Enthusiasm for controversial market neutered
In a financial earnings call for the third quarter of its fiscal year, publisher Electronic Arts has spoken of its disappointment with the under-expectation sales of its beleaguered military shooter, Battlefield 2042.
“We did have a challenge in Q3 as the launch of Battlefield 2042 did not meet expectations,” said CEO Andrew Wilson, in a call transcribed by Seeking Alpha. “Battlefield 2042 was always an ambitious game and our teams pushed to innovate across many dimensions including massive scale and 128-player matches, new modes, new dynamic gameplay, and more.”
Wilson also referenced the “unanticipated performance issues” that have bothered the title during its launch period, while also noting that some of Battlefield 2042‘s general design decisions and new gameplay mechanics might not have resonated with the franchise’s player base.
“Some of the design choices we made with the game also did not resonate with everyone in our community,” said Wilson. “We are fully committed to realizing the full potential of this game and fully committed to our Battlefield fans. We have already implemented a series of major updates to the game, and there is more to be done.”
In additional comments, it appears that EA might be backtracking on its initial heated enthusiasm to enter the NFT market. Despite the controversial scheme seeming custom-designed for Electronic Arts range of sports titles, Wilson stated during the call that the company was “not looking at anything at this juncture.”
“I believe that collectability will continue to be an important part of our industry and the games and experiences that we offer our players,” continues Wilson.”Whether that’s part of the NFT and the blockchain? Well, that remains to be seen. And I think the way we think about it, is we want to deliver the best possible player experience we can. And so we’re going to — we will evaluate that over time. But right now, it’s not something that we’re driving audience.”
Previously, EA had spoken of the NFT trend being a very important part of the gaming industry’s future. But it seems that the publisher is choosing to pump the brakes on that future, at least for the time being. As to what might have led to this sudden change of heart — we may never know.