that its Q4 and annual fiscal results are likely to fall short of the numbers it had previously predicted, EA had stated that it will reduce the number of titles it releases next year – though it stressed that most of its new IP is safe.
Having noted that 17 of EA’s titles this year have Metacritic averages of 80 or higher compared to jut seven titles last year, EA CEO John Riccitiello stated in an investor call that: Our response is fewer titles, more focus on those titles, and very likely, more investment to create demand for those titles. Cutting costs will not impact our commitment to quality or our investment in new properties and direct to consumer initiatives.
We’re very pleased with a lot of our new franchises this year. Spore looks like an ongoing franchise, Dead Space looks like a long-term big winner for us, Warhammer will continue to perform very well, Mirror’s Edge was very strongly reviewed. We’ll be looking at some issues around the design to make sure that strong IP is married with strong business.”
Riccitiello went on to add that the firm will be focusing more on online going forwards, stating: We are definitely seeing an ongoing shift to online gameplay and monetization. It’s not just an Asia phenomenon, but a global phenomenon. More online features and ongoing content that will create additional business models for us and help prolong the catalogue life of that title.”
The outspoken CEO also found time to highlight the struggles the firm is continuing to have with Nintendo’s Wii: We have a number of titles that are performing well on the Wii but there’s no question that having the lead platform be a platform with two thirds of the unit sales occurring to the first-party owner is a really unusual thing. We haven’t seen that since prior to the PlayStation 1.
For those who sell console games, that’s a challenge and something we have to contend with. We don’t think Nintendo’s a new factor there.”