Battlefield 3 could have $50 million marketing budget - Analyst

Wedbush industry watcher estimates EA's push for Call of Duty competitor, projects 2 million sales for Star Wars: The Old Republic.

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In April, Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello said Battlefield 3 was designed to take Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 down, adding gamers could expect "a couple hundred million dollars" would be spent marketing the two competing titles. The lion's share of that money may be spent on behalf of Activision's blockbuster first-person shooter series, if a new investor note from Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter is accurate.

Expect a Battlefield 3 ad blitz closer to the game's launch.
Expect a Battlefield 3 ad blitz closer to the game's launch.

In today's note, Pachter estimated that EA will spend between $45 million and $50 million to push Battlefield 3 this year. In addition to the marketing support, EA has the DICE-developed first-person shooter scheduled to get a head start on the competition, with an October 25 launch coming weeks before Modern Warfare 3's November 8 bow.

Pachter also weighed in on EA's Star Wars: The Old Republic massively multiplayer online game. The analyst expects it will sell 2 million copies at launch, with 1.5 million of purchasers sticking around beyond a free one-month trial period. Earlier this year, Riccitiello told investors that the game could be "substantially profitable" with just 500,000 subscribers, with anything above 1 million monthly users making the game "very profitable."

For more on Battlefield 3, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

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