Call of Duty vs. Battlefield "good for the industry" says EA

Labels president Frank Gibeau says competition drives innovation, is a positive for the industry, gamers, and developers.

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The ongoing struggle between Call of Duty and Battlefield for the top spot in the first-person shooter sector is a positive for the industry, EA Labels president Frank Gibeau told CVG in a new interview from Gamescom.

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Gibeau was asked if Battlefield 4 can outsell Call of Duty: Ghosts, to which he said his company's game will attempt to "lap" Activision's thanks to new services and innovation.

"Look, we are absolutely going for it," Gibeau said. "It's a competition and we feel really good about Battlefield 4, and we have an old saying at EA which is 'transition is our friend', and we're going to try to lap them with new technology, new innovation, and new capabilities. So do I think we're going to do better than last time? Absolutely."

Gibeau said when the original Battlefield: Bad Company came to market, the Call of Duty series held a 95-5 advantage for market share in the first-person shooter landscape. EA has since "pushed and pulled" to increase its share, Gibeau said.

"Something I learned from the EA Sports business--with regards to FIFA versus Pro Evolution and Madden versus 2K--these fights are good for the industry," he said. "They're good for customers.

"Competition drives innovation, and from our perspective some people snigger at these two companies going head-to-head but actually it's good for our industry, it's good for customers, and it's good for our dev team," he added.

Now that the Medal of Honor series is out of EA's regular rotation, other franchises will have to step up to fill the void, Gibeau said.

"The shooter rotation we think about now is Battlefield, Titanfall, and [Star Wars: Battlefront], and so we like those three brands going forward," he said. "We're working out how we're going to line that up because that's what you'll see from us. With regards to Medal of Honor, you try things in entertainment and if they don't work you try something else."

Battlefield 4 launches October 29, one week before Call of Duty: Ghosts arrives on November 5.

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