Today during their E3 press conference, EA announced their new “EA Originals” program, a new publishing initiative aimed toward fostering indie development. The program has three core tenets, as detailed in the official announcement:
- Bringing “first-time experiences that are unique, gorgeous, innovative and memorable” to consumers.
- Supporting small developers and partnering with them throughout the entire process from development to marketing to publishing.
- Funding small studios and offering them a level of security so they can make even more great games.
At first glance, this program seems to resemble the EA Partners label that was shut down in 2013. However, EA Originals seems to be geared much more toward smaller indie studios, whereas the Partners label saw major developers such as Crytek, Double Fine, and Epic Games use the label as a way to bring their games to market with EA serving mostly in a publishing role. The original Partners program was the start of EA’s relationship with DICE, who they eventually acquired, and Respawn, who are now working on Titanfall 2 and an untitled Star Wars game.
The Originals program stems from EA’s experience working with Swedish developer Coldwood on Unravel, and the games published through this program will feel more like that game than a Titanfall.
According to Patrick Söderlund, Executive Vice President of EA Studios:
“With EA Originals, we are committed to finding great new games that we know players are going to love, and working with small developers to make sure those games get discovered and into the hands of players.”
The first game to come from the EA Originals program was shown during the press conference. Fe, as it is called, is being developed by Zoink, a small studio in Gothenburg.
Fe is a third-person action platformer with a unique, understated yet gorgeous aesthetic that EA is calling “a wordless celebration of our longing to be one with world around us.” It is unclear exactly what that means, but one thing is certain: we are longing to see more of Fe soon. In the meantime, here are some screenshots that show off how beautiful the game is.