Electronic Arts (EA) revealed in their Q3 earnings report that digital sales are on the rise and FIFA was played by over 40 million people in 2017.
Digital sales accounted for 67% of EA’s total Q3 earnings and that number includes games purchased digitally as well as DLC and Microtransactions. The company also recently announced that they will soon be bringing Microtransactions back into Star Wars Battlefront II.
FIFA performed well in 2017, with 42 million confirmed players. The 42 million figure only accounts for people who played FIFA on console, and doesn’t factor in PC or mobile players. It does, however, include Nintendo Switch players, as FIFA 18 marked the first time since 2012 that a FIFA game has come to a Nintendo platform.
On the mobile side, FIFA 18 added over 26 million players and fan favourite game mode FIFA Ultimate Team saw a 12% growth in players year over year. Ultimate Team lets players create their own teams featuring players from all over the world, and battle against one another or the computer in online matches. FIFA 18 was also the best selling physical title in the U.K in 2017.
As much as FIFA prospered in Q3, the rest of EA’s game library did not. The quarter saw the release of games such as Star Wars Battlefront II, FIFA 18, Madden 18 and Need for Speed Payback, but EA still posted a $186m Q3 loss, with physical sales declining year over year. EA CFO Blake Jorgenson noted that he expects growth in the future as through the fourth quarter and into the 2019 fiscal year EA will be ”launching games across five different genres, on three different platforms, and toplayers around the world. We expect growth in full-game downloads,subscriptions, extra content, and in our mobile business.”
EA recently announced that a new Battlefield game is coming in 2018 and that Bioware’s upcoming game, Anthem, has been pushed back to Q1 2019.
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