Photo by Lars Mårtensson (DICE)
“I need a very strong vision for our games”
Executive ProducerAs Executive Producer for Battlefield, Patrick Bach is responsible for the finished game as a whole. This entails everything from what the game is supposed to be, its actual contents, shipping it on time and to quality, and finishing it within budget.
“Heading up a team of several hundred people can be hard work. It’s my job to set the high level goals for the game, and to make sure all of these diverse disciplines – technical as well as artistic – work together towards those goals.
I need to make sure I have a good team, and I need to make sure everyone knows what the project is. They should have the necessary information to do the work of their life, and they should have fun while doing that.
My job is pretty easy, thanks to the talented and passionate co-workers at DICE. The one thing that can feel daunting is working with a huge title like Battlefield 3. I want to make all of our fans happy, and in some ways Battlefield has grown larger than just a game. It has almost taken on a life of its own.
My job as Executive Producer takes a great amount of common sense. I also need a very strong vision, the drive to accomplish something amazing, and the ability to find the team that can carry it through. A good amount of integrity helps keep focus on what we want to create with our game.
Game development at DICE is very attentive. I don’t think creativity is a skill as much as a mindset. We believe in the creative benefits of asking everyone to contribute with ideas and listening to all of them, no matter where they come from. Often, there are conflicting ideas within a team. That’s good. I don’t necessarily have to come up with the right ideas myself. My job is to point to the best ones and say: “This is what’s going into the game”. I get my ego boost from watching the game grow stronger and stronger throughout this process.
I often have a coaching role in the team. When someone has an idea for a new feature, I ask what the purpose of the new feature is, what we want to achieve with it, and how we can make it work even harder.
I vividly remember taking Battlefield 3 to the road for the first time. Having kept the game quiet, I still suspected we were onto something big. Seeing and hearing the audience’s incredible reactions to our live demo at GDC 2010 was an emotional moment. That’s when I knew we were creating something very special.
For me, the most rewarding moments at work are when we truly break new ground, like I think we are doing with Battlefield 3. I know we can achieve anything when we stop thinking things should be made like they always have been.”