Most likely the most recognisable EA executive Patrick Soderlund has finally decided to jump ship after 12 years in the company, despite the EA's best efforts to keep him around, some of which earned him a pretty penny in the process.
Having begun his rise to prominence as the CEO of Refraction Games, later to be acquired by Swedish developer DICE, Soderlund has come a really long way in the industry. Aged 44 though, he's not even close to finished and we're likely to see him pop back up on our radar sooner rather than later.
With DICE's fortunes skyrocketing at the time thanks to their shooter Battlefield 1942, suitors were coming in hard and fast. DICE eventually decided that selling their soul to the devil is the best possible solution, with Soderlund at the helm.
Sarcastic digs aside, the deal ended up being beneficial for both companies, for Soderlund perhaps doubly so. His peers and former colleagues have already sung many a praise and EA's official website states that the man has streamlined just about every possible facet of the company's business, from nurturing creativity to future proofing and optimisation of production pipelines.
If you prefer, ahem, numerical representations of Soderlund's worth to EA, you should know that he earned $48.3 million in 2017 alone, around $46 million of which were stock awards. Of the latter number, $20 million was meant as an incentive to stay, so there's no doubt EA has lost one of their most influential players.
All things considered, not least the hefty bonuses, the decision may turn out to be a smart move by Soderlund. His expertise is unlikely to leave him out of work for long and breaking the affiliation with EA is likely to significantly improve his public image as well. I mean, the guy even played volleyball, for the Swedish national team no less.
Additionally, his sticking with EA through the entire Star Wars: Battlefront II loot box controversy saved the company plenty of face, as Soderlund ended up being the first to start extending olive branches to the community. Oh well, next challenge we guess.