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Riccitiello: Cross-platform publishing is "greatest innovation"

EA boss denies need for new hardware and praises creativity of rivals

EA CEO John Riccitiello has refuted suggestions that a new generation of consoles is needed as a catalyst for innovation in the industry - arguing that cross-platform publishing is already inspiration enough.

Speaking as part of a new interview with website IndustryGamers, Riccitiello was responding to suggestions made by Ubisoft founder Yves Guillemot that the longer console cycle for current hardware is hurting creativity in the industry.

"What I don't agree with is the implication that we're waiting for the hardware guys to transition to help us realise the innovation," said Riccitiello. "I think the greatest innovation in the history of gaming is occurring right now. It is happening in the cross-platform arena - where publishers are linking the best IP from console to PC to mobile to social."

"This is hard to do, but it will change the way gamers interact with our IP. Five years ago, I said that the industry had been making the same five games over and over. That pissed some people off - but it was true," he added.

"Since then we've seen an explosion of quality and creativity from publishers like Take-Two, Ubisoft and EA. On top of that, we've got to acknowledge that platform partners like Nintendo, Facebook and Apple have given us enormous new canvases to work on."

Although many expect Microsoft to announce their next generation console next year, including a prediction today of an E3 2012 reveal by Crytek, EA has always seemed less impatient for the new generation consoles.

After previous rumours suggested that EA had already taken delivery of development kits for the new Xbox the publisher went out of its way to deny them, describing the story as a "total fabrication".

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David Jenkins