Electronic Arts isn’t exactly the most popular company in the game industry. For years, the publisher has been embroiled in a number of controversies, including shady day-one DLC sales and the botched releases of high-profile titles like Sim City and Battlefield 4. In fact, many gamers feel so negatively about Electronic Arts that the publisher’s been voted the worst company in America not once, but twice.
However, a company’s more than just a logo and a series of buildings, and despite the publisher’s poor image Electronic Arts employees occasionally step up and do the right thing. For a recent example, look no further than the story of Roman, a 10-year old boy who lost out on a copy of Madden NFL 15 simply because he was wearing a Lions jersey.
Apparently, Roman’s grandmother gave the boy and his family tickets to see the Detroit Lions – Roman’s favorite football team – compete against the Dallas Cowboys in a highly anticipated play-off game. There was just one catch: the game was in Dallas, not Detroit. Undeterred, Roman wore his Lions jersey to the event. That’s where the trouble started.
Roman and his family arrived at the stadium early and participated in some of the stadium’s pregame activities. One of these events was a musical chairs competition, co-hosted by the Dallas Cowboys mascot, in which players could win a copy of Madden. Roman entered the contest and won. However, when the Dallas-based MC saw Roman’s Lions jersey, she demanded a do-over. Roman lost the second time around, and was sent on his way with some Batman DVDs, a Led Zeppelin CD, and no video games.
That’s a bizarre and petty way to treat anyone, especially a kid who’s just supporting his favorite team. Apparently, Electronic Arts agrees. After the story went viral, EA stepped in and gave Roman a PlayStation 4, his own copy of Madden, and a replica football helmet signed by Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson
Unfortunately for Roman the day itself didn’t get much better as: the Lions lost to the Cowboys and were promptly eliminated from the playoffs. However, while the Lions will still be sitting at home on Superbowl Sunday, at least Roman’s injustice could be corrected by a higher authority. Kudos to Electronic Arts for stepping up, and a word of warning to anyone hoping to score some free swag while in enemy territory: be careful what you’re wearing.