American McGee clarified comments he made yesterday about EA's marketing strategy. McGee, who said EA wanted to 'trick' people into perceiving Madness Returns as hardcore horror, apologized to the publisher on his blog today. McGee does maintain the publisher is somewhat at fault for the game's poor sales.
"Allow me to expand on my original post," McGee wrote, "while at the same time making a correction (call it a retraction if you like). 'Tricked' is the wrong word. I take that back. Apologies to EA and anyone else whose feelings were hurt. Electronic Arts doesn't trick customers into buying things. They carefully apply proven marketing techniques to achieve the desired customer response. If they were bad at this sort of thing they'd have been crushed by their competitors long ago and you'd be playing Madden Football from Activision or Atari or something."
McGee then noted that, while Madness Retuirns does include a lot of what's in the trailers in question, the developer felt its marketing didn't portray the Alice character correctly, and made out "blood and guts" to be the game's primary selling point. However, he conceded all of the blame can't be placed at the publisher's doorstep.
"I can't and don't fully fault them or their marketing for whatever the Alice games might or might not have done sales-wise. As a developer, do I grumble into my beer about how it could have been different if only...? Sure do! But I also recognize my own faults, and actions which are to blame for things not being 100 percent... or for inadvertently igniting firestorms."