Star Wars: The Old Republic Subs Are Down; EA Investing $80 Mil Into Next-Gen
EA's fiscal results are in and they are unsurprising. The company made pretty much what they estimated they would, with total revenue reaching $4.14 billion dollars and a final quarter that seen them net a profit of $76 million. The real news, though, is that EA plans to dump $80 million into next-gen software, which should be interesting. However, as everyone has feared, The Old Republic subscription numbers are down.
First up, according to VG 24/7, they give a rundown of EA's financials and if you're curious how the company performed in each market, they basically lay out the details. But let's skip to the interesting bits, EA is investing $80 million into next-gen, but no word on if that means $80 million set aside for next-gen projects (e.g., $20 mil for this game and $40 mil for that game, and maybe $10 mil for two other projects) or if they're literally going to dump all $80 million into one next-gen game. It would seem silly to do the latter given that they could very well port over Battlefield 3 and just turn the graphics up to "Ultra" and call it "next-gen".The number might seem large to some gamers but given that EA's R&D throughout 2011 topped $1.1 billion, you could say that $80 million is throwaway cash for them.
Spending aside, Star Wars: The Old Republic has been plagued with bad news and rumors about losing subscribers. The rumors were true. Originally, the EA viral marketer mentioned that he had lost his job due to poor performance of The Old Republic and Mass Effect 3 (despite Mass Effect 3 racking in more than $200 million since its release), based purely on internal estimations at EA. Later, third-party server status reports indicated drop-offs of player populations on the many servers for The Old Republic. This very same thing was later reiterated by analysts who mentioned that based on their findings the subscription numbers were down for The Old Republic. BioWare and EA neither denied nor confirmed this.
As the reports from EA's fiscal results indicate, the subscriptions have dropped from 1.7 million down to a still respectable 1.3 million. In other words, Star Wars: The Old Republic is not the World of Warcraft killer many people thought it would be.
You can check out the rest of EA's stats over at VG 24/7.
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