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Game giant Electronic Arts is spending over a billion dollars on phone and iPad gaming company PopCap – the maker of Bejeweled and Plants vs Zombies. EA is handing over $650m in cash plus $100m in EA shares to some PopCap shareholders. Additionally PopCap can earn another $550m if it hits sales targets for the next two years …


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  1. NoneSuch Silver badge

    I will bet serious money...

    ...that the 400 employees of PopCap today will be down to only 200 in two years or less.

    I for one welcome the new corporate overlords with their profit margin spreadsheets and board of directors.

    Don't worry about the employees that much. With "$100m in EA shares to some PopCap shareholders" I am sure those 2-5 people will look after the rest when the cuts come.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      And the remaining 200 employees...

      ... will be expected to work all night and all weekend, for a pizza (if they're lucky).

      EA is the corporation which has done more than any other to reduce the creative art of games programming to sweatshop drudgery.

      F%&$ you, EA.

  2. Kevin 6

    death to another company

    I got the feeling EA will add their DRM encumbered installer to all pop cap games, so it will take longer to install the actual game than beat it(like most things EA sells now). And a new plants VS zombies will come out that the new plants will cost $2 a piece as DLC

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    app dev company

    Right, I am starting an app dev company pronto!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Too right

      I'm in the wrong fucking business!

  4. Anonymous Coward


    Smaller, more casual games need developers organised in the same way.

    1. James Hughes 1


      Popcap have over 400 employees. That's not small or casual.

      And they do pretty well.

  5. Lee Dowling


    Knew I should have bought the PopCap Complete Collection when it was on the Steam sale last week. How else am I going to make sure they don't ruin all those perfectly good games forever?

  6. pompurin

    Plants and Zombies

    Is it sad that I was more fulfilled by playing Plants and Zombies than any of the mega hyped games that have been out the past year?

    1. Lee Dowling


      Nah, I was playing that for hours when I got it a few months back. Stupidly addictive, unlike most of the regurgitated, steal-an-engine-and-make-it-prettier junk that's out there.

      Here's a hint. You're suck on a desert island with only a PC and a single game installed on it:

      Duke Nukem Forever, or Plants Vs Zombies?

      I think I know what most people would choose.

      1. Oninoshiko

        RE: Nah.

        I'm trying to figure out which side you are on... You mention that PvG is "stupidly addictive" then mention "regurgitated, steal-an-engine-and-make-it-prettier junk" which sounds like it could be a quote from the DNF reviews I saw, but the structure of your email implies you think DNF would be the better choice.

        I dont know about PvZ, but if you make that Bjeweled, I'm going with Bjeweled.

        Although... screw games, Give me IRC so I can tell people to get me off the damn island.

        1. Lee Dowling

          RE: Nah.

          PvZ is *Unlike* that regurgitated junk (DNF) - hence PvZ is good.

          The balance in PvZ is annoyingly good and makes you want to play it more. But then, so did Peggle, and Bookworm for myself. PopCap knew how to balance a game perfectly, no matter how simple it seemed.

          And already, I'm referring to them in the past tense!

          1. Oninoshiko
            Thumb Up


            Thanks for the clarification.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Perfect match!

    so, an iToy-developer and DRM-fetished EA? What a perfect match!

  8. T.a.f.T.

    Mobile games...

    I only hear about them from their PC work and most of that is through Steam?!!

    It is true that casual games are probably easy to port and will work well on most handheld devices but this is not the main market for PopCap at the moment is it? I guess it might be what they sold themselves to EA as.

    At least EA is not in any kind of monopoly position with its tendrils in 90% or more of the games industry.

  9. Anonymous Coward

    "Duke Nukem Forever, or Plants Vs Zombies?"

    Could you have picked a worse game to compare with Pv'sZ.

    I would chose chewing my own arm off over DNF and I found Pv'sZ extremely boring after about half an hour.

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