EA CEO John Riccitiello resigns

CEO of Electronic Arts steps down

John Riccitiello has resigned as the CEO of Electronic Arts (EA), a position he has held for six years.

The decision to move on comes amid significant criticism of the company for its recent Sim City title, with the majority of players reporting issues with the city building simulator. Such has been the controversy around the new release, a free EA game has been offered to players who have had issues when attempting to play. This is not the first major issue EA has suffered in recent times, with its once highly successful NBA and Medal of Honour games titles dropping out of circulation.

In an open resignation letter, Riccitiello commented that the decision "all comes down to accountability". He stated that he was proud of what the company had achieved during his tenure, but he was "accountable for the miss" of the year's financial targets.

He concluded by speaking of his pride in the company he has worked for since 1997, stating: "I leave knowing EA is a great company, with an enormously talented group of leaders and the strongest slate of games in the industry."

Next generation of gaming

With details of the Playstation 4 announced recently, and a successor to the Xbox 360 expected in the near future, the console gaming market is moving rapidly towards the future. With a number of major EA franchises, including the FIFA and Madden sports games, expected to make up a key part of the next generation of gaming, EA will be desperate to react to the departure of Riccitiello positively.

While the search for a replacement continues, he will temporarily be replaced by Larry Probst, the CEO of the company between 1991 and 2007.

Adrian Mursec, senior developer at theEword, commented: "The games industry is facing an extremely important step forward, and with a number of recent EA issues it is perhaps no surprise that this change has taken place. What is essential for EA now is ensuring that the same mistakes are not repeated, with strong performances on the next generation of console titles."