The announcement produced quite a shock at E3, especially since id Software was known to be the ally of Activision. EA’s Partner program was a better deal, Carmack told GameSpot:

"I’ll admit that, if you asked me years ago, I still had thoughts that EA was the Evil Empire, the company that crushes the small studios…I’d have been surprised, if you told me a year ago that we’d end up with EA as a publisher."

"When we went out and talked to people, especially EA Partners people like Valve, we got almost uniformly positive responses from them.[…] they really offer a menu of services–Valve takes one set of things, Crytek takes a different set, and we’re probably taking a third set."

Kudos to EA for making the deal with id. The Activision-Blizzard merger is a real threat to EA’s position as top publisher, so the US giant had to offer more appealing deals. Hopefully, this might turn out in a good cliamte for developers.