Annualized Battlefield games would kill the franchise - DICE

Battlefield 3 producer says yearly installments in EA's military shooter franchise would dilute the series; DLC add-ons a better way to extend life of a game.

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EA has positioned Battlefield 3 as its Call of Duty killer this holiday season, but don't expect the military first-person shooters to go head-to-head every year. In a new interview with Gamerzines, Battlefield 3 executive producer Patrick Bach said that annualizing the franchise would be a mistake.

Battlefield 4? Probably not in 2012.

"EA would never force us to release a game every year," Bach told the site. "I think that would dilute the vision of the franchise, and you will eventually kill the franchise by doing that."

He did acknowledge that it might be possible in theory for the series to be split between multiple studios to alternate releases (the way Activision does with Call of Duty) but said there weren't plans to do that currently. He also appeared skeptical that it could be done without a drop-off in quality.

"To us, we need the time to be able to create the next game that consumers will hopefully like," Bach said. "If we were to release another big Battlefield title next year, that would mean that we'd have less than a year to build it, and that would mean that we'd have to have another studio building it for us, which would mean it wouldn't have that DICE seal of approval, which would mean they'd just have to release a copy of the game we just released. Ugh, no."

While the Battlefield franchise has maintained an annualized presence in recent years with spin-offs like Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (2010), the free-to-play Battlefield Heroes (2009), the downloadable Battlefield 1943 (2009), and the original Bad Company (2008), it will have taken the series a decade to see its third main entry. Battlefield 3 is set to launch October 25 in North America on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC.

For more on the game, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

Discussion

226 comments
R4gn4r0k
R4gn4r0k

Can't even guarantee quality when you do a bi-annual release.

Racing_Fan_POV
Racing_Fan_POV

I wouldn't say Bad Companys are "spin-offs". That would be like saying GTA San Andreas wasn't a full game. Just because it doesn't have a number, doesn't mean it ain't Battlefield

goodbye77
goodbye77

'Without a drop off in quality'???? yeah right

isidrorozco
isidrorozco

raptures330 "I'll be the last one laughing when you load up BF3 and notice Bad Company and everything else that has happened in the BF franchise since BF2 is ALL OVER IT. Then you and your ilk will be posting epic nerdhurt all over their forums." lol, their using frostbite 2.0 you idiot, how do you not expect it to be like bc2? after alpha testing it, i can say yes, it looks like an upgraded bc2 but trust me... its not.

Awesomefroggy2
Awesomefroggy2

Goooooood. It's quality over quantity, and that's coming from someone as stupid is I am. Battlefield 3 deserves to be winner!!

Gameric69
Gameric69

Its all entertainment, keeping us off the street (doing dumb things...) Some love this, some love that... play and let play, i would say. Better than starting a war or bankrupting countries. Hope to catch u on a some future bf3 server or on some old cod4 custom map! Uzi does it.. peace !

xboxfanonly
xboxfanonly

@scatterbrain007 nope. if that was so the artical would say something like: the series would of taken a decade since the original. it says on the artical: it would have taken the SERIES, (its not pointing out the 1st bf, its the SERIES) to see its third MAIN ENTRY( main entry meaning the 1st bf and the ones that follow, which in this case is bf2 and eventualy bf3)

cornbeef5
cornbeef5

Great news from DICE! In my opinion annual games like CoD are the scourge of the gaming world. As the developers have to create a game in less than a year this means that the game is rushed, giving no thought to innovation and improvement. If all games followed this ethos the changes between titles would be so slow we would in all probability be stuck with graphics from 2005 and unchanging gameplay. Activision, take notes here: quality beats quantity any day

mattxbox360
mattxbox360

Good this means when the next instalment of Battlefield comes out it is of outstanding quality.

Henninger
Henninger

Smart move cuz COD is getting boring. & im a huge COD player. So no fanboy s*** over here.

MN121MN
MN121MN

Something COD franchise cannot understand nowadays.... Don't get me wrong, I'm a gamer and I support both oppositions...

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

@GAMERALL @raptures330 O.k, not gonna lie, it was fun typing, but I'm glad you both understand what I'm saying and I do respect what you both have to say. Yes EA/DICE did sell-out, and yes both IW and DICE are run by Nazis but there is nothing we can do... let's just have fun :) See you on the battlefield you two, I'll be the Assault Medic class saving your butts if you need help, or mowing you down if you're killing my boys! lolz. >:) Prepare the time is nye!

adventurer360
adventurer360

Glad it never has been annualized and hope it never does.

Ghosthunter54
Ghosthunter54

Good. Don't annualized it. CoD Modern Warfare (1) was an excellent game. It hasn't changed since - and that's bad. Don't do what CoD did.

awwedewacs
awwedewacs

Battlefield has been not annualized since the first game came out. Is it right? CMIIW

ericstifer
ericstifer

using their new engine to create new unique content is what dice does best. BC2 Vietnam is a perfect example. battlefield 1943 on XBLA was built on the original BC engine. Both offer vastly different experiences. call of duty is the same multiplayer every time but with a new single player story.

GAMERALL
GAMERALL

@dxBIGBOSSxb Man, you're loaded. :P OK, I'm not seeking more arguments. Though you're a fierce arguer, your hands must hurt now I'm sure. And we wanna leave some energy for playing the games instead of arguing about them. We're all discussing like gentlemen here. And I respect your desire of not wanting to have bad ties with anyone. Although it will take me some time to grasp those iron balls equations you came up with! Have fun. :D

Takeno456
Takeno456

Very glad to hear this. Quality beats quantity every time. Take note of this CoD.

raptures330
raptures330

@dxBIGBOSSxb All I was saying is that sentence is a lie. You can figure out a way to make it sound better but that sentence is a lie. They said "We won't be throwing ANY SIZED (they just said Battlefield) iron balls off the building every year." They did. They talked about not "diluting" the franchise. They did. They have a GREAT game. I like it. Lots of people were complaining. I can't wait for Beta and release. They should focus on talking about how awesome they are by themselves instead of all these cheap shots at CoD. Especially if they are twisted truths or lies. Just think it is not necessary for them to do this.

raptures330
raptures330

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

MrGoldfish1
MrGoldfish1

DLCs better not be just additional maps, equipment and vehicles. I also think DICE should remake 2142 and 1942 with the Frost Bite 2.0 engine.

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

@raptures330 So in terms of size and mass, 3 big balls + 2 Medium Balls= Roughly 7-8 little balls to Act. weighing equally the same in terms of game content, and replay value. 5 titles versus 8 on an equal scale. Add the 4-5 tiny balls to the scale and you outweigh call of duty, but your adding Arcade games, "minis", and low budget side projects giving an unfair balance to a battle of full price releases. You see? I know you'll respond but I have a life to get back to so don't expect another response. :( I don't want to have bad ties as you do seem very smart and know what you're talking about but I hate bad-blood. I have nothing against you or anyone I just want people to understand two sides of an argument and not one as I see no responses to these DICE backlashes. O.k? :)

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

@raptures330 I'm tired of typing responses. Let me make it simple. Yes, "similar" was a poor choice of word, but my defense still stands and your argument is disagreeable solely for the fact that you didn't mention how long it took to create the main title releases of DICE by commenting on other development times. If I were to take to iron balls and throw them from atop a building (Small one is Act. big one is EA), now I throw them. They land at the same time and I continue to throw each for a couple seoncds. Of course I can throw more of the tiny ones than big ones. Now if you go down and look at the two ball piles which pile had a bigger impact on the surface? The big one, but I only threw about 3, while I was able to throw about 7-8 tiny balls which covered a bigger portion of the street. Now take that into games, yes it takes under or up to two years for a CoD game to come out, so what do they do... they throw more tiny balls to fill the pit, increasing both profits, and impact, and insuring a never ending stream of main title releases. DICE WILL occasionally throw a tiny ball or two (2142, Vietnam, 1943, etc.) but it never makes the same impact as their bigger ball. While all the little balls scatter on the ground, DICE decides we need a medium ball, Bad Company, to level the area we need to cover.

AMRgamer3
AMRgamer3

I totally agree. Releasing a title annually would kill the battlefield franchise. Dlc content would be better, getting the most out of the game. Battlefield 3 would be good for me for about 3 yrs.

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

@GAMERALL Now, Call of Duty's Main title list lasts forever, so let's just start with CoD 4 and WaW. Now to start off, most people don't know this but CoD 4 was actually the BC for Activsion. Act. wanted to coninue milking the franchise through WWII games but the developers pushed Act.'s buttons to try something new. With the success of Modern warfare it made itself known as it's own series, while WaW was developed during or even before CoD 4. With less success to the WWII genres of games they made they said to everyone "Oh yah, Modern warfare is our game now", even though Modern Warfare is technically a spin off, they lied and said it was their plan all along while twirling their mustaches. EA/DICE didn't do that! They even said multiple times they never expected such good success and that their MAIN BF series was still their star player. If 2142 was as successful as CoD4, I guarantee they would have had the same response, being shocked at the success and NOT twirling their mustaches, lieing and saying this was our evil plan. I'm not saying their any better of a company than Act. as EA is just as evil, but what I am saying is that DICE gave credit to the fact it wasn't their original idea to make BF into BC like how Act. and IW said about Modern Warfare. I know I got off track but I can't ype anymore because I do have A LOT more I can say but this is too long... :(

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

@GAMERALL Remember when their was news that some former Infinityward members left to join DICE, as well as other out of work designers? It was all part of the hiring craze EA made DICE have in order to expand their production for not 1, but up to 2 game franchises they can milk.So in turn by a marketing, and advertising stand point, as well as budget and marketing goes, technically the Main titles of battlefield revolve around 1942, BF2, and BF3, and with the success of BC now being a sequalized spin off, technically there are 2 main titles now being sold by EA. Now comes the good part. Call of Duty utilized all of there games as a full Main Budget title release.

dxBIGBOSSxb
dxBIGBOSSxb

@GAMERALL O.k, I understand your argument but I do have a viable response to it. Yes EA may have gotten away with putting 2142, or any game released later, as a possible BF3. BUT(And this is a big but), EA/DICE did not market the games as viable sequels. Now this may sound like a dumb response but hear me out. EA is not known for being anything other than gimmicky, weather it's Pre-Order bonus's, bundle packs, or special code offers. This in tern affects their game criteria, and in saying any of the later games are true sequals is absolute bull. You see, EA doesn't care about it's customers as much as they do their sales, so to make money on the side BEFORE a big release what do they do? They sell lesser budget spin offs of an already made game series to kill the time, make some money, and wait for their next big BF game to release. After the initial success of BC1, EA saw this as an opportunity to make "Moe Moneh" by sequelizing a mere spin off, that way they can take in 2x the income. So what do they do this time? Increase their staff.

Revelstone
Revelstone

This is how it should be, those who feel the need to release a new game every year will continue to get NONE of my money be it the CoD franchise or Madden.

Calgar45
Calgar45

I like this statement of value. I agree with it.

funkmugumbo
funkmugumbo

I got lucky enough to get an alpha invite. For 5 days i ran around on operation metro in a state that can simply be described as video game bliss. Even in it's alpha stage this game is simply amazing. shooting out the lights before you drop prone and set up your m249 complete with bipod (that will mount on low walls, windows...) then unleashing a constant stream of suppressing fire. original plan was to buy both this and cod when they released (so i can finish the CoD story), but now i doubt i'll even think of buying Mw3 before i hit max rank in bf3

funkmugumbo
funkmugumbo

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

metaltorn
metaltorn

i know that annual release well kill the franchise, but i don't like DLC. because i don't have a live account. i need one, but my Hard drive died. man i'm screwed.

berzerk0912
berzerk0912

and that's how you keep a loyal fan base. I might get the pc version for the single player, and the console version for MP.

ebookerd1
ebookerd1

lets be honest Activision kills Franchises. If they could they would put COD's out a month. Relax you have more than enough fans to milk. They will end up pulling a Rock Band if they keep it up. I know I gave up on COD because I don't like being milked unless you at least add some strawberry flavor. LOL

Phaselinear
Phaselinear

Agree for the most part. Look no further than Madden football. I only play it about once every 3 years.

jsobc
jsobc

Love this article, however, don't push BF 2143 aside, and add in an additional faction to make 3 total, just have it for your next game :)

Ewangotkool
Ewangotkool

Well, at least Dice understands that milking a franchise kills the franchise eventually. Same Activision can't see this.

ShavdApe
ShavdApe

How refreshing to hear of a game producer thats not so interested in milking the gamer for all there worth. Thank you DICE for having some integrity and caring about the gamer as well as the game.

cejay0813
cejay0813

And why do people bash the BC spin-offs as if they were bad games. I understand that Battlefield 1942 and Battlefield 2 were beast in comparison but if BC was just suppose to be something to "pacify me" until the next big Battlefield release, it did a damn good job. Sad thing is, now I'm torn between getting BF3 on PC or the 360. I already know which one is going to be better from a technical aspect, but I've gotten used to playing in the living room on the big screen... Decisions, decisions

GreG975
GreG975

To what Bach is saying I just have one word: AMEN! Though when I read this article I can't help but think of what's sumarized in the statement: "While the Battlefield franchise has maintained an annualized presence in recent years with spin-offs"

raptures330
raptures330

@isidrorozco Obviously you are wrong. I have 4 (a few expansions) of the games not including the free one which I found to be boring. He spoke about THE FRANCHISE. It is up there in the article. Not "Vanilla BF". Understand what a franchise is? Carry on. I'll be the last one laughing when you load up BF3 and notice Bad Company and everything else that has happened in the BF franchise since BF2 is ALL OVER IT. I'll be enjoying it too while you are all signing petitions for the Command Rose and Commander... and 100 other things that aren't just like BF2.

cejay0813
cejay0813

Damn straight it would. Can you say 'over-saturating the market'. COD needs to learn from this. Take time and make a good game and then support the game throughout its life. Bungie does a pretty good job of this and look at their success. Besides have you guys played BFBC2 on a 51 in with surround sound lately... talk about a thing of beauty.

eynonz
eynonz

A game company with sense...... why cant CoD do this..... Oh wait i forgot, they love sucking up everyones money.....

GunGriffin
GunGriffin

HOnestly COD Gamers wont like BF no matter how much EA trys to get them to play it. Why? Because it has everything right up front and spaced out in super dumbed down terms, and mind numingly easy to fallow plot lines, and last but not least a super easy to play MP. COD is for simple people who like GI-JOE (1985 not the new 2010 show wich kicks butt) esc saterday morning cartoon gameplay, and story lines. BF on the other hand is about real weapons, and warfare across huge maps with the player having almost no limits to what he/she can do ingame, people who defend COD don't want to think outside the box, or even want to play a game that requires more thought and skill then COD, it's also why COD players hate Halo, and Gears of War. Because yet agian they are games that give the player a challangeing SP, with a story line that is there not to string along some random SP shoot outs, but to tell you about the people you meet, and what they go through. The Point I'm making here is if you gave a COD fanboy Half life 2 he would play it up till the second level and then complain it was too hard, and the story was wack............... He would also whine to no end about lack of MP.

stomponyahead
stomponyahead

With all this hype, I pray this game delivers. Because if it ends up how gears of war 2 or MW2 was, I believe alot of people on Gamespot/gamefaqs will literally kill themselves from the amount of dissapointment.

TheGreyArea
TheGreyArea

this is a great article. Can you imagine if there had been an Elder Scrolls every year? ... an annual GTA? I'm so pleased to read that DICE are aware of their own titanic market position, and the integrity of their franchise, with such a view to deliver a quality gaming experience, without diluting that game with pointless "revenge of the Moo-Cow" pre or sequels. Really looking forward to my first day purchase of Battlefield 3.

scatterbrain007
scatterbrain007

@xboxfanonly I think the article was stating it took 10 years to get to the 3rd sequel from the original game. Not to get from the 2nd sequel to the 3rd one. The orignal was released in 2002 so a little less than a decade, but close enough.

Hammershock6
Hammershock6

Im glad they are focusing on DLC for BF3 because its a multiplayer game, thats the main reason people want to play it. although it would be nice if they added more than maps, like new guns and new modes as the game would progress, a few new maps on BC2 was good for a while and with vietnam but its started to get a bit boring. What others should do for singleplayer DLC is release retail copies of it for people that cant afford the internet in some places. (you know maybe in larger packs so you dont get the manufacturing costs)

sniperwol_basic
sniperwol_basic

Thats the reason they are on top of the list. that is the reason they will kill cod forever

doomandcow
doomandcow

he is pretty much insulting COD without actually saying "COD is dumb because it is annually released"