Battlefield Play4Free has 10% of BF3's budget

But Easy studio already commercialising beta of PC exclusive, says Cousins

Ben Cousins, general manager of EA's free-to-play studio Easy, has told that his new title, Battlefield Play4Free, had only five to ten per cent of the production and marketing budget of retail stablemate Battlefield 3.

The freemium model shooter is partly constructed of pieces of other Battlefield titles, using Bad Company 2's weapons and the maps from Battlefield 2. Cousins says that this was intended to make players feel a comfortable familiarity, but has had the happy side effect of keeping costs low.

A more important consideration for the studio, however, was how quickly the game could be ready to play.

"We were constrained, but we weren't constrained by costs. We were constrained by speed to market," said Cousins, as part of an interview published today.

"We're paranoid - in this sort of business you have to be very paranoid. We wanted to get something out as fast as possible, so that's why we used those assets. But like I say, there's a reason for using those features which is giving people familiarity.

"[We had] Just over five per cent of the budget of Battlefield 3. That's production and marketing. Five to ten per cent," said Cousins when asked about relative costs.

The game's microtransaction model, honed by the experience of Battlefield Heroes, is already starting to make some of that money back. According to Cousins, EA has already begun to sell customisation options to players of the game's closed beta programme.

"We're actually already commercialising the beta. We're already selling stuff and we're seeing the clothing items do really well. The key moment in our games, both Battlefield: Play4Free and Heroes, is the kill cam. As you know, you get killed by someone and you see them straight afterwards. That's the moment when you can say - 'I killed you and I am a badass.'

"There's another element too, which is the forums. People love to show off their soldiers there - taking screenshots and making a signature."

The full interview with Ben Cousins is available now.

Related stories

EA stock reaches all-time high ahead of Battlefront II loot box return

Company's stock rose 7%, peaking at $131 following recent financial results

By James Batchelor

Star Wars Battlefront II disappoints with over 7 million sold

Anthem delayed to 2019 to give it more space from next Battlefield game, holiday competition; Respawn Star Wars game to launch by April 2020

By Tom Mc Shea

Latest comments (2)

Luke Salvoni Senior iOS Developer 6 years ago
Interview link goes to a non-existent page.

Edit: Cheers Phil!

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Luke Salvoni on 3rd March 2011 12:08pm

0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply
Phil Elliott Project Lead, Collective; Head of Community (London), Square Enix6 years ago
Thanks - now fixed.
0Sign inorRegisterto rate and reply

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.