Although scheduled for release on PC, Zeschuk said the game would also appear on consoles in the future.

Finally, Valve's Gabe Newell showed character designs and a trailer from Left 4 Dead which is shipping on November 4 for the PC and Xbox 360.

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