One of EA’s best known executives is departing the publisher, it’s been announced. Patrick Söderlund, former CEO of Digital Illusions CE (DICE) from 2000, will leave EA at the end of October, following Battlefield V’s release.
Söderlund spent 12 years under the EA umbrella following DICE’s acquisition in 2006, moving through numerous roles before ending up as Chief Design Officer in April of this year. The Swede was subject of a $20 million (£15.7m) bonus in 2017 (spotted by Kotaku) as EA made an effort to keep him at the publisher. Everybody doesn’t have a price, it seems.
EA put up a note from CEO Andrew Wilson confirming the departure, stating: “Patrick has been a trusted business partner and a great friend, and his inspiring leadership has had an outstanding impact on EA. As an integral part of the management team for many years – including as head of Worldwide Studios and, most recently, Chief Design Officer – he’s been an agent of change and transformation. From his early vision for Frostbite, which has now become a cornerstone for our technology strategy, to being a champion for Players First experiences, Patrick has always ensured we put creative at the center of everything we do.
“He has also been unwavering in his commitment to building our pipeline of amazing new games to come, and his fingerprints will be on the experiences that we bring to players well into the future. We wish Patrick the very best in his next life adventure, and we thank him for his many significant contributions.”
Posting a comment on Linkedin, Söderlund said: “During my many years of making games, our industry has grown from relative obscurity to a massive global phenomenon that engages billions of people around the world every day. What blows my mind is that we’re only in the beginning. The speed at which technology advances, the advent of streaming, deep learning, cloud computing and the emergence of completely new gaming platforms will reshape this industry from the ground up in the next few years. While I’m not yet ready to spill the beans on what’s next for me, rest assured that I’m not done with gaming.
“I owe a debt of gratitude to a whole bunch of you, but a special shout-out to Andrew and all the amazing people at Electronic Arts for an incredible ride.”
Söderlund’s most recent forays in the public eye centred on the loot box controversy.