Peter Moore unconcerned about retail disappointments

EA exec predicts rash of underperforming launches for new packaged games will be followed by upbeat news of Black Friday sales

There hasn't been much good news coming out of the retail games industry in the UK and US lately, but Peter Moore isn't worried. Speaking at the Credit Suisse 20th Annual Technology, Media & Telecom Conference today, Electronic Arts' chief competition officer brushed aside concerns when asked if the release of new hardware like the PS4 Pro and Xbox One S was sapping dollars from the holiday software lineup.

"I take a long-term view," Moore said. "If there are dollars being invested in hardware, that is great for the industry long term. I don't worry as a video game executive about what's happening this week, or this month, or this quarter. I'm actually enthused if this mid-cycle refresh, which is unique and exciting to us in the publishing business, allows this generation to continue much longer and at a much higher rate than maybe it previously [did].

He added, "The numbers we have seen reported publicly obviously don't take into account digital, and we're seeing continued strength in digital. And we're going to see in the next few days I'm sure, some of the results of Black Friday... And I think, without giving the game away, I think we're going to be comforted, if not pleasantly surprised. But I'm optimistic, and certainly at EA we're not changing our guidance whatsoever."

When asked about the steep level of discounting on some AAA releases around Black Friday, Moore noted that such promotions are planned out months in advance, oftentimes before the games in question have even launched. He also added that given the current games-as-a-service model embraced by the industry, every copy of a game sold brings with it the opportunity to generate plenty of extra income down the line, which could be used to justify deeper cuts than the industry might have seen for successful games in the past.

As for EA launching Battlefield 1 and Titanfall 2 just a week apart, Moore downplayed the suggestion that one title cannibalized the other, again emphasizing a long-term view over the results of any given sales period, even the game's launch week.

"One thing we do incredibly well is take a great title like this and leverage it for many years to come," Moore said after pointing to the positive critical response to Titanfall 2. "We're going to be selling Titanfall 2 on a global basis for many, many years."

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Latest comments (1)

I think many investors of VR studio devs and VR projects will be surprised and disappointed by the constantly sliding forecasts regarding consumer VR system penetration - and the derailment of the hype-train and disillusions talk from some of the hardcore adds to a feeling that this sector needs to locate its core and regroup.

Note - I notice we have not seen much coverage of rumored returned PSVR system, buyers sighting sim-sickness as a reason for many of these returned units? Can nail down if this is a serious issue (and a possible factor staying Sony's hand on how hard they push PSVR?)

As one focused on the Out-of-Home entertainment applications of immersive tech including the VR component, I can not feign surprise that the hyped-business-approach of some consumer devs regarding this latest phase of VR adoption was faulty, but the speed in which the pendulum shifted begs many questions that main be uncomfortable to answer!

I think many of you will see, following the Universal / Nintendo theme park deal, the out-of-home approach is one that offers an interesting area of business - just that the needs of the consumer publishers means it is one not getting much publicity... yet!
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