Made in Central Florida: Electronic Arts Orlando on mission to inspire the world to play
ORLANDO, Fla. - Beyond the brightly colored exterior walls in Orlando’s Creative Village, we found a space filled with creativity, innovation, and most importantly, passion.
Inside Electronic Arts’ Orlando studio, development teams are working around the clock on games like Madden NFL, EA Sports PGA Tour, EA Sports College Football, and NBA Live Mobile.
Senior Vice President of EA Sports, Daryl Holt, took FOX 35 cameras behind the scenes for a look at where the magic happens. Some areas were off-limits to protect top-secret gaming material, but from the moment we stepped inside, we were fascinated.
The development studio is what forms the nucleus of the operation, bringing play to life. We also found a ball pit in a meeting room, a gorgeous terrace overlooking Orlando’s Creative Village, Astro, the studio pet, and robots.
"We have beam robots that people can use remotely and beam in and drive around the studio and interact with people," Holt explained.
Holt has been with the company since 2004, but it all started ten years before he joined the team. In 1994, three software developers headed to central Florida to create Tiburon Entertainment. Their vision would eventually become EA in Orlando, transforming into a hub for interactive entertainment and employing more than a thousand of the world’s most talented electronic artists.
"There’s over 2.7 billion gamers around the world. One out of every three people on the planet. So games continue to grow and for us in sports, we are really trying to reach out and modernize and bring more sports fans into this digital experience that are our games," Holt said.
For EA, the culture of the studio expands beyond its building. The employees are passionate about the community in which they live, which is why outreach is so important to their company mission.
One of their most notable programs is their STEAM Camp. It helps underrepresented talent in the area learn about the career paths available to them in science, technology, engineering, arts, and math. That program begins in July.