EA CEO talks Dead Space 3, NFL Deal, Battlefield 3

John Riccitiello says next installment in sci-fi horror series may join 5 million-seller club, confirms extension of pro football contract, discusses annualized military shooters.

Yesterday, Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello presented at the 2011 Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference. Among the various subjects touched upon was Dead Space 2, the sci-fi horror sequel that sold-in--or shipped--2 million units as of the first of the month.

EA's CEO is already thinking about Dead Space 3.

Ironically, Riccitiello said that number wasn't the most accurate measurement of the game's success. He said, "To be honest with you, sell-in numbers can be a little misleading because they can overstate or understate the case. I think the best measure is what the sell-through has been and Dead Space 2 compared to Dead Space 1 in a like number of weeks, has been about double, a little more than 100 percent growth. It's an example of how we can take a key intellectual property, put it in the marketplace, and then build on it. Games with 2s, 3s, and 4s behind them almost always sell better than the original launch edition."

Later on, Riccitiello listed EA's "strong, growing franchises" as being "Madden, FIFA, Need for Speed, Medal of Honor, Battlefield…Mass Effect…Dragon Age, and the one that's not proven coming later in our fiscal year is Star Wars[: The Old Republic]." He continued, "Now that excludes Dead Space because I think it will probably take Dead Space 3 before we get into the 5 million-unit cadence versus, say 3, 4 [million]." (Emphasis added.)

Riccitiello also touched on the report earlier this week that the EA-NFL exclusivity deal has been extended to 2013. He explained, "What was reported in the press was a bit more that I wanted to get out there at this point in time about our relationship with the NFL, and that they have granted us relief…against our licensed royalties in the event that there is a lockout this year. And what was reported in the press...it is fair to say is largely true."

He continued, "We did negotiate our P&L in the event of a lockout so we don't get hurt as much as we otherwise would. Second, we did extend [the deal], which was great. The one thing that was a little hard to interpret that was out that sort of implied that we pay more later for the [National Football] League [rights] than in the present, and that's not correct. So we have extended the relationship, but there's no quid pro quo in 2011 or fiscal 2012 for a larger amount at any given point in the future."

The executive also addressed his high hopes for Battlefield 3, due out on PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 later in the year. "I've made no excuse that I want market leadership in the first-person shooter business," said Riccitiello. "In many ways, I feel like we created the first mass-market first-person shooter with Medal of Honor. Unfortunately, during the transition to the PS3 era, we lost that. We're after it now."

He continued, "There's a great thing about an annual franchise, whether it's us or our competition. When you've got that annual franchise, it's a meal ticket. You can generate a great deal of income. One of the problems with an annual franchise is you don't take the time to reengineer the underlying code base, so it is, if you will, as next generation as it can be. So we think there's a window of opportunity here. We've been investing for three years to build this next Battlefield 3 game, [and] I think it will stand up as the best product in the industry this year. And we're going to get at 'em."

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Discussion

142 comments
Zner13
Zner13

Dead Space 3! Anyone ;)

ticklemonster1
ticklemonster1

i would be excited about a dead space 3.the second was a great game, but lacking on terror and missing epic bosses(and the multiplayer, while unique, felt tacked on)

Brewer74
Brewer74

Lets hope BF3 is a proper PC battlefield game, with 64 players and all the trimmings that made the other BF games great, especially BF2. I would like to see some variation on the Titan mode from 2011 too, that was a lot of fun. Looks like they have worked hard and BC2 had a great multi element, they just need to turn it to 11 for BF3. Here is hoping

u-got-served
u-got-served

Battlefield 3 .Game that is not for children.Will be the best game ever just like BF2.

XCameleonX
XCameleonX

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

DarkPhoneix85
DarkPhoneix85

@BlurKillerEX Yeah, that works. Eventually the ante has to be upped something significantly. Eventually Issac Clarke has to be on the front line of Earth's Salvation, cause i mean, they're always preaching about how if the necromorphs got to Earth, Humanity would be in real trouble and there has to be some closure on the hidden details of the markers and the race that may them. well, let's just hope all will be delivered in Dead Space 3

BlurKillerEX
BlurKillerEX

@DarkPhoneix85 Dead Space 2 is set on Titan, one of Saturn's moon. Its as close as it get can, maybe after destroying the 2nd marker, some of its fragments landed on earth? xD

killlo
killlo

well well look who's making lots of noise :) for a game series that most people didn't even know about Dead Space 2 is getting lots of attention this time around heck I bet theres people out there that haven't even played the first Dead Space and they are playing DS2 right now.

DarkPhoneix85
DarkPhoneix85

@BlurKillerEX Yeah, that's possible. Maybe even Mars would be good. wouldn't that scare you to know that the necromorph plague was only 1 planet away?

Sweendrix
Sweendrix

I could name a million things that the original Dead Space did better than Dead Space 2. Please don't make Dead Space another action oriented shooter. We have Call of Duty for that.

Sweendrix
Sweendrix

One last thing...please try and realize that Dead Space 2 sucks compared to the first game. Dead Space 2 is not a bad game...not by any means...but when compared to he first it pales in comparison. Please realize that giving Isaac a voice, speeding up his movements, and taking him out of the closed-in environments of the original did not help to make a better game! Dead Space 2 took several steps backwards!

Sweendrix
Sweendrix

Just a thought...the sense of accomplishment that came with the end of each chapter in the original Dead Space added quite a bit more to the game than most give it credit for and it just wasn't present at all in Dead Space 2.

Sweendrix
Sweendrix

Please make sure that you return the gameplay found in Dead Space 1! The original Dead Space was superior to Dead Space 2. It's not even close. Also...shut Isaac up. Let the player interpret what's going on...don't force feed him/her a story. Dead Space 2 was ok, but certainly not the incredibly awesome game that the original was.

BlurKillerEX
BlurKillerEX

@DarkPhoneix85 Isnt saturn's moon alr close enough to earth? Being in the same solar system and all...

emperiox
emperiox

Pretty excited for BF3! Keep it coming, EA!

SouthArmagh777
SouthArmagh777

It is always a balancing act between the investors and the consumer and meeting both fo their needs. I think based on the CEO's comments they may be starting to understand that. The investors propel the funding for these games just as much as consumers, even though we have very different needs out of this relationship. I can't wait for Battlefield 3 and am looking forward to a retooled, re-approached Medal of Honor.

Ghosthunter54
Ghosthunter54

So they're still in a deal to ban competition for football, huh? Hell, why work to make a better product when you can just make a deal that prevents anyone from competing with you?

DarkPhoneix85
DarkPhoneix85

smtgfx: Dead Space 3 = Coop and Tone down the horror... Dead Space 3 = Co-op and Increase the Horror ten fold. Also, maybe present this game in an environment dangerously close to Earth or maybe the necromorphs have finally gotten to Earth and you have to help stop the invasion.

simonsworld
simonsworld

am still loving BF2 so BF3 bring it on, and yea gonna be some great games on the way,most of them going to be hits for sure.

xdude85
xdude85

I wish Dead Space 3 was out now, after playing through Dead Space 2 I just have to know what happens next for Isaac.

smtgfx
smtgfx

Dead Space 3 = Coop and Tone down the horror...

pjordan0404
pjordan0404

between EA and activision got to go with EA

Starbound571
Starbound571

@Frost259: Truer words have never been spoken, at least in my case. I remember when they developed/published games like BLACK and TimeSplitters Future Perfect for the PS2, loved those, then came over to the 360, saw titles like Dead Space and the Madden NFL games (Which from what I hear never stop being good.) and thought "Wow, they're a real top notch developer/publisher!" Lately though, they're still churning out hits, including Dead Space 2, Mass Effect 2, Dragon Age, but I take issue with ONE little thing they're doing that they never did before... Yep, here it comes... The fact that you have to register an account with them for some content at times, and wait! It doesn't end there: You have to buy their games NEW in order to play them online or pay a premium to download an online pass to play online, (Battlefield Bad Company 2 VIP pass, Dead Space 2 Online pass.) or otherwise get some content for said game (Mass Effect 2 Cerberus Network.) Call me cheap, but they've got a LITTLE bit of an evil streak already buddy, as I know of no other publisher that did/does this (though please correct me if I'm wrong, plenty of developers/publishers have you register an account with them, but usually only for optional extras, like Ubisoft.) BioWare didn't take a stand against EA on this issue, but I'm hoping to the powers that be that Epic Games takes a stand against them involving Bulletstorm.

lilboicookie
lilboicookie

Whats is this Craptivision...Sequals every year -_- Pfffft dont milk deadspace

twztid13
twztid13

2k was charging $19.99. wont let me edit.

twztid13
twztid13

PLEASE don't let Activision buy Take2. btw, regarding the 2004 NFL games, @k was charging 19.99$. instead of trying to match that, EA went to the NFL & told them that 2k was "cheapening their brand." that was a major factor in the NFL exclusivity contract. i followed it from the day it was mentioned here @ Gamespot, and all this i mentioned was information acquired by the Gamespot News team. i never bought another Madden, and never will.

Frost259
Frost259

Dude EA has such a powerhouse lineup right now, and with Activison losing the GH games and milking the crap outta COD I think EA will get right back on top. Then become Evil and will go through the cycle of this crap again lol.

ICE_PREDATOR
ICE_PREDATOR

I'm so can't wait for Battlefield3 , DeadSpace3 , MassEffect3 and why not MedalOfHonor2

DEATH775
DEATH775

Wow Dead Space 3 and Battlefield 3, I can't wait.

fishless
fishless

@voldo25 & lowkey254 Actually it was 2K that was trying for an exclusive. The NFL loved the idea (more $) . The NFL went to EA and told them they had an offer from 2K. EA had to out bid or loose the Madden franchise. So, they signed a deal and EA had to bite their tongue and take the criticism or bad mouth the people that they just signed a Jillion dollar deal with. Source: http://www.veoh.com/collection/Master-class/watch/v63914382eKeJf6Q (It's @ 2 hr and 8 min mark) Edit - That's funny I'm getting thumbs down for sharing a link that clarified the issue.

Toplinkar
Toplinkar

Annual franchise may be good because we can get a brand new game every year. But this gamer feel that getting a new game every year is kinda pointless if every single one of them seems like the one from last year with a new campaign and a few modifications. I prefer to experience something new.

Decrate
Decrate

" We've been investing for three years to build this next Battlefield 3 game, [and] I think it will stand up as the best product in the industry this year." i sure hope so and i want that call of duty crap to die already

Pete5506
Pete5506

Really looking forward to BF3

nimaazad
nimaazad

I really miss mirrors edge 2 here , it was something different , though those titles above are all cool and great .

RapidFirE53211
RapidFirE53211

With the exception of sports games, I really hate the idea of an "annual franchise"....just spend the time to actually move a series forward ffs :/

lowkey254
lowkey254

"Unfortunately, during the transition to the PS3 era, we lost that." I'm confused by that statement. Otherwise I've come to realize that EA has bought out some great dev teams to make great games. Not a lot of milking going on, yet (not including Madden). I'm still confused at how EA can create a monopoly with the NFL game market and get away with it.

Torque203
Torque203

Love Issac Clarke but his story is done. i would like a whole new character for dead space 3. part 2 did the right thing and didnt end on a cliff hanger. Great series

edhc44
edhc44

"According to an October 2010 (...) document (...) Mirror's Edge has sold more than two million copies worldwide" "On August 3, 2010, EA announced the game has sold 2 million copies" Source of both quotes is Wikipedia. Now can you explain me why the hell we have Dead Space 2, he's talking about Dead Space 3 while Mirror's Edge 2 has been dismissed?

gudni
gudni

Dead space 3DS side story first please. I would love to play Dead space in 3D(affordable 3D).

Mc_Trickz
Mc_Trickz

Dead space 3?lol.Calm down!!!lol