During the EA press conference at E3, EA announced a new indie publishing division called EA Originals. “Today we are very excited to announce EA Originals,” declared Patrick Soderlund, EVP of EA Originals. “We are committed to working with small developers, finding great new games, and giving all of you a chance to discover their magic.”
Soderlund mentioned the indie darling of last year’s E3, Unravel. He hopes to bring more unique and innovative indie games to the mass market (which probably wouldn’t make them indie any more). “Our partnership on Unravel showed us something bigger than just one game,” said Soderlund. “There are so many amazing games out there today, with highly creative development teams putting their hearts and souls into their projects. With EA Originals we are committed to finding great new games that we know players are going to love. We’re working with small developers to make sure those games get discovered and into the hands of players.”
EA Originals will take on a few projects each year. They will aid in development, marketing, and publishing. Soderlund made a point on stage that all profits will go back to the developers. The process sounds similar to the annual Summer of Arcade program on the Xbox 360, but even more involved.
Soderlund also announced the first game with EA Originals. He introduced Swedish developer Zoink Studios and their game, Fe. Zoink CEO Klaus Lyngeled was charmingly nervous. He described Fe as “a personal narrative about our relationship with nature.”
Fe has no dialogue. Instead, you play a young creature in a dark forest ready for discovery. Every creature (and even plants) has a unique song. You can use these songs to interact with the world around you, and avoid the one-eyed Silent Ones.
Fe’s art style and sound direction looked absolutely fantastic. As of yet, no platforms or release dates have been announced.