On Tuesday (5), EA submitted its financial report for the third fiscal quarter of 2018 (for the period October to December), and the results were so below expectations that the company’s own executives admitted they were disappointed with the performance in the quarter.
According to the report, Battlefield V – the company’s grand launch in the period – sold only 7.3 million copies by adding up all versions of the game, about one million less than the lowest selling prospects for the title. According to Blake Jorgensen, the company’s CFO, DICE, the developer of the game, was blamed for the small number of sales, saying that the game failed because DICE was too worried about the single-player campaign and there was no time to develop Firestorm. mode battle royale) to be released along with the game. This mode should only be available in March, about 4 months after launch. In addition to the lack of battle royale mode, executives also cited a poor marketing campaign and high competition against titles such as Fortnite, Call of Duty and Red Dead Redemption 2 as others responsible for the low number of sales.
In addition to its console gaming sector, EA was also well below expectations in its mobile gaming industry, which posted revenue of only $ 142 million – down 23 percent compared to the same period last year. The company blames the result on the failure of the launch of Command and Conquer Rivals in the fact that they were forced to postpone another major mobile game release that was due out in the last quarter and in the changes made to the new version of Madden Mobile, which decreased purchases within the app, although there has been no change in the amount of players.
Despite the casualties, executives were keen to remind investors that the EA Sports lineup ( FIFA , Madden , UFC , NHL and NBA Live ), along with the Ultimate Team mode present in all of them, is still the basis of all the revenue of the company and the great responsibility for it to be operating in profit – mainly the FIFA franchise, which is seen by executives as a series of games that can stand out even in the most difficult moments of the market. The executives also highly praised Apex Legends, a game released on Monday (4) and has already reached the mark of two million players.
Future nothing exciting
Although he struggled not to get into details about Anthem, EA’s next big release coming on February 22, when pressed Jorgensen revealed that the game is expected to sell between 5 and 6 million copies by end of March – a very optimistic prediction given the poor performance of the public demo available in January.
Already in 2019, EA has confirmed that it has a series of console-based games on its release schedule for the end of the year, citing a new Plants vs. Zombies shooter (probably a Garden Warfare 3 ) plus a game from the Need for Speed, in addition to Jedi: Fallen Order (the Star Wars game being developed by Respawn), and also a new game related to the universe of Titanfall , but that the company did not mean if the game will be a sequence or a remake of the first game of the series. When asked about a new Battlefield in 2019, Jorgensen shied away from the questions and chose not to declare anything about. To conclude, the company’s shareholders were warned to expect “significant changes in the company’s organization and operational focus” by 2019.
Soon after the disclosure of its results, EA’s stock closed one day with a value of $ 76 per share – a drop of almost 18% in the previous value – reaching the lowest market value the company has had since the last quarter of 2016.